Article

Psychopathology and Social Work Practice

Sophia F. Dziegielewski and George Jacinto

in Social Work

ISBN: 9780195389678
Published online May 2011 | | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/obo/9780195389678-0125
Psychopathology and Social Work Practice

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As the field of social work practice has expanded its services within health-care and mental health-care settings, social workers have become one of the leading providers in the delivery of mental health-related services. This requires that social workers, regardless of their specialization area, be well versed in diagnosis, assessment, intervention, and treatment planning. Therefore, courses in psychopathology have become the cornerstone of many social work programs, constituting a central aspect of the social work educational curriculum. This focus is clear regardless of the social work program’s concentration or an individual social worker’s interest. In almost all graduate programs, exposure with a resultant expertise in this area is expected. In terms of sheer numbers, social workers outnumber those from other disciplines, such as psychiatry and psychology, who also specialize in this area. Updated information in this area is necessary to help social workers keep abreast of changes while taking into account the lessons learned from the past, as well as current strategy and what will be needed for the future. Because mental health conditions are compilations of extreme symptoms occurring in the greater population, preparation for this aspect of practice requires working knowledge of the DSM-IV-TR, or other multi-assessment strategies. This involves a practice assessment and intervention guided by the foundational knowledge of psychopathology. Most references in this area strive to provide information related to the causes and development (as well as the subsequent treatment) of mental illness, and how professional intervention and prevention efforts can be applied to achieve the best practices.

Article.  7701 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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