Why Conduct a Spiritual Assessment? A Theoretical Foundation for Assessment
Keywords:Assessment, spirituality, religion, spiritual assessment, religious histories
AbstractIn spite of increased interest in spirituality, the concept of a spiritual assessment remains a questionable practice in the eyes of many social workers. This paper develops five rationales to underscore the importance of including spirituality in assessment. These reasons can be summarized as follows: spiritual assessment provides insight into clients’ world views, serves as a vehicle to identify strengths, and demonstrates respect for client autonomy. In addition, the profession’s ethics implicitly recommend the administration of a spiritual assessment and, for a growing number of accrediting organizations and agencies, it is explicitly recommended.This paper concludes by discussing the implications for practitioners and educators.