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SOCW 6520 WK 4 responses 

Respond to the blog post of three colleagues Has to be responded to separately and different responses in one or more of the following ways: Name first and references after every person

  • Validate      an idea in your colleague’s post with your own experience.
  • Share      an insight from having read your colleague’s posting.

Peer 1:

Sasha Ritchie – 

Field Instructors play a significant role in social work education since field education is considered the profession’s signature pedagogy (Bogo, 2015; Council on Social Work Education, 2008; Kanno & Koeske, 2010, cited in Cooper-Bolinskey & Ketner, 2016)). It is normal for students to have anxiety, low-confidence, and have uncertainty in fieldwork decision-making. The supervisor plays a critical role in the integration of learning and professional practice for students. According to Ketner et. al (2017) to strengthen the supervisory model, field directors must take, and be given, the lead in adopting and operationalizing field education as their signature pedagogy, including field instruction while students are engaging in field education. Social work field instruction, or supervision, has taken many forms over the years. Contemporarily, Marc, Makai-Dimeny and Oşvat (2014) referred to supervision as an interactional process in which a qualified supervisor is assigned or designated to assist and direct the practice of supervisees in defined learning or practice areas.

Social work leadership is most closely aligned with the model of transformational leadership, a style in which the leader identifies the needed change creates the vision for that change, inspires and guides others to work toward that change, and executes the change as a team (Corbett & Clark, n.d.). My field instructor’s leadership style is democratic leadership. Northouse (2021) explains that democratic leadership is shared leadership. My supervisors’ type of leadership style allows me to take a more participative role in the decision-making process. Though my supervisor does not have to meet with me every time when I complete my hours, he still arranges for us to speak at the end of the day when I am working for Infinity Hospice. We meet virtually to discuss our cases and problem-solving and concerns that may have arisen during my workday. Democratic leaders often provide more opportunities to participate, ideas are exchanged freely, and discussion is encouraged. While the democratic process tends to focus on group equality and the free flow of ideas, the leader of the group is still there to offer guidance and control (p. 55-77).


Corbett, B. & Clark, E.J., (n.d.) Social Work Leadership – What Is a Leader? Are You One? Can You Become One? The New Social Worker.,the%20change%20as%20a%20team.

Cooper-Bolinskey, D., & Ketner, M. (2016). Does type of supervision impact the quality of social work field education? International Journal of Education and Social Science, 3(7), 34-40. Retrieved from

Cooper-Bolinskey, D., & Ketner, M. VanCleave, D. (2017). The Meaning and Value of Supervision in Social Work Field Education. Simmons School of Social Work.

Council on Social Work Education. (2008). Educational policies and accreditation standards. Alexandria, VA: Council on Social Work Education.

Marc, C., Makai-Dimeny, J., & Oşvat, C. (2014). The social work supervisor: Skills, roles, responsibilities. Bulletin of the Transilvania University of Braşov, 7(1), 221-230. Retrieved from PDF/24_MARC,%20Makai,%20Osvat%201-2014.pdf

Northouse, P. G. (2021). Introduction to leadership: Concepts and practice (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Sage.

Peer 2:

Omoyinka Orekoya 

An explanation of the role of supervision in your field education experience

Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger,  (2018) define supervision within the social work field experience as the development and guidance given by a professional who has more skills, knowledge, and experience to a  person learning the skills. The supervision takes place in a practice setting, and it is integrated with some administrative, educational, and emotional support functions. There is also an instructor-student relationship implemented on a one-on-one and individualized teaching arrangement (Shulman, (2013), as cited  Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger,  2018). Practicum supervision is described as an instructor- Intern relationship as distinct from employment supervision which is mainly to mentor the implementation of duties assigned (Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger,  2018).

