Chapter 06

Chapter Six Objectives: Use of Self in Clinical Practice

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Knowledge (Declarative Knowledge)

By the end of this chapter you should possess declarative knowledgeable about:  
  1. The terminological turmoil associated with direct practice; the definitions of such  terms as  "indirect" and "direct" practice as well as "therapy"
  2. The difference between a professional clinical social work relationship and     the type of professional relationship needed for policy, advocacy, management and       community practice.
  3. The difference between a clinical relationship based on belief bonding and a     therapeutic alliance
  4. How a professional relationship differs from a personal relationship
  5. The difference between initial contact at point of entry and the establishment of a       working relationship based on belief bonding
  6. The history of the concept of relationship in social work  
  8. How different theories inform the enactment of a therapeutic relationship.
  9. The empirical evidence that supports the efficacy of relationship as a dynamic of the    change process.
  10. The difference between efficacy and effectiveness studies in determining whether therapy works and which theory-based therapy is better than another.
  12. The practitioner"s use of self-observation as a tool in the helping process.
  13. How methods shape and change the context of relationship
  14. How time (brief and long term therapy) reconfigures the therapeutic alliance.
  16. How declarative knowledge (procedural knowing) is connected to the enactment of a      therapeutic process (tacit knowing).

Skills (Application of Knowledge- Procedural and Tacit Knowing)

  1. By the end of this chapter you should demonstrate beginning competency in the art of healing in clinical practice by being able to:
  2. Establish a working (therapeutic) relationship with clients
  3. Use the decision tree to guide your use of self in relationship; regulate the intensity of    the worker-client relationship according to the purpose of the interview, the facts of the      case and the theory selected
  4. Use empirically supported treatments in the enactment of a therapeutic process to the         extent possible
  5. Use process recordings and field supervision to improve your use of self in the helping relationship; move from novice to master
  6. Manage the strains and ruptures that occur in a therapeutic relationship or alliance


  1. Value the role of process recordings and supervision in moving from novice to             master social work clinician
  2. Respect the licensing hierarchy as a performance indicator of clinical skill  attainment designed to protect the client
  4. Give credence to the importance of face to face contact in forming the therapeutic        alliance needed for the enactment of a healing process
  5. Respect BSW and MSW similarities and differences on the novice-to master         trajectory.

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