Journal Article

Dip.S.W. Students and Anti-Discriminatory Practice: Questions of Learning Outcomes and Assessment


in The British Journal of Social Work

Published on behalf of British Association of Social Workers

Volume 28, issue 5, pages 745-761
Published in print October 1998 | ISSN: 0045-3102
Published online October 1998 | e-ISSN: 1468-263X | DOI:
Dip.S.W. Students and Anti-Discriminatory Practice: Questions of Learning Outcomes and Assessment

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There is great public interest in issues of discrimination and prejudice and, while this interest leads to changes in public and professional behaviour and sometimes to legislative changes, it is not at all apparent that these changes achieve the stated intention, which is to eliminate negative and oppressive discrimination. It is argued that current methods of education for anti-discriminatory practice, while successful in terms of imparting understanding and competence in relation to structural and societal issues such as racism, power and inequality, may be less successful at the individual level of personal attitudes. An argument is put forward which suggests that anti-discriminatory practice (ADP) education may sometimes result in hidden or unrecognized, unmeasured, and possibly unwanted learning outcomes. This is discussed in relation to social work education, and two possible unforeseen outcomes are proposed: first, the individual may shift the focus of prejudice from one subject to another, secondly, the individual may unrealistically interpret their attitudes as anti-discriminatory, despite evidence to the contrary. In addition, it is suggested that social workers may hold conflicting discriminatory attitudes towards a single subject, depending on whether they see themselves, at that time, as an individual or as a professional.

Journal Article.  0 words. 

Subjects: Social Work

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