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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Jon Conte
SOC W 563
Seattle Campus

Advanced Practice II: Health/Mental Health

Second quarter of a two-quarter sequence. Highlights program planning, supervision, and intervention across all levels of practice.

Class description

Theory and Practice of Clinical Social Work with Individuals I

The course seeks to provide a depth knowledge and appreciation of key concepts underlying direct social work practice in a wide variety of practice settings and roles. Topics include: the role of development in therapy, the therapeutic relationship, therapeutic listening, the ground rules of treatment in different settings, transference and counter transference, psychological defenses, resistance and obstacles to treatment, intervention techniques, phases of treatment, interventions, and the process of change.

It is believed that these principles are useful in a wide range of public social service, mental health, and health settings. The principles describe a conceptual framework useful for understanding a wide range of interventions with and interactions between the professional social worker and clients in traditional social work practice settings. It is not assumed that students will practice only in face-to-face clinical settings, although the course is designed to prepare students for psychotherapy practice.

Social work practice with individuals is viewed within the traditional social work perspective of giving equal attention to “person-changing” and “context-changing” interventions. Further it is viewed in the context of social justice, freedom, and empowerment. Effective social work practice requires the management of the professional relationship in which issues of class, race, culture, privilege, gender, and personal history are understood. This course seeks to prepare students who understand and manage the relationship with clients consistent with clinical theory, social work values and objectives, and contemporary understandings of “best practices”.

This is a two quarter advanced practice sequence on the theory and practice of clinical social work. The two quarters are seamless and content is planned over two quarters. It is the opinion of the instructor that practice is best learned by student and instructor working together over an extended period of time to understand the theory and application of theory within the context of a teaching and learning relationship. It is unlikely that permission will be given to students to take the second quarter without having completed the first. Students who enroll in quarter one must complete quarter two, except in rare circumstances and with instructor permission.

Although much of the content is based on a psychodynamic perspective, other theoretical models and practice research are viewed as equally relevant to the practice of social work and some content from other theories is presented.

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Roberta A Aldrich
Date: 08/05/2004