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Social Work Theses, Projects, and Dissertations

Theses/projects/dissertations from 2024 2024.


Caregivers of Dialysis Patients , Alyssa Bousquet and Amelia Murillo



Assessing and Meeting the Needs of Homeless Populations , Mitchell Greenwald





Theses/Projects/Dissertations from 2023 2023





Understanding Ethical Dilemmas in Social Work Practice , Arielle Arambula






Program Evaluation of Teen Parent Support Group , Brianne Yvonne Irene Brophy


Adverse Effects for Siblings Who Witness Child Abuse , Leslie Chaires



The Media and Eating Disorders , Diane Corey


The Investigation of Knowledge and Practice of Child Welfare Workers Providing Case Management to Children with Disabilities , Giselle Cruz

Examining The Relationship Between Technological Skills and Success In Higher Education Among Formerly Incarcerated Individuals , Ebony Cubias




RESILENCY AND FATHERLESS HOUSEHOLDS , Joshua Ellis-Kennedy and Crystal Angelica Orellana


Staff Turnover in Child Welfare , Maleena Flores




How Stigma Impacts the Utilization of Mental Health Services Among Young Adults' Within Three Different Ethnic Minority Communities , Ivette Garcia and Melissa E. Gomez















Indigenous Women and Traditional Paths to Healing , Lisa Mariano-Grise



EFFECTS OF CORPORAL PUNISHMENT ON PARENTS , David Martinez and Linda Saleh Borghol







Attitudes of Social Work Students on the Use of Psychedelics as a Mental Health Treatment in Clinical Settings , Amanda Nickles



Examining the Obstacles in Rehoming the Homeless with Substance Use Addiction , Denise Ortuno

Access to Gender-Affirming Care and Mental Health of Transgender Individuals , Paola Osuna Berumen






Preserving Placement for Children with Behavioral Issues: A Qualitative Study of Child Welfare Social Workers in the United States , Jessica Katelyn Quin and Tara Belle Beam

Does the use of Social Media Have an Impact on Young Adults Body Identification? , Glycell Robledo Felix and Ashley Olmedo






Incarceration Effects on Children and Families , Sharon Rose





Social Justice Theatre and the Impact on Theatre Artists , Stevie Taken

School-based Suicide Prevention Program for LGBTQ Students , Ching Lok Tse

Exploring Permanency Rates Within the Southern California Counties of Los Angeles, Riverside, San Bernardino and San Diego , Karrene Turner

Placement instability and its effects on the mental health of foster youth , Tyra Turner and Shalynn Burton





The Relationship Between Adverse Childhood Experiences and Resilience in Social Work , Margeaux Wilkins and Jazmine Salazar


Theses/Projects/Dissertations from 2022 2022


Measuring Competency in Social Work: LGBTQIA Populations , Desirae Nicole Aguirre and Samantha Raquel Stephens





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206 Interesting Social Work Research Topics You Should Consider

social work research topics

Many students struggle to find suitable social work research topics. This field has many subjects that learners can explore in their dissertations. The simplest social work definition describes it as a set of functions that enable you to improve other people’s lives. A social worker helps children and adults cope with daily issues, personal issues, family issues, and relationship troubles.

Considering the scope of this field, selecting an ideal social work research topic can be challenging. Learners have many pressing issues that they can cover in their papers. Nevertheless, choosing an interesting topic is essential in writing a winning dissertation.

Social Work Research Paper Outline

Once you’ve chosen a topic for your social work dissertation or research paper, the next step is to outline it. Your outline should highlight the components of your work, incorporating the argument. Also, identify your stance on an issue, tying up the other parts of the paper because it will enable you to create a thesis statement. Here are the key sections to highlight in your outline.

Introduction: The intro should present your study’s background while providing relevant details of the problem. Use a strong opening phrase to grab your readers’ attention and engage them so they can read the rest of the paper. The introduction should present your study’s context, formulate its primary goal, and end with an effective thesis statement. Main body: This section should feature the main arguments. It highly depends on your research type and the methods you use. It may include a literature review analyzing other scholars’ findings and identifying gaps in previous studies. Also, this section explains the methods you use in your research, results, and discussions. Conclusion: The conclusion should summarize the findings and wrap up the dissertation. You can restate your thesis statement to remind readers about your position on the issue and your goal. The best approach is to reward the thesis statement persuasively while encouraging readers to think about the problem. Also, you can recommend further research explaining why the topic is worth exploring.

After drafting an outline, you can proceed to research and write your social work paper. Edit and proofread the work or seek professional assistance to ensure its quality.

General Social Work Research Topics Ideas

Maybe you want to write a thesis on general topics in this study field. In that case, here are ideas you can explore in your paper.

  • How substance abuse influence parenting
  • Teenager adoption- Happiness and hardships that come with it
  • How to address the inclination to commit suicide
  • Should society question the stigma surrounding mental sickness?
  • Foster homes and group therapy- Is it effective?
  • How does the lack of child support affect childcare
  • Investigating autistic children and social displacement
  • How does clinical depression affect adolescent children
  • How does continuous mobility influence orphan toddlers
  • Analyzing the stigma surrounding depression
  • How to manage intrinsic PTSD for medical veterans
  • Exploring the stigma surrounding disability
  • How homelessness influences a person’s psychology
  • How does displacement influence aggressiveness among street children
  • How the works of several agencies affect child protection
  • Exploring perceptions and attitudes of oppression between the community and health professionals
  • Addressing cultural perspectives- Transiting to social work
  • The social worker’s role in deciding to end life
  • Lifelong learning model- Exploring evidence-based practices
  • The reflection law- a learning model or self-indulgence in social work

These are general ideas worth exploring in your social work dissertation. Nevertheless, please select any of these titles when confident you will be comfortable working on them.

Common Social Worker Research Topics

Maybe you’re searching for something your readers can quickly identify with when reading your paper. If so, this section lists some of the best ideas to investigate in your social work thesis.

  • How to create dyslexia patients’ awareness
  • Analyzing similarities and differences between ADHD and dyslexia
  • How alcoholism affects personal, family, and social lifestyle
  • How a family can exacerbate depression
  • Why academic and social integration matter for kids suffering from down syndrome
  • Investigating the social exclusion of kids with down syndrome
  • The effectiveness of anti-depressants- A clinical study
  • How alcoholism affects a person’s psyche
  • The positive impact of sponsors on recovering addicts’ lives
  • Investigating family support and its effects on alcohol recovery
  • Why group therapy matters for foster home children
  • How clinical depression affects teenage girls
  • How the lack of support affects child care in America
  • How ADHD affects foster home children
  • How mental illness misdiagnosis affects people
  • How to address suicidal tendencies in military units
  • Why social interrogation matters when dealing with stigma surrounding mental illness
  • How parents’ bipolar affects their children’s lives and parenting
  • Is childhood displacement the cause of antisocial lifestyle among foster children?
  • The joys and struggles of teenagers’ adoption
  • Investigating the undisclosed rape violence cases among military women- How it affects their service and lives
  • How substance abuse affects parenting
  • Child-parent separation- Investigating the stigma it brings
  • Positive impacts of divorce on children’s lifestyle and health
  • Addressing substance abuse issues among teenagers
  • How death affects a family’s well-being
  • Family support study- Is it a viable option for alcohol recovery?

Most people will identify with these topics because they touch on issues with which they are familiar. However, investigate the matter you select carefully to develop a winning dissertation.

Exciting Social Work Research Questions

Maybe you want to answer a question in your thesis paper. If so, consider any of these questions as a topic for your essay.

