NASW Standards of Practice as Social Work Exam Study Guide

practice makes licensed There are lots of ways to structure your preparation for the social work licensing exam. Learning everything there is to know about social work is one way to go (memorizing The Social Work Dictionary, the DSM, all your MSW textbooks...). But that's not recommended. It would take nearly forever, and there's only so much information you can realistically retain. Better to find a way to get acquainted in a general way with what you might actually expect to see on the exam.

The exam aims to make certain that licensed social workers know their way around the requirements of the profession. So, what are those requirements? The NASW Code of Ethics has a lot to say about that. Knowing your way around the code is a great way to get exam-ready. Here's another: Take a look at the NASW Standards for the Practice of Clinical Social Work. Here--bullet-pointed below--are the basic building blocks of clinical social work practice. Links go to explanations from NASW. If any of these standards reads as alien to you, then dig into the textbooks.

  • Standard 1. Clinical social workers shall function in accordance with the ethics and the stated standards of the profession, including its accountability procedures.
  • Standard 2. Clinical social workers shall have and continue to develop specialized knowledge and understanding of individuals, families, and groups and of therapeutic and preventive interventions.
  • Standard 3. Clinical social workers shall respond in a professional manner to all persons who seek their assistance.
  • Standard 4. Clinical social workers shall be knowledgeable about the services available in the community and make appropriate referrals for their clients.
  • Standard 5. Clinical social workers shall maintain their accessibility to clients.
  • Standard 6. Clinical social workers shall safeguard the confidential nature of the treatment relationship and of the information obtained within that relationship.
  • Standard 7. Clinical social workers shall maintain access to professional case consultation.
  • Standard 8. Clinical social workers shall establish and maintain professional offices and procedures.
  • Standard 9. Clinical social workers shall represent themselves to the public with accuracy.
  • Standard 10. Social workers shall engage in the independent private practice of clinical social work only when qualified to do so.
  • Standard 11. Clinical social workers shall have the right to establish an independent private practice.

Chances are, you already get this basic, social work stuff--just like you'll know the basic, social work stuff that comes up on the exam. Good luck!

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Jean Piaget and the Social Work Exam

doll August 9th is Jean Piaget's birthday. Consider marking the occasion by brushing up on the parts of Piaget's work that you might encounter on the social work licensing exam. Here's's summary of Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development, with links through to more detail:

  • The Sensorimotor Stage: During this stage, infants and toddlers acquire knowledge through sensory experiences and manipulating objects.
  • The Preoperational Stage: At this stage, kids learn through pretend play but still struggle with logic and taking the point of view of other people.
  • The Concrete Operational Stage: Kids at this point of development begin to think more logically, but their thinking can also be very rigid. They tend to struggle with abstract and hypothetical concepts.
  • The Formal Operational Stage: The final stage of Piaget's theory involves an increase in logic, the ability to use deductive reasoning, and an understanding of abstract ideas.

See the chart below for the ages (or just remember, shifts come at 2, 7, and 11). More details about Piaget--too many details, really--await you here:

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Here's a new coupon code, good through August '14. Get an additional five percent off your purchase of any and all Social Work Test Prep exams and exam bundles by entering AUG5 at checkout. Social workers don't let social workers pay retail. Pass it on and good luck on the exam!



How to Approach the Social Work Licensing Exam

how to approach the social work exam Here's a helpful page of tips for taking the social work licensing exam--or any multiple choice exam. Contains answers to lots of test-taking FAQs, including whether or not to change your first answer (okay if you've got a reason to), how best to schedule your exam prep (don't cram), and what to do if more than one answer seems right (there are a few approaches--check out the article). Here are the bullets. Get details at the Social Psychology Network:

Preparing for the Exam

  • Simulate the Required Behavior
  • Spaced Practice is Better than Massed Practice
  • Don't Psych Yourself Out

Taking the Test

  • Look Over the Test and Pace Yourself
  • Take Short Breaks
  • Don't Skip Around
  • Don't Be Afraid to Change Your First Answer
  • What To Do If More Than One Answer Seems Correct

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Coupon Codes Arrive at SWTP

swtp coupon codes More questions, less money. That's what people request when surveyed about possible improvements to Social Work Test Prep. You talked, we listened. We've been adding questions as fast as we can. We're up to over 750. (Practice exam #5 is in the works--stay tuned.) Now, starting today, get additional savings on SWTP exams and exam bundles using coupon codes at checkout. Coupons save you money above and beyond the already low prices and the daily 20% discount offered on the site.

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Lots of questions, lots of savings. Happy studying and good luck on the exam!