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Social and Behavioral Sciences Commons

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2012

Theses/Dissertations

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Articles 1 - 30 of 4173

Full-Text Articles in Social and Behavioral Sciences

Navigating The Experience Of Identity Intersection : An Exploration Of The Lesbian Mother Identity In The United States, Sarah A. Horn Dec 2012

Navigating The Experience Of Identity Intersection : An Exploration Of The Lesbian Mother Identity In The United States, Sarah A. Horn

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This purpose of this study was to explore the experiences of lesbian women who have become mothers. My specific research aim was to investigate the formation of the lesbian-mother identity in terms of the way the individual woman's identity as a lesbian is shaped by her new experience and identity as a mother. Within this framework, I looked at which identity felt most salient in everyday life and how the individual woman felt each identity had contributed to her sense of self. I also looked at the different factors that either reinforce or inhibit an individual's likelihood to ...


Is Social Work The Work Of Love? : Love Practice And Queer Doing In The Process For Full Self-Determination, Sady K. Horn Dec 2012

Is Social Work The Work Of Love? : Love Practice And Queer Doing In The Process For Full Self-Determination, Sady K. Horn

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

The 1915 National Conference of Charities and Corrections, during which Abraham Flexner stated that social work was not a profession because it lacked a "communicable technique", is understood as a historically significant event in social work history. Part of the discourse regarding the legacy of this conference has spoken to social work's struggle with comprehending the nature of its purpose and definition as a profession. In this thesis I explore the phenomenon of social work, understood as a profession, and how its professionalization may contribute to its struggle in developing a comprehensive practice method that makes its stated values ...


The War On Women And The War In The Self : A Foucaultian And Kleinian Analysis Of Anti-Choice Ideology, Shoshana A. Funk Dec 2012

The War On Women And The War In The Self : A Foucaultian And Kleinian Analysis Of Anti-Choice Ideology, Shoshana A. Funk

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This theoretical study explores the external power dynamics and internal psychic processes involved in both historical and contemporary anti-choice ideology, practice, and rhetoric. The three primary tactics of the anti-choice movement and current "war on women" involve 1) promoting the establishment of fetal personhood through measures—both rhetorical and political, 2) the co-opting of feminist and liberal rhetoric in establishing a woman-centered, as opposed to fetus-centered, anti-abortion strategy, and 3) the use of incremental policy measures and restrictions at the state and local level, including the creation of legal and practical barriers to the procedure for both women and abortion ...


Comparing Individual And Couples/Family Therapy : Practitioners' Perspectives, Rebecca H. Lawrence Dec 2012

Comparing Individual And Couples/Family Therapy : Practitioners' Perspectives, Rebecca H. Lawrence

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study examines social workers' perspectives on the similarities and differences between individual and couples/family therapy. Particular attention is given to similarities and differences between individual and couples/family therapists' use of self, orientation towards conflict, and relationship factors. The investigation is based on semistructured interviews with 10 master's level social workers who specialize in either individual or couples/family therapy. A number of interesting trends emerged in the findings of this research. Therapists in both modalities perceived couples/family therapists' use of self to be more active and directive than individual therapists, and described more behavioral ...


Evolving Identities, Shaping Connection : The Effects Of Narrative-Sharing Spaces On Undocumented Latino Students, Christopher M. Heinrich Dec 2012

Evolving Identities, Shaping Connection : The Effects Of Narrative-Sharing Spaces On Undocumented Latino Students, Christopher M. Heinrich

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study was undertaken to explore the ways in which undocumented Latino students navigate and shift personal identity, notions of group solidarity and political consciousness upon "coming out" as undocumented and participating in narrative-sharing spaces that specifically ask them to reflect on their citizenship status in the company of other undocumented young people. The study aims to help guide the social work community in developing further support for undocumented youth. The study sample comprises nine undocumented Latino students from the San Francisco Bay Area, ages 20 – 24. Data was collected through in-depth, in-person interviews that focused on participants' experiences ...


