Social work

experience and methods

Development of social work practikal skills in field practice

Review

Nowadays learning is active process during which knowledge, based on experience obtained during field practice, is created. Social work practice is inseparable part of professional social work. Learning from experience is important as it is continuous process based on experience. Social work practice is a possibility for a student to improve his/her skills combining theoretical knowledge and practical skills while performing direct social work with an individual, family, small group. Social work is based on ecological system theory, on understanding a human being in his/her environment and on problem solving process as the main practice model.
Learning during field practice activates a student, stimulates him/her to look for the answers to arisen questions, to understand importance of theory and apply it practically.
While studying social work at Vytautas Magnus University, students perform field practice during sixth and seventh semesters. Students begin their field practice having theoretical knowledge and they have the possibility to integrate knowledge in practice.
94 part-time social work students participated in the research. The research has revealed that 47 % of respondents were able to apply theoretical knowledge in practice successfully. 85 % of research participants stated that during field placement they obtained useful professional knowledge. The research revealed that students in field practice most successfully develop skills related to social work ethics and values.
The success of combining social work knowledge and skills depends not only on learning / teaching process but on student's personal features, his/her motivation and wish to become a professional social worker.

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