Introduction to Grounded Theory and Its Potential for Social Work

Julianne S. Oktay

in Grounded Theory

Published in print January 2012 | ISBN: 9780199753697
Published online May 2012 | e-ISBN: 9780199932627 | DOI:

Series: Pocket Guides to Social Work Research Methods

Introduction to Grounded Theory and Its Potential for Social Work

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This chapter provides a basic introduction to grounded theory. It begins by arguing that grounded theory is of particular value for the social work profession. It introduces three excellent grounded theory studies that will be used throughout the book to illustrate the grounded theory method, and to show how it can be used in social work and related fields. It provides some historical background on the method, emphasizing its common roots with those of the social work profession. The chapter includes an introduction to the theory of symbolic interactionism because its ideas are central to both social work and grounded theory. Finally, the chapter presents the basic characteristics and key components of the grounded theory method, and briefly discusses how it has evolved since the late 1960s, including recent developments such as constructivist and postmodern models. Several suggested exercises follow the chapter.

Keywords: social work practice; social workers; symbolic interactionism; grounded theory method; constructivist model; postmodern model

Chapter.  7651 words.  Illustrated.

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