Undergraduate Course: Working with Self & Others: Skills Theories & Methods (UG) (SCWR10031)
|School||School of Social and Political Science
||College||College of Humanities and Social Science
|Credit level (Normal year taken)||SCQF Level 10 (Year 3 Undergraduate)
||Availability||Not available to visiting students
|Summary||PLEASE NOTE: THIS COURSE IS ONLY FOR STUDENTS ON THE BSC SOCIAL WORK DEGREE PROGRAMME
Working with vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals and groups is demanding for the social work professional who is often working in complex, chaotic situations and with service users who are not always receptive to such intervention. To operate at a satisfactory professional level and to ensure safety for self and service users, it is essential that professionals develop a heightened self awareness of their motivation for undertaking social work and an understanding of their own personal history and its impact upon their values, vulnerabilities and skills. Such awareness in turn informs the development of professional skills and the acquisition and application of theoretical methods of practice.
The focus on communication skills takes account of the cultural and situational context and addresses relevant issues with regard to power inequalities.
This course provides an experiential vehicle for the enhancement of self awareness; the learning and development of core communication skills and the opportunity to learn and apply key social work methods of practice. Essential understanding of group work processes is acquired via membership and participation in the group and the exploration of relevant theory. The attention in semester 2 to theoretical practice perspectives would be of interest to students wishing to develop methods for engagement with people in a variety of complex contexts. The course will take account of international and cultural influences on communication, sense of self and engagement with others.
a) Academic Description
Working with vulnerable and disadvantaged individuals and groups is demanding for the social work professional who often works in complex, chaotic situations and with service users who are not always receptive to such intervention. To operate at a satisfactory professional level and to ensure safety for self and service users, it is essential that professionals develop a heightened self-awareness regarding their motivation for becoming a social worker including an understanding of their own personal history and its impact upon their values, vulnerabilities and skills. Such awareness in turn informs the development of professional skills and the acquisition and application of theoretical methods of practice.
b) Outline Content
This course provides an experiential vehicle for the enhancement of self-awareness, the learning and development of core communication skills and the opportunity to learn and apply key social work methods of practice. Elements of mindfulness practice will be drawn upon to assist students in developing attention and presence in their communication and actions. Essential understanding of group work processes is acquired via membership and participation in the group and the exploration of relevant theory. The course will take account of international and cultural influences on communication, sense of self and engagement with others. The impact of power inequalities will also be addressed
Developing self-awareness via reflective learning and feedback
Mindfulness and Emotional Intelligence to support social work practice
Death, loss, bereavement and change
Developing the core skill of empathy
Verbal, non verbal and symbolic communication
Group work theory
Application of a range of social work approaches
c) Student Learning Experience
Students are expected to be active learners. Apart from two lectures, the learning is undertaken in facilitated groups using an experiential teaching method. Application, simulation and feedback is undertaken in triads. The first semester explores the understanding of self and motivation for social work whilst practising communication skills in core interview role plays. The second semester involves students applying social work methods to simulated social work case situations. Students are required to keep a reflective journal throughout the course. This is a challenging course which students consistently rate highly because of its direct relevance for social work practice.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
|| Students MUST have passed:
||Other requirements|| Students must attend all groupwork sessions
Course Delivery Information
|Academic year 2018/19, Not available to visiting students (SS1)
||Blocks 1-3 (Sem 1-2)
|Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info)
Lecture Hours 2,
Supervised Practical/Workshop/Studio Hours 20,
Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4,
Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours
|Assessment (Further Info)
|Additional Information (Assessment)
||Group Attendance: 10%
Reflective journal entry: formative and developmental
The essay must be passed in order to pass the course
||This course contributes to the required number of practice learning hours required by our professional body, the Scottish Social Services Council. Attendance is therefore recorded by a weekly register and is worth 10% of the overall course mark.
Students are encouraged to keep a reflective journal throughout the course and to submit an extract from the diary to their group facilitator towards the end of semester 1. The facilitator in turn provides developmental feedback on the reflective piece
Summative assessment: The essay is the summative assignment for this course. It takes the form of a reflective essay charting the student's process of learning throughout the course. Students choose one option from a choice of three essay titles, each relating to a specific course theme. The essay must be passed to pass the overall course.
|No Exam Information
On completion of this course, the student will be able to:
- Develop and reflect upon their self awareness of their motivation for professional practice
- Develop and reflect upon their personal and professional communication skills, values and attributes
- Demonstrate their understanding of the underpinning theory of communication skills, group work theory and social work practice methods
- Apply and practise communication skills and theory acquisition via simulations of social work practice situations
|Coulshed, V. and Orme, J. (2012) Social Work Practice. An Introduction.( 5th Edition) Basingstoke. Palgrave.|
Dominelli, L. and Payne, M (eds) (2002) Social Work Themes, Issues and Critical Debates.( 2nd edition) Basingstoke. Palgrave.
Healy, K. (2012) Social Work Methods and Skills. Basingstoke. Palgrave.
Koprowska, J (2005) Communication and interpersonal skills in Social Work. Exeter; Learning Matters.
Lishman, J. (ed) (2007) Handbook for Practice Learning in Social Work and Social Care. Knowledge and Theory. (2nd edition) London. Jessica Kingsley
Lishman, J. (2009) Communication in Social Work. Basingstoke; Palgrave Macmillan
Milner, J. and OżByrne, P. (1998) Assessment in Social Work. London. MacMillan Press.
Payne, M. (2005) Modern Social Work Theory. Basingstoke. Palgrave. MacMillan
Ruch, G. Turney, D. and Ward, A. (2010) Relationship-Based Social Work: Getting to the Heart of Practice, London: Jessica Kingsley
|Graduate Attributes and Skills
|Additional Class Delivery Information
||Groupwork and Lectures
|Course organiser||Ms Jan McClory
Tel: (0131 6)51 3870
|Course secretary||Mr Ewen Miller
Tel: (0131 6)50 3925