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The motivation, professional development and identity of social work students in four European countries.

Hackett, S. and Kuronen, M. and Matthies, A. and Kresal, B. (2003) 'The motivation, professional development and identity of social work students in four European countries.', European journal of social work., 6 (2). pp. 163-178.


Four European Universities (University of Durham, UK; University of Jyväskylä, Finland; University of Ljubljana, Slovenia; and Magdeburg-Stendal University of Applied Sciences, Germany) have been collaborating on an EC-funded Erasmus Curriculum Development Project (2001-03) in order to enhance the European dimension in their programmes of social work education. As part of this co-operation, a comparative study of the student groups in each country has been undertaken. The aim of the study is to examine and analyse students' beliefs about social work as a profession, as well as their personal motivations for training as social workers and their aspirations for their subsequent careers upon completion of their studies. A questionnaire was developed in order to gather data from all students at the outset of their university-based social work education in each of the four countries. In this article, the authors present and analyse findings from this questionnaire. In identifying and comparing the concerns of social work students from diverse cultural contexts at the beginning of their professional education, it is possible to identify some key themes within, and test the concept of, European social work.

Item Type:Article
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Date of first online publication:July 2003
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