HSW702 - Understanding Social Work Care and Risk in Child Protection
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HSW702 - Understanding Social Work Care and Risk in Child Protection


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Master Of Social Work

The first assignment has three sections:
1. In the first part of your assignment, at a general level you should briefly describe and critically analyse the ways in which 'care' and 'risk' interact in current social policy contexts and social work practice. This section should provide a general overview of this interaction in these contexts and sets the stage for a more focused analysis in section two of the assignment.
2. The second part of this assignment asks you to apply your developing understanding (e.g. the interactional dynamics of ‘care’ and ‘risk’, relevant concepts from the unit) to risk assessment within the child protection field. In order to accomplish this, you will need to engage with the readings and other material (e.g. weblinks, narrated powerpoint) relating to risk assessment and child protection in module 3 on CloudDeakin. In writing this section of the essay, you should critically evaluate the pros and cons of applying risk assessment procedures within the field of child protection and discuss any policy, practice or ethical implications that you perceive.
3. In the final part of the assignment, you will need to outline a social issue/problem from your field education practice or former practice experience (or if you have neither, then your observations of/readings on a particular social policy/practice problem) that you will focus your analysis on in the second assignment. You should briefly describe the issue/problem and also indicate how it might relate to the concepts of ‘care’ and ‘risk’, the debates raised in the unit so far and any other relevant concepts you may want to employ. This section of the assignment should be very schematic. You do not need to have an in-depth analysis of your issue/problem, it is meant to simply provide guidance for your second assignment. In addition, it is not written in stone, and you can change your angle or focus for the second assignment if you choose.



The literature review in the previous assignment dealt with various issues of risk and care assessment. Particularly it dealt with various instruments used in assessing risk. This paper tries to analyse the pros and cons of subjective and objective risk assessment methods, the inherent problems associated with it, the ethical framework and the solutions to it. The focus of this paper is on risk assessment procedures against various dimensions and coping with the challenges posed by the advent of technology in social work risk assessment.
Numerous research studies clearly show that care and risk though are an integral part of social work practice. In different parts of the world, different types of assessment instruments have been devised to address the core issues of care and risk. While there are subjective and objective risk assessment instruments, bias, subjectivity and objectivity are posing problems in identifying harm and risk in child social welfare. This has resulted in presenting an inaccurate picture of risk or potentially harming the child. It has also been observed that culture, ethnicity, and race from the sensitive which needs to be focused and adequate concerns, complaints have arisen due to the lack of it in the assessment instruments. With the changing times, the role of the technology has changed the face of social work practice. It has been seen that it has its own advantages, especially in geographically remote areas where face to face interaction is not possible and in cases of social anxiety disorders. However, the advent of digital technology has also presented itself with many challenges which the social work as a profession and practice, need to face and overcome them.


Psychodynamic Approach to Risk Assessment

One of the approaches which have gained attention in recent times is the psychodynamic approach to assessing the client's behaviour, which enables in understanding the underlying cause of acts, thoughts, and feelings. Understanding the client from the psychological perspectives will help them in developing different ways of calming, engaging, sustaining the situation. It will also help the assessor to develop empathy towards the client and engage in good communication skills. (Lishmann, 2011)
Psychodynamic psychotherapies are another way of assessing risk assessment of the patient enabling him/her to understand his/her mind and its function in a better way.
The social work practitioners study, analyse and modify the behaviour of their clients which is closely related to understanding the mind and behavioural aspects of the clients. Various psychological concepts such as behaviour 'modification' therapy, cognition and attribution therapies are being used to assess and treat individuals suffering from various difficult situations in life. (Thomas, 2010) Thus these methodologies are also types of risk assessment procedures gaining popularity worldwide.

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