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Course #: N0621
Social Work Values and Ethics

Publication Date: 1999
Frederic G. Reamer, MSW, Ph.D

Material Includes Book and Online Test

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About the Author

Frederic G. Reamer, MSW, Ph.D. is Professor in the graduate program of the School of Social Work, Rhode Island College, where he has been on the faculty since 1983. His research and teaching have addressed a wide range of human service issues, including mental health, health care, criminal justice, public welfare, and professional ethics. Dr. Reamer received his Ph.D. from the University of Chicago (1978) and has served as a social worker in correctional and mental health settings. He has also served on the faculties of the University of Chicago, School of Social Service Administration (1978-1981), and the University of Missouri-Columbia, School of Social Work (1981-1983). Dr. Reamer has served as Director of the National Juvenile Justice Assessment Center of the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention (1979-1981); as Senior Policy Advisor to the Governor of Rhode Island (1987-1990); and as a Commissioner of the Rhode Island Housing and Mortgage Finance Corporation, the state housing finance agency (1987-1995). Since 1992 Dr. Reamer has served on the State of Rhode Island Parole Board. He also served as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Social Work Education (1990-1994). In 1995 Dr. Reamer was appointed editor of the Columbia University Press Social Work Knowledge book series.

Dr. Reamer has conducted extensive research on professional ethics. He has been involved in several national research projects sponsored by The Hastings Center, the Carnegie Corporation, and the Haas Foundation.


6 hours CE
Frederic G. Reamer, MSW, Ph.D.

Atimely and practical exploration of the 160 ethical guidelines in the NASW Code of Ethics adopted in 1997. Includes a discussion of the conceptual foundations of each of six core values considered to be the basis of social workethics; additional material on confidentiality and privacy; vignettes accompanying many of the code’s guidelines; and a comprehensive overview of the issues of social work misconduct and malpractice.

Learning Objectives

  1. identify general ethical standards for social workers
  2. identify ethical dilemmas and a framework for decision making
  3. identify ethical issues related to confidentiality
  4. identify ethical standards applied to indirect practice
  5. identify issues related to professional malpractice

Table of Contents

  1. Social Work Values and Ethics: An Overview
    • The Evolution of Social Work Values and Ethics
    • The Emergence of Applied Professional Ethics
  1. Social Work Values
    • The Nature of Social Work´s Mission
    • Typologies of Values in Social Work Practice
    • The Influence of Social Work Values
    • Reconciling Personal and Professional Values
    • Cultural and Religious Values
    • Values and the Duty to Aid
    • Challenging Social Work´s Values
    • From Values to Action
  1. Ethical Dilemmas and Decision Making: A Framework
    • Codes of Ethics
    • The Current NASW Code of Ethics
    • The Resolution of Ethical Dilemmas
    • An Overview of Ethical Theory
    • The Process of Ethical Decision Making
  1. Ethical Dilemmas in Social Work: Direct Practice Confidentiality and Privacy
    • Self-Determination and Paternalism
    • Divided Loyalties
    • Professional Boundaries and Conflicts of Interest
    • Professional and Personal Values
  1. Ethical Dilemmas in Social Work: Indirect Practice
    • The Allocation of Limited Resources
    • Government and Private-Sector Responsibility for Social Welfare
    • Compliance with Regulations and Laws
    • Labor-Management Disputes
    • Research and Evaluation
    • The Use of Deception
    • Whistle-Blowing
  1. Professional Malpractice and Misconduct: The Enforcement of Social Work Ethics
    • The Adjudication of Social Workers
    • Confidentiality and Privacy
    • Delivery of Services
    • Supervision: Clients and Staff
    • Consultation, Referral, and Records
    • Deception and Fraud
    • Interpretation
    • Termination of Service
    • The Impaired Social Worker
Difficulty Level:Intermediate

247 pp.

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