Having A Voice And Being Heard : A Scoping Review Of What Current Literature Tells Us Is Most Important To The Caregivers, Children And Social Workers Involved In Kinship Foster Care, Leah J. Hoffman, Leah J. Hoffman-Setka Dec 2012

Having A Voice And Being Heard : A Scoping Review Of What Current Literature Tells Us Is Most Important To The Caregivers, Children And Social Workers Involved In Kinship Foster Care, Leah J. Hoffman, Leah J. Hoffman-Setka

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study was undertaken in order to determine what the existing literature tells us about how children, kinship caregivers and social workers perceive the quality of care provided to children placed in kinship foster homes, using a scoping review methodology. The studies that made up the sample had a range of research questions and purposes, but all discussed to some degree, the views of their study participants – children, kinship caregivers and/or social workers – regarding their understandings of what aspects of quality care were most important to child well-being in kinship foster homes. Findings indicate that social workers tend to ...


Coparenting Among Mexican-American And Non-Latino White Couples, Amy B. Kallenberg Dec 2012

Coparenting Among Mexican-American And Non-Latino White Couples, Amy B. Kallenberg

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

Grounded in structural family theory, the present study examined how positive coparenting relates to couple satisfaction and to positive parenting for predominantly lowincome Mexican American and non-Latino white heterosexual couples. The sample was selected as a subset from the Supporting Father Involvement study, based in California. Participants included 73 mono-racial/ethnic families (56.2% Mexican American and 43.8% non- Latino white), each including a youngest child under age 11. Couple Discussion Task ratings from observed coparenting interactions were tested for associations with: 1) self-reported couple satisfaction, and 2) Parent-Child Interaction scales derived from observed parent-child interactions. Results indicated that ...


Social Workers' Changing Perceptions Of Disability Through Working With Clients With Disabilities, Juliette F. Kennedy Dec 2012

Social Workers' Changing Perceptions Of Disability Through Working With Clients With Disabilities, Juliette F. Kennedy

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explores the changing perceptions (attitudes and language use) of clinical social workers toward clients with disabilities through a qualitative exploration of clinicians' experiences working with this population over time. Based upon in-depth semi-structured interviews with nine experienced clinical social workers currently in private practice, the findings suggest that clinicians' attitudes and language use toward persons with disabilities are influenced by many factors, including contact with individuals with disabilities, supervision, post-masters training and social work theory. While participants in this study were not versed in disability theory, they nonetheless were flexible in applying alternative approaches with their clients ...


The Role Of Emotion In Therapists' Training : A Psychological And Social Exploration, Loren D. Helms Dec 2012

The Role Of Emotion In Therapists' Training : A Psychological And Social Exploration, Loren D. Helms

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This theoretical study aims to explore emotionality and its particular relationship to students whom are training in psychotherapy. The study will examine emotion as it pertains to understandings of an individual's psychological structuring, the therapeutic process, and therapeutic growth. Emotion will be reviewed through psychodynamic theory and literature on therapeutic practice. In addition, the study will use a feminist lens to explore historical and social treatments of emotionality. Emotions and emotional expression will be considered as it becomes situated within social power heirarchies. Through these understandings and conceptualizations of emotionality, specific attention will be paid to the roles of ...


An Exploratory Study Of White People's Evolving Consciousness And How Their Awareness Of White Privilege And Racism Changed Their Consciousness, Phillip C. Horner Dec 2012

An Exploratory Study Of White People's Evolving Consciousness And How Their Awareness Of White Privilege And Racism Changed Their Consciousness, Phillip C. Horner

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study was undertaken to explore the many ways in which a White person's consciousness changes due to their awareness of White privilege and racism. The research was a qualitative study with a sample of 12 White people who self identified as able to recognize the benefits of their White privilege, accepted their own role in perpetuating racism, were knowledgeable about racial, ethnic, and cultural differences, and are able to talk about race. Through phone interviews, participants were asked to reflect on their lives and offer their narrative of how learning about and accepting their White privilege and racism ...


