Research Methods & Evidence Based Practice

Why Research

Research is a vital activity that must be done by all social workers. It is a social worker's ethical responsibility to have an evidence based practice (EBP) and to be abreast of what effective interventions are being implemented within their field. Research is addressed within a section of the National Association of Social Workers code of ethics. Evidence based practice means the practitioner critically examines the various theories used for working with clients, and they use methods that are based on researched concepts (unless the purpose is to look into more experimental techniques).

Help Completing Research

Looking into this concept of EBP, we see a couple of ways it can be implemented. This site showcases some of the assorted facets of completing research. The first place that a researcher must look is into the ethics of the research proposed. It is vital to have some understanding of the purpose of the research and the over arching types of research. Much like the scientific method, there is also a research process and a specific design model that must be followed. Although there are clear processes that ought to be followed in research, there are various paradigms in how research is thought about and different types of reasoning used by social workers. One of the types of research studies is known as a single system design. For your convince, there is also a section that showcases an example of a single system design study attempting to change habits in my life. With any study it is also imperative to determine the studies validity. This is partially done though looking at sampling and population and also at the a range of factors affecting measurement.

Examples of Research and Evaluation

To further help your understanding there are some examples I have completed. First there is a quality assurance survey I utilized for an agency I was volunteering with and all the forms and process created for said study. Second there is the aforementioned single system design example with displays how a single system design study functions and operates and gives all the documents and data collected for my study on changing some of my own habits. Third there is a critical article review to demonstrate some of how to critically assess various aspects of a published journal article. Finally there for my Master's degree I completed a research project. This project took place at an agency in Spokane, Crisis Residential Center, and is a program effectiveness study. This comprehensive document contains both an executive summary and a literature review. Along with these to papers, there is the data set, all of the forms and documents that were utilized for this project. View the Overview of the Directions Program Evaluation for more detailed information.