Social Work Skills. Introduction Chapters 1 and 2. General Social Work Skills. As a social worker, You will serve people in all walks of life and in all kinds of situations. The range of settings in which you might serve is wide and varied.
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Chapters 1 and 2
... fundamental to social work practice.
The Social Work Skills Workbook
Barry. R. Cournoyer
What kind of social work would you like to practice in the future?
(Hick, 2002, p. 61)
Listen to the following audio recording of a client-therapy session
Write down what the issue is
Note what techniques the therapist uses
“I’m a full human being. I want you to be able to relate to me as one human being to another”.
"the practice component that brings
knowledge and values together and
converts them to action as a response to
concern and need (Johnson, 1995, p. 55),
"a complex organization of behaviour
directed toward a particular goal or activity"
(Johnson, 1995, p. 431)
method in order to further a process
directed toward the accomplishment of a
social work purpose as that purpose finds
expression in a specific program or service"
(Smalley, 1967, p. 17).
Skill is "the production of specific
behaviours under the precise conditions
designated for their use"
(Middleman & Goldberg, 1990, p. 12).
A "social worker's skills include being proficient in communication, assessing problems and client workability, matching needs with resources, developing resources, and changing social structures" (Barker, 1995).
Pre-existing characteristics of the client:
seeking help for themselves.
Factors that influence the quality of the
relationship between therapist and the client:
family is critical
Clients prefer therapists with advanced training.
Includes communication, relationship-building, & self-monitoring skills.
Good Interpersonal Skills
Should be able to listen to clients & effectively communicate with them.
Good Listening Ability
Genuineness, empathy, &
Unconditional positive regard.
These promote rapport with the client & build trust.
The expectation of the client that the therapy will lead to positive change
contributing to the therapist’s (theoretical) frame of reference and practice
The essential facilitative qualitiesbecome critical because when social workers consistently reflect these qualities, the risk of harming the person-and-situation tends to decrease and the probability of helping usually increases.