  • How can you support an adult living with a disability?
  • What are the social and psychological impacts of student loans?
  • What are the psychological, physical, and emotional effects of incarceration of pregnant mothers?
  • What challenges do minority children face in foster homes?
  • Transformative change- Can police brutality enhance it?
  • How can society deal with the rising obesity in America?
  • How can we support bipolar patients?
  • What are the effects of incarcerated individuals’ entry into the community?
  • What is the percentage of incarcerated adults among minority groups?
  • Does substance misuse increase alcoholism cases?
  • How does community violence affect LGBT lives?
  • What is the difference between Bipolar 1 and Bipolar 2?
  • Can trauma inform children’s education in foster homes?
  • Can protesting police brutality promote transformative change?
  • Does divorce affect all children’s psyches negatively?
  • Does foster homes’ trauma cause kids’ disappearance from the facility?
  • Can implementing learning curriculums with a positive impact on dyslexic students enhance academics?
  • Does trauma-informed learning reflect parenting?
  • Do food and house security affect foster children throughout their lives?
  • Has the criminal justice system failed social lifestyle in America?
  • What are the primary workplace trauma signs?
  • How can society address workplace violence?
  • How do scarcity and poverty affect young children’s psychology?
  • How can you identify depression in a teenager?
  • Has the American healthcare system failed minority groups?
  • What are the risks of kids-parent separation?
  • What are the impacts of living with dyslexia?
  • Is depression a mental disorder?
  • What are the effects of racial disparity?

Any of these questions can be an excellent title for your dissertation. Nevertheless, consult various information sources to write a high-quality paper.

Human Services Research Paper Topics

Human services is a part of the social work field dealing with issues related to human services, factors affecting them, and how to address the challenges. Here are ideas to consider in this category.

  • How to address panic, anxiety, and depression in young children
  • The psychological impact of human trafficking on victims
  • Psychological effects of child trafficking
  • Similarities between adult incarceration and juvenile delinquency
  • How unemployment affects people
  • Factors that increase depression cases among the youth
  • Police system- Defunded, reformed, or abolished?
  • How the carceral system in America affects minority and low-income homes
  • Social integration of dyslexic and down syndrome patients
  • Effective ways to enhance welfare conditions
  • Food banks and their adverse psychological effects
  • The benefits of food banks on American lives
  • The impact of home violence on children
  • The result of high school bullying
  • Why welfare workers need support groups and therapy
  • How to enhance love in foster homes
  • Resilience practice among social workers
  • Juvenile delinquency impacts in America
  • The shortcomings of America’s carceral system
  • How to address the homophobia issue in the U.S
  • How homophobia affects LGBT+ adults
  • What causes family violence?
  • How to address spousal violence
  • How family cruelty affects lives
  • Undiagnosed bipolar cases and their effects
  • Impacts of misdiagnosed mental illnesses
  • How to enhance LGBTQ+ kids’ support systems
  • The result of home insecurity on the homeless
  • How to bridge the gap between community members and formerly incarcerated individuals
  • Incarceration- Abolished or reformed?

These human services topics are worth investigating in a research paper. However, take the time to research your chosen title to write an exciting piece.

Controversial Topics In Social Work

Some social work essay topics are controversial. Some people find these titles controversial because they provoke public interest. Here are some of them.

  • Flood and hurricane survivors and their hidden trauma
  • How hurricanes affect low-income neighborhoods
  • Trafficking- How it affects a society’s social well-being
  • Unreported abuse cases in homes and how they promote violence
  • Social, health, and psychological implications of the abortion ban for rape victims
  • Why the community should enhance awareness of AIDS stigmatization
  • Therapy continuous cycle- Why a therapist requires therapy
  • The unnoticed and hidden trauma among therapists and counselors
  • How court-sanctioned confinement promotes mental illness instead of facilitating correlation
  • How to address violence- Is it a social problem in the correctional system?
  • Sexual health education- Is it vital for incarcerated women?
  • How social media affects a person’s mental health and well-being
  • The effectiveness of different types of therapy for treating mental health disorders.
  • The prevalence of Eating Disorders in developed countries.
  • The role of family dynamics in the development and treatment of Eating Disorders.
  • How do different cultures view mental health and mental illness?
  • Is there a link between creativity and mental illness?
  • Does psychiatric medication use lead to higher recovery rates from mental illness?
  • What are the most effective interventions for helping people with substance abuse problems?
  • How to deal with grief and loss?
  • How can we better support people with chronic physical health conditions?
  • Drug abuse- Is it increasing in low-income neighborhoods?
  • The negative impacts of incarceration on the imprisoned people’s psychological well-being
  • Reasons to investigate confinement and its dangers
  • Ways to help addicts facing high drug vulnerability
  • How cognitive-behavioral therapy enhances the relationship between social workers and their situations or environments
  • The health benefits of hypnosis on individuals
  • Why treatment is essential for less represented groups
  • Distinguishing undiagnosed depression and clinical depression
  • A qualitative investigation of dyslexia among adolescents
  • How empathy can enhance the social work sector
  • Why qualitative examination of foster homes for peace and child safety matters

These are controversial topics to consider in this academic field. Prepare to take a stance and defend it if you pick any of these social work project ideas.

Social Work Topics For Presentation

Maybe you want to include a presentation in your paper. That’s because social work is a practical field requiring some displays. Consider the following titles for your essay if you want to include a presentation.

  • What are Stockholm syndrome and its effects?
  • How to understand syndrome victims better
  • How incest affects homes
  • Investigating sexually violated kids
  • Why free healthcare matters in foster homes and low-income neighborhoods
  • How adult incarceration and juvenile delinquency affect society
  • Juvenile delinquency and trauma
  • LGBTQ+ children trauma and adolescent transitioning
  • Foster kids and neglect-syndrome
  • Why diversity matters in the social work sector
  • Social workers- Understanding their trauma
  • Foster parenting- What are the positive impacts?
  • Do foster homes create a safe space?
  • Foster parents and their roles in preventing violence
  • Social workers and their role in preventing drug abuse
  • The effects of domestic violence
  • Psychological violence and its damages
  • How spirituality affects techniques in social works
  • Social works and their historical development
  • Social work and its importance in schools
  • Why teenagers’ therapy matters
  • Exploring the challenges facing social workers in the forensics sector
  • Investigating the struggles facing the minority groups
  • Studying abuse and violence in middle-class homes
  • Why finance matters in social works sustenance
  • The impact of compassion fatigue
  • Modern social workers and their challenges
  • Drug abuse and its effects on children
  • Why inclusivity matters in social works
  • Same-sex relationships- Why they matter to a social worker
  • Why high schools need drug sensitization
  • Investigating depression stereotypes

Pick any of these ideas and use them to draft a paper that includes a presentation. Nevertheless, research your topic extensively to prepare a winning dissertation.

Interesting Social Work Topics

Some issues in social work draw more attention than others because they are unique. Here are such topics.

  • The impacts of pregnancy on teenage mothers
  • The increasing pressure and effects of social media on teenagers’ lives
  • How welfare systems relate to low-income neighborhoods
  • Why are rehabilitation centers are essential in America than carceral systems
  • How cultural beliefs and gender roles affect marriages
  • Low labor and its role in workplace abuse
  • How the increasing housing cost affects young millennials
  • The part of abortion bans on psychological issues
  • How birth control roles affect society negatively
  • How are teenagers, the general community, and school related?
  • Analyzing first-time menstrual experiences and their impact on teenage girls within foster homes
  • Wellness therapy and its sustainability
  • Investigating poverty prevalence in the American Deep South- How it prevents the growth
  • The implications of relationships on social workers’ interactions
  • The negative impact of conversion therapy on the LGBTQ+ community
  • How an inclusive and functional healthcare system enhances social growth
  • Shelter homes women- Investigating their life experiences
  • The prevalent racial disparity in food bank systems in America
  • Understanding social relegations and stigma of welfare mothers
  • Client-therapist relationship- Investigating psychiatric therapists and their work

These topics address relevant issues that society often neglects. Pick any idea in this category and explore it further through research and analysis.

Social Work Thesis Topics

Educators will ask you to write different papers when pursuing social work studies. A sociology thesis is among the documents you might write when pursuing a master’s or Ph.D. studies. Here are topics to consider for these papers.

