Building Excellence: The Rewards and Challenges of Integrating Research into the Undergraduate Curriculum

1st Edition

Catherine N. Dulmus, Karen M. Sowers

Published July 6, 2007
Reference - 152 Pages
ISBN 9780789034427 - CAT# HW15210

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Social work curriculum changes that really work.

The Boyer Report and the Council on Social Work Education have placed expectations on universities and social work programs to make sure undergraduate students know how to develop, use, and communicate empirically-based knowledge. Building Excellence is a handbook for integrating research into undergraduate curriculums, using the curriculum of the University of Tennessee College of Social Work as an example. This unique book showcases social work research conducted by UT seniors, who were paired upon graduation with doctoral students who helped them place their research in publication form.

Building Excellence demonstrates how universities can develop into communities of learners by strengthening critical thinking, independent thinking, and creative imagination at the undergraduate level. For several years, The University of Tennessee, Knoxville, has created opportunities for students to gain professional experience in their fields of interest through research projects that establish the connection between study and knowledge. The results of several projects conducted by UT seniors are presented here, reaffirming that faculty mentoring is crucial to this effort.

Student research findings presented in Building Excellence examine:
  • emotional and behavioral symptoms of sexually abused children using two symptom scales—internalizing and externalizing
  • stress and strain experienced by personal care assistants caring for people suffering from dementia
  • the relationship between childhood abuse and adult suicide
  • the effectiveness of court-mandated treatment of recidivism among juvenile offenders
  • barriers to effective medication adherence among the elderly
Building Excellence demonstrates how the University of Tennessee’s social work curriculum has enhanced student capacity and practice effectiveness. The book is an essential read for social work academics working at all levels.


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