Social Work



Degree Name

Doctor of Social Work (DSW)

Type of Paper/Work

Banded Dissertation


Advisor not provided.


Spirituality and religion are vital aspects of client identity and well-being, yet social work professionals are often ill-equipped to address these in practice due to a lack of training.Social work education has historically excluded spirituality and religion content. Though the first Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) curriculum policies of the 1950s included spirituality, this content was removed entirely in statements from the 1970s and the 1980s. Today, the National Association of Social Work (NASW) and the CSWE support spirituality integration in social work practice and education, recognizing spirituality and religion as factors of client diversity. Programs have begun integrating thiscontent into their curricula, but existing research focuses on Master of Social Work (MSW)-level integration.Missing from the literature are (a) the number of Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) programs integratingspirituality and religioncontent and (b) best practices for teaching itat the BSW level. This banded dissertation addressesthis gapwith three scholarly products:a proposed conceptual framework educators can use as atool for teaching spirituality content across BSWcore courses, a qualitative research studyexploring the degree and natureof BSW-level integration throughoutthe U.S.,anda peer-reviewed conference presentationonthe proposed conceptual framework.Ultimately, the goal of this dissertation is to increase the degree and quality of BSW-level spirituality integration in the U.S.Only then will practitioners feel equipped to address client spirituality and religion in practice, and only then will clients receive the holistic, culturally competent care they deserve.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-Share Alike 4.0 International License.

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Social Work Commons