Coming Out : Sexual Orientation Disclosure To Siblings, Rachel M. Gottesman Dec 2012

Coming Out : Sexual Orientation Disclosure To Siblings, Rachel M. Gottesman

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explores LGBTQ individuals' experiences navigating sexual orientation disclosure to their sibling(s). The purpose of the study was to examine the role siblings play in sexual orientation disclosure, how and why LGBTQ identified individuals 'come out' to their sibling(s), and provide a glimpse into their experiences of this disclosure. Eleven individuals, ages 25–32 who identified as Lesbian, Gay, Bi–sexual, Transgender or Queer were interviewed via open–ended, semi–structured interviews. LGBTQ participants were asked to speak about their sibling(s) relationship prior to and following their sexual orientation disclosure and the trajectory of their ...


Implicit Communication : The Body's Role In Clinical Work With Trauma Survivors, Julia A. Jakubowski Dec 2012

Implicit Communication : The Body's Role In Clinical Work With Trauma Survivors, Julia A. Jakubowski

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This exploratory-descriptive study examined therapists' use of their physiological responses in work with trauma survivors. Broadly, the study sought to understand how a therapist's physiological responses play a role in how they construct meaning about a client. The study sample consisted of eight Relationally oriented therapists who worked with trauma survivors. Data were collected through hour-long, semi-structured interviews with each participant at a single point in time, utilizing the Physiological Response to Trauma Questionnaire. Findings revealed that participants used their physiological countertransference to inform clinical functions, specifically: ability to attune, choice of interventions, assessment, and ability to maintain boundaries ...


Interdisciplinary Collaboration In School Social Work : Building Relationships For Ecological Change, Alex J. Kim Dec 2012

Interdisciplinary Collaboration In School Social Work : Building Relationships For Ecological Change, Alex J. Kim

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

School social work is part of social work's historical commitment to seeing people as well as the systems and environments they exist in, but much of today's school social work practice focuses on the clinical treatment of individual emotional and social problems. With growing needs and fewer resources, school social work must find ways of impacting more students through ecologically-informed practice that affects multiple levels of the school environment. Interdisciplinary collaborative practice can be a powerful way to foster ecological change by involving other staff in the effort to craft a stronger school system. In this study, 11 ...


Black Students' Classroom Silence In Predominantly White Institutions Of Higher Education, Mahajoy A. Laufer Dec 2012

Black Students' Classroom Silence In Predominantly White Institutions Of Higher Education, Mahajoy A. Laufer

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explored Black students' silence in classrooms at predominantly white institutions (PWIs) of higher education in the northeast United States. Fifteen student interviews revealed that teaching material centered on European-American culture and history influenced their silence. Participants perceived devaluing of people of color in course material and perceived that professors used and allowed racist language and opinions to pervade the classroom. Students negotiated the tension of having discordant views from the mainstream and at times, between other students of the same racial and cultural group. They often elected to speak out against perceived discrimination and remained silent in ...


"She's Such A Borderline" : Exploring The Stigma Of Borderline Personality Disorder Through The Eyes Of The Clinician, Jessica C. Fritz Dec 2012

"She's Such A Borderline" : Exploring The Stigma Of Borderline Personality Disorder Through The Eyes Of The Clinician, Jessica C. Fritz

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study was undertaken to explore the attitudes and feelings that mental health clinicians have towards Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD), which, as the literature shows, is a highly stigmatized diagnosis within the field. Special attention was paid to the participants' treatment experiences with this client population, including initial reactions, issues of countertransference, treatment approaches, prognosis, and clinician disclosure. The study was designed to explore the reasons or meanings behind the negative stereotypes that often accompany discussions around BPD. Previous research has not utilized a qualitative approach with therapists. Instead, the existing literature has focused on evidence-based treatments for BPD and ...


