The professional boundaries and global scope of
social work and social work practice are governed primarily by sanctions
and constraints of educational preparation, ethical principles, social work
statutes, legislative regulations, code(s) of ethics, standards of care and
local case law, or some combination of the aforementioned.
The extent to which the scope of social work can
be practiced in a given society or setting is ultimately governed by
societal sanctions, moral imperatives, organizational constraints and
precedent requirements in statutory laws or other regulatory systems
Social work is the science-profession of social
well being functioning. Social work has a distinct “person-in-environment”
domain of practice and defining purpose that is directed to social well
being, individual and communal.
The central focus of social work is on societal
relationships that advance distributive justice and well being for all.
Value-guided and evidence-based knowledge and
methods of enabling others that are derived from the sciences (including
social work), humanities and human experience inform the function of social
The practice of social work employs two kinds of
dialogical process-guided social well-being/distributive justice
One is directly with individuals and families in
their contextual environments. Psychotherapy, psychosocial counseling,
group work, and social support methods of social caring principally aid
this kind of practice.
The other is indirectly with contextually
relevant environment systems, including societal validators, institutional
structures and social support resources, and their distributive
justice/social well-being impact on individual and communal social well-being.
Community development, social policy and social justice methods of social
change principally aid this kind of practice.