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October 2021

Reimaging field instruction from a spiritually sensitive perspective: An alternative approach

Author(s): Gray, C., Gray, L. B.

Journal/Book: Soc Work. 1999; 44: 750 First St NE, Ste 700, Washington, DC 20002-4241, USA. Natl Assoc Social Workers. 371-383.

Abstract: Field work is a major component of social work training embedded in our graduate training process. This article proposes incorporating some wisdom of Eastern traditions and spirituality, which moves the vertical ''line'' of hierarchy into a circular, interactional approach to field work instruction. The concepts presented for discussion and application are Sacred Space, karma, interrelation-emptiness, process dedicated to process-no goal, and Taoist harmony. The. Authors conclude by using the concepts of power and authority to demonstrate the interconnectedness of the concepts. They argue that the Eastern alternative presented supports an environment more conducive to the promotion of natural authority, whereas the traditional models promote the exercise of power. The authors urge field instructors and students to incorporate this alternative paradigm into their educational experiences to maximize their opportunities for professional development and open the process of field work supervision to the upper limits of its potential.

Note: Article Okundaye JN, Univ Maryland, Dept Social Work, 1000 Hilltop Circle, Baltimore,MD 21250 USA

Keyword(s): Eastern concepts; field instruction; instructor-student relationship; social work education; spirituality; SOCIAL-WORK EDUCATION

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