Using the Consolidated Framework for Implementation Research to Promote Anti-Racism in Social Work Higher Education
Keywords: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.
Abraham, R. (2000). Organizational cynicism: Bases and consequences. Genetic, Social, and General Psychology Monographs, 126, 269-292.
Abrams, L. S., Garcia-Perez, J., Brock-Petroshius, K., & Applegarth, D. M. (2021). Racism, colorblindness, and social work education: An exploratory study of California MSW student beliefs and experiences. The Society for Social Work and Research. https://doi.org/10.1086/714830
Allchin, B., Goodyear, M., O’Hanlon, B., & Weimand, B. M. (2020). Leadership perspectives on key elements influencing implementing a family-focused intervention in mental health services. Journal of Psychiatric and Mental Health Nursing, 27(5), 616-627. https://doi.org/10.1111/jpm.12615
Allegheny County Health Department. (2021). COVID-19. https://www.alleghenycounty.us/Health-Department/Resources/COVID-19/COVID-19.aspx
Allen, M., Wilhelm, A., Ortega, L.E., Pergament, S., Bates, N., & Cunningham, B. (2021). Applying a race(ism)-conscious adaptation of the CFIR framework to understand implementation of a school-based equity-oriented intervention. Ethnicity & Disease, 31(1), 375-388. https://doi.org/10.18865/ed.31.s1.375
Asada, Y., Turner, L., Schwartz, M., & Chriqui, J. F. (2020). “Bridging, brokering, and buffering”: A theoretical exploration of school leaders’ engagement with local school wellness policy implementation. Implementation Science Communications, 1(1), 44. https://doi.org/10.1186/s43058-020-00029-1
Blackstock, U. (2020). Why Black doctors like me are leaving faculty positions in academic medical centers. First Opinion. Stat News. https://www.statnews.com/2020/01/16/black-doctors-leaving-faculty-positions-academic-medical-centers/
Chudy, J., & Jefferson, H. (2021, May 22). Support for Black Lives Matter surged last year. Did it last? The New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2021/05/22/opinion/blm-movement-protests-support.html
Council on Social Work Education [CSWE]. (2015). 2015 Educational policy and accreditation standards for baccalaureate and master’s social work programs. CSWE. https://www.cswe.org/getattachment/Accreditation/Accreditation-Process/2015-EPAS/2015EPAS_Web_FINAL.pdf.aspx
Damschroder, L. J., Aron, D. C., Keith, R. E., Kirsh, S. R., Alexander, J. A., & Lowery, J. C. (2009). Fostering implementation of health services research findings into practice: A consolidated framework for advancing implementation science. Implementation Science, 4(1), 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1186/1748-5908-4-50
Dancy, T. E., Edwards, K. T., & Earl Davis, J. (2018). Historically White universities and plantation politics: Anti-Blackness and higher education in the Black Lives Matter era. Urban Education, 53(2), 176-195. https://doi.org/10.1177/0042085918754328
Davis, M. (2021). Anti-Black practices take heavy toll on mental health. Nature Human Behavior, 5, 410. https://doi.org/10.1038/s41562-021-01058-z
Dei, G. J. S. (1996). Critical perspectives in antiracism: An introduction. Canadian Review of Sociology/Revue canadienne de sociologie [Canadian Review of Sociology], 33(3), 247-267. https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1755-618x.1996.tb02452.x
Delgado, R., & Stefancic, J. (2017). Critical race theory (3rd ed.): An Introduction. NYU Press.
Detlaff, A., Weber, K., Pendleton, M., Boyd, R., Bettencourt, B., Burton, L. (2020). It is not a broken system, it is a system that needs to be broken: the upEND movement to abolish the child welfare system. Journal of Public Child Welfare, 14(5), 500-517. https://doi.org/10.1080/15548732.2020.1814542
DeVlieger, S. E. (2021). Trauma-informed, antiracist approaches to developmental science [Student poster]. https://srcd21biennial.ipostersessions.com/default.aspx?s=1E-52-C2-66-AB-3D-98-98-2D-BD-77-5D-5A-1D-A0-65
Dixon, P. J., & Dundes, L. (2020). Exceptional injustice: Facebook as a reflection of race- and gender-based narratives following the death of George Floyd. Social Sciences, 9(12), 1-24. https://doi.org/10.3390/socsci9120231
Dominguez, E., Dukes, A., & Ivy, A. (2020, June). Becoming anti-racist: Being a better advisor, lab mate, and friend to Black colleagues. https://www.umass.edu/sbs/sites/default/files/assets/Becoming%20Anti-Racist%20PPT.pdf
Earl, J., Maher, T. V., & Elliott, T. (2017). Youth, activism, and social movements. Sociology Compass, 11(4), 1-14. https://doi.org/10.1111/soc4.12465
Figueroa, J. F., Wadhera, R. K., Mehtsun, W. T., Riley, K., Phelan, J., & Jha, A. K. (2021). Association of race, ethnicity, and community-level factors with COVID-19 cases and deaths across U.S. counties. Healthcare, 9(1), 1-5. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.hjdsi.2020.100495
Fussell-Ware, D. J. (2021). Gray clouds over ivory towers: Struggles facing Black, first generation social work research doctoral students. Advances in Social Work, 21(2/3), 298-310. https://doi.org/10.18060/24126
Gold, J. A. W., Rossen, L. M., Ahmad, F. B., Sutton, P., Li, Z., Salvatore, P. P., Coyle, J. P., DeCuir, J., Baack, B. N., Durant, T. M., Dominguez, K. L., Henley, S. J., Annor, F. B., Fuld, J., Dee, D. L., Bhattarai, A., & Jackson, B. R. (2020). Race, ethnicity, and age trends in persons who died from COVID-19—United States, May–August 2020. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, 69(42), 1517-1521. https://doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6942e1