        Supervision performs many roles and is not limited to allowing the intern to perform in the real-life situation in working with clients, the client system, community, and the governmental bodies depending on the placements. It allows the intern to gain some advice, and consultation, regarding professional development and care about the career, which may eventually lead to a lasting relationship beyond practicum experience, and play an important role in an intern’s professional growth and development (Hicks, (2011)as cited in Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger, 2018). Supervision guides the agency field instructor in determining their teaching approach that will allow the intern to measure up to the learning agreement assigned by the institution. The intern will also have the opportunity to gain nontraditional social work experience, the perspectives of other disciplines, and interdisciplinary collaboration skills when interns are supervised by graduates from other disciplines. A major role of supervision is to guide the intern to demonstrate the social work program competencies according to the social work education CSWE (Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger,  2018).

A description of your field instructor’s leadership style and an explanation of whether the

leadership style will promote your agency learning agreement during your field

education experience

According to Birkenmaier, & Berg-Weger,  (2018), the quality of the field experience is determined by the experience and skills of the field instructor. While there are different leadership styles, Bogo et, al,(2007), stated that field instructors should be guided by professional values of respecting diversity, focusing on strengths and empowerment, advocating for vulnerable individuals, and valuing relationships as avenues for growth and change (p.100). Northouse, (2008) also explains that personal leadership style is driven by personal leadership philosophy. My field instructor understands professional values, respect, and empowerment as defined by Bogo, et al (2007), takes much interest in directing, explaining, and allows the intern the opportunity to grow by practicing, and taking up real-life roles as professionals in handling clients’ cases. He is friendly, and approachable for clarity in duties assigned.


Birkenmaier, J., & Berg-Weger, M. (2018). The practicum companion for social work: Integrating class and fieldwork (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.

Chapter 4, “Making the Most of Your Practicum Supervision” (pp. 79-95)

Bogo, M., Regehr, C., Power, R., & Regehr, G. (2007). When values collide: Field instructors’ experiences of providing feedback and evaluating competence. The Clinical Supervisor, 26, 99

Northouse, P. G. (2008). Introduction to leadership: Concepts and practice (4th ed.). Washington,

DC: Sage.

Peer 3:

Audri Kaufman 

An explanation of the role of supervision in your field education experience

The primary focus of supervision during field education is to build on the teacher-learner relationship between the supervisor and the student and ensure the professional and personal development of the student (Birkenmaier & Berg-Weger, 2018). Supervision during field practicum is really about self-reflection, learning, and challenging any adverse reactions that come up for the student in regards to client interactions or situations. Field supervisors provide the student with tasks and/or shaddowing opportunities to learn from seasoned staff. Supervision is all about debriefing about the experiences learned while completing assigned tasks, interacting with clients, and discussing what was learned from any shadowing experiences. The supervisor plays a fundamental role in the learning process of the student which is why  supervision is so important; it allows for that uninterrupted, one-on-one time between student and supervisor to maximize the learning experience of the student.

A description of your field instructor’s leadership style and an explanation of whether the leadership style will promote your agency learning agreement during your field education experience

The leadership style of my field supervisor is more democratic. According to Northouse (2021), democratic leaders view their followers as capable of self-direction and therefore, provide counsel and support rather than exerting excessive control. My supervisor at Valley’s Best Hospice so far has been very supportive to me; allowing me the talking space to share about my learning process.  Our conversations have ranged from direct patient work to big picture/macro systems of care. Learning from my field supervisor and his 20+ years of experience has been very inspiring for. What I appreciate most from my field supervisor is that our relationship feels to me more along the lines of a coach/mentorship.  I appreciate the trust and flexibility he provides me throughout my learning process so far. It is about finding the right fit so that the student feels comfortable to come to their field supervisor with questions and/or to process a challenging case.  Strict, controlling, authoritarian supervisorial styles do not work well with my style of learning. Therefore, I am grateful that I have a field supervisor that creates a work environment that is conducive to learning and will promote the satisfying of the competencies that make up my learning agreement. 



Birkenmaier, J., & Berg-Weger, M. (2018). The practicum companion for social work: Integrating class and fieldwork (4th ed.). New York, NY: Pearson.

Northouse, P. G. (2021). Introduction to leadership: Concepts and practice (5th ed.). Washington, DC: Sage.

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