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School Social WorkAn Evidence-Informed Framework for Practice$
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Michael S. Kelly, James C. Raines, Susan Stone, and Andy Frey

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780195373905

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: May 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195373905.001.0001

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Understanding and Narrowing the Research–Practice Knowledge Gap

Understanding and Narrowing the Research–Practice Knowledge Gap

(p.23) 2 Understanding and Narrowing the Research–Practice Knowledge Gap
School Social Work

James C. Raines

Susan Stone

Andy Frey

Oxford University Press

This chapter examines several reasons for the existence of the knowledge—practice gap; a gap between the practice choices of school social workers, and research on school-based prevention and intervention as well as contemporary education models. It presents three plausible explanations for the knowledge—practice gap: (1) lack of practitioner familiarity with the knowledge base; (2) barriers to implementing principles and specific empirically supported treatments (ESTs) emerging from the knowledge base, and (3) a privileging of practice wisdom over empirical research, resulting in a rejection of current school-based research. It introduces the evidence-informed practice (EIP) process that has been proposed in social work and other disciplines to address the research—practice gap. While EIP has intuitive appeal, it has also received much criticism from the practice community. These criticisms, many of which are legitimate, have undoubtedly contributed to the slow embracing of EIP in practice.

Keywords:   social work practice, social workers, knowledge-practice gap, school social workers, school-based prevention, education models, evidence-informed practice

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