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Ethics for Social Workers


1. The National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics was established to offer standards and serve each of the following purposes EXCEPT:

A. Identify core values on which social work’s mission is based and summarize broad ethical principles that reflect the profession’s core values

B. Help social workers identify relevant considerations when professional obligations conflict or ethical uncertainties arise

C. Examine how moral philosophy, social concepts, and relevant theory impact ethical decision making

D. Socialize practitioners new to the field to social work’s mission, values, ethical principles, and ethical standards

The History of Ethical Standards in the Social Work Profession

2. The evolution of social work ethics was highlighted by the Values Period, where the focus was on the moral issues facing the poor, oppressed, and vulnerable, including how they often succumbed to immoral deeds due their circumstances and how they were in need of relief.

A. True

B. False

Conflicts of Interest

3. While a boundary violation is is harmful or potentially harmful to the patient and therapy, and constitutes exploitation of the patient, a boundary crossing is defined as a deviation from classical therapeutic activity that is harmless, non-exploitative, and possibly supportive of the therapy itself.

A. True

B. False

4. Which of the following is NOT generally included in the licensed clinical social worker’s informed consent agreement with clients?

A. What to expect from the clinical process, client rights, and services offered

B. Confidentiality factors and limits as well as practices relating to release of information

C. Recordkeeping practices, fee/payment schedule, and cancellation policy

D. A statement addressing the client’s right to personal autonomy

Privacy and Confidentiality

5. In regard to confidentiality, the general expectation that social workers will keep information confidential does not apply when disclosure is necessary to prevent serious, foreseeable, and imminent harm to a client or other identifiable person.

A. True

B. False

Competence and Integrity of the Profession

6. Clinicians who practice professional competence display the habitual and judicious use of communication, knowledge, technical skills, clinical reasoning, emotions, values, and __________ in daily practice for the benefit of the individual and community being served.

A. Beneficence

B. Reflection

C. Understanding

D. Efficacy

Impairment of Colleagues

7. According to the NASW Code of Ethics, when professionals have direct knowledge of a social work colleague’s impairment that interferes with practice effectiveness, they must consult with their licensing or regulatory body in order to get advice on helping the colleague take remedial action.

A. True

B. False

Social Workers’ Ethical Responsibilities in Practice Settings-Supervision and Consultation

8. Most professional codes of conduct address the need to establish clear boundaries in the supervisorial role, the responsibility to monitor worker issues that may affect practice with clients, and the need to act in a way to establish and preserve:

A. Competence and integrity

B. Collaboration and justice

C. Fairness and respect

D. Privacy and Trust

Social and Political Action

9. Social workers should engage in political and social action that enhances human well-being and helps meets the basic human needs of all people, while ultimately reducing barriers and promoting the betterment of society and social inclusion.

A. True

B. False

Cultural Competence and Diversity

10. In addition to being culturally and linguistically competent, LCSWs need to be aware of “cultural humility”, which acknowledges that although we may never truly understand the experiences of another cultural group of which we are not members, we will have a respectful attitude and approach toward different points of view.

A. True

B. False

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