Bob CECIL present ation JSWEC

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Bob CECIL present ation JSWEC Powered By Docstoc
					Navigating in a changing landscape :
 service user and carer involvement
  from the social work academic's

             Bob Cecil
 Principal Lecturer in Social Work
Canterbury Christ Church University
• Context of the study-developments in HE and
  social work education
• Models of service user & carer Involvement
• Defining (auto/)biographical approaches
• The study
• Findings: 8 themes , biographical roots and
  reflections on the interview
• Final thoughts
           Developments in HE
• Lifelong learning/widening participation
• Challenge of diversity & “living in a complex
  political & social world” (E.C. Lifelong Learning
• Turn to a ‘critical pedagogy’ (David,2008:5)
• Reconstruction of learning
• New options & challenges for curriculum
  design & delivery
  Developments in social work &
      social work education
• Modernisation agenda-’fit for purpose’
• Research & knowledge base social care
  reviewed identifying service user & carer
  perspectives( SCIE report, 2003)
• growth of user movement ,legislation &
  professional development-passive to active
  models of working with vulnerable
 Involvement of service users and
  carers in social work education
• Preparation for Practice - ‘the opportunity to
  develop a greater understanding of the
  experience of service users’ (DOH, 2002: 3)
• Teaching/programme delivery ( Bolan et al ,
• ‘facilitated dialogue’ (Scheyett and Diehl,2004)
• engaging students in conversations about
  personal histories (Elliott et al ,2005)
 Involvement of service users and
 carers in social work education 2
• as co-trainers and facilitators of workshops
• evidence of service users’ positive
  contribution to students’ early- stage learning
  communication skills (Moss et al, 2007)
• innovative and non-tokenistic developments
  including 1 st yr. modules designed, delivered
  and assessed by service user trainers (Byers et
  al, 2008).
     The turn to biographical
approaches in teaching & research
• new body of methodologies grounded in
  personalised learning , narrative approaches
  and the use of life histories and
  auto/biography (David,2008 Associate
  Director (HE)of ESRC’s Teaching & Learning
  Programme )
• potential for “rich insights and a more
  inclusive approach within HE “ (David,2008)
 Rationale for study-a subtler form
           of evidence...
• The academic’s perspective receives little
  attention within the literature
• interest in auto/biographical & personal
  experience methods & challenges re:
  knowledge-construction -Okely & Callaway,1992
• Research-”to highlight and advance the
  quality of lived , practical wisdom and
  organisational learning.” (Shaw and Norton,
   Auto/biographical approaches
• ’Auto/biography ‘ essentially covers both the
  individual experiences of others as well as our
  own reflections on life to illustrate and explore
  sociological issues and social phenomena
• institutional ethnography:-“reflection upon
  our own social , political, economic and
  cultural locations within the academy is one of
  the greatest taboos” (Rainbow,1986:225)
   Definitions , the literature and
    considerations for research
• “biographical research is used to refer not to
  one approach but to a different range of
  similar approaches, whose main field of study
  is ‘lives’”(Rodriguez ,2003:1).
• boundaries btwn. the researched/researcher
• We are already in the research” and “engage
  with our pre-existing understandings and
  assumptions rather than attempt to deny
  them” (Reid, 2008:25)
   Definitions , the literature and
    considerations for research 2
• stories as co-constructions between narrator
  and listener/questioner -the ‘inter-view’
  (West,2001, 2007)
• the function of stories as a form of politics or
  to’ broadcast’ voices (Squire, 2005)
• ” A central area of narrative study is human
  interaction in relationships-the daily stuff of
  social work” -importance of language
  (Riessman and Quinney, 2005:392)
                  The study
• Sonja selected for her lead responsibility for
  SU involvement in the curriculum-case study
• initial interview- taped & transcribed in full
  using the conventions of oral history
• identifying the (development) of themes
• auto/biographical interview pro-forma as a
  ‘live’ working document (see Merrill and
  West, 2008).
                 The study
• pro-forma used combined thematic,
  structural and interactional analyses to
  identify themes, process & my own responses
• S. given transcript-reflections/amendments
• 2nd interview where my analysis discussed,
  ideas and interpretations openly-hand written
  field notes (Skeggs’,1997- dialogical approach)
• interviewer/ee equality issues on agenda
• context-based ethics model for ethnographic
  and narrative forms of social research in
  sharp contrast to those medico-centric
  models adopted by those working in the
  experimental paradigm
• Relational issues
         Grouping the findings