Greenberg, J. (1990). Organizational justice: Yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Journal of Management, 16, 399-432. https://doi.org/10.1177/014920639001600208
Griffith, D. M., Childs, E. L., Eng, E., & Jeffries, V. (2007). Racism in organizations: The case of a county public health department. Journal of Community Psychology, 35(3), 287-302. https://doi.org/10.1002/jcop.20149
He, W., Zhang, Z. (Justin), & Li, W. (2021). Information technology solutions, challenges, and suggestions for tackling the COVID-19 pandemic. International Journal of Information Management, 57, 1-8. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ijinfomgt.2020.102287
Hounmenou, C. (2012). Black settlement houses and oppositional consciousness. Journal of Black Studies, 43(6), 646-666. https://doi.org/10.1177/0021934712441203
Hudson, K. G., Lawton, R., & Hugh-Jones, S. (2020). Factors affecting the implementation of a whole school mindfulness program: A qualitative study using the consolidated framework for implementation research. BMC Health Services Research, 20(1), 1-13. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12913-020-4942-z
Jeffery, D. (2005). ‘What good is anti‐racist social work if you can’t master it’?: Exploring a paradox in anti‐racist social work education. Race Ethnicity and Education, 8(4), 409-425. https://doi.org/10.1080/13613320500324011
Kelly, B., & Perkins, D. F. (2012). Handbook of implementation science for psychology in Education. Cambridge University Press.
Leeman, J., Wiecha, J. L., Vu, M., Blitstein, J. L., Allgood, S., Lee, S., & Merlo, C. (2018). School health implementation tools: A mixed methods evaluation of factors influencing their use. Implementation Science, 13(1), 1-13. https://implementationscience.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s13012-018-0738-5
Maher, T. V., & Earl, J. (2019). Barrier or booster? Digital media, social networks, and youth micromobilization. Sociological Perspectives, 62(6), 865–883. https://doi.org/10.1177/0731121419867697
McCoy, H. (2020). Black Lives Matter, and Yes, You are Racist: The Parallelism of the Twentieth and Twenty-First Centuries. Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal, 37(5), 463-475. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10560-020-00690-4 .
Miller, J., & Garran, A. M. (2007). The web of institutional racism. Smith College Studies in Social Work, 77(1), 33-67. https://doi.org/10.1300/J497v77n01_03
Mustaffa, J. B. (2017). Mapping violence, naming life: A history of anti-Black oppression in the higher education system. International Journal of Qualitative Studies in Education, 30(8), 711-727. https://doi.org/10.1080/09518398.2017.1350299
National Association of Social Workers [NASW]. (2021a). 2021 Revisions to the NASW Code of Ethics. https://www.socialworkers.org/About/Ethics
NASW. (2021b). NASW apologizes for racist practices in American Social Work. NASW. https://www.naswil.org/post/nasw-apologizes-for-racist-practices-in-american-social-work
Nilsen, P., & Birken, S. A. (2020). Handbook on implementation science. Edward Elgar Publishing.
Priniski, J. H., Mokhberian, N., Harandizadeh, B., Morstatter, F., Lerman, K., Lu, H., & Brantingham, P. J. (2021). Mapping moral valence of tweets following the killing of George Floyd [ArXiv]. http://arxiv.org/abs/2104.09578
Ross, K. M. (2020). Call it what it is: Anti-Blackness. New York Times. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/06/04/opinion/george-floyd-anti-blackness.html
Soicher, R. N., & Becker-Blease, K. A. (2020). Implementation of the utility value intervention: An adaptation of implementation science frameworks for higher education teaching and learning research. Cognitive Research: Principles and Implications, 5, 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1186/s41235-020-00255-0
Tinkle, M., Kimball, R., Haozous, E. A., Shuster, G., & Meize-Grochowski, R. (2013). Dissemination and Implementation Research Funded by the US National Institutes of Health, 2005–2012. Nursing Research and Practice, 2013, 1-15. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/909606
University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work Anti-Racist Doctoral Program Student Committee. (2020, July). Syllabus review: Guiding questions [Unpublished student committee recommendations]. https://www.socialwork.pitt.edu/sites/default/files/ardpsc_syllabus_review_guiding_questions.pdf
University of Pittsburgh School of Social Work Doctoral Student Organization, [@PittSSWDSO]. (2020, July 2). Today 114 @PittSocialwork students sent the attached letter to @CSocialWorkEd, requesting action to address issues of anti-Black violence, systemic racism [Tweet]. Twitter. https://twitter.com/PittSSW_DSO/status/1278818766403637249
Wolf, T. (2020, April). Order of the Governor of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania for individuals to stay at home. Office of the Governor. https://www.governor.pa.gov/wp-content/uploads/2020/04/20200401-GOV-Statewide-Stay-at-Home-Order.pdf
Zamalin, A. (2019). Antiracism: An introduction. New York University Press.
Copyright (c) 2022 Dashawna J. Fussell-Ware, Kess L. Ballentine, Ana T. Flores, Laurenia C. Mangum, Serwaa S. Omowale, Kristen T. MacKenzie, Adrian J. Ballard, Christopher T. Thyberg, Laura Ellen Ashcraft
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.