Self-Assessment: Group Termination and Practice Competencies
In your Generalist Practice with Individuals course, you read an article about client and social worker reactions to termination and participated in a discussion in which you reflected on your own experiences of and feelings towards endings. In this activity, you will have the opportunity to reflect on what it is like to leave an important group. You will build empathy for family and group clients who are in the ending stage of your work with them. You will identify the important knowledge, tasks, and skills that social workers need while working with families and groups during the ending stage.
In this activity, you will also consider the overall group development process and assess your competency in each stage. This activity offers you an opportunity to reflect on your strengths and ongoing needs in each phase of the social work practice framework in family and group practice. Self-awareness and self-reflection are building blocks of successful social work careers.
Complete the scaling questions and provide examples related to each phase of social work practice with families and groups. Then write a journal entry that outlines your areas of strength and your opportunities for improvement as you move forward in your social work education.
Note: In the next workshop, you will observe and reflect on the use of spirituality in group practice, specifically in Alcoholics Anonymous (AA) or Narcotics Anonymous (NA) groups. You will be required to attend and observe an open AA group in your community, so you should seek opportunities and create a plan to attend this type of group now. In many communities, AA and NA groups are held on a weekly or even daily basis. Most groups are open and available to the public, with days and times posted online. Contact your instructor as soon as possible if you have difficulty locating a group to attend. You will be directed to observe and analyze specific dynamics and skills in the next and final workshop.
Upon successful completion of this assignment, you will be able to:
Social work students must be intimately familiar with the tasks and skills of working with groups in the final or ending stage. These tasks include discussions of termination and evaluation. Additionally, social workers must fully understand components such as the dynamics of endings, how loss in a member’s past can impact the person during a group’s ending, policies regarding contact with members after a group ends, and others. This workshop will cover these important elements of working with families and groups during the ending phase, as well as the feelings surrounding this stage of practice.
Social work research and the knowledge base of the profession are continually emerging and growing. Social workers are encouraged to reflect on their needs for ongoing training and education in pursuit of the ethical standard of competence. (NASW Code of Ethics, 2015) This standard of professional awareness and growth is no different for group and family practice than it is for individual practice. This activity will provide you with a process for assessing your own competencies in family and group practice.
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