Anna-Marie Beytell



The Social Work profession experiences various challenges in practice that influence the practice education of students. Educators, practitioners and the experiences of students should inform practice education in curriculums. The aim of this study was to explore the experiences of fourth-year BSW students at the University of the Western Cape doing their fieldwork education in healthcare contexts. Integration of social work theories, the types of client problems, emotions caused by fieldwork and ethical dilemmas were challenges to students in health contexts. Supervision was emphasised by the students as a positive experience during fieldwork.




Full Text:



BANKS, S. & NØHR, K. 2012. Practicing social work ethics around the world. London: Routledge.

BARLOW, C. & HALL, B.L. 2007. ‘What about Feelings?’ A study of emotion and tension in social work field education. Social Work Education, 26(4):399-413.

BENNETT, S., MOHR, J., BRINTZENHOFESZOC, K. & SAKS, L.V. 2008. General and supervision-specific attachment styles: relations to student perceptions of field supervisors. Journal of Social Work Education, 44(2):75-94.

BERZOFF, J. & KITA, E. 2010. Compassion fatigue and countertransference: two different concepts. Clinical Social Work, 38:341-349.

BOGO, M. & TAYLOR, I. 1990. A Practicum Curriculum in a health specialization: a framework for hospitals. Journal of Social Work Education, 26(1):76-86.

BOZALEK, V. 2010. Moral dilemmas in a South African blended learning ethics course. In: ZARVIŠEK, D., ROMMELSPACHER, B. & STAUB-BERNASCONI, S. (eds) Ethical dilemmas in social work. Ljubljana: University of Ljubljana.

CAREY, M.E. & McCARDLE, M. 2011. Can an Observational Field Model enhance critical thinking and generalist practice skills? Journal of Social Work Education, 47(2):357-366.

CORR, C.A., CORR, D.M. & NABE, D.M. 2006. Death and dying, life and living. Belmont: Wadsworth.

COUNCIL ON HIGHER EDUCATION. 2011. Work-integrated learning: a good practice guide. Pretoria: IeCommunications.

CRESWELL, J.W. 2007. Qualitative inquiry and research design (2nd ed). Thousand Oaks: Sage Publications.

CRISS, P. 2010. Effects of client violence on social work students: a national study. Journal of Social Work Education, 46(3):371-390.

FORT COWLES, L.A. 2003. Social work in the health field: a care perspective. New York: Haworth Press.

FORTUNE, A.E., McCARTHY, M. & ABRAHAMSON, J.S. 2001. Student learning processes in field education: relationship of learning activities to quality of field instruction, satisfaction and performance among MSW students. Journal of Social Work Education, 37(1):111-123.

FULCHER, L.C. 2008. Putting the baby back in the bathwater: re-thinking the practice curriculum in social work education. Aotearoa New Zeeland Social Work, 2:65-75.

GELMAN, C.R. 2004. Anxiety experienced by Foundation-year MSW students entering field placement: implications for admissions, curriculum and field education. Journal of Social Work Education, 40(1):39-54.

GELMAN, C.R. & BAUM, N. 2010. Social work students’ pre-placement anxiety: an international comparison. Social Work Education, 29(4):427-440.

GLOBERMAN, J. & BOGO, M. 2002. The impact of hospital restructuring on social work field education. Health and Social Work, 27(1):7-16.

HEALY, K. 2005. Social work theories in context. Houndmills: Palgrave McMillan.

KANNO, H. & KOESKE, G.F. 2010. MSW Students’ satisfaction with their field placements. The role of preparedness and supervision quality. Journal of Social Work Education, 46(1):23-37.

KIRST-ASHMAN, K.K. 2013. Introduction to social work and social welfare (4th ed). Belmont: Brooks/Cole.

KIRST-ASHMAN, K.K. & HULL, G.H. 1997. Generalist practice with organizations and communities. Chicago: Nelson Hall Publishers.

LEVERIDGE, M.J. 2003. Preparation for practice – developing and assessing Diploma Social Work students pre-placement competence. Social Work Education, 22(3):321-327.

LEWIS, I. & BOLZAN, N. 2007. Social work with a twist: interweaving practice knowledge, student experience and academic theory. Australian Social Work, 60(2):136-146.

LITVACK, A., BOGO, M. & MISHNA, F. 2010. Emotional reactions of students in field education: an exploratory study. Journal of Social Work Education, 46(2):227-243.

MacDONALD, A. 2007. Solution-focused therapy. London: Sage Publications.

MAIDMENT, J. 2003. Problems experienced by students on field placement: using research findings to inform curriculum design and content. Australian Social Work, 56(1):50-58.

MAIDMENT, J. & CRISP, B.R. 2011. The impact of emotions on practicum learning. Social Work Education, 30(4):408-421.

MAISS, M. 2010. Ethical learning and ethical deliberation in social work. In: ZARVIŠEK, D., ROMMELSPACHER, B. & STAUB-BERNASCONI, S. (eds) Ethical dilemmas in social work. Ljubljana: University of Ljubljana.

McAULLIFFE, D. 2012. Challenging and developing organizations. In: BANKS, S. & NØHR, K. Practising social work ethics around the world. London: Routledge.

MILNER, J. 2001. Women in social work: narrative approaches. Houndmills: Palgrave McMillan.

OKO, J. 2008. Understanding and using theory in social work. Southernhay East: Learning Matters.

PARKER, J. 2010. Effective practice learning in social work (2nd ed). Southernhay East: Learning Matters.

PETERSEN, S. 2010. Challenges of integrating theory and practice in social work teaching and learning. Cape Town: University of the Western Cape. (MA Thesis)

ROSENBERGER, E.W. & HAYES, J.A. 2002. Origins, consequences, and management of countertransference: a case study. Journal of Counseling Psychology, 49(2):221-232.

SALEEBEY, D. 2009. The strengths perspective in social work practice (5th ed). Boston: Allyn & Bacon.

SHARRY, J. 2007. Solution-focused groupwork. London: Sage Publications.

TEIGISER, K.S. 2009. New approaches to generalist field education. Journal of Social Work Education, 45(1):139-146.

VOURLEKIS, B.S., ELL, K. & PADGETT, D. 2001. Educating social workers for health care’s brave new world. Journal of Social Work Education, 37(1):177-191.

WALKER, J., CRAWFORD, K. & PARKER, J. 2009. Practice education in social work: a handbook for practice teachers, assessors and educators. Southernhay East: Learning Matters.

WESTERN CAPE PROVINCIAL GOVERNMENT. 2013. Integrated Provincial Violence Prevention Policy Framework. [Online] Available: www.westerncape. [Accessed: 12/11/2013].



  • There are currently no refbacks.

ISSN 2312-7198  (online) ; ISSN 0037-8054 (print)

Powered by OJS and hosted by Stellenbosch University Library and Information Service since 2014.


This journal is hosted by the SU LIS on request of the journal owner/editor. The SU LIS takes no responsibility for the content published within this journal, and disclaim all liability arising out of the use of or inability to use the information contained herein. We assume no responsibility, and shall not be liable for any breaches of agreement with other publishers/hosts.

SUNJournals Help