As the world deals with the overwhelming challenges of homelessness and unemployment, social workers are needed more than ever in promoting social change, cohesion, and development.
Recent data shows nearly 15% of Americans live under the poverty line while another 20% suffer from mental illnesses during a given year.
Individuals in this circle need social workers to help them cope with these challenges and improve their overall quality of life.
Therefore, social workers must dive head-first into extensive social justice and policy issues that help reduce poverty nationwide.
Like it or not, the social work profession necessitates professionals to seek social justice. It requires them to advocate for political change and participate in political action for marginalized groups and individuals.
While most social workers know firsthand how public policy ignores or outright harms society’s most vulnerable, too few have the proper training in the political processes that establish these policies.
This article outlines several reasons political science is crucial to the social work program.
Social order is an essential component of a community. With social order, everyone can build connections and ensure they feel part of society.
The enforcement of laws, regulations, norms, and taboos is often used to restrict practices, behaviors, attitudes and beliefs that oppose the social order.
To maintain social order within their respective communities, social workers must actively provide education programs, shape social services, and enable long-term economic independence.
Social workers can only do this when they understand the laws and regulations that shape policy and help constituents by working with local, state, and federal agencies.
In doing so, they can navigate power dynamics and use political mechanisms to elicit social change while challenging systemic discrimination and institutional inequalities.
In connection with the previous point, part of being a social worker is challenging the norm and promoting individual and communal well-being through policy outcomes and processes.
Using political science, social workers can explain government and legislative processes so that everyone will understand the policies that impact their well-being.
It also helps social workers to understand how and why different societies establish unique laws and regulations.
Through this process, social workers can engage individuals and communities in political processes while identifying opportunities within government proposals to address barriers within a specific community.
When social workers challenge the norm, they can seek social change on behalf of vulnerable and oppressed individuals while providing the best support for their clients.
It allows for collaboration
Interdisciplinary collaboration is a critical aspect of social work. When social workers collaborate with other professionals, particularly those involved in shaping policies, their clients can benefit from an extensive range of support and gain access to additional resources.
Through political science, social workers work with politicians and pool knowledge to better navigate barriers and improve specific situations.
Social workers provide unique insights. Their skills enable them to see the circumstances of individuals that are not immediately visible to those working in the political sector.
Social workers lay the required groundwork by helping politicians understand the challenges of individuals within specific communities.
They give those in office the insight to better plan for and address the barriers to individuals getting the help they need and to find appropriate alternative approaches.
Now that the importance of political science in social work has been established, one might wonder what to expect from the social worker online program at Spalding University.
Various projects and assignments will normally be part of completing your online social work degree.
Online courses typically include a variety of assignments, including scholarly writing, case study-based scenarios and online lectures, just like conventional social work degrees.
More practical evaluations than usual are expected because social work focuses on social change, development and empowerment.
Additionally, you might be required to participate in rotations and assignments at various public and private organizations where you can use your knowledge and abilities. You can coordinate these assignments with agencies located near your home.
Assignments will introduce you to real-world practice under the guidance of an accomplished mentor and crucial connections with potential employers.
Near the end of the program, most online courses will include a capstone experience. This entails completing a research project or thesis and possibly taking and passing several written and practical assessments.
In either case, online social work courses can help you stay current with the industry and improve as a social worker.
Depending on your chosen academic institution, here are some courses you may take:
To perform social work effectively at the interpersonal, group, societal and organizational levels, learners in this course receive an interdisciplinary introduction to social justice. It covers multiple viewpoints and demonstrates their use in practicing social work in various contexts.
By starting with a critical analysis of individual growth at a micro level, this course lays the groundwork for the practice of social work. This course emphasizes the micro-theoretical viewpoints that highlight the different components of individual human behavior. This can include sociological, psychological and biological factors.
Policy analysis and strategies for change
The knowledge acquired in earlier foundation year courses is expanded in this course. Integrative practice and field practice are linked to this course and provide crucial context for training at all levels. After completing this course, learners should be able to comprehend and evaluate social regulations in light of global, cultural, biopsychosocial and economic developments.
Applied critical thinking and reflective practice
Students working towards an MSW have the chance to develop their critical thinking abilities in this course. These techniques can be applied to macro, mezzo and even micro levels of social work practice by comprehending how the human brain functions.
Social work is a rewarding job. Start a meaningful career and work towards your social work degree by signing up and enrolling today.