6210 week 10 | SOCW 6210 – Human Behavior and the Social Environment II | Walden University

 

Application of Theoretical Perspectives – Part 1

As you near the completion of your second course in human behavior and the social environment, you are likely able to identify several theories that help explain human development at different phases of the life span. Are any of the theories you have studied of particular interest to you? How might you apply these theories to your social work practice?

This week, you select a theory of life-span development and evaluate its strengths and weaknesses as it relates to social work practice. You also practice an important social work skill as you interview a colleague to obtain information about his or her life-span development.

Learning Objectives

Students will:
  • Analyze theories of life-span development
  • Apply theories of life-span development to social work practice
  • Apply social work interview techniques

Photo Credit: andresr / E+ / Getty Images

Learning Resources

Note: To access this week’s required library resources, please click on the link to the Course Readings List, found in the Course Materials section of your Syllabus.

Required Readings

Dybicz, P. (2012). The hero(ine) on a journey: A postmodern conceptual framework for social work practice. Journal of Social Work Education, 48(2), 267–283.
Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Villadsen, K. (2008). ‘Polyphonic’ welfare: Luhmann’s systems theory applied to modern social work. International Journal of Social Welfare, 17(1), 65–73.
Note: You will access this article from the Walden Library databases.

Document: Life Span Interview (PDF)
You will use this document for your Life Span Interview Assignment.

Discussion: Theories of Life-Span Development

Zastrow and Kirst-Ashman (2016) stated, “We need theories to guide our thinking and our work so that we may undertake research-informed practice” (p. 127-128). At the same time, the authors asserted, “No theory will be perfectly applicable. Perhaps you will decide that only one or two concepts make any sense to you in terms of working with clients” (p. 128). Though you may be able to apply only a few concepts in a particular theory to your work with clients, as a social worker, you should be applying evidence-based research to your work. Empirically-based developmental theories may guide you as you assess clients and their presenting problems. You may also apply developmental theories to your treatment decisions.

For this Assignment, you discuss theories of life-span development by evaluating a theory that seems especially relevant to you and your role as a social worker. Select a theory of life-span development to address in this Discussion. This may be a theory described in the resources of this course, or you may select a theory based on personal research. Locate at least one scholarly resource (not included in the course resources) that addresses the theory you selected.

By Day 3

Post a Discussion in which you analyze the theory of life-span development that you selected. Summarize the theory; then, identify the strengths and weaknesses of this theory, especially as it relates to social work practice. Explain one way you might apply the theory to your social work practice.

By Day 5

Read a selection of your colleagues’ posts.

Respond to at least two colleagues who addressed theories that are different from the theory you addressed. State whether you might apply the theories your colleagues evaluated to your social work practice. Provide support for your position.

Assignment: Life Span InterviewThroughout the HSBE I and II courses, you have explored the biological, psychological, and sociological aspects of different phases of the human life span. You have explored life-span development theories that help to explain human behavior. You also have considered how the social environment influences individuals and their behavior.

Gathering facts about a client’s life span through the interview process is an important social work skill. This week, you practice this skill by interviewing an older adult using the questions in the Life Span Interview document available in this week’s resources. For this week’s Assignment you transform your interview notes into a narrative—that is, a life story—of the older adult ­you interviewed. You interweave within this narrative an analysis of the life story by applying person and the environment concepts to your understanding and interpretation of that story.

 

Submit a 3- to 5-page paper in which you provide a narrative analysis of the Life Span Interview you completed. The paper should:

  • Provide a chronological history of the individual’s major life experiences.
    • Identify specific biological, psychological and sociological influences that shaped the individual’s experience.
  • Analyze the individual’s experiences by applying theory and concepts learned throughout both HBSE courses.
  • Provide your reflection of the experience, both in interviewing the individual and analyzing their narrative.
  • Explain what you learned and how you will apply this to future social work practice.
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