Disordered Eating Attitudes And Behaviors : Comparing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender And Queer Women To Women Who Identify As Straight, Mellissa T. Bonilla Dec 2012

Disordered Eating Attitudes And Behaviors : Comparing Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender And Queer Women To Women Who Identify As Straight, Mellissa T. Bonilla

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study used a quantitative, fixed-method research design to explore the trends of eating disordered attitudes and behaviors in women. Specifically, it investigated whether there were differences in prevalence of eating disordered attitudes and behaviors between heterosexual women and women who identify as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender or Queer. Participants were found using snowball sampling. 556 women participated in the research by completing an online survey. The survey instrument they were then asked to complete was EAT-26, used to asses if a person may be at high risk for an eating disorder. The ages of the participants ranged from 18-83 ...


What Psychodynamic Psychotherapists Think About Free Will And Determinism And How That Impacts Their Clinical Practice : A Qualitative Study, Patrick J. Cody Dec 2012

What Psychodynamic Psychotherapists Think About Free Will And Determinism And How That Impacts Their Clinical Practice : A Qualitative Study, Patrick J. Cody

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explored psychodynamic psychotherapists' beliefs about free will and determinism and how these impact their work with clients. A secondary goal was to determine if and how knowledge of psychodynamic theory, neuropsychology and/or physics has shaped those views. Twelve clinicians were asked questions related to free will, determinism and clients' behavioral change. All participants said that psychodynamic theory has influenced their beliefs, and a majority said that neuropsychology has done so. Major findings include that 11 of the 12 participants endorsed the concept of compatibilism, that free will and determinism can co-exist and are not mutually exclusive ...


Screening Techniques : Clinicians' Views And Approaches To Assessing Alcohol And Substance Use In Older Adults, Erin M. Conlan Dec 2012

Screening Techniques : Clinicians' Views And Approaches To Assessing Alcohol And Substance Use In Older Adults, Erin M. Conlan

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study examined how New York State licensed clinicians approach the initial assessment and ongoing treatment of older adults (55+) identified to be struggling with alcohol or substance misuse issues. The research questions specifically asked: Do clinicians assess for alcohol and substance misuse in the older adult patients they serve? What are the mediating factors within this assessment and treatment process? This study was initiated in an exploratory fashion because of the limited amount of research available which investigates the relationship between clinicians' attitudes and approaches to this work with the rapidly growing older adult populations they serve. Given ...


Talking Through The Body : A Comparative Study Of Cognitive-Behavioral And Attachment Based Treatments For Childhood Trauma, Eric A. Eichler Dec 2012

Talking Through The Body : A Comparative Study Of Cognitive-Behavioral And Attachment Based Treatments For Childhood Trauma, Eric A. Eichler

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

Childhood abuse and neglect have been shown to have a devastating impact on an individual's social, emotional, and physical development. This study was undertaken in order to determine the best treatment approach for survivors of childhood trauma. The author investigated the impact of traumatic stress on the brain, and reviewed the psychoanalytic, child development, and neurobiological literature on the importance of the attachment relationship for healthy development. Various perspectives on the diagnosis of childhood trauma were explored, including models that centralize childhood trauma as the cause of much of the spectrum of mental illness we see today. The author ...


How Does Homeless Outreach Work : The Perspective Of The Homeless Outreach Worker, Carlos E. Encalada Dec 2012

How Does Homeless Outreach Work : The Perspective Of The Homeless Outreach Worker, Carlos E. Encalada

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This exploratory/descriptive study examines the perspective of workers who provide outreach services to a population experiencing street homelessness, about the work they do. It utilizes a convenience sample derived from the diverse workforce of a five-agency collaborative in a large Northeastern U.S. city. The purpose of this study was to give voice to and contextualize the perspective of outreach workers on the nature of work with vulnerable populations. Largely missing from the literature on outreach work with the chronically homeless, the perspective of outreach workers is needed to inform an understanding of the complexities of this work and ...