  • Investigating expecting mothers’ postpartum depression
  • How interdependency differs from codependency among youth adults
  • Emotional unavailability in homes- Does it enhance codependency?
  • Codependency- Is it a displacement feature?
  • Foster kids and future attachment methods
  • Social work and disability disparity
  • Disability challenges facing the healthcare system
  • Compassion integration in social works
  • ADHD- What are the most common myths about it?
  • How emotionally immature parents affect their adult children psychologically
  • Drug addiction and treatment plans
  • Addressing challenges facing visually impaired students
  • Investigating foster homes and child abuse
  • The emotional impact of a transition into a nursing home
  • Exploring immigrant families and parenthood
  • The intricacies of child labor

These are exciting topics to consider for your social work thesis. Nevertheless, prepare adequate time and resources to investigate any of these titles to develop a paper that will earn you the best grade.

Get Professional Thesis Assistance

Perhaps, you have chosen a title but don’t have the skills or time to write a top-notch paper. Maybe you’ve never scored high grades on your report, and your professor or parent constantly reprimands you. In that case, you need help with your academic writing.

We offer fast, cheap, and some of the best dissertation services for college, university, and high school students. Our ENL and U.S writers are always ready to handle your project. Contact us now to get the best academic paper help online.

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  • Correlation between poverty and health: issues of health care
  • Healthcare programmes for the elderly: Chronic Care Model
  • Impacts of increasing workloads and lack of adequate training in UK social workers

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185 Social Work Dissertation Topics: Creative List

185 Social Work Dissertation Topics

If you are a student of social work, then there are so many subjects that you can write about in your dissertation topic. Social work, in simple terms, is a set of functions that allow you to improve the lives of others. Social workers help adults and children cope with everyday issues, relationship troubles, personal issues and family issues. Given the scope of work of a social worker, finding the right social work dissertation topics can be challenging as there are so many pressing issues to cover.

In order to write a good paper and choose a topic that interests you, here are a few things that you should consider:

Choose a topic that is close to your heart : If you have chosen social work as your field of study, then there must be some area of work that intrigues you. This could be related to child care, women’s rights or health. To write a good paper, choose a subject that is of interest to you and will help you in your line of work going forward. Make sure your topic is supported by data : Choose topics that have enough data to present strong arguments and discussions. The paper should be thought provoking : Once you have got an approval on your proposed social work dissertation topics, use as much information that is relatable. The readers should take back some ideas from your paper and also have questions about how the system can be improved to fulfill the purpose of social work. This means that you need to find loopholes in the system and address them in your paper effectively.

Now that you know what a good social work dissertation paper entails, here is a list of topics to help you start your journey. However if you have more interesting things to do, remember you have an opportunity to buy dissertation and get the best result.

Social Work Dissertation Ideas

These are good dissertation topics for social work students at all academic levels:

  • Write an in-depth paper on the perception and attitude of oppression between the community and healthcare professionals.
  • Write about the inherent perceptions related to social work among different cultures.
  • A comprehensive review of different approaches to strengthen users of social services.
  • The role of social workers in end-of-life decisions.
  • Is evidence based learning an excellent way of learning for social workers?
  • What are your views on the law of reflection and its role in social work?
  • What are the challenges faced by social workers with respect to inter-professional practices?
  • Is tutoring an integral part of social work training? Write your views.
  • Social work and government policies: Write a detailed review.
  • How social work interventions can protect vulnerable adults.
  • The common security issues faced by personal social workers.
  • Transitioning from employment to social work: Challenges and advantages.
  • Substance abuse among young adults. The role of social workers in prevention and management.
  • A review on why women choose to remain in abusive relationships.
  • The contribution of social services in helping families cope with a member with dementia.
  • The relationship between social work and communities of faith.
  • The role of social workers in promoting ethnic minorities.
  • The best ways in which social workers can improve the life of the elderly.
  • Does social work impact the quality of life of senior citizens?
  • Disparities in the society that can be resolved to improve the lives of ethnic minorities.
  • The importance of being gender sensitive in addressing the issues faced by the LGBTQ community.
  • Is rehabilitation of young offenders the new way of ensuring restorative justice?
  • Laws that allow the representation of marginalized societies in the government.
  • Can prohibition of alcohol preserve law and order in a community?
  • The role of drug addiction in increasing relationship problems within families.
  • The primary factors contributing to juvenile delinquency.
  • Does imposing a curfew on minors lead to increased chances of premarital sex?
  • The role of the media in determining the electoral process of any country.
  • Provide great examples of good governance with respect to the recovery of a city or locality after being affected by a natural calamity.
  • Provide a social work perspective on the growing popularity of political figures and icons.
  • How does education contribute to the ability of leaders to shape the social and political structure of a country?
  • Can reactivating the death penalty change the rate of crime in our society?
  • Do individuals who are in illicit relationships perceive the norms of a marriage differently?
  • Experiences with healthcare of people who have been diagnosed with fibromyalgia.
  • Culture-based activism and its impact on the lives of Native Americans.

Easy Social Work Research Topics

These social work research topics cover a range of relatable and controversial subjects for you to write about.

  • How can survivors of domestic violence get better employment opportunities?
  • A study of women with sexual addiction.
  • Reintegration of individuals who have survived abuse into the society.
  • The primary causes and the best ways to prevent juveni;e recidivism.
  • Examples of great women leaders in our community.
  • Should immigrants be given health services?
  • What are the best housing options to support young people?
  • Medical care for the elderly: The challenges.
  • A detailed study of the relationships of HIV positive individuals.
  • Is customer satisfaction the most important goal for a business?
  • The barriers in social work with respect to climate change.
  • The experience of a home care worker in a caring relationship.
  • Are voluntary tourism communities in Chile an example of social development?
  • Why do we still hesitate to talk about sex?
  • How does organizational culture contribute to marginalism?
  • The role of leadership practices in eliminating new forms of marginalism.
  • Graduate students and the attitude towards couples therapy.
  • Review the employment services for domestic violence survivors in your region/ country.
  • Evaluate eviction risks based on social and cultural perceptions.
  • Write about the experiences of women who are in a relationship with an individual who is sexually addicted.
  • Provide a qualitative study of resilience and risk associated with young people.
  • How does health affect the employment of refugee and immigrant women?
  • Does encouraging traveling among women promote community leadership?
  • Humanities and the relationship with citizenship.
  • The perspectives of youth and service providers on the impact of housing options for young adults.
  • The role of arts in boosting healing processes.
  • How has dance impacted society?
  • How to improve medical facilities in rural areas?
  • The experiences of rural individuals with social workers.
  • How do the concepts of our society affect the lives of individuals with HIV and AIDs?
  • Improving care for individuals with HIV and AIDS.
  • Explore the nature of collaboration between individuals who suffer from poverty and various organizations in regions that are at a high economic and social risk.
  • The importance of sexual health education for immigrant women.
  • The social risks of gender identity.
  • How can the theory of dynamic systems be applied to countries that are in a war situation?

