The Application of Simulation-based Learning in a Bachelor of Social Work Course at Wilfrid Laurier University
Lead Presenter: Dr. Michelle Skop, PhD, RSW, is an Assistant Professor in the Faculty of Social Work at Wilfrid Laurier University, Brantford Campus. Before joining Laurier, Michelle practiced social work in both hospital and community healthcare settings. Michelle values a relational approach to teaching based on power sharing and community collaboration. Michelle’s program of research involves: (a) the development, implementation, and evaluation of innovative pedagogies and experiential learning processes; and (b) using arts-based methodologies to explore the intersections of identity, health, and wellness.
Co-presenter: Sandy Cao is a fourth year Bachelor of Social Work student who works with Michelle as a Teaching Assistant. Sandy has played a key role in this simulation project by co-facilitating the course, Communication and Interviewing Skills. Sandy’s areas of interest include working with adults with developmental disabilities, as well as social work within healthcare. She plans to pursue her Master of Social Work degree in the future.
In this presentation, we will describe the development and implementation of a scholarship of teaching and learning project about simulation-based learning in a new Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) course at Wilfrid Laurier University. The course, Communication and Interviews Skills, embedded the pedagogy of simulation-based learning to help prepare second-year BSW students for direct social work practice in their upcoming field placements. In partnership with Dr. Eva Peisachovich’s research team at York University, we facilitated two simulations during weeks five and eight of the course. In the first simulation, students were tasked with beginning a social work interview, introducing confidentiality, and building rapport. Using the same case scenario, in the second simulation, students continued the interview process by focusing on social work assessment. We assessed the efficacy of the two simulations and their impact on students’ learning and skills development through a mixed methods research study involving questionnaires and focus groups. We will conclude this presentation by sharing reflections and observations about students’ active learning process within the remote classroom, as well as by describing future directions for simulation-based learning in social work education.
Learn more about the exciting work of Dr. Michelle Skop