Homelessness As Trauma : A Theoretical Analysis Exploring Treatment Of Symptoms Of Grief And Loss In Single African-American Homeless Women, Jesse J. Dice Dec 2012

Homelessness As Trauma : A Theoretical Analysis Exploring Treatment Of Symptoms Of Grief And Loss In Single African-American Homeless Women, Jesse J. Dice

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

The purpose of this theoretical study was to explore and describe the trauma that single homeless African-American women are at risk for before and during homelessness. Grief and loss theory and attachment theory were used to bring attention to the need of addressing traumas during homelessness. Literature was reviewed relating to exploring the areas of cross-sectional identities of race, gender and socioeconomic status within this population, historical contexts of homelessness in the U.S., and homelessness as trauma, to analyze the language used to describe the barriers in receiving treatment as a single homeless African-American woman. Through exploring these topics ...


A Theoretical Approach To Understanding Alcohol Misuse In Military Personnel Returning Home From Operation Iraqii (Oif) And Operation Enduring Freedom (Oef), Patrice K. Boyce Dec 2012

A Theoretical Approach To Understanding Alcohol Misuse In Military Personnel Returning Home From Operation Iraqii (Oif) And Operation Enduring Freedom (Oef), Patrice K. Boyce

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This theoretical thesis explores the misuse of alcohol in military personnel who are returning home from the current conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan. The study focuses on what occurs to these soldiers upon their return home, as they try to manage their experiences of combat while continuing to fulfill their duties as soldiers, sailors, Marines, airman, and guardians. The comorbidity of posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) which sometimes result from traumatic memories and experiences of the Middle East, and the misuse of alcohol which some returning soldiers use as an acceptable tool for numbing symptoms of PTSD are explored in this ...


Resiliency In Survivors Of Human Trafficking : An Exploratory Study Of Clinicians' Perspectives Of Protective Factors, Theresa A. Carter Dec 2012

Resiliency In Survivors Of Human Trafficking : An Exploratory Study Of Clinicians' Perspectives Of Protective Factors, Theresa A. Carter

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explores the salutogenic question as it relates to female survivors of human trafficking, "Why, when women are exposed to the same trauma which causes some to become ill, do some remain healthy?" Using a standardized open-ended interview format, this author gathered the perspectives of twelve health and social services providers, including executive directors, case management workers, mental health counselors, and advocates. This data was compiled and analyzed, alongside the existing literature on resiliency and within the framework of Salutogenic Theory. All participants identified protective factors that contribute to resiliency based on their professional work with female survivors ...


Resiliency On The Home Front : Addressing The Needs Of Family And Friends Of Unmarried Military Members During Deployment, Michelle E. Biltz Dec 2012

Resiliency On The Home Front : Addressing The Needs Of Family And Friends Of Unmarried Military Members During Deployment, Michelle E. Biltz

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study was undertaken to explore the needs of family and close friends of unmarried military members. Unmarried military members depend on parents, relatives, siblings, significant others, and close friends for support during deployments, however there is limited research available on the needs of this population. The main research question was: What are the needs of family and close friends of unmarried military members during deployment? A questionnaire was used to recruit participants through Facebook military communities and online military community forums. There were 33 total participants who were asked to identify an unmarried military member with whom they had ...


Questioning Neutrality : An Inquiry Into Contemporary Therapists' Attitudes Towards Neutrality In The Clinical Encounter, Shoshanna D. Brady Dec 2012

Questioning Neutrality : An Inquiry Into Contemporary Therapists' Attitudes Towards Neutrality In The Clinical Encounter, Shoshanna D. Brady

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This study was undertaken to explore the possible relationship between clinicians' training in neutrality at Smith College School for Social Work and their enduring practice ideals with respect to neutrality. Grounded in the theoretical literature regarding models of psychodynamic therapeutic change, this research project sought to describe the role of neutrality in contemporary clinical practice, addressing a gap in comprehensive empirical research on this topic. Research data was collected from 224 alumni who graduated from Smith College School for Social Work (SCSSW) during the past 30 years and are currently practicing in the field of mental health. Participants completed an ...