Child Protection Dissertation Ideas

Here are some good dissertation topics for social work students who are interested in childcare services:

  • The impact of agencies in protecting children: Provide a review of literature based on real practices.
  • Will children who experience or witness abuse and violence within the family perpetuate the same type of behavior?
  • Impact of family support and protection in child protection intervention by social workers.
  • The health problems of adults who have survived child sexual abuse.
  • The contribution of social workers in carrying out effective interventions for survivors of child sexual abuse.
  • Factors that contribute to adopted children seeking out their biological parents.
  • The impact of domestic violence on children and the resulting consequences for a social worker.
  • Review the educational achievements with respect to childcare in your region.
  • Review of literature of education and childcare in California and what the world can learn from it.
  • The effect of gambling on the lives of children.
  • The common factors that affect the socio-economic requirements of children.
  • How can social workers aid the emotional growth of children?
  • The impact of pornography in increasing the rate of crime and violence against chidlren.
  • The views of sexual abuse victims on pedophilia.
  • How do the physical changes during puberty affect the psyche of a child?
  • The risks associated with child welfare decisions.
  • How can education prevent violence against children?
  • An analysis of the maternal experiences of victims of child sexual abuse.
  • The experience of new social workers in child welfare.
  • Secondary traumatic stress between young counselors and children.
  • The best ways to protect a child in custody.
  • Support strategies to prevent child poverty in your country.
  • A study of resilience in individuals when building a strong future after emerging from a difficult childhood. Provide examples.
  • Immigrant families and adolescent development.
  • Is gender neutral upbringing overrated or is it the need of the hour?
  • How does the environment in the school impact the self esteem of children?
  • A case study to review the challenges of children with learning disabilities.
  • The benefits of studying child development in improving the contributions of social services.
  • The reason for the ignorance of child development for several years in history.
  • Write a detailed paper on the formation of ego with respect to different stages of development.
  • The effect of an absent parent on the developing years of a child.
  • How does domestic violence affect the concept of self in a child?
  • Child education and the impact of single parenting.
  • Factors that contribute to the retention of employees in childcare.
  • The causes and best strategies for the protection of runaway children.
  • The role of gender differences in shaping the outlook of children.
  • Why is play an important educational tool?
  • The best policies to promote the rights of children.
  • Factors that influence the quality of food in child care centers.
  • The risk factors and effects of bullying.
  • The best ways to reduce behavioral issues in children in foster care.
  • The relationship between disability and the chances of a child ending up in foster care.
  • The lack of child support and the effects on child care.
  • How does group therapy help children in foster care?
  • The impact of constant changes of family in orphaned toddlers.
  • How does homelessness impact the psyche of a child?
  • Recurring displacement and the effects on homeless children.
  • Factors that contribute to an antisocial lifestyle in children in foster care.
  • The effects of substance abuse on the lives of children.
  • The trauma of child-parent separation on the lifestyle and health of children.

Social Work Dissertation Topics Mental Health

Mental health contributes to some of the most important dissertation topics for social work students.

  • Why do individuals with obsessive compulsive disorders struggle to cope with society?
  • The effects of living with bipolar parents on the health and lifestyle of a child.
  • Why should we socially interrogate the stigma associated with mental health?
  • The role of social workers in improving support for individuals with mental health issues.
  • The occurrence of suicidal tendencies in military units and the best ways to address them.
  • The impact of death on the collective well-being of any family unit.
  • The positive impact of sponsors on the lives of recovering addicts.
  • Provide a clinical study on the current anti-depressants and their effectiveness.
  • How to stop social elimination of children suffering from Down Syndrome.
  • The role of a family in exacerbating depression.
  • The impact of alcoholism on personal lifestyle, family and society.
  • Provide a detailed analysis of the similarities and differences between ADHD and Dyslexia.
  • The best ways to improve awareness on degenerative mental health issues like Dementia.
  • The need for more awareness among educators about learning disabilities.
  • The most effective learning tools for children who suffer from ADHD, dyslexia and other learning disorders.
  • A detailed evaluation of socio-sexual education programs for individuals with developmental disorders.
  • Evaluation on the impact of developmental disabilities in the life events of an individual.
  • Life with a spouse who has memory loss.
  • Provide an exploratory study of different aids available to the primary caregivers of children with autism.
  • The meaning of well-being based on the cultural and ethic backgrounds of individuals.
  • Building resilience towards traumatic incidents using the mind-body connection of yoga.
  • Is the stigma against mental health disorders greater for women? Conduct a comparative study.
  • The perspectives of a woman living with mental illness and receiving assistance from community services.
  • Investigate how smoking gives individuals with depression a sense of belonging or acceptance.
  • Are mental health services equally accessible to minorities and other oppressed groups?
  • Do mental health service providers avoid detention of young males in their psychiatric units?
  • The relationship between government policies and effective mental health assistance.
  • Common behavioral issues of children in dysfunctional families.
  • The impact of foster care on the mental health of teenagers.
  • The effect of poverty and scarcity on the psyche of young children.

Social Work Masters Dissertation Topics

If you are writing a dissertation paper for your master’s degree, here are some interesting topics for you to choose from:

  • How is the lifestyle of a metropolitan city failed by the criminal justice system?
  • What are some sure shot signs of trauma in the workplace?
  • The effects of racial disparity on our society.
  • The best ways to control substance abuse and addiction.
  • How can the facilities at nursing homes for the elderly be improved?
  • The negative impact of food banks.
  • Government policies that have improved welfare conditions.
  • The impact of homophobia on our community.
  • Primary factors contributing to violence in a family.
  • The effects of unemployment on society.
  • Stigma and social issues faced by welfare mothers.
  • Experiences of women who live in shelter homes.
  • The inherent challenges of transracial adoption.
  • How to make wellness therapy more sustainable?
  • The impact of first-time menstrual experience on teenage girls living in foster homes.

Common Dissertation Topics For Social Work Students

If you wish to get top grades, here are some topics that give you a lot of literature and data to review.

  • Birth control laws and their negative impact.
  • The challenges of increasing housing costs on the youth.
  • Workplace abuse and the relationship with paid labor.
  • The impact of cultural belief on relationships.
  • The negative impact of teenage pregnancy.
  • Low income neighborhoods and the increasing cases of substance abuse.
  • The hazards of confinement and why they need our attention.
  • The need for therapy of poorly represented groups.
  • Misdiagnosis of mental health issues and its impact.
  • How can empathy improve social services?
  • The need for qualitative examination of foster homes.
  • The contributing factors for violence in correctional systems.
  • Do therapists need therapy?
  • How trafficking impacts societal well-being.
  • The reasons for unreported abuse cases.
  • The hidden trauma of survivors of natural calamities.
  • Traumatic experiences of children in foster homes. A clinical study with measures to prevent them.
  • Growing in a war zone and the psychological impact.
  • Common myths about child services and foster care.
  • Is there a disability disparity among social workers?

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Guidelines For Writing A Social Work Dissertation

Social work is an important profession, and a dissertation is a primary requirement for those wishing to pursue this field. Writing a social work dissertation requires a great deal of preparation and dedication.

This article provides guidelines which can be used to develop a successful dissertation. The guidelines focus on topics such as developing a research question, understanding the requirements, outlining the structure, collecting resources, designing the methodology, writing the dissertation, proofreading and editing, and submitting the final draft.

These guidelines are intended to provide a framework to help ensure the successful completion of a social work dissertation.

Choose a Topic

The selection of a suitable topic can be a crucial step in the successful completion of a dissertation in the field of social welfare.

It is important to consider the scope of the topic, as well as assess the feasibility of researching and writing about it.

The topic must be relevant to present-day social work and its related issues, and be narrow enough to allow for exploration and in-depth analysis.

It is also necessary to determine if the topic has already been sufficiently explored or if there is room for more research.

In addition, the topic should be one that allows the student to demonstrate a comprehensive understanding of the relevant literature and be able to draw meaningful conclusions from the research.

Researching potential topics is an important step in the process; this may include reading relevant literature and examining previous dissertations in the same field.

Once a suitable topic has been identified, the student should be able to determine its scope and assess the feasibility of researching and writing about it.

Develop a research question

Exploring the research question is a key step in the process of producing a successful dissertation. It is essential to identify the research question that the dissertation will address. When selecting a research question, the student should consider both the ethical implications of the topic and any gaps in existing research. This will help to ensure the research question is appropriate and relevant to the field of social work.

The research question should be specific, measurable and achievable within the timeframe of the dissertation. It is important to ensure that the research question is focused and does not contain too many elements that could lead to data overload. It should also be possible to answer the research question using the methodology selected for the dissertation.

By carefully considering the research question, it is possible to create a dissertation that will make a valuable contribution to the field of social work.

