Advances in Social Work 2022-06-14T14:20:33-04:00 Margaret E. Adamek Open Journal Systems <p><em>Advances in Social Work</em> is a peer-reviewed journal committed to enhancing the linkage among social work practice, research, and education. Accordingly, the journal addresses current issues, challenges, and responses facing social work practice and education globally. The journal invites discussion and development of innovations in social work practice and their implications for social work research and education. <em>Advances in Social Work</em> seeks to publish empirical, conceptual, and theoretical articles that make substantial contributions to the field in all areas of social work including clinical practice, community organization, social administration, social policy, planning, and program evaluation.</p> Who Is a Social Worker? 2021-10-20T13:56:58-04:00 Patrick Meehan Jason Ostrander Shannon R. Lane <p>Defining social workers for the purposes of research is not as straightforward as it sounds. To date, researchers who have examined social workers as a group have used a variety of sampling methods. Multiple methods speak to the variety of options for defining social workers. Understanding membership within the profession is a precondition to understanding research about the behavior of those within the profession. This research note explores these sampling methods in detail. Each has its advantages, but none are without their own disadvantages, some of which bias their view of the profession. As researchers who have considered the political behavior of social workers, we consider six methods for sampling social workers that have been used to understand their behavior in this specific domain. Importantly, the sampling methods examined here can be applied to research about social workers outside of politics. These include sampling (1) members of professional organizations, (2) licensed social workers, (3) social work students, (4) graduates of social work programs, (5) social work faculty, and (6) members of social work-related occupations. After reviewing the advantages and disadvantages of each, we provide scholars a table for reference. The authors recommend that the Council on Social Work Education, National Association of Social Workers, and several other professional associations pull together members to explore a unified definition of social work through integrated practice and refrain from focusing on what makes us different.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Patrick Meehan, Jason Ostrander, Shannon Lane Managing Ethics Challenges in Social Work Organizations 2021-11-23T11:38:14-05:00 Frederic G. Reamer <p>Social workers are keenly aware of ethical challenges in professional practice. Formal ethics education strives to acquaint social workers with common ethical dilemmas in practice and decision-making protocols and frameworks. However, the social work literature includes relatively little information about practical resources promoted in allied professions that can be useful to social workers who encounter ethics challenges. This article discusses the role of four principal resources: informal ethics conversations among social workers and other colleagues (“curbside consults”), formal ethics consultations, agency-based ethics committees, and ethics rounds. The author includes illustrative examples demonstrating social workers’ use of these resources to manage ethics challenges skillfully.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Frederic G. Reamer Social Work Advocacy in Federal Immigration Courts 2021-10-14T15:08:26-04:00 Luis H. Zayas <p>Advocacy for immigrant families undertaken by social workers, attorneys, and other supporters to protect against deportation, detention, and unfair government policies occurs mostly in immigration and federal courts. Social workers bring unique knowledge and skills that enhance legal teams’ representation of immigrants. This paper provides case illustrations of social work’s contribution in three types of legal actions. One illustration from immigration court demonstrates the social work consultant’s role in cancellation of removal cases when undocumented immigrants have US-citizen children. A second case is a federal class-action lawsuit to end the detention of asylum-seeking families. The third case was a federal lawsuit to dismantle bureaucratic policies and procedures that undermined the legal rights and well-being of unaccompanied children. In each of these actions, social work knowledge influenced lawsuits that can have lasting policy impact. While this paper focuses on social work advocacy in immigration cases, social work extends to many other areas of advocacy in the legal system. Social work consultants must have a clear understanding of what the attorneys are requesting to ensure that they have the requisite knowledge and skill to be optimally effective and to practice ethically within the scope of their expertise. Other implications include maintaining familiarity with contemporary social and behavioral research and providing expertise confidently in written reports and oral testimony in court. When social workers bring their expertise to legal teams in immigration cases, they promote the profession’s expertise and help families facing oppressive policies.