Professional supervision and professional autonomy

Published on Sep 30, 2019in Aotearoa New Zealand Social Work
· DOI :10.11157/anzswj-vol31iss3id650
Synnöve Karvinen-Niinikoski6
Estimated H-index: 6
(UH: University of Helsinki),
Liz Beddoe15
Estimated H-index: 15
(University of Auckland)
+ 1 AuthorsMing-sum Tsui1
Estimated H-index: 1
(Caritas Institute of Higher Education)
INTRODUCTION:  Supervision is a well-established component of practice in the health and social care professions. In recent years, however, relentless changes in the nature of professional roles within these contexts have led to corresponding variations in how professional practice supervision is configured and delivered. METHOD:  This article examines how professional supervision and its future are seen by an international group of experts in social work supervision. The evolving perceptions of social work supervision’s role, and the relationship to professional autonomy in the social sphere are explored with reference to the authors’ earlier research. FINDINGS:  The tension between supervision as a surveillant tool of management and a practice of critical reflection is acknowledged in literature as posing a threat to one aspect of professional autonomy and agency. IMPLICATIONS:  The authors pose an alternative, theoretically grounded, approach based on the traditions of critically reflective supervision to assist the recognition and management of the balance between support and surveillance or managerial organisational dimensions. Meta- theoretical understanding of professional supervision in the frame of human agency will help both practitioners and supervisors to construct sustainable and proactive social work. Instead of despairing about the loss of autonomy, the professionals may go through significant societal and professional transformations as subjects of their own expertise and professional agency.
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Cited By1
#1Darla Spence Coffey (Council on Social Work Education)H-Index: 3
#2Liz Beddoe (University of Auckland)H-Index: 15
This chapter identifies the challenges facing social work education in the contemporary era and suggests the need for bold and courageous leadership for change. It considers the wider contextual issues that influence social work education within the academy, as well as those affecting the profession for which programmes are preparing practitioners. These dynamics have given rise to innovative strategies and initiatives, including embracing leadership in the public ‘marketplace’ of ideas and a wi...