Social workers’ reflexive understandings of their ‘everyday’ communications with children

Hadfield, Mark, Ruch, Gillian, Winter, Karen, Cree, Viviene and Morrison, Fiona (2019) Social workers’ reflexive understandings of their ‘everyday’ communications with children. Child and Family Social Work. pp. 1-9. ISSN 1356-7500

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Abstract

Over the past two decades, the use of ethnographic research methods, in combination with a range of discursive, conversational, and multimodal analytical approaches, have provided vivid accounts of the complex nature of social workers' everyday communication. This paper discusses the potential and the problems of combining a video‐stimulated recall methodology with an explicit theoretical framework, in order to generate critical reflexive “insider” accounts of social workers' direct encounters with children. The framework employed was based on an adaptation of Goffman's concepts of “framing” and “footing,” which were integrated into an analytical process designed to theorize social workers' critiques regarding the nature of their communication with children. Three detailed case exemplars are used to demonstrate the potential of this methodology to explore the “delicate” agency required by social workers in the practice of authentic communication in complex professional inquiries with children. The paper concludes with a brief discussion of the theoretical and practical issues associated with utilizing reflexive methodologies in professional contexts.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Education and Social Work > Social Work and Social Care
Subjects: L Education
Depositing User: Deeptima Massey
Date Deposited: 23 Sep 2019 11:27
Last Modified: 26 Nov 2019 11:45
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/86325

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