Research Topic Ideas for College Social Work Students

Look through scholarly journals for research topic ideas.
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The topic that you choose for your social work research paper can do more than help you earn a good grade; it can serve as a tool to help you get accepted into a graduate program or gain employment. When selecting a topic for your paper, choose one in the area of social work that interests you. If you feel unsure about a research topic idea, ask your professor for guidance.

1 Implications of Out-of-School Suspensions for Caregivers

Some social workers work within school districts or with families who have low incomes and/or children with behavioral problems. For a research paper, evaluate the effects of out-of-school suspensions on the caregivers or parents of children. Do research on the effectiveness of academic disciplinary actions and conduct recorded interviews with parents and caregivers who have a child who has been suspended. Ask the individuals about their views of the disciplinary measure. Verify if the suspension prompted the withdrawal of a parent’s or caregiver’s participation in the school. Then evaluate how a child’s out-of-school suspension affects parents or caregivers. For example, learn if there were financial losses because a parent had to stay home from work or if the suspension added stress to an already tense relationship.

2 Hospital Deportations and Social Work

Social workers employed in health care settings may work with immigrants who don’t have health care and lack the means to pay for medical care. For a social work project, evaluate the policies and practices of hospitals in your state in regards to treating patients who are in the country illegally. According to the article “Passport Biopsies: Hospital Deportations and Implications for Social Work” in the publication “Social Work,” some hospitals participate in the “extralegal” deportation of uninsured, undocumented patients who are seriously injured or ill. In the paper, discuss the role of social workers in hospitals as they work with this population during the informed consent and discharge process. Compare the rights of undocumented patients in such situations to the demands of the health care organization and the ethical values that social workers must follow.

3 Promotion of Foster Care Placement Stability

There is significant research regarding the harmful social, psychological and academic consequences of unstable foster care placements on a child’s life. The “British Journal of Social Work” shares that there is lack of information about how social workers can promote placement stability in an effective manner. For a report, discuss roadblocks to placement stability and techniques that facilitate a successful foster care placement. Examine how the successful techniques have helped children who tend to experience more placement instability than others, such as those who are older or are separated from siblings.

4 Alternative Spiritual Assessments

It is common for a social worker to conduct a spiritual assessment of a client. Some clients, however, may not feel comfortable discussing their spirituality, may not be fluent in the language used in the assessment or may not understand language. In your report, discuss the benefits of a client spiritual assessment. Highlight alternative spiritual assessment approaches used by professionals and their outcomes. Furthermore, discuss the types of phrases or questions that facilitate and hinder a client spiritual assessment.

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