Research Paper: Statistics in Social Work

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[. . .] Back end testing of additional questions utilizing data from the sample, and test type, performs 'audit' of sorts on the research. While not typically necessary, as outlandish findings are invariably obvious to professionals whom have been working at practice, in training this applied method of assessment is perhaps the best way to learn how to form a strong hypothesis.

b. How using knowledge about effect size can prevent you from applying a relatively weak intervention on the basis of statistical significance alone.

Risk Probability is a simple answer here. Knowledge of effect size will enable discernment where applicability as evidence is not valid, when findings to a small study only reveal insignificant outcomes in terms of statistical significance. In such a case, it is impossible to say that 'universal' or even important recommendation to practice can be made. Preliminary clinical trials fall in this category.

4. The steps of evidence-based practice require you to evaluate outcomes at the individual level. How does knowing about statistics, especially the limitations of statistics, enable you to effectively evaluate case levels outcomes?

a. How statistical approaches to single case data can have limitations.

Again, single case statistical analyses do not provide the multi-scale inferences that investigative research offers. Single case data are normally rendered to show a 'trend.' Trends may be operational within a given context that might seem relevant to case management in social work, but trends may also be 'nationwide' studies which have produced an effect size related to family law case decisions. In such a case, the utility of single case outcomes is informative to practice, but is not a guaranteed probability in the administration of a single client case. Here 'single case data' are not applicable to an individual intervention, because the probability that a family law matter is decided one way or the other, is always a 50/50 chance.

b. Ho using your knowledge about effect size applies to assessing the clinical significance of your intervention.

In circumstances where clinical testing has been abundant (i.e. alcohol addiction), certain statistical outcomes to discretionary studies where subjects were drawn from a proximate convenience sample of an almost identical population, and this has been done consecutively in longitudinal analysis for many years, and in a number of sites, certain criteria in part to 'evidence-based practice' where rules in conduct with such clients are considered, are based on fairly meaningful and accurate statistical times of rehabilitation etc. The sheer magnitude of the 'problem' within the scope of discretionary research dedicated to such analysis is usually a strong indicator that consistency in outcomes is equivalent to reliability.

c. How including visual analysis principles offer a viable and understandable alternative to using statistics alone.

Visual analysis enables significance to be reviewed 'at a glance.' Useful for publication and presentation, the format offers knowledge sharing capacity building, learning too, and evidence to third party reporting (i.e. law) and practice.

5. Discuss how engaging in the evidence-based practice process enables you to be more ethical, compassionate and effective social workers practitioner. Contrast evidence-based practice with relying on authority to make practice decisions (Gambrill).

a. Falsification vs. justification as an approach to knowledge for practice that maximizes critical thinking.

Interestingly, it is the abstraction of rational thinking present within the logic construction of statistical analysis that renders social workers more compassionate by equipping them with tools that assist in the exercise and facilitation of high level discretionary thinking where core competencies in effect. Evidence-based practice adds a level of confidence to the client management relationship; substantiating authority where decisions making requires justification rather than personal conjecture.

b. Value of actively informing and involving clients in decisions about your work with them.

Statistics may serve as a 'liaison' for entrance into uncomfortable discussions, where terms like 'prevalence' or 'probability' are either not understood or taken seriously. Again, visual analysis translates significance so that social worker and client synergy are improved through informed practice.

c. Value of transparency in avoiding practices that may actually harm clients.

Statistics are the aspect of evidence-based practice that bodies forth more like 'proof' in the discovery of a court legal matter. Transparency in practice requires documented reporting. Statistical competency removes the individual identity from the picture where categories of progression, method of analysis and distribution frequencies are more relevant to a presentation of outcomes. [END OF PREVIEW]

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Cite This Research Paper:

APA Format

Statistics in Social Work.  (2010, December 3).  Retrieved March 19, 2019, from

MLA Format

"Statistics in Social Work."  3 December 2010.  Web.  19 March 2019. <>.

Chicago Format

"Statistics in Social Work."  December 3, 2010.  Accessed March 19, 2019.