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Social Work: HOME

Starting Guide for Social Work Research

Welcome to the Social Work Guide!

Use this guide to help you start your research assignment or to familiarize yourself with your subject discipline's search tools and strategies. Each discipline has it's own research methods, databases, peer reviewed scholarly journals, and authorities or experts. We can't cover everything in one guide, but this is a good jumpstart on your journey. 

Contact the librarian listed for more help on navigating specific resources and finding information you need. We're excited you're here!

Research Topics in Social Work

Social Work is informed by research and practice, using evidence to create innovative solutions to society's biggest problems. The following topic ideas are based on Grand Challenges for Social Work initiated by the American Academy of Social Work and Social Welfare. 

Just Society 

  1. Eliminating racism in society through research-based interventions
  2. Addressing social injustice including racism, sexism, or ableism by exposing unfair practices in work, healthcare, or other areas of society
  3. Promote smart decarceration and promoting a just approach to public safety
  4. Reducing wealth inequality and increasing financial literacy 
  5. Reducing economic inequality including the wage gap, retirement, and home ownership

Individual and Family Well Being 

  1. Ensure healthy development for all youth including behavioral and mental health 
  2. Close the health gap addressing discrimination, poverty, and environmental factors that impact health 
  3. Build healthy relationships to end interpersonal violence 
  4. Examine strategies to advance longevity and help people live productive lives of meaning 

Stronger Social Fabric

  1. Eradicate social isolation and loneliness that is a health hazard 
  2. End homelessness by developing service innovations, technologies, and policies to promote affordable housing and income security 
  3. Create social responses to environments impacted by climate change by engaging with communities 
  4. Harness technology for the good of society 


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