Social Work:

Emergence of a Holistic

Design Science - Profession

 

 

The Art and Science of Social Well-Being

 

A. Discipline/Profession development

          area-domain

                   describes unique nature of science/profession

                   where the work of the science/profession is done

 

          ontological view (nature of reality)

                   divided wholeness

                             modern science

                             up to the 20th century

                   undivided wholeness

                             postmodern science

                             20th century and beyond

 

          underlying perspectives

                   psychodynamical

                             informed early 20th C social work practice

                   ecological systems

                             shallow

                                      informed mid 20th C social work practice

                             deep

                                      emergent perspective for late 20th C social work practice

                   holistic systems

                             deep interconnectedness

                   ecological-holistic

                             “ecoholism”

                                      biopsychospiritualsocial/anibiopsychosocial

                                      environment (natural and social)

 

          person-in-environment/situation/context/network

                   pioneer (early 20th century) conception

                             Richmond, Social Diagnosis

                   mid century transformation

                             Bartlett, Common Base of Social Work

                   central focus of change effort

                             interactions/relationships/interconnections

                   primary units of attention/analysis

                             entities

                                      dual purpose

                                      early to mid 20th C

                             networks

                                      unifying purpose

                                      late 20th C and early 21st C

                                      possible new domain; person-environment network (PEN)

 

          profession influences

                   distinguishing features

                             applied through human delivery

                             value-guided

                             ethical expectations

                             standards of practice

                             altruistic motives

          science influences

                   Newtonian - basic research; knowledge development science

                             pure/basic science

                   Baconian - applied research; knowledge application through tools

                             applied science-profession

                   Jeffersonian - social problem research; social caring science

                             generally unfamiliar to social workers

                             social design science-profession

                                      influenced by Fuller’s geometric thinking

- sees environment and human condition relationships as being ever improvable

                                                - structuring of environments to advantage all

                                                humanity without harm to environment           

                                                - method is premised on (w)holism - one of always

                                                starting with the whole and working toward the

                                                particular

 

B. Discipline/Profession consensus - Thomas Kuhn

          consolidation

          folding to a status of exclusivity

          separateness

          specialisation

 

C. Discipline/Profession boundary

          paradigm adherents - Thomas Kuhn

- a community of like minded people adhere around common question(s):          

                   - declared domain; articulated problems of concern; value declarations;

- declared ethical principles and standards; methods of service; curriculum, content, sanctions, knowledge base, etc..        

          ontological perspective -  determining the nature of reality

                   divided wholeness (Cartesian)

                             independence in 3-D space-time

                             part - to - whole understanding of reality

                             observer - 3-D space separateness

                   undivided wholeness (Bohm)

                             interdependence in 4-D space-time

                             whole-to-part understanding of reality (Fuller)

                             4-D observer - space interrelationships

 

          epistemological base - determining the nature of knowledge

                   linear, predictable, proportional

                             17th - 20th C science; modern science

                                      reductionist

                                      analytical

                                      central tendency norms/averages

                                      sum of behavior of parts equals behavior of whole

                   nonlinear, unpredictable, disproportional

                             20th C science; postmodern science-

holistic                  

                                      synthetical

                                      skewed tendency norms

                                      whole cannot be predicted from behavior of parts

         

          philosophy

                   ancient

                             charitable

                   philanthropic

                             humanistic

                   scientific

                             professional

                   value-guided

                             primary values

                             instrumental values

 

          history

                   Feudal -  Industrial systems

                             New order dependency: self-reliant & independence norms

                             Moral classifying: helpless, worthless, homeless children

English Poor Laws - state emergence over church & family responsibilities

                   Malthusian economics  (early 1800s)

                             scarcity of resources are unable to advantage all

                             rights of privileged few

                             right to life has to be earned

                   Darwian natural selection

                             local environment adaptation

                             culturally pressured to endorse evolutionary progress

                   Social Darwianism (late 1800s)

                             Spencer

                                      survival of the socially fit

                                      elimination of social misfits

                   Applied philanthropy - charitable treatment of dependency

                             Charity Organization Systems (COS)

