Clinical training for Social Work students

Course: Foundations of Social Work, Social Work Practice II

Department: School of Social Work, Columbia University
Instructor(s): Various


At the Columbia University School of Social Work, first-year students take a core course entitled "Foundations of Social Work" in their first semester, followed by "Social Work Practice II" in their second semester.

The curriculum emphasizes assessment, intervention, and evaluation; clinical applications of risk and resiliency theories to at-risk populations; and clinical issues with specific client populations.

In both courses students use Mediathread to connect class readings to videos of clinical sessions and role-play assignments.


Students watch videos of clinical sessions and role-play assignments, clip segments, and make annotations.

They then add the video annotations to essays in which they analyze theoretical models and clinical techniques and reflect on their own intervention methods.

These multimedia essays encourage closer readings of clinician/patient interactions and improve students' evidence-based reasoning.

Sharing completed multimedia essays with other social work students fosters group discussion and learning from peers.

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