Critical Thinking In Social Work

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There are generic critical thinking skills and attitudes, however the research suggests critical thinking should be taught in both explicit and disciplinary-specific ways.

This article reviews the literature on teaching critical thinking in social work and human services education.

Teaching critical thinking in social work education: a literature review Clare Tilbury, Jennifer Osmond and Teresa Scott Authors Affiliation: School of Human Services and Social Work, Griffith University, Australia.

Address for Correspondence: Clare Tilbury, School of Human Services and Social Work Griffith University, Logan campus University Drive MEADOWBROOK Q 4131 AUSTRALIA ABSTRACT While there has been considerable discussion about reflective practice and evidence-based practice in social work education over the last decade, less specific attention has been paid to critical thinking.

"A dialectical approach to social work avoids the simplistic linear cause-effect notion of historical materialism and the naïve romanticism associated with the notion of totally free human will." (Mullaly and Keating, 1991).

"Dialectical analysis helps to illuminate the complex interplay between people and the world around them and to indicate the role of social work within society" (Mullaly, 201).

In doing so, it outlines educational strategies that have been used to promote critical thinking in social work, and argues that understanding the client or consumer perspective is a vital part of the critical thinking process.

Introduction Critical thinking is on the agenda for professionals and higher education institutions as a means to equip students and practitioners to grapple with the complexity and rapid growth of knowledge.

Therefore, according to the critical theory, the aim of social work is to emancipate people from oppression and allow a critique of the ideology of "operativity", State law and governance.

Critical social work takes a stance against common assumptions about the necessity of work, capitalist labor and managerial systems of control.


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