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Luis H. Zayas De la Iglesia a Servir el Pueblo 2021-09-01T10:17:07-04:00 Anayeli Lopez Rene Galindo Ruben P. Viramontez Anguiano RUBEN.ANGUIANO@UCDENVER.EDU Marianna Corkill Jennifer Jacob-Bellowe JENNIFER.JACOB-BELLOWE@UCDENVER.EDU Yesenia Weaver <p>Without initial resources and support in place for newcomer immigrant families, municipalities and service providers in new destination communities struggle to address social, economic, and educational needs of Latino immigrants and their families. The present study explored the role of churches and religious leaders in addressing the social, economic, and educational needs of Latino families in an emerging immigrant destination community. The study draws from in-depth interviews with five Latino religious leaders (e.g., Catholic priests and evangelical pastors) and Catholic laity. Thematic analysis was used to identify themes in the narrative data. Results illustrate Latino churches and religious leaders provided religious social capital (e.g., information, social and spiritual support) and served as cultural and language brokers (e.g., interpreter of language and culture). This study provides important implications and recommendations for social workers on how they can partner with religious leaders to serve Latino immigrant families in a timely, effective, and culturally sensitive manner.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Anayeli Lopez, Rene Galindo, Ruben P. Viramontez Anguiano, Marianna Corkill, Jennifer Jacob-Bellowe , Yesenia Weaver Maternal Substance Use Disorder 2021-08-05T13:59:05-04:00 Kristin Trainor <p>Pregnant women with substance use disorder (SUD) can face varying degrees of negative interactions with healthcare providers, including judgment of the individual’s value and involvement in their infant’s care. This research explored potential stigma and attitudes among medical providers within a maternal/fetal healthcare setting towards women with maternal SUD. An electronic survey was administered to 117 health care providers, including social workers, who work with pregnant women in an urban, Midwest, healthcare facility. Attitudes and stigma differed significantly based on the health care providers’ discipline. Healthcare providers who viewed SUD as a disease had a more positive perception of mothers with SUD. By building professional awareness, creating policy change, increasing education, and continuing research regarding maternal SUD, social workers have an opportunity to develop responsive support programs for healthcare workers and promote overall change within the healthcare setting.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Kristin Trainor COVID-19 and the Rapid Expansion of Telehealth in Social and Behavioral Health Services 2021-06-05T12:21:41-04:00 Melissa Hirschi Anna L. Hunter Susan L. Neely-Barnes Cherry C. Malone Julie Meiman Elena Delavega <p>The spread of COVID-19 changed the landscape of how social service agencies operate. Essential services providers have had to adapt and innovate in order to carry out their mission. As a result, technology has become an integral part of their service model, with an increased emphasis on telehealth services. For many agencies, the abrupt transition to remote services has brought about important conversations around access, use, policy, effectiveness, and efficiency. A qualitative, narrative study was conducted with CEOs or social work directors of 37 social service agencies in the Mid-South region to understand their experience and the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. Interviews were conducted and data were transcribed and analyzed. Thematic analysis highlighted seven themes: 1) a rapid transition to virtual services, 2) the need to improve infrastructure, 3) new technology and innovation, 4) barriers, 5) benefits, 6) funding, and 7) changes that will be kept. Implications at the client level include continuing to offer telehealth services. At the agency level, implications include managing the logistics of telehealth and the need for insurance and regulator changes. Implications for social work include ethical considerations for providing telehealth services and educating current and future social workers in the use of telehealth services.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Melissa Hirschi, Anna L. Hunter, Susan L. Neely-Barnes, Cherry C. Malone, Julie Meiman, Elena Delavega Social Work Practice in the Time of Quarantine 2021-08-16T18:29:26-04:00 Terra Rosten Georgianna Gaitan Pari Shah N. Eugene Walls <p>Using quantitative, qualitative, and photographic data that were collected early in the COVID-19 pandemic, this study examined the reflections of ten U.S. social workers on their experiences migrating to remote service delivery. Participants were asked to share strategies, opportunities, coping mechanisms, self-identified professional values, and predictions for the future of social work. Three primary themes - professional flexibility and creativity, connection, and recentering general-ist social work skills – emerged with numerous additional subthemes. The study’s findings underscore the critical importance of contextualizing service delivery mov-ing forward – neither adopting a one-size fits all approach for the sake of financial efficiencies nor failing to incorporate the lessons learned during the pandemic. As such, service delivery systems should adapt in such a way as to incorporate in-creased flexibility in meeting client needs.