                                      Friendly visitors

                             Settlement Houses

                                      live-in-neighbors

                             Social Reform

                                      dedicated social activists

                             Womens Movement

                                      dedicated equal rights advocates

 

                   Scientific philanthropy

                             “socialization work” becomes “social work”

                                      open to career minded women

                                      focus on social functioning

                                      disciplined effort instead of self-interest charity

                                      apprenticeship training

                                      social medicine advocate Rene Sand

                                      first school of social work in U.S., NYSS,1905

                                      first school of social work in Canada, U of T, 1914

 

                             social casework

                                      skill based method

                                      aspiring for profession status

                                      Flexner’s critique (1915)

                                      Flexner’s racist, paternalistic attitudes (Ernest Just)

                                      Einstein’s theory of relativity (1915)

                                      Richmond - Addams divisive rivalry (1910-1920)

                                      Richmond’s “Social Diagnosis” (1917)

                                      U.S. Red Cross “firing” of social work (1923)

                                      Freud’s psychoanalytical human development

 

                             fields of practice leading to specialized casework methods

                                      medical                           psychiatric

                                      school                                       family

                                      child welfare                    corrections

 

                             generic social casework method

                                      Milford Conferences (1925-1929)

 

                             dominant social casework methods

                                      Diagnostic School

                                                Freudian foundation

                                                          deterministic science roots (pre-20thC)

                                                          systematic stages

                                                          study - diagnose - treat methodology

                                      Functional School

                                                Rankian foundation

                                                          quantum science roots (early 20thC)

                                                          systemic patterns

                                                          relationships - functions - time

 

                             professional identity through differential methods (before 1970s)            

                                       social casework

                                                social groupwork

                                                community organization

                                                          added later

                                                social administration

                                                social research

                             micro-macro dichotomies (1960s)

                                      Clinical (direct)

                                                individual

                                                family

                                                small groups

                                      Community (indirect)/Social reform

                                                locality development

                                                          participatory action research

                                                social planning

                                                social action

 

                             professional identity transforms to scope of practice (after 1970s)

                                      person-in-environment domain

                                                Hamilton (1951) - organismic

                                                Boehm (1958) - interactions

                                                NASW definition (1958) - social functioning

                                                CSWE curriculum study (1959) - central focus

 

                                      common triangular base of social work (1970) - Bartlett

                                                social functioning (domain)

                                                orientation (broad-based profession)

                                                intervention repertoire (methods)

 

                                      systems models of social work

                                                developers

                                                          Pincus and Minahan (1973)

                                                          Goldstein (1973)

                                                          Compton and Galway (1975)

                                                          Meyer (1976, 1983)

                                                          Germain and Gitterman (1980)

                                                         

                                      knowledge foundations

                                                general systems (von Bertalanffy)

                                                          Hearn, Gordon (social work application)

                                                          Smalley, Ruth (social work application)

 

                                                ecological systems (Handler)

                                                          Germain & Gitterman (social work)

 

                                                natural whole systems (Fuller)

                                                          Ramsay (social work)

 

                                      minimum whole/tetrahedral system framework                             

                                      Common whole of social work (1994)

                                                                   Domain of practice

                                                                   Paradigm of the profession

                                                                   Domain of practitioner

                                                                   Method(s) of practice

 

                   theory

                             modern

                                      reductionist science

classical, initial condition, cause & effect determinism

                                                          psychoanalytical theory

                                                          counselling theory

                             postmodern

                                      complexity science

                                                sensitive dependence conditions, cause & effect

                                                probability

                                                          chaos theory

                                                          synchronicity

                                      indigenous science                                      

Blackfoot physics

 

                   social assignment (Popple, 1988)

                             dependency problems 

                                      domain perspective; problems issue

                   problematica (Tucker, 1996)

                             social caring profession perspective; solution issue

 

                   comprehensive conceptual framework/model (Ramsay, 1994)

                             holistic scope- common whole of social work

 

