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SERVICE USER INVOLVEMENT IN SOCIAL WORK PRACTICE, EDUCATION AND RESEARCH IN BOSNIA-HERZEGOVINA

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Author(s): Sanela Čekić Bašić

Journal: Ljetopis Studijskog Centra Socijalnog Rada
ISSN 1846-5412

Volume: 16;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 241;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: service user involvement | practice | social work education | research in social work

ABSTRACT
Despite the fact that the social work profession is considered to be a profession “promoting ... empowerment and liberation of individuals in order to attain greater level of well-being“, the inclusion of the user perspective is a relatively new and still much debated phenomenon. Having in mind that the involvement of service users as experience experts in social work practice, education and research is a very demanding and complex process, the paper analyses a number of challenges faced by social workers, teachers and researchers in their everyday work due to the requirement of inclusion of the service user perspective. The idea of service user involvement in planning, execution and evaluation of curricular contents is a quite recent one in Bosnia and Herzegovina since the social work education reflects the idea on professionals (social workers, teachers or researchers) as ultimate knowledge holders. The author defines two categories of factors obstructing the service user involvement in the education and research process: one is related to education institutions and the other to service users, i.e. their organizations, and discusses necessary prerequisites for stronger connections between institutions (departments of social work), practice and service users.
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