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Terra Rosten, Georgianna Gaitan, Pari Shah, N. Eugene Walls Pedagogical Strategies for Teaching the DSM 2022-02-11T14:44:47-05:00 Amy Levine Mariyln Ghezzi <p>The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition presents numerous ethical challenges for social workers. As social work educators, we are tasked with preparing students for clinical social work practice, which includes not only instructing students in the use of the DSM-5, but also emphasizing the importance of pursuing social justice and equity in clinical work. With the most recent revision, the DSM-5 Task Force attempted to improve cultural awareness and sensitivity – efforts that yielded mixed results. This article explores the changes, benefits, and shortcomings of these efforts to address cultural diversity and highlights pedagogical approaches for bringing this knowledge to the MSW classroom. We describe specific teaching strategies that underscore the importance of a strong cultural formulation of client problems and are designed to inspire critical thinking about the process of diagnosing. Social workers are encouraged to adopt these strategies for using the DSM-5 not only to better inform their clinical decision-making but also to better align their clinical practice with social work values and ethics.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Amy Levine, Mariyln Ghezzi Applying the Principles of Brain-Based Learning in Social Work Education 2021-10-15T15:49:20-04:00 Vickie Harden V. Nikki Jones <p>This paper contributes to social work education by presenting brain-based learning as a theoretical framework to understand the impact of brain development and brain processes on learning and teaching. Historically, brain-based learning was adopted in elementary and secondary educational settings to assist educators in determining the pedagogical strategies most salient to supporting cognitive processes. However, in recent years, emphasis on brain-based learning has also emerged in higher education. It is more imperative than ever that faculty rely on evidence-based methods and models of teaching in the learning environment given the life stressors and trauma experienced by college students, including the coronavirus pandemic. Brain-based learning is a well-developed approach informed by theoretical constructs in neurology, psychology, biology, education, and medical science. Implementation of the key principles of brain-based learning are associated with improved academic performance, positively influenced motivation, and supported retention of knowledge. Brain-based learning is a model well-suited for implementation in social work education and supports the experiential practices embedded in social work pedagogy.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Vickie Harden, V. Nikki Jones Technical Standards in Social Work Education 2021-11-16T13:45:39-05:00 Rachel Schwartz Laura Curran <p>Following larger developments within professional education, schools of social work have increasingly adopted technical standards as non-academic criteria for program admission and continuation. This paper examines the emergence of technical standards within schools of social work, articulates the distinction from and overlap with other forms of non-academic admissions and retention criteria, and considers their use in relation to the larger literature on gatekeeping in social work. Drawing on select legal cases, this review paper contemplates possible challenges associated with the implementation of technical standards, including issues related to disability law and due process. We argue that the development and implementation of technical standards in social work education raises complex questions related to inclusion and equity and poses unique challenges and opportunities for a relational and behavioral profession grounded in interpersonal skill development. Despite challenges, development of technical standards in schools of social work is worthwhile and can help manage the delicate and often difficult balance between serving as student-focused educators and professional gatekeepers.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Rachel Schwartz, Laura Curran Training Incoming Social Work Students in Motivational Interviewing Skills 2022-01-07T12:12:56-05:00 Allen Zweben Mary Piepmeier Kathyrne Leak <p>Field practicum settings often do not have adequate resources, staff, and time to meet the extensive basic training and learning needs of master’s level social work students beginning their first year of field placement. An innovative, empirically-supported motivational interviewing (MI) skills lab was created to provide students with supplemental skills training in preparation for field placement entry. The lab practice of MI strategies allows students to gain familiarity with effective methods for forming helping relationships, developing intervention goals, and understanding and resolving ambivalence about behavioral change. This paper describes the rationale for the experiential learning approach, addresses challenges encountered by students in learning MI skills, and demonstrates its potential effectiveness in addressing the learning needs of incoming social work students. We recommend that the MI lab be considered as a model for helping to prepare new students for agency practice.