                             Domain of practice

                                      social well-being/social functioning objective

                                                dimension of health (WHO) -shared domain

                                                          ani (anima, spiritual)

                                                          bio (physical)

                                                          psychological

                                                          social

                                      person-in-environment domain - unique boundary

person(s) - differential sizes: individual to community            

                                      roles (Karls and Wandrei, 1994)

                                                                   family

                                                                             parent

                                                                             spouse

                                                                             child

                                                                             sibling

                                                                   other interpersonal

                                                                             lover

                                                                             friend

                                                                             neighbor

                                                                   occupational

                                                                             worker

                                                                             student

                                                                   life situation

                                                                             consumer

                                                                             patient/client

                                                                             probationer

                                                                             immigrant

                                                                             prisoner

                                                                   relationships types

                                                                   dependency

                                                                   power

                                                                   victimization

                                                                   isolation

                                                                   loss

                                                                   ambivalence

                                                environmental strengths-problems

                                                          social context

                                                          validator otherness

                                                                   resource otherness

                                                                   personal otherness

 

                                      social functioning

                                                person

                                                          self validators

                                                          life aspirations

                                                          life tasks

                                                          distress alleviation

                                                environment

                                                          otherness validators

                                                          opportunities

                                                          services

                                                          resources

 

                             Paradigm of profession: nature of discipline

                                      common boundary –common whole of social work

                                                comprehensive framework/model

                                                          generalist perspective - BSW

                                                                   - professional practice framework

                                                                   - general problem-solving method

                                                          specialist perspective - MSW, PhD

                                                                   - personal practice frameworks

                                                                   - specialized fields and methods

                                                                   - research  

                                      change perspective

                                                planned change

                                                          predictable interventions

                                                          linear outcome measures

                                                critical disturbance change

                                                          sensitive dependence interventions

                                                          non-linear outcome measures

                                      strategic practice options

                                                systems

                                                          - client - contractual

                                                          - target - influencing others to benefit

                                                          client/others

- action - working with others to benefit client

                                                          - change agent system - employer of social

                                                          worker

                                                ecological

                                                          micro - person centred

                                                          messo - person-personal relationships

                                                          mezzo - resource-resource relationships

                                                          macro - person-public relationships

                                                structural

                                                          intended beneficiaries -  persons engaged

                                                          client - other

                                      functions

                                                linking

                                                problem-solving

                                                communication between

                                                communication within

                                                dispensing resources

                                                social policy and humaneness

                                                social control/monitoring

                                                social change

                                      roles

                                                informer/referrer

                                                counsellor-therapist

                                                facilitator

                                                mediator

                                                supporter

                                                educator

                                                advocate - activist

                                                enforcer

                                      relationship stances

                                                cooperative - enabling

                                                collaborative - reciprocal

                                                conflictual - adversarial

 

                             Domain of practitioner: disciplined use of self

                                                values

                                                          primary

                                                          instrumental

                                                ecoholistic caring

                                                disciplined self-disclosures

                                                personal experiences of phobias and “isms”

 

                             Method(s) of Practice: repertoire of methodologies

                                                direct - indirect

                                                micro, messo, mezzo, macro

                                                micro, mid, macro, professional

                                                          dialogue

                                                          discovery

                                                          development

                                                general problem-solving/solution-seeking

                                                          intake and engagement

                                                          data collection and assessment

                                                          planning and contracting

                                                          intervention and monitoring

                                                          evaluation and termination

                                                function of worker-client relationship

                                                          coempowering

                                                          synergetic

                                                          generates progress

                                                pathways, phases, tasks

 

                   principles, ethics, standards of conduct, policies and procedures

                             international - IFSW principles and definition

                             national - CASW Code of Ethics, Scope of Practice

                             provincial - ACSW Standards of Practice, legislation

                             local - employment policies and procedures

 

C. Scope of Profession

          - domain and orientation

 

D. Scope of Practice

          - bounded and constrained by domain and orientation; guided by the problematica of caring; addressed through methods of teaching and development.     

 

R. Ramsay, Faculty of Social Work

University of Calgary

September 2003