Understand the requirements

Once the research question has been identified, it is necessary to understand the requirements for the dissertation in order to ensure successful completion. This includes examining the structure and formatting of the dissertation, as well as understanding the expectations and requirements of the institution and/or supervisor.

Some important steps to consider include:

  • Examining the trends in social work research and exploring the implications for the dissertation
  • Assessing the length and structure of the dissertation and familiarising oneself with the formatting guidelines
  • Understanding the expectations for data collection and analysis
  • Determining the resources and support to be used for writing the dissertation

It is important to take the time to understand the requirements for the dissertation in order to ensure a successful and timely completion. By doing so, the researcher can set themselves up for success and achieve their goals.

Outline the structure of the British English language:

Grammar: This includes the rules for sentence structure, spelling, and punctuation.

Vocabulary: This encompasses the words used in the language and the terms used to describe their meanings.

Pronunciation: This involves the correct way to pronounce words and their individual sounds.

Idiomatic Expressions: These are phrases or expressions that cannot be understood literally, but which still communicate a meaning.

Dialects: Different dialects of English exist across the British Isles, with variations in accent, vocabulary, and pronunciation.

Having examined the relevant requirements and expectations, the next stage is to outline the structure of the dissertation. A well-structured dissertation is essential for a successful submission. The structure of a dissertation will vary depending upon the topic and type of research, but there are some common components that can be identified.

By following these guidelines, it is possible to create an effective structure for a dissertation that will provide a clear and concise overview of the topic. This structure should help to ensure that the dissertation is well-structured, engaging, and informative.

Gather Resources

Gathering pertinent resources is a necessary step in the dissertation process, allowing for a thorough evaluation of the topic and its related literature.

It is important to explore the funding options available for the research and to evaluate the various sources that can be used to collect data. This could include literature reviews, surveys, interviews, or focus groups.

It is essential to consider the implications of the resources that are chosen and how they will be used to support the research. Furthermore, it is advisable to consult with an expert in the field to ensure that the chosen resources are valid and reliable.

The resources should be carefully selected to ensure that they are relevant to the research question and will provide evidence to support the hypothesis and conclusions.

Construct a Literature Review

Construct a review of the literature

Constructing a literature review is an essential part of writing a social work dissertation. It involves reviewing existing sources of data, interpreting the results, and summarizing the findings. The literature review allows readers to understand the context of the research and provides enough evidence to support the arguments in the dissertation.

The following steps should be taken when constructing a literature review for a dissertation:

Identify the research question: A clear research question should be established before starting the literature review.

Select relevant sources: Relevant sources should be carefully selected and must include both primary and secondary sources.

Analyse and interpret the sources: Each source should be read and analysed, and conclusions should be drawn based on the evidence.

Synthesize and present the findings: Once all the sources have been analysed, the findings should be synthesized and presented in a coherent and logical manner.

Design the Methodology

The choice of appropriate methods for a social work dissertation is an essential step in the research process. It is important to consider the data that is available and to choose methods that will be best suited to the research aims and objectives.

Once the methods have been selected, it is important to ensure that the data is gathered and analysed in a systematic and consistent manner in order to provide accurate and reliable results.

Choose the appropriate methods.

Selection of methods is a crucial step in the process of creating a dissertation in the field of social work. It is important to carefully choose methods that are appropriate for the research question.

Researchers should consider the implications of the methods they select, identify the limitations that may arise, and decide if the methods are feasible given the scope of the project.

When selecting methods for a social work dissertation, researchers should:

  • Assess the appropriateness of the method for the research question
  • Examine the implications of the chosen method
  • Identify any potential limitations
  • Consider the feasibility of the method given the scope of the project

By carefully considering the implications and limitations of each method, researchers can ensure that they have selected the most appropriate methods for their dissertation.

Doing so will ultimately result in a more successful dissertation.

Gather and analyse data

Careful analysis of the data gathered is essential for producing an effective dissertation in the field of social work.

When considering the ethical implications of gathering data, it is important to examine any potential ethical concerns. Furthermore, it is essential to assess any risk factors that may be associated with the data. It is important to be thorough and accurate when collecting data, as any errors could lead to the dissertation being deemed invalid. Additionally, the data must be collected in a manner that is compliant with any relevant legislation and regulations.

When it comes to analyzing the data, it is important to ensure that the data is carefully examined and interpreted. This process should take into account any potential biases that may be present. Additionally, it is important to consider the implications of the data in order to draw meaningful conclusions.

Moreover, the data should be used to inform the development of new social work practices. By carefully analyzing the data, it is possible to create a comprehensive and compelling dissertation in the field of social work.

Write the Dissertation

Crafting a dissertation for a social work program necessitates keen attention to detail. It is essential to adhere to the rules of structure and format, cite sources properly, use a clear and concise writing style, and ensure the content is well organized.

Additionally, it is important to write the dissertation in an engaging style to capture the attention of the audience who have a subconscious desire for serving others.

When writing the dissertation, one should take the time to plan and organize the content, review the rules of the social work program, and use a style that is both clear and concise. Furthermore, it is important to ensure that sources are properly cited and that the structure and format of the dissertation are in line with the guidelines of the social work program.

By doing this, the dissertation will be most effective in conveying the ideas of the social work program in a way that resonates with the audience.

Proofread and edit

Attentive proofreading and editing of the dissertation is essential to ensure that it conveys the ideas of the social work program in a way that resonates with the audience. Proofreading techniques, such as reading aloud, checking for grammar and punctuation mistakes, and double-checking references, are necessary to make sure that the dissertation is well-written and free of errors. Editing tools, such as spellcheckers, grammar checkers, and style guides, can also be used to help ensure accuracy and consistency.

Making sure that the dissertation is clear, concise, organized, and engaging is also key. It is important to ensure that the ideas of the social work program are presented in a way that is easy for the reader to understand. Additionally, writing with the intent of serving the audience can help to create an emotional connection between the reader and the dissertation.

Submit the final draft

Submitting the final draft of the dissertation is a crucial step in ensuring that the ideas of the programme are communicated effectively to the reader. Strategizing a submission plan is essential, as it helps to ensure that the document is formatted correctly and submitted on time.

The following guidelines should be followed when submitting the final draft of the dissertation:

  • Formatting Guidelines:

Double-check the formatting of the document to ensure that it is consistent throughout and complies with the university’s guidelines.

Include a title page with the title of the dissertation, the author’s name, and the date of submission.

  • Submission Plan:

Submit the document electronically to the university’s electronic submission system.

Send a hard copy of the dissertation to the university’s library for archiving.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do i allocate time to write my dissertation.

Time management and organisation skills are essential when writing a dissertation. It is important to create a plan to ensure that the task is completed in a timely and efficient manner.

This plan should include goals, deadlines and check-ins with oneself to ensure that the project is progressing. It is also beneficial to break the task into smaller, more manageable chunks and to focus on one part of the dissertation at a time.

Finally, it is important to focus on the bigger picture, as this can help to provide motivation during the writing process.

What are the most effective research methods for a social work dissertation?

When writing a social work dissertation, two types of research methods are typically used: qualitative and quantitative.

Qualitative research is used to gain an in-depth understanding of a particular phenomenon, while quantitative research is used to measure the prevalence of certain behaviour.

Both of these approaches are effective in helping to answer questions related to the dissertation topic. It is important to weigh the pros and cons of each method and determine which one is best suited for the research objectives.

How many sources should I include in my literature review?

When writing a literature review for a social work dissertation, it is important to ensure that the sources used are peer reviewed and that a consistent referencing style is used throughout.

Generally, a literature review should include at least 10 sources that are relevant to the topic being researched. All sources should be from reliable and reputable sources, and should be cited accurately and consistently.

It is important to ensure that the literature review is clear, concise and organized, as this will enable an audience to comprehend the research more easily.

What is the best way to structure my dissertation?

