Certificate in Systemic Social Work Practice with Children and Families
AFT accredited at Foundation Level
Welcome, introductions and setting the context:
- Introduction to systemic ideas and fit with children's social care context.
- Placing systemic theory and practice within historical context: Bateson through to current thinking.
Constructing relationships, making connections between personal and professional:
- Developing engagement skills and practices that fit with a statutory context.
- Making connections between personal ideas and beliefs and how these influence the way in which relationships are constructed: the development of self-reflexivity.
Making assessments using systemic concepts: the family life cycle, family scripts, and systemic formulations:
- Understanding the usefulness of the Family Life Cycle Model in making assessments with children, young people and their families.
- Applying the concept of family scripts to develop understanding of family functioning.
- Developing an awareness of how both our own beliefs and ideas about families, and the wider social context might impact upon the assessments and formulations that we make.
Exploring attachment theory within the social care context in a systemic frame linking with mentalisation theory and practice.
- Understanding the usefulness of attachment theory within a systemic social work context using interactional awareness.
- Exploring how attachment theory links to family scripts, Family Life Cycle Model, managing transitions and the secure base both in social work practice and the organisational context.
- Developing an understanding of the limitations and critique of these theories within different cultural contexts.
Using genograms as part of assessment and intervention in social work practice with children and families:
- Developing self-reflexivity through considering our own family and cultural genogram.
- Understanding how the use of genograms might add to an assessment through identification of relational patterns across generations and for developing hypotheses.
- Using the genogram as a systemic intervention towards relationship building and assessment.
Incorporating First Order interventions into social work practice with children, young people and their families:
- Understanding and applying systemic approaches focused upon behaviour change: structural family therapy and strategic family therapy.
- Making connections between the above and evidence-based work with parents.
- Locating First Order approaches within a broader systemic theoretical framework.
Applying the Milan and post-Milan systemic models into social work practice with children, young people and their families:
- Understanding the use and application of the three guidelines of hypothesising, circularity and neutrality within the Milan approach.
- Making connections to professional intentionality in relation to decision making and interventions within the social care context.
- Consider the use of a second order perspective to promote change at the level of family beliefs, values and meaning.
- Develop and practice using hypothesising as a form of intervention.
Practice day and course review
- A day to take stock and review the course. Focus on developing practice skills in conducting a systemic interview with a family.
- Understanding and applying Post-Milan systemic ideas in social work practice: the use of the observing and reflective teams.
- Develop and practise using linear, strategic, reflexive and circular questions as a form of intervention.
Developing relationships with families and professionals through taking relational risks and the concept of safe uncertainty in the assessment of risk:
- Development of an understanding of our own position in relation to risk and how this might influence our position and practice.
- The usefulness of systemic theory and practice in the assessment of child protection risk.
- To appreciate the idea of relational risk-taking and its connection to reflexivity in relationships and consider further the relationship as a site for change.
- To support reflexive abilities as an aid to better decision making.
- Consideration of the ethical dilemmas posed in assessment of risk within a statutory context.
Social Constructionism and Co-ordinated Management of Meaning (CMM):
- Gain an understanding of Social Constructionism and the Co-ordinated Management of Meaning (CMM).
- Develop an understanding of the different tools and techniques within CMM.
- Consider the use of language and meaning systems in the construction and development of identity and relationships within the wider social context.
- Discussion about the research undertaken in the development of identities through language.
Direct work with children using a Narrative approach/theory:
- Gain an understanding of the Narrative approach and be able to locate this within the development of systemic ideas.
- Develop an understanding of how to use Narrative approaches when working with families and children.
- Develop skills and techniques from Narrative approaches when assessing and managing risk.
The Solution Focused approach in systemic social work and social care:
- Gain an understanding of the Solution-Focused approach and be able to locate this within the development of systemic ideas.
- Develop an understanding of how to use Solution-Focused approaches when working with children and families.
- Develop skills and techniques from Solution-Focused approaches in working with 'stuck' relationships.
Using the Social GRRRAAACCEEESSS: working with power and violence
- Develop anti-oppressive practices through a systemic perspective and understanding of the wider context and multiple aspects of social division.
- Developing self and relational reflexivity in relation to power and difference.
- To consider the ethical issues in working with relationships in which there is violence and think about a systemic framework to guide our work.
Working systemically with adult mental health issues:
- Gain an understanding of the Open Dialogue model as a systemic approach to working with adult mental health.
- To consider how a systemic approach to practice might manage risk whilst supporting families to make change.
- To consider how working systemically might be effective when adults have a mental health diagnosis, working from a research-led evidence base.
Systemic interventions in writing and endings:
- Gain an understanding of how to use writing as a systemic intervention, communicating systemic ideas in assessments and reports.
- Develop an understanding of how to use therapeutic writing when working with families and children.
- Develop a systemic approach to ending relationships.
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