A Critical Review of Theory in Social Work Journals: A Replication Study
AbstractThe purpose of this paper is multifold.Key aspects discussed include exploring the extent of theory discussion and progression in social work journals for the year 2004; discussing the necessity of theory in social work research and practice; reviewing previous research literature regarding evaluation of theory discussion and progression; proposing criteria for defining theory in social work journals; and presenting findings from the current study concerning theory discussion and progression in social work journals. Results: Of the 1,168 articles reviewed from 37 journals, 71 (approximately 6%) met the criteria for theory development with empirical base. Thus, a minimal number of articles (3 out of 71 or 4.2%) evaluated, based on the criteria in the theory quality scale (Table 1), received high quality ratings. Conclusion: Based on the results yielded by the analysis, we assert that social workers need to make a conscious effort to include theory in practice decisions.
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