The best way to structure a dissertation is to begin by developing questions and refining ideas. This will help to ensure that the dissertation is clear, concise, and well organized.

Additionally, an engaging style should be used in order to capture the attention of an audience that has a subconscious desire for serving others. By ensuring these elements are included, the structure of a dissertation can be optimised for maximum impact.

How can I stay motivated while writing my dissertation?

Writing a dissertation can be an arduous and taxing task, however, it is possible to remain motivated throughout the process.

Creative brainstorming and smart scheduling can help to keep enthusiasm for the project alive.

It is essential to keep the message clear, concise, and organized, and to present it in an engaging style for an audience that has a subconscious desire for serving others.

An effective way to stay motivated is to focus on the current topic, without the context of the larger dissertation project.

Writing a social work dissertation can be a challenging but rewarding experience. With careful planning and consideration of the requirements, the process can be made easier.

It is important to choose a topic, develop a research question, understand the requirements, outline the structure, collect resources, design the methodology, write the dissertation, proofread and edit, and submit the final draft. Through this process, a well-written dissertation can be produced that can be used to further academic research in the social work field.

It is necessary to be thorough and methodical when writing a dissertation to ensure that the best possible result is achieved. Following the guidelines for writing a social work dissertation will ensure that the process is carried out in a successful way.

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The Social Work Dissertation: Using Small-Scale Qualitative Methodology

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Julie Fish, The Social Work Dissertation: Using Small-Scale Qualitative Methodology, The British Journal of Social Work , Volume 43, Issue 8, December 2013, Pages 1667–1668,

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Social work gained recognition by the Economic and Social Research Council, the Government funded research council, as a research discipline in 2006. Disciplinary recognition, and subsequent designation as a priority research area, was achieved because social work research makes a distinctive contribution to knowledge about the effective design and delivery of social care services or interventions to promote well being. Achieving a vibrant and heterogeneous research discipline requires solid foundations: qualifying social workers need to be both active consumers and producers of research. Carey makes this argument early in this second edition of his book: social work students are uniquely placed among social science undergraduates and postgraduates to apply their research in practice. Social work researchers are able to build upon their practice experience of working alongside service users to bring about positive outcomes in their lives.

Competing demands on the qualifying curriculum following the Munro Review may lead some universities to question the need for an extended piece of work, such as a dissertation; Carey argues, in the first chapter, that conducting a dissertation enables students to understand social ‘problems’ in context and, at the same time, develop core social work skills. The text does much to demystify research from social work students' own disciplinary base. In chapter 2, Carey takes the reader through the stages of undertaking a dissertation: through choosing a topic to writing up and disseminating the findings. Choosing a topic is illustrated by practice examples, stimulating students' interest in core social work issues, including the assessment skills of care managers, safeguarding work with children and the needs of residents with learning disabilities in supported living. Students can thus visualise that the dissertation enables them to develop understanding and expertise about a key area of social work practice: to further investigate a problem they have encountered on placement, develop their understanding of people's experiences of service provision or pursue a topic about which they are passionate.

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Phd program, dissertation instructions.

The dissertation is an original piece of scholarly research on a topic that has been jointly agreed upon by the student and her/his Supervisory Committee members. It is a major undertaking that should reflect the highest standards of scholarship and make a significant contribution to knowledge and practice in the field of social welfare and the profession of social work.

"A candidate must present a dissertation demonstrating original and independent investigation and achievement. A dissertation should reflect not only mastery of research techniques but also ability to select an important problem for investigation and to deal with it competently." ( University of Washington Graduate School )

Dissertation Research 

After the dissertation prospectus has been approved by the Supervisory Committee and the PhD Steering Committee, the student normally works primarily under the direction of the chair. The extent to which other members are involved during the course of the dissertation research is determined on a case-by-case basis. If a dissertation study significantly changes as it progresses from that originally approved in the Prospectus by the Supervisory Committee and Steering Committee, the changes must be reviewed and approved by the Reading Committee members of the Supervisory Committee. 1

Dissertation Research Colloquium

At some point during the dissertation process each candidate is required to make a 30-minute presentation of her/his research at a Dissertation Colloquium. 2  The colloquium is an open assembly of Social Welfare Faculty, PhD students, and others (e.g., faculty from the School of Social Work and other departments, MSW and BASW students, and community persons) who have interest in the proposed research. The Dissertation Colloquium provides (1) a forum for the productive and timely exchange of ideas, suggestions, and resources with doctoral candidates as they work on their first major independent research endeavor and (2) an opportunity for doctoral candidates to articulate to others their research goals, plans, and questions. The timing of the colloquium will depend on the specific needs of each student and be determined by the student and Supervisory Committee. Two options are available:

  • At any point during the dissertation research process when the student and Supervisory Committee determine that a public presentation of the research and findings would be useful for the student. (This could be as a practice job talk or for the general purpose of sharing the research with the community.) The student’s Supervisory Committee is typically in attendance, and one member serves as discussant and facilitator of the Colloquium.
  • As an opening presentation during the Oral Dissertation Defense. (If this option is chosen the Social Work community must be invited to the presentation. Note: Graduate School guidelines recommend that at least a portion of the Oral Dissertation Defense be open to the public.)

Consistent with the program’s emphasis on providing opportunities for students to strengthen their skills in presenting their work, students are strongly encouraged to invite not only social work faculty and students but also any other relevant university colleagues or community members to attend the Colloquium. At least two weeks prior to the date of the Colloquium the student sends an email announcement with the presentation information and an abstract.

Writing and Submitting the Dissertation

Two general formats have been approved by the Graduate School and the social welfare faculty. The first, more traditional within the Arts and Sciences, is the monograph or “book” format for a dissertation. In this format, the dissertation is organized as an integrated set of chapters written as a logical progression of ideas pertaining to a central topic.  The second dissertation format, more prevalent in the health sciences, is a series of three to four research papers that may differ in topic but are clearly reflective of a coherent program of research. (*When the dissertation is composed of a set of research papers that are inclusive of co-authored manuscripts, the candidate must be the primary contributor and lead author on all published papers.)  Each format has advantages and disadvantages having to do with publication goals and career plans, and these should be carefully considered by the candidate in consultation with his/her dissertation committee.

For instructions on formatting the Dissertation, follow the School of Social Work Dissertation Style Guidelines . Also referenced in the guidelines document are templates for the required preliminary pages  and for paragraph styles . The final dissertation must be submitted to the Doctoral Program Office for approval before it is submitted to the Graduate School, thus students need to contact the Program Office during the final stages of writing to ensure that all the guidelines are understood and complied with. For submitting the final to the Graduate School, students must follow the procedures outlined in the  Graduate School’s Dissertation Submission Guidelines  for Theses and Dissertations. This document outlines the process for submission of doctoral dissertations.

All members of the Supervisory Committee must be provided a draft of the dissertation chapters at least 6 weeks in advance of the Oral Defense and a complete draft of the dissertation (with all required sections) at least 2 weeks in advance of the Defense. 2

Resources for Dissertation Research and Writing

All-But-Dissertation Survival Guide This monthly newsletter provides practical strategies for successfully completing your doctoral dissertation, periodic interviews with scholars about the tips they wish they'd known at the beginning of their own careers, and teleworkshops. 

Phinished  A discussion and support site aimed at helping people finish their dissertations.

Summary Notes of  Writing for Social Scientists Presents an outline of Howard S. Becker's suggestions for writing.  Taken from his book,  Writing for Social Scientists: How to Start and Finish Your Thesis, Book, or Article  (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1986). 

Thinking About Your Thesis This article by Erika Simpson provides guidelines for finishing a thesis or dissertation.

Writing and Presenting Your Thesis or Dissertation This article by S. Joseph Levine provides guidelines for thinking about a thesis or dissertation, writing a proposal, completing the project, and defending it.. 

