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Introducing social work: a starter kit
Introducing social work: a starter kit

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12 Summary of Session 2

In this session you have learned the following:

  • Good social workers have a thorough knowledge of people, the law, and about how society works. This will incorporate a commitment to continual learning and to on-going professional development.
  • Good social workers have high levels of analytical skills and a good understanding of themselves, of their own strengths and weaknesses, and of their own vulnerabilities.
  • Good social workers are good communicators. This especially includes listening and empathy and being able to communicate to others that they have heard them accurately and with the minimum of distortion.
  • Good social workers fully appreciate the nature and the importance of the professional relationship, including the use of appropriate language and professional power. They know that not to respect their professional role is likely to harm service users and others.
  • Good social workers, wherever safe and possible, involve service users fully in decisions that affect their lives. They actively and continually seek and incorporate service users’ views, especially when working with children.
  • Good social workers know that their work is dynamic and often unpredictable. They appreciate that they must be able to respond thoughtfully and at times quickly to unfolding and changing circumstances, holding the needs of the service users as central to their work.

Alongside communication skills and a facility to use professional relationships in an empowering way, social workers need to access and use a wide range of knowledge in their work. This includes knowledge about the law, safeguarding, human development, social policy and diversity, and many theories and methods relating to practice. In the next session you’ll consider some of the baseline elements of knowledge that social workers need in relation to social divisions and diversity.

You can now go to Session 3 [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .