In this document, the authors address the need for all social work educators to have some basic understanding and competence in the use of technology and its impact on the field.
In 2017, a new publication, Standards for Technology in Social Work Practice, was issued to address the intersections of professional social work practice and technology. The National Association of Social Workers (NASW), along with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), and the Clinical Social Work Association (CSWA) cosigned the Standards, developed by a committee of primarily social work practitioners.
Standard 4.0 specifically addresses social work education and the role of educators and supervisors in maintaining professional standards related to technology-mediated practice and educational settings. Discussions with educators revealed a need for broader consideration. The purpose of this document is to shift interpretations of the Standards from a mostly risk-averse and micro-practice focus to a perspective that also acknowledges the potential strengths of technology in micro to macro levels of practice and social work education, supervision, and continuing education.
The document provides interpretations for Social Work educators of these specific Standards:
Standard 4.01: Use of Technology in Social Work Education
Standard 4.02: Training Social Workers about the Use of Technology in Practice
Standard 4.03: Continuing Education
Standard 4.04: Social Media Policies
Standard 4.05: Evaluation
Standard 4.06: Technological Disruptions
Standard 4.07: Distance Education
Standard 4.08: Support
Standard 4.09: Maintenance of Academic Standards
Standard 4.10: Educator-Student Boundaries
Standard 4.11: Field Instruction
Standard 4.12: Social Work Supervision