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Empowerment Series: An Introduction to the Profession of Social Work 5th Edition

Elizabeth A. Segal, Karen E. Gerdes, Sue Steiner

  • Published
  • Previous Editions 2013, 2010, 2007
  • 544 Pages
Starting At 100.00 See pricing and ISBN options


The fifth edition of Segal, Gerdes, and Steiner's AN INTRODUCTION TO THE PROFESSION OF SOCIAL WORK provides a balanced introduction to the social work profession and helps students to understand the role that the profession plays in the social welfare system. The authors' supportive tone and experiential approach inspires interest in and enthusiasm toward future careers in social work. Case studies, personal stories, and exercises help students apply the concepts and truly understand what it means to be a social worker. The book is designed to encourage both knowledge building and self-exploration-skills that are essential in developing good social work practice. Part of the Brooks/Cole Empowerment Series, the fifth edition is completely up to date and thoroughly integrates the core competencies and recommended practice behaviors outlined in the most recent Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards (EPAS) set by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

Elizabeth A. Segal, Arizona State University

Elizabeth A. Segal is a Professor in Arizona State University's School of Social Work. Along with this text, Dr. Segal has multiple publications, including a social welfare policy text and numerous journal articles. She is a co-founder and editor emeritus of the Journal of Poverty. Her areas of research and interest include inequality, social justice and social empathy.

Karen E. Gerdes, Arizona State University

Karen Gerdes is Professor Emeritus at the Arizona State University School of Social Work. Her research interests include empathy, empathy measurement and conation. Many of Dr. Gerdes' 36 publications focus on how students learn and process information. She was recognized with a university-wide Faculty Achievement Award as an Outstanding Professor in Undergraduate Education in 2010.

Sue Steiner, California State University Chico

Sue Steiner is Professor at California State University, Chico School of Social Work. Her areas of interest include macro practice/community organizing, social welfare policy and teaching effectiveness. She is a coauthor of a book on self-care in social work and has published articles in numerous journals.
  • The new edition includes a more detailed history of health care reform in the United States from the 1960s all the way up to the contentious and problematic implementation of the Affordable Care Act.
  • Topics relevant to current social work practice have been added or updated. This edition includes discussion of gender identity issues, an increased focus on cultural humility and mental health recovery, the latest information on empathy, material on the growing income inequality in the U.S. (which has reached its highest level since 1928), and coverage of many other topics.
  • The authors discuss new controversial topics including the legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington, the growing privatization of American prisons, and ramifications of the ongoing shortage of lethal injection drugs in the U.S.
  • Brief questions interspersed in chapters, end-of-chapter discussion questions, and experiential/self-exploration exercises make this a combination workbook and textbook that provides students with ample tools to apply the text concepts.
  • Numerous case studies help students apply the concepts and explore their understanding of the profession. The book's appendices provide students with useful resources, such as the NASW Code of Ethics and a list of relevant websites.
  • Chapter 14, “Crisis, Trauma, and Disasters,” addresses such challenges as mass shootings, terrorist attacks, and natural disasters, which bring the unpredictability of our world to the forefront of social work services.
  • The fifth edition addresses the most recent EPAS requirements. Helping Hands icons within the chapters and end-of-chapter Competency Notes spotlight text coverage of the required Core Competencies and recommended Practice Behaviors detailed by the Council on Social Work Education.
  • Material on values and ethics appears throughout the book.
  • The chapter on poverty appears early in the text (in Chapter 3) to provide a foundation for the rest of the content.
  • The chapter on modes of intervention (Generalist Social Work Practice appearing as Chapter 6) reflects a generalist approach, which is more accessible and meaningful to introductory students.
  • “Personal Stories” provide practitioners' first-hand accounts and experiences taken from their lives as social workers.
  • “What Do You Think,” “More About,” “Point of View,” and “From the Field” inserts invite readers to think more deeply about the content at hand.
1. What Is Social Work?
2. The History Of The Social Welfare System and The Social Work Profession.
3. Poverty and Economic Disparity.
4. Human Rights and Social and Economic Justice.
5. Dimensions of Diversity.
6. Generalist Social Work Practice.
7. Child Welfare: Working with Children and Their Families.
8. Gerontology: Working with People Who Are Older.
9. Health Care Services.
10. Mental Health Services.
11. School Social Work.
12. Substance Abuse.
13. Violence, Victims, and Criminal Justice.
14. Crisis, Trauma, And Disasters.
Appendix A: NASW Code of Ethics.
Appendix B: Web Resources.
Each MindTap product offers the full, mobile-ready textbook combined with superior and proven learning tools at one affordable price. Students who purchase digital access can add a print option at any time when a print option is available for their course.

This Cengage solution can be seamlessly integrated into most Learning Management Systems (Blackboard, Brightspace by D2L, Canvas, Moodle, and more) but does require a different ISBN for access codes. Please work with your Cengage Learning Consultant to ensure the proper course set up and ordering information. For additional information, please visit the LMS Integration site.

Standalone Digital Access — Ultimate Value

Recommended and most popular

  • ISBN-10: 1305646932
  • ISBN-13: 9781305646933
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $100.00
  • RETAIL $100.00

Digital Access + Print — Flexible Value

Recommended and most popular

  • ISBN-10: 1337081469
  • ISBN-13: 9781337081467
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $152.00
  • RETAIL $201.95

Textbook Only Options

Traditional eBook and Print Options

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  • ISBN-10: 1305733843
  • ISBN-13: 9781305733848
  • STARTING AT $26.99

  • STARTING AT $45.93

  • ISBN-10: 1305258991
  • ISBN-13: 9781305258990
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $142.00
  • RETAIL $188.95

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


Online Instructor's Manual

ISBN: 9781305575592
Online Instructor Manual Empowerment Series: An Introduction to the Profession of Social Work.