Preparing Social Work Graduates for Digital Practice: Ethical Pedagogies for Effective Learning
S Goldingay, J Boddy
ABSTRACT: Debate has arisen in social work about the value of online education, with proponents providing examples of innovative approaches to online teaching and those against it citing the need for face-to-face interactions to suitably teach and assess social work skills. At the same time, social workers are increasingly making use of social media, websites, online databases, email, and text messaging services for work with clients. Consequently, social workers must be adequately prepared to make use of online technologies in their practice. Drawing on examples of online interactive activities used at two regional universities and informed by Chi’s conceptual framework of cognitive processes of learning, this article argues that learning via information and communications technology (ICT) helps prepare graduates for emerging digital practice and should be an integral part of social work education. Further, ICT enables educators to monitor the levels and quality of student rehearsal of practice skills and knowledge in interactive learning experiences helping promote competent practice, grounded in social work values.