• key themes - the constituent parts of the
  interview including biographical roots,
  personal values and justifications
• process and circumstances of the interview
• reflections on the emerging whole (‘gestalt’)
  revealed by the story including any distinctive
  patterning/ form within the narrative
  including how the interviewee positions self in
  discourse (West,2006,2007)
              8 Key Themes
• Structural difficulties/obstacles:
“ the university is a very inflexible big, huge
  machine so payment issues are a huge
  nightmare, practical issues for people,
  communication you know, all this…”
• SU motivation:-“they have very strong
  feelings about what has happened to them or
  their families, bad experiences they’ve had…”
              Themes (cont.)
• Managing uncertainty:- “It is very fluid”
“You have to think on your feet...”“I never know
  what will happen at any given meeting…”
• Managing behaviours of the group:-“You also
  have to be very clear with boundaries”..” “I’m
  on my own.. dealing with a group, a very
  unpredictable group”. “This project is
  fundamentally ,perhaps all about conflict “
              Themes (cont)
• The lecturer’s role , power and powerlessness:
““ You know, there are people who are coming
   to the meetings who see it as a social event
   and they are not social events you know. I’m
   not there to be called ‘love’ you know or there
   to give people the food that they like.”
“ I feel very strongly about it but I feel quite
   manipulated really...I always have to prove
   that I’m the good professional”
• Models of service user involvement and
  reflections on teaching
“ the students, of course, will find it very
  interesting to see someone there who’s
  sharing their personal experience, but it can
  also end up being voyeuristic, you know, it can
  end up exposing the service user to
” We started the session by saying ‘What do you
  think you know about homelessness?’ and the
  first thing the student said was ‘that homeless
  people beg for money when they don’t need
  it’”....“Meetings where you collaborate with
  the service users & it’s such a productive and
  dynamic sort of interaction where they say
  ‘Oh what about practice placements, what
  about that sort of assessment’
“We did 2 sessions, the two of us and the
 relationship we had, at the interplay, of
 thinking on our feet together and actually,
 really rising to the occasion. I think, um…
 with the class, feeling that the class was very
 much part of that interplay and sort of ping
 pong of ideas and the questions and … that
 has felt tremendous, you know – a buzz”.
• Role confusion & identity
“ a process that resembles very much client
  work, even though it isn’t….. I’m not, you
  know, counselling people or anything like that
  or getting involved in their day to day lives but
  you are dealing with a lot of need, a lot of
  expectation” “… my teaching role..I do very
  little of that ..most of my working life is
  developing SU involvement”
• Personal impact, sense of isolation and feeling
  alone - insufficient support , workload
  intensity, overburdened with admin.& feeling
  personally responsible for the project
“very often on a daily basis I dread it.. when I
  have a meeting,…. I have dreams about it. The
  money’s not there and this and that so the
  anxiety it’s causing me on a daily basis is
  something that’s very unpleasant for me”
        Reflections on interview
• Biographical roots -personal values
  &justifications –strong political, rights-centred
• Learning & reflexive space/emotional impact
• Joint political endeavour & committed to
  empowerment & equalities issues
• Gendered dimension-”good enough”,
  responsibility, anxiety, ”outlaw emotions”
                                         (Jagger, 1992)
       Reflections on interview
• Not to replicate Susers’ experience as
  recipients of poor social work practice
• Use of language –’service users’ ‘experts’
  ‘social citizenship’ ‘co-educators’
• Gestalt-conflict management
  -professional aloneness
  - creativity & aspirations
  - identity as ‘educator’ or project worker
• How we theorize the subject side of work
  within a life history perspective (Salling
• Importance of biographical approaches within
  research into education
• The benefits of creating a reflexive, learning
  space & conversation (Critten,2008)
             Final thoughts
• How do we support innovative & creative
• What lessons for structural, cultural,
  attitudinal aspects of university life ?
• How are the costs involved in a commitment
  to non-tokenistic approaches addressed?
• ”the participants are our first & most
  important audience; it is to them that we owe
  our care to compose a text that does not
  rupture life stories that sustain them... as
  researchers we also owe our care and
  responsibility to a larger audience, to the
  conversation of scholarly discourse …to speak
  of how we lived and told our stories within the
  particular field of inquiry.”(Clandinin &
  Connelly, 2000:174).

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