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Human Behavior Essay

1813 words - 8 pages

OVERVIEW OF THEORIES OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR & THE SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT
APPLICATIONS TO SOCIAL WORK GENERALIST PRACTICE

The following is a very general outline summarizing the theories covered in the NCSSS foundation classes of SSS 571: Human Behavior & the Social Environment. Theory application & integration with practice are demonstrated. This outline is only a summary of highlights; all theorists, ideas, and concepts are not included. Because human behavior is complex and the social work profession is broad, numerous theories are utilized for social work practice at the micro-meso-macro levels. These theories focus on human growth and development, psychological and social functioning, and ...view middle of the document...

D. (2003). Dimensions of human behavior: Person and environment (2nd ed.). Thousand Oaks: Sage. Robbins, S., Chatterjee, P., & Canda, E. (Eds.) (2005). Contemporary human behavior theory: A critical perspective for social work (2nd ed.). Boston: Allyn and Bacon.]

Revised 8/2008

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THEORY OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR
SYSTEMS THEORY Includes: Ecological Systems [Systems Perspective]

FOCUS OF THEORY
How persons interact with their environment

MAIN CONCEPTS RE: HUMAN BEHAVIOR
*Persons are in continual transaction with their environment *Systems are interrelated parts or subsystems constituting an ordered whole *Each subsystem impacts all other parts and whole system *Systems can have closed or open boundaries *Systems tend toward equilibrium *Individual functioning shapes family functioning and family systems can create pathology within the individual *Boundaries, roles, communication, family structure influence family functioning *Imitation & reaction to stimulation shape behavioral learning *Knowledge is constructed through children physically and mentally acting on objects *Intelligence is an evolutionary, biological adaptation to environment *Cognitive structures enable adaptation & organization

SOME THEORISTS
Parsons Merton Germain Gitterman

SOME PRACTICE APPLICATIONS
*Useful for developing holistic view of personsin-environment *Enhances understanding of interactions between micro-meso-macro levels of organization *Enriches contextual understanding of behavior

SOME PRACTICE INTERVENTIONS
*Strengthen one part of the system or subsystem to impact the whole system *Ecomaps & genograms for understanding system dynamics *Networking & referrals to facilitate change *Assessment of family development and lifecycle transitions *Use of multi-generational genograms *Use of family and parent coaching *Behavioral interventions such as classical or operant conditioning, positive or negative reinforcement *Time-limited, problemfocused interventions *Cognitive reframing of automatic thoughts about presenting problems to facilitate change

Includes: Family Systems [Systems Perspective]

How the family system affects the individual and family functioning across the lifespan

Bowen Satir Minuchin Carter & McGoldrick

*Useful for understanding family systems and life cycles over multiple generations

BEHAVIORISM & SOCIAL LEARNING THEORY Includes: Cognitive theory, Behavioral theory, Social Learning theory [Social Behavioral Perspective]

How individuals develop cognitive functioning and learn through acting on their environment

Pavlov Skinner Watson Piaget Bandura Beck

*Useful for enabling behavioral & symptomatic change *Useful for assessing individual cognitive functioning, group & family interactions

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THEORY OF HUMAN BEHAVIOR
PSYCHODYNAMIC THEORY Includes: Classical psychodynamic theory, Ego-psychology, Object-relations theory, Selfpsychology [Psychodynamic Perspective]

FOCUS OF THEORY
How inner energies and...

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