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Home arrow Sociology arrow Holistic engagement : transformative social work education in the 21st century
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CONCLUSION

As advocates for the inclusion of mindfulness in social work pedagogy and curriculum, we believe it is necessary to create learning spaces where mindfulness and social work practice are experienced as inclusive and socially just. In our commitment to this, we consider it important to open up discussion around some of the historical, cultural, and ethical elements within the current discourse about mindfulness in social work education in order to become more responsible about the knowledge that informs our pedagogy and curriculum. In advocating for critical reflection on the “mindfulness is value free” discourse evident in social work, we do not wish to negate the potential merits in recognizing the scientific basis of mindfulness and its inclusion into curriculum. We hope our dialogue encourages a heightened critical awareness of the complexity and multiplicity of student experiences of mindfulness in social work education, the influence of the social work culture and values, and the issue of power in this process. As educators, we need to consider whether the conditions that separate mindfulness from religion and its philosophical roots are helpful or oppressive and for whom. In addition, educators need to be aware of how the preferred “mindfulness is value free” discourse is shaped by social work knowledge and culture and how the historical contexts of our own lives are involved in this process. The challenge for social work education lies in the use of pedagogy and the implementation of curriculum that encompasses the multiplicity and complexity of mindfulness in social work.

 
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