Using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research to Promote Anti-Racism in Social Work Higher Education


  • Dashawna J. Fussell-Ware University of Tennessee Knoxville
  • Kess L. Ballentine School of Social Work, Wayne State
  • Ana T. Flores School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh
  • Laurenia C. Mangum School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh
  • Serwaa S. Omowale University of California
  • Kristen T. MacKenzie School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh
  • Adrian J. Ballard University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work
  • Christopher T. Thyberg University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work
  • Laura Ellen Ashcraft School of Social Work, University of Pittsburgh



CFIR, Social Work Education, Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research, Anti-racism, higher education, doctoral education, implementation science


Recognizing a clear call to dismantle traditionally racist structures within our nation, doctoral students at the University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work formed the Anti-Racist Doctoral Program Student Committee (ARDPSC) to push for systemic changes within our school and profession to eliminate anti-Black racism. Our student-led initiative is an innovative approach for two reasons. First, we strengthened our community virtually despite the limitations of COVID-19 and virtual spaces. Second, although collective organizing among students can be seen as threatening, we held a tension between agitation and collaboration, and contributed to, rather than disrupted, implementation of anti-racist reform. We map our experiences onto the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research (CFIR) using narrative data and documents produced by our committee. First, we describe how we built anti-racist group processes, established brave working environments, and integrated processes to reflect on change at various system levels. Next, we describe our actions to push our school and profession to be anti-racist and assess outcomes using the CFIR. Finally, we share our reflections on how to continue this work. We hope to document our experiences and reflect on how social work student groups can contribute to dismantling white supremacy and rebuilding institutions with an anti-racist approach.

Author Biography

Serwaa S. Omowale, University of California

University of California, San Francisco Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology, & Reproductive Sciences


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