Welcome to Research at Roberts Wesleyan College
Our commitment to expanding research in the department of social work is paying great dividends for faculty and students alike. We have two new funds to assist students in attending conferences and for supporting faculty student research efforts. Our new faculty research collaborative is encouraging and supporting the development of multiple presentations and papers at local and national conferences. Let me highlight two examples. First, Dr. Rebekah Crofford will be providing the keynote address at the National Play Therapy Conference held in Rochester NY in October 2012. Second, Professor David Haller and Student Shawn Gianforte are the first recipients of the Daniel S. Berry faculty /student research award. Their proposal is entitled “An Evaluation of BSW Students’ Preparation to Conduct Research in the Field”. The research study is an evaluation of the effectiveness of the pedagogy of using agency-based research projects to prepare BSW students to become competent producers of research in social service agencies. As a part of the Social Research Methods course (SWK 404), all senior social work students conduct a research project at a local human service agency. The projects are designed to educate students in the application of research methods in the field and to sharpen the students’ competency in using research design to meet agency needs and solve applied practice problems.
Our commitment to supporting research throughout our curriculum is highlighted by the following statement which will be in every required course syllabus. Evidence-based practice is a conscientious, explicit, and judicious use of the best available research evidence in making practice and policy decisions. It has recently become a leading paradigm in the field of social work. The BSW and the MSW programs at Roberts Wesleyan College prepares students to become an evidence-based practitioner by teaching how to integrate the best available research evidence with your professional judgment, client characteristics, and social contextual factors. Each course in the BSW and MSW curriculum addresses some aspects and areas that are necessary to engage in evidence-based practice.