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Printed from the ScOPTbox Practice Learning Library

Practice learning in private care homes for older people – a two-way resource

This paper reports on three evaluated projects of social work placements in private care homes for older people in Scotland. This was a new situation for each of the care homes. They were uncertain about the student role and this was initially challenging for the students. Reported outcomes of these placements include deep learning for the students who developed core social work skills and an understanding of ageism within a relationship-based model of social work. The care homes reported considerable benefit from the presence of the student in terms of raising overall standards of practice and enhancing the opportunities which they could offer to residents. An increase in inter-professional understanding was reported by all respondents and this had been a major factor in the motivation of care home managers in agreeing to participate in the projects. Planning, preparation and communication were cited as challenges in some of the studies. Because they are new and different in the UK, such developments must be supported and nurtured and considering groups of such placements as projects to be managed holistically would work to the advantage of all stakeholders, especially the care home residents who gained so much from these projects.

Social Work Education, 2013 Vol. 32, No. 2, 197-212

  • Author(s):
Moira Dunworth
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  • Type:
  • Tags:
Placement Journey
Practice and Theory
Care Homes, Older People, Residential Care, Group Care
  • Specific Service User Group/s:
Older People
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  • Recommended by:
Jon Bolton
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Dunworth, M. (2013) Practice learning in private care homes for older people – a two-way resource. ScOPTbox Practice Learning Library. [Online]. Available from:

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