How Practising Social Workers Benefit from Teaching Social Work Students in University Classrooms

Taylor, Mark. 2024. How Practising Social Workers Benefit from Teaching Social Work Students in University Classrooms. Social Work Education, ISSN 0261-5479 [Article] (Forthcoming)

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Abstract or Description

I consider the effects on social workers invited to a university to teach social work students. Employing narrative inquiry as a methodological approach, focus group interviews were conducted with social workers from three London local authorities to explore the consequences of taking up classroom teaching opportunities.

If we understand the university classroom as a “systemic-constructionist” (Barge & Fairhurst, 2008) learning environment, it can be imagined as a space generating learning opportunities for visiting social work practitioners teaching social work students. Co-operative, dialogical interactions with curious students asking unforeseen questions create opportunities for practising social workers to reflect on the constituents of social work knowledge. If teaching encounters unsettle familiar social work discourses, then social workers may envisage the possibilities of social work and how it can be practised in different ways. Practitioners can, therefore, return to their workplace after teaching with a revised social work ontology. Depending on their day-to-day roles and the amount of power they possess, these revisions may have implications for themselves, colleagues and service users.

Item Type:



Social Work Discourse; Continuous Professional Development; Self-Reflexivity

Departments, Centres and Research Units:

Social, Therapeutic & Community Engagement (STaCS)


19 February 2024Accepted

Item ID:


Date Deposited:

18 Mar 2024 11:50

Last Modified:

21 Jun 2024 09:44

Peer Reviewed:

Yes, this version has been peer-reviewed.


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