SCWK 4333: Social Work Practice I

This guide is intended to assist students enrolled in SCWK4333 to complete the client engagement and assessment assignment.


Component #3 Client engagement and bio-psycho-social assessment

  • This is the first of a two-part assignment.
  • You will need to choose one of the posted short stories for these two assignments. Using the character in the story, you will submit a paper addressing the following:
    • Discussion of client engagement for this individual, including strategies you may use, potential power differences that may exist, and any personal issues that may arise for you in working with such an individual.
    • Discussion of this individual, considering the bio-psycho-social assessment framework. This will include areas of client need, client strengths, all dimensions of the bio-psycho-social framework, and additional information you would need about the client’s situation to complete a comprehensive assessment.
    • Review of relevant evidence regarding individuals like your character. You will be required to find and discuss two sources that describe characteristics of a population which the client is a member of and two sources that discuss services or interventions for the population.
  • The following resources are provided on Blackboard:
    • Short stories to choose from
    • Detailed instructions and requirements
    • Grading rubric
  • Note: we will also all read one additional short story and use it as an example during class discussions to highlight 1) issues of engagement, assessment and planning in general and 2) the requirements of the assignment.  


Component #4 Client planning and evaluation

  • This is the second part of the assignment using the short stories.
  • Using the character in the story, the issues you discussed regarding engagement and assessment and the literature you reviewed in the previous assignment, you will submit the following:
    • An intervention plan including client goals, measurable objectives and specific interventions/actions.
    • A discussion of why you would propose such a plan to this individual.
    • A discussion of how you would evaluate the intervention(s), identify how termination should occur, and discuss any recommended follow-up plan.
  • The following resources are provided on Blackboard:
    • Short stories to choose from
    • Detailed instructions and requirements
    • Grading rubric


Component #5: Memo and referral

  • You will submit both of the following:
    • A professional internal memo regarding a hypothetical client.
    • A professional external referral regarding a hypothetical client.
    • Note: for these you may continue to use the character from your short story or just make up a client and situation.
  • The following resources are provided on Blackboard:
    • Detailed instructions and requirements
    • Grading rubric

Research and Literature Reviews: not as daunting as they seem

A literature review is the first step when writing a research paper.  It will allow you to locate books, journal articles and other materials to support or refute the research you are doing.  They can give you an overview or act as background to more recent information. A literature review allows you to  learn about the history of a field and current developments.  It allows you to find the most pertinent or relevant books and journal articles related to a subject.   

Search Strategies

I like to use the same techniques as developing a topic sentence, for developing a search strategy.

Start with your topic sentence.  I am researching adolescent healthy eating initiatives.  

Next break it down.  What are other words that can be used?

adolescent  young adult  teen* picks up teen, teens, teenager, teenagers

healthy eating  nutrition

initiatives  programs projects  studies

Connect them using the following words

and : narrows your results.  All words must be in the results  adolescent and healthy eating

or : broadens your results.  Any of the words must be in your results. healthy eating or nutrition

not : excludes words.  adolescent not (males or boys)

() : allows you to combine it all together.  (adolescent or teen* or young adult) and (healthy eating or nutrition) and (initiative or program or study or projects)


Take Aways

Here are some helpful hints to assist you in getting the most out of research.

1.  Buy a copy of the Publication Manual of the American Psychological Association. The first three chapters are a very important guide to writing for an academic audience.

2.  Set the foundation - build your skills, just as you would  in learning anything new.  The more you do it the better you become.

3.  Ask for help!  Get to know your subject librarian.  We can help you with search strategies and source selection to maximize your time management.

4.  Utilize the "Find It" feature on the Libraries website.

5.  Sign up for Interlibrary Loan which is also known as ILLiad.