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An introduction to the main theoretical traditions informing the practice of social work in the Aotearoa/New Zealand context, their expression in Social Work methods, and the location of these theories and models within an overview of theoretical perspectives.
This paper provides the foundation for the social work professional programme for
both on-campus and distance students. It provides an overview of theory using the
ecological model as a framework. The purpose of this paper is to explore the application
of theory to social work practice in Aotearoa/New Zealand. The content covers theories
and models that shape assessment and guide intervention at each of the three levels
of the ecological model. This paper introduces the concept of practice frameworks,
which allow for the integration of different theories and models in a coherent manner.
Theories and models introduced during this paper will be critically evaluated in relation to culture, class, gender, age and ability. Given that many of these theories and models have been developed in other contexts, their relevance for practice in Aotearoa/New Zealand is explored. Students are also encouraged to evaluate these theories in relation to their own values. The material provided in lectures will be applied to case studies to provide students with the opportunity to explore the practical application of theory. Students will have the opportunity to critically evaluate theories and models from the perspective of their practical application and their own values. In the final assignment students will be required to develop their own framework for practice and apply this to their chosen case study.
|Paper title||Theories and Methods of Social Work|
|Teaching period(s)||Semester 1
Semester 1 (On campus)
|Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD)||$929.55|
|International Tuition Fees||Tuition Fees for international students are elsewhere on this website.|
- SOWK 551, SOWX 301
- Limited to
- Non-BSW students may be admitted to this paper with approval from the Head of Department of Sociology, Gender and Social Work.
- More information link
- Teaching staff
Course Co-ordinator: Associate Professor Nicola Atwool
- Paper Structure
- The paper is divided into three modules exploring theories and models that shape social work practice at micro- (individuals and families), meso- (organisations and communities) and macro- (societal and political) levels.
- Connolly, M. & Harms, L. (2019) Social work. From theory to practice. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
- Gardner, F. (2016). Working with human service organisations (2nd ed.) Melbourne: Oxford University Press
- Course outline
- A course outline will be provided at the commencement of the paper.
- Graduate Attributes Emphasised
- Critical thinking, Cultural understanding.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
- Learning Outcomes
- By successfully completing this paper students will
- Develop critical analytical skills on the areas of social theories and methodologies examined in the paper
- Understand the nature and causes of social inequality and poverty
- Critically assess differing explanations of problems and their practical implications for change
- Develop communication ability within the context of social services provision
- Be able to analyse the basis and effectiveness of current practice models
- Develop skills of critical reflection on one's own professional practice