Social workers share some fundamental skills, knowledge and obligations, but at the same time bring their own identities, ideas and style to the profession. Our Professional Development Groups are extra-curricular sessions in which students are asked to think about how their social worker identity is developed and influenced by discussion, teaching, media, reflection and personal identity. Over their first term, students tackle the question 'Who am I as a social worker?' culminating in a sharing event in the last week of term (photos below). This creative expresssion of identity allows for a deeper exploration of identity 'beyond talk and text'.
Patricia Walton, Lecturer in Social Work and coordinator for this project, explains more about the role of creativity in the formation of a social worker's identity in this podcast:
Further information about this methodology is detailed in Patricia's article:
Craig Burrows recorded a poem 'Who Am I As A Social Worker?' as his contribution. Craig offers some honest insights into studying the subject and becoming part of the varied and challenging profession of social work. You can listen to it below:
Students used a variety of creative forms, including presentations, posters, baking, craft and photography, to address the question 'Who am I as a social worker?'.
Photos (c) SPSW, University of York. Students' creations (c) their respective author/artist.