Final Program Office Check

Before scheduling the oral defense, the student must contact the PhD Program Assistant Director for a final degree check, which will be done via email. This will ensure that all degree requirements have been met.

SSW Approval of the Dissertation

Once the entire dissertation is complete, it must be submitted it to the School of Social Work Doctoral Program Office for approval before submitting the final to the Graduate School. Each document will be checked page-by-page, and notations made of all errors to be fixed. 

As a general guideline, the SSW check should be arranged at least 2 weeks prior to the time the final will be submitted to the Graduate School. For formatting guidelines, see the  School of Social Work Dissertation Style Guidelines .  Contact the PhD Program Assistant Director in advance to request this check. Provide electronic files for checking instead of paper copy. This check can usually be accomplished in 1-2 working days if scheduled in advance.

Final Examination: Oral Defense

When the dissertation is complete and the doctoral Supervisory Committee agrees that the candidate is prepared to take the Final Examination (Oral D efense), the Program Director, Assistant Director, and Graduate School must be informed of the decision . 3

All members of the Supervisory Committee must be provided an initial draft of all chapters at least 6 weeks prior to the Oral Defense and a complete draft of the dissertation (with all required sections) at least 2 weeks in advance of the Defense. 4

All members of the Supervisory Committee (including the GSR) must be consulted by the student and approve the date, time, and location for the Oral Defense. The student then logs in to MyGrad to request  scheduling of the Defense . (This must be done at least 2 weeks prior to the date of the oral defense.) As soon as the request is made, the student  must send an email to the Assistant Director of the Social Welfare Program indicating that the request has been made (the MyGrad system tells students that the departments are being notified, but that's not true). The Assistant Director will approve the request through MyGrad. 

The Final Oral Defense is intended as an opportunity for the student to clarify, elaborate, or justify the procedures used and the findings obtained. At least four members of the Supervisory Committee (including the Chair, all other members of the Reading Committee, and the GSR) must be present at the defense, and all members of the Reading Committee (composed of at least 3 members of the Supervisory Committee, including the Chair) must approve the final product. (The GSR must be there in person; any other members may participate by phone or video-conferencing.) The student may choose to present the public Dissertation Colloquium as part of the Defense (see Dissertation Colloquium section above).

The defense session is normally about 2 hours. The committee Chair completes the  Dissertation Evaluation Form . After the defense has been conducted, the committee may approve the dissertation or require the student to make additional modifications or additions. Upon a successful defense and acceptance of the dissertation by the SSW and the Graduate School, the PhD in Social Welfare is conferred. 

The Reading Committee approves a dissertation through an online process. All members of a Committee must log into MyGrad Committee View , including non-UW Reading Committee Members. Members log in using their UW NetIDs and will see the option to approve the dissertation after the student's final exam has been scheduled. Any non-UW Reading Committee members must obtain a UW NetID when the join the committee. The PhD Program GPA can assist in this process.

Participating in Commencement Exercises

Consistent with the eligibility criteria for participation in the University of Washington’s June commencement exercises, individuals are eligible for participation in the School of Social Work’s June commencement exercises if the doctoral degree has been earned during the preceding Summer, or the Fall or Winter term of the current academic year. Alternatively, if a doctoral candidate has a reasonable expectation of graduating in either Spring or Summer of the current academic year he/she may choose to participate.  “Reasonable expectation of graduation” is interpreted as having progressed sufficiently in the writing of a dissertation that is of sufficient academic standard that there is strong consensus by the candidate’s Reading Committee that a dissertation defense can be scheduled in sufficient time for graduation by the end of the Summer term (after the commencement exercises).   

The PhD Program Director must approve commencement participation for any student who has not completed all requirements, including submission of the final dissertation to the Graduate School.

  • For information on participating in the  School of Social Work commencement .  To apply and participate in the University of Washington’s June commencement exercises go to the Graduation, Commencement, and Diplomas page .
  • Approved by Steering Committee, 5/26/98.
  • Approved by the PhD Steering Committee, 11/6/2012.
  • Graduate School revisions in General Examination and Defense Process instituted May 2009.
  • Approved by Steering Committee, 12/7/2010.

Grad Coach

Dissertation Structure & Layout 101: How to structure your dissertation, thesis or research project.

By: Derek Jansen (MBA) Reviewed By: David Phair (PhD) | July 2019

So, you’ve got a decent understanding of what a dissertation is , you’ve chosen your topic and hopefully you’ve received approval for your research proposal . Awesome! Now its time to start the actual dissertation or thesis writing journey.

To craft a high-quality document, the very first thing you need to understand is dissertation structure . In this post, we’ll walk you through the generic dissertation structure and layout, step by step. We’ll start with the big picture, and then zoom into each chapter to briefly discuss the core contents. If you’re just starting out on your research journey, you should start with this post, which covers the big-picture process of how to write a dissertation or thesis .

Dissertation structure and layout - the basics

*The Caveat *

In this post, we’ll be discussing a traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout, which is generally used for social science research across universities, whether in the US, UK, Europe or Australia. However, some universities may have small variations on this structure (extra chapters, merged chapters, slightly different ordering, etc).

So, always check with your university if they have a prescribed structure or layout that they expect you to work with. If not, it’s safe to assume the structure we’ll discuss here is suitable. And even if they do have a prescribed structure, you’ll still get value from this post as we’ll explain the core contents of each section.  

Overview: S tructuring a dissertation or thesis

  • Acknowledgements page
  • Abstract (or executive summary)
  • Table of contents , list of figures and tables
  • Chapter 1: Introduction
  • Chapter 2: Literature review
  • Chapter 3: Methodology
  • Chapter 4: Results
  • Chapter 5: Discussion
  • Chapter 6: Conclusion
  • Reference list

As I mentioned, some universities will have slight variations on this structure. For example, they want an additional “personal reflection chapter”, or they might prefer the results and discussion chapter to be merged into one. Regardless, the overarching flow will always be the same, as this flow reflects the research process , which we discussed here – i.e.:

  • The introduction chapter presents the core research question and aims .
  • The literature review chapter assesses what the current research says about this question.
  • The methodology, results and discussion chapters go about undertaking new research about this question.
  • The conclusion chapter (attempts to) answer the core research question .

In other words, the dissertation structure and layout reflect the research process of asking a well-defined question(s), investigating, and then answering the question – see below.

A dissertation's structure reflect the research process

To restate that – the structure and layout of a dissertation reflect the flow of the overall research process . This is essential to understand, as each chapter will make a lot more sense if you “get” this concept. If you’re not familiar with the research process, read this post before going further.

Right. Now that we’ve covered the big picture, let’s dive a little deeper into the details of each section and chapter. Oh and by the way, you can also grab our free dissertation/thesis template here to help speed things up.

The title page of your dissertation is the very first impression the marker will get of your work, so it pays to invest some time thinking about your title. But what makes for a good title? A strong title needs to be 3 things:

  • Succinct (not overly lengthy or verbose)
  • Specific (not vague or ambiguous)
  • Representative of the research you’re undertaking (clearly linked to your research questions)

Typically, a good title includes mention of the following:

  • The broader area of the research (i.e. the overarching topic)
  • The specific focus of your research (i.e. your specific context)
  • Indication of research design (e.g. quantitative , qualitative , or  mixed methods ).

For example:

A quantitative investigation [research design] into the antecedents of organisational trust [broader area] in the UK retail forex trading market [specific context/area of focus].

Again, some universities may have specific requirements regarding the format and structure of the title, so it’s worth double-checking expectations with your institution (if there’s no mention in the brief or study material).

Dissertations stacked up


This page provides you with an opportunity to say thank you to those who helped you along your research journey. Generally, it’s optional (and won’t count towards your marks), but it is academic best practice to include this.

So, who do you say thanks to? Well, there’s no prescribed requirements, but it’s common to mention the following people:

  • Your dissertation supervisor or committee.
  • Any professors, lecturers or academics that helped you understand the topic or methodologies.
  • Any tutors, mentors or advisors.
  • Your family and friends, especially spouse (for adult learners studying part-time).

