Title

A Synthesis of E-therapy in Social Work: an Ecological Perspective

Department

Social Work

Date of Paper/Work

2016

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Type of Paper/Work

Clinical research paper

Advisors

Robin Whitebird

Abstract

The purpose of this research is to explore how empirical studies surrounding e-therapy may affect the social work profession from an ecological perspective. Technology has played an important role in expanding contemporary society's ability to connect to one another. Currently, there is a significant number of people who are in need of mental health services but do not have access for a variety of reasons such as lack of local resources, financial issues, or simply the stigma surrounding seeking mental health treatment. This review explores eleven quantitative research articles in an effort to determine who is being treated with online therapeutic interventions, why they are being treated, and the outcomes of selected studies. Findings suggest that many aspects of online mental health treatment are being explored at an international level across all mental health professions. Studies conducted in Europe (n=4) tend to focus on adults suffering from general psychological issues, to individuals experiencing chronic addictions. Articles from Australia or New Zealand (n=3) are oriented around addressing young people's (under 20) psychological concerns and perceptions of mental health treatment as a whole. Clinician's perspectives are also examined in the remaining articles (n=4). Online mental health services may provide another avenue for the implementation of successful therapeutic interventions. Future research should continue to explore the efficacy of CBT and psychotherapy delivered online, making a conscious effort to repeat Standardized Measurement Tools (SMT).

Keywords

e-therapy, social work, ecological perspective

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.