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Allen Zweben, Mary Piepmeier , Kathyrne Leak "The Problem is That Puerto Rico Does Not Have a Say" 2021-11-22T15:49:08-05:00 Dee Ann Sherwood Karen VanDeusen Mioara Diaconu Courtney Jones <p>This study explored the reflections of graduate social work students from a public university in the Midwest region of the continental United States, following a service-learning course in San Juan, Puerto Rico during the aftermath of Hurricane Maria. The course linked academic study and civic engagement through organized service with Proyecto ENLACE, a public corporation that unites eight communities and twelve grassroots organizations located along the estuary banks of the El Caño Martín Peña. Nine students and two faculty members repaired and painted a community center building. Faculty facilitated opportunities for critical reflection on the dynamics of power, privilege, and oppression in the context of working with communities during the reconstruction phase of the disaster. Students met with Puerto Rican community members and social workers to learn about their experiences and perspectives. Qualitative analyses of a student focus group revealed themes in students’ learning processes, students' perceptions of trauma and resilience among community members and disaster relief workers, environmental justice in Puerto Rico, and the increased visibility of macro-level practice opportunities. We recommend critical reflection as a valuable pedagogical tool for social work education and requisite for skill development and transfer learning.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Dee Ann Sherwood, Karen VanDeusen, Mioara Diaconu, Courtney Jones Using a Flipped Classroom Approach to Teach Research 2021-10-15T14:08:46-04:00 Beverly A. Wagner Sharon Bowland <p>Challenges abound in assisting social work students to comprehend the value of scientific inquiry and to use research to inform their practice. Student research anxiety and low levels of research confidence are often at the heart of this reluctance. This article offers a conceptual rationale and strategies for developing a flipped classroom approach in teaching research. Kolb’s experiential learning cycle provides a theoretical lens to understand the importance of hands-on experiences for student learning and how these experiences can assist student development of research-related competencies. The authors propose a conceptual model and application of Kolb’s cycle through case examples at both the BSW and MSW levels. The authors recommend application of a flipped classroom approach to increase opportunities for self-paced learning and as a useful strategy for students who are second language learners.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Beverly A. Wagner, Sharon Bowland Evaluation of Interprofessional Practice Education for Master of Social Work Students 2021-09-14T16:00:59-04:00 Matthew A. Walsh Jeremiah W. Jaggers Carol Satre James Hall <p>As interprofessional education (IPE) continues to grow as part of social work programs, it is important to evaluate how best to engage students in understanding this material and explore possible barriers. With this in mind, researchers conducted qualitative interviews and focus groups to explore perceptions of three cohorts of social work students (n=29) participating in short-term interprofessional practicum experiences. Perceived benefits included improvements in communication and client care. The study also uncovered various barriers with implementing IPE-focused practicums such as time, scheduling and role uncertainty. Students shared the impact their experience had on knowledge and perceptions of the social work role in interprofessional collaboration. Even so, students were able to observe important elements of interprofessional practice from these relatively short practicums, indicating they may be a viable option for programs looking to expose students to real world interprofessional experience.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Matthew Walsh A., Jeremiah Jaggers W., Carol Satre, James Hall Spring 2022 Editorial 2022-06-07T16:44:12-04:00 Margaret E. Adamek <p>In the Spring 2022 issue of <strong><em>Advances in Social Work, </em></strong>we are pleased to present 14 papers written by 40 authors from different regions of the U.S. The articles in this issue include a selection of empirical studies (n=6) and conceptual pieces (n=8). While the 14 articles cover a wide range of topics, two underlying themes include supporting different aspects of diversity in practice and in social work education and discovering the virtues of virtual practice. This issue begins with an important Letter to the Editor from four social work colleagues, <strong><em>Jessica Aldrich Strassman, Sara Schwartz, Eugenia Weiss, </em>and<em> Ann Petrila,</em></strong> who call all social work professionals to be prepared to address the re-traumatization that the war in Ukraine is having on people globally—especially those who experienced similar trauma from World War II and other major conflicts. The mental health impact of war trauma and forced migration, even intergenerationally, is something that all social workers need to be informed about.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Margaret E. Adamek Everyone’s War Becomes My War 2022-04-18T13:32:19-04:00 Jessica Aldrich Strassman Sara L. Schwartz Eugenia L. Weiss Ann Petrila <p>The invasion of Ukraine has been difficult to watch for individuals around the world. Feelings of disbelief and helplessness arise as violent images of murdered children, bombed apartment buildings and shelters, and fleeing families waiting in freezing temperatures at border crossings flash across our screens. This is especially challenging for survivors of World War II (WWII) and their descendants, particularly Holocaust survivors of Eastern European and Ukrainian descent. The impact, however, is not limited to this population and has been felt by survivors of war crimes committed in Bosnia, Syria, and elsewhere.</p> 2022-06-14T00:00:00-04:00 Copyright (c) 2022 Jessica Aldrich Strassman, Sara L. Schwartz, Eugenia L. Weiss, Ann Petrila