Social History Assignment
You will select and interview an individual while following an outline that indicates the information you need to solicit. The information reflects the types of information typically gathered by social workers in practice when doing a social history. Social histories reflect the important aspects of an individual’s development and help social workers assess the nature of a client’s problems.
This assignment will enable you to:1.Identify those aspects of human development that are important in shaping an individual’s life situation and issues.
2.Recognize the complexity and necessity of assessment in social work practice.
3.Experience the process of interviewing and recognize the need to develop interviewing skills.
1.Choose aperson to interview. This could be a friend, a relative, or an acquaintance. Describe this assignment to the person, and ask the person for permission to do the interview. Feel free to show the person these guidelines or your proposed outline ahead of time. Make it clear that his or her real name will not be used and that the information will be kept confidential. Your instructor will provide additional information regarding how to conduct the interview. In practice a social history involves “an in-depth description and assessment of the current and past client situation, often included in the case records and medical records of clients” (R.L. Barker, The Social Work Dictionary. Washington, DC: The NASW Press, 1999, p. 450). The purpose is not to learn every intimate detail of the client’s personal life but rather to gain a generalized understanding of what a client’s life is like in addition to gaining more specific information related to the client’s problem.The attached Social History Outline developed for this assignment is not a complete social history but only portions of one. There are no sections that relate to problems or to recommendations. This assignment does notfocus on a client’s problem, because you have neither client nor problemto work with. However, this assignment is designed to give you a chance to interview someone, obtain developmental and social information, and summarize this information in an organized, informative manner.
2.One requirement of the assignment is to do some related researchon social work interviewing techniques. Find two sources(articles or books) regarding information on what is involved in interviewing and how to do it. Summarize the research and information you reviewed and include it in the “Research Applications” section of the paper. Apply this research and information to your own interview where possible. For example, which techniques did you find usefulor could you have used? How were they, or might they have been, helpful in your interviewsituation?Include a bibliography, in APA format, of your references at the end of the paper.
3.Use the attached outline when conducting the interview. Note that, at times, the outline includes specific questions you might want to ask. This is simply aguideline for you to use. In some cases, you might have to ask more questions to get sufficient information. In other cases, the questions may not apply. In thesecases, you should state that they don’t apply. You should also make it clear when information is unavailable.
4.Write a paper that summarizes the information you’ve gathered. The paper should be typewritten, double-spaced, and five to six pages in length. Use an outline form for topic headings followed by a narrative presentation of information for each heading. Make sure each underlined topic headingis included in your paper.
5.The following provides a partial example of what your final social history might look like:
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