Enduring Loss : A Critique Of Cultural Competence Literature In Social Work Practice With Latin American Immigrants, Tamara Bransburg Dec 2012

Enduring Loss : A Critique Of Cultural Competence Literature In Social Work Practice With Latin American Immigrants, Tamara Bransburg

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

In this paper I will use the concept of melancholia to critique and improve upon the theoretical constructs that are typically used in social work practice literature to understand the experience of Latin American immigrants. I will argue that acculturation and cultural competence models (re)enforce categories of self and other and reify notions of cultural authenticity that negate the complexity and specificity of immigrant experiences. In so doing, social work practice has taken up the United States' hegemonic narrative around immigration. As a challenge to this collaboration, I will propose an exploration of the concept of melancholia to inform ...


The Experience Of Homelessness And The Human-Companion Animal Bond : A Quantitative Study : A Project Based Upon An Investigation At San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium/Veterinary Street Outreach Services, San Francisco, California, Erin J. Brewbaker Dec 2012

The Experience Of Homelessness And The Human-Companion Animal Bond : A Quantitative Study : A Project Based Upon An Investigation At San Francisco Community Clinic Consortium/Veterinary Street Outreach Services, San Francisco, California, Erin J. Brewbaker

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This qualitative study explores homeless pet owners' perceptions regarding their experience of homelessness and the impact of companion pet accompaniment on this experience. In-person, semi-structured interviews were held with a diverse sample of 12 homeless pet owners receiving services from Veterinary Street Outreach Services (VET SOS), a volunteer-based project providing free veterinary care for the companion animals of homeless individuals in San Francisco. Participant narratives were used to explore the complexities of the experience of homelessness while being accompanied by a companion animal, personal experiences of homelessness, insights concerning the bond shared between companion animals and owner, and the experience ...


Psychotherapists' Decisions Regarding Boundary Crossings In Outpatient Practice, Victoria E. Brinckerhoff Dec 2012

Psychotherapists' Decisions Regarding Boundary Crossings In Outpatient Practice, Victoria E. Brinckerhoff

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This research study was a quantitative, exploratory investigation of the experiences and opinions of outpatient psychotherapists regarding decisions about crossing boundaries within clinical practice. The focus was on boundary-crossing behavior, as distinguished from boundaryviolating behavior, in that boundary crossings are not necessarily harmful, and at times may be helpful to the client. An electronic questionnaire, developed specifically for this research, was administered anonymously to 46 practicing clinicians in the United States. The major areas of inquiry were the following: boundary-crossing decisions with which clinicians experienced the most difficulty, factors influencing decisions regarding boundary dilemmas, and types of resources that clinicians ...


A Queer-Positive Institution And Its Creation Of Gender-Competency In Social Workers : A Project Based On The Exploration Of Smith College School For Social Work Alumni, Haley M. Burton Dec 2012

A Queer-Positive Institution And Its Creation Of Gender-Competency In Social Workers : A Project Based On The Exploration Of Smith College School For Social Work Alumni, Haley M. Burton

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This quantitative study explored the inclusion of transgender specific curriculum provided at the Masters level at Smith College School for Social Work and the degree of competency and level of preparedness it provided graduates of the program. The chosen alumni population was reached through the alumni email network. This study utilized a curriculum survey created by previous researchers, as well as a transphobia scale to perform an attitudinal assessment. It was hypothesized that those who indicated receiving more education on issues specific to the transgender population would feel more competent and more prepared. An additional hypothesis was that those who ...


Unequal Access : Gaps In Service For Gay Male Victims Of Intimate Partner Violence, Elizabeth H. Condrey Dec 2012

Unequal Access : Gaps In Service For Gay Male Victims Of Intimate Partner Violence, Elizabeth H. Condrey

Theses, Dissertations, and Projects

This theoretical study explores the problem of gaps in intimate partner violence services for gay male victims of abuse and the implications for social workers and other service providers. Unequal access to appropriate, affirming, and inclusive partner abuse services is a widespread problem for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) individuals and communities, and, for the purposes of this study, partner abuse specifically among gay men is considered. This study utilizes two theoretical models, intersectionality and cultural competency, to provide a guiding framework for service providers to use when assessing current services and implementing improved policies and procedures. Intersectionality ...