There’s no need for lengthy rambling. Just state who you’re thankful to and for what (e.g. thank you to my supervisor, John Doe, for his endless patience and attentiveness) – be sincere. In terms of length, you should keep this to a page or less.

Abstract or executive summary

The dissertation abstract (or executive summary for some degrees) serves to provide the first-time reader (and marker or moderator) with a big-picture view of your research project. It should give them an understanding of the key insights and findings from the research, without them needing to read the rest of the report – in other words, it should be able to stand alone .

For it to stand alone, your abstract should cover the following key points (at a minimum):

  • Your research questions and aims – what key question(s) did your research aim to answer?
  • Your methodology – how did you go about investigating the topic and finding answers to your research question(s)?
  • Your findings – following your own research, what did do you discover?
  • Your conclusions – based on your findings, what conclusions did you draw? What answers did you find to your research question(s)?

So, in much the same way the dissertation structure mimics the research process, your abstract or executive summary should reflect the research process, from the initial stage of asking the original question to the final stage of answering that question.

In practical terms, it’s a good idea to write this section up last , once all your core chapters are complete. Otherwise, you’ll end up writing and rewriting this section multiple times (just wasting time). For a step by step guide on how to write a strong executive summary, check out this post .

Need a helping hand?

social work dissertation writers

Table of contents

This section is straightforward. You’ll typically present your table of contents (TOC) first, followed by the two lists – figures and tables. I recommend that you use Microsoft Word’s automatic table of contents generator to generate your TOC. If you’re not familiar with this functionality, the video below explains it simply:

If you find that your table of contents is overly lengthy, consider removing one level of depth. Oftentimes, this can be done without detracting from the usefulness of the TOC.

Right, now that the “admin” sections are out of the way, its time to move on to your core chapters. These chapters are the heart of your dissertation and are where you’ll earn the marks. The first chapter is the introduction chapter – as you would expect, this is the time to introduce your research…

It’s important to understand that even though you’ve provided an overview of your research in your abstract, your introduction needs to be written as if the reader has not read that (remember, the abstract is essentially a standalone document). So, your introduction chapter needs to start from the very beginning, and should address the following questions:

  • What will you be investigating (in plain-language, big picture-level)?
  • Why is that worth investigating? How is it important to academia or business? How is it sufficiently original?
  • What are your research aims and research question(s)? Note that the research questions can sometimes be presented at the end of the literature review (next chapter).
  • What is the scope of your study? In other words, what will and won’t you cover ?
  • How will you approach your research? In other words, what methodology will you adopt?
  • How will you structure your dissertation? What are the core chapters and what will you do in each of them?

These are just the bare basic requirements for your intro chapter. Some universities will want additional bells and whistles in the intro chapter, so be sure to carefully read your brief or consult your research supervisor.

If done right, your introduction chapter will set a clear direction for the rest of your dissertation. Specifically, it will make it clear to the reader (and marker) exactly what you’ll be investigating, why that’s important, and how you’ll be going about the investigation. Conversely, if your introduction chapter leaves a first-time reader wondering what exactly you’ll be researching, you’ve still got some work to do.

Now that you’ve set a clear direction with your introduction chapter, the next step is the literature review . In this section, you will analyse the existing research (typically academic journal articles and high-quality industry publications), with a view to understanding the following questions:

  • What does the literature currently say about the topic you’re investigating?
  • Is the literature lacking or well established? Is it divided or in disagreement?
  • How does your research fit into the bigger picture?
  • How does your research contribute something original?
  • How does the methodology of previous studies help you develop your own?

Depending on the nature of your study, you may also present a conceptual framework towards the end of your literature review, which you will then test in your actual research.

Again, some universities will want you to focus on some of these areas more than others, some will have additional or fewer requirements, and so on. Therefore, as always, its important to review your brief and/or discuss with your supervisor, so that you know exactly what’s expected of your literature review chapter.

Dissertation writing

Now that you’ve investigated the current state of knowledge in your literature review chapter and are familiar with the existing key theories, models and frameworks, its time to design your own research. Enter the methodology chapter – the most “science-ey” of the chapters…

In this chapter, you need to address two critical questions:

  • Exactly HOW will you carry out your research (i.e. what is your intended research design)?
  • Exactly WHY have you chosen to do things this way (i.e. how do you justify your design)?

Remember, the dissertation part of your degree is first and foremost about developing and demonstrating research skills . Therefore, the markers want to see that you know which methods to use, can clearly articulate why you’ve chosen then, and know how to deploy them effectively.

Importantly, this chapter requires detail – don’t hold back on the specifics. State exactly what you’ll be doing, with who, when, for how long, etc. Moreover, for every design choice you make, make sure you justify it.

In practice, you will likely end up coming back to this chapter once you’ve undertaken all your data collection and analysis, and revise it based on changes you made during the analysis phase. This is perfectly fine. Its natural for you to add an additional analysis technique, scrap an old one, etc based on where your data lead you. Of course, I’m talking about small changes here – not a fundamental switch from qualitative to quantitative, which will likely send your supervisor in a spin!

You’ve now collected your data and undertaken your analysis, whether qualitative, quantitative or mixed methods. In this chapter, you’ll present the raw results of your analysis . For example, in the case of a quant study, you’ll present the demographic data, descriptive statistics, inferential statistics , etc.

Typically, Chapter 4 is simply a presentation and description of the data, not a discussion of the meaning of the data. In other words, it’s descriptive, rather than analytical – the meaning is discussed in Chapter 5. However, some universities will want you to combine chapters 4 and 5, so that you both present and interpret the meaning of the data at the same time. Check with your institution what their preference is.

Now that you’ve presented the data analysis results, its time to interpret and analyse them. In other words, its time to discuss what they mean, especially in relation to your research question(s).

What you discuss here will depend largely on your chosen methodology. For example, if you’ve gone the quantitative route, you might discuss the relationships between variables . If you’ve gone the qualitative route, you might discuss key themes and the meanings thereof. It all depends on what your research design choices were.

Most importantly, you need to discuss your results in relation to your research questions and aims, as well as the existing literature. What do the results tell you about your research questions? Are they aligned with the existing research or at odds? If so, why might this be? Dig deep into your findings and explain what the findings suggest, in plain English.

The final chapter – you’ve made it! Now that you’ve discussed your interpretation of the results, its time to bring it back to the beginning with the conclusion chapter . In other words, its time to (attempt to) answer your original research question s (from way back in chapter 1). Clearly state what your conclusions are in terms of your research questions. This might feel a bit repetitive, as you would have touched on this in the previous chapter, but its important to bring the discussion full circle and explicitly state your answer(s) to the research question(s).

Dissertation and thesis prep

Next, you’ll typically discuss the implications of your findings? In other words, you’ve answered your research questions – but what does this mean for the real world (or even for academia)? What should now be done differently, given the new insight you’ve generated?

Lastly, you should discuss the limitations of your research, as well as what this means for future research in the area. No study is perfect, especially not a Masters-level. Discuss the shortcomings of your research. Perhaps your methodology was limited, perhaps your sample size was small or not representative, etc, etc. Don’t be afraid to critique your work – the markers want to see that you can identify the limitations of your work. This is a strength, not a weakness. Be brutal!

This marks the end of your core chapters – woohoo! From here on out, it’s pretty smooth sailing.

The reference list is straightforward. It should contain a list of all resources cited in your dissertation, in the required format, e.g. APA , Harvard, etc.

It’s essential that you use reference management software for your dissertation. Do NOT try handle your referencing manually – its far too error prone. On a reference list of multiple pages, you’re going to make mistake. To this end, I suggest considering either Mendeley or Zotero. Both are free and provide a very straightforward interface to ensure that your referencing is 100% on point. I’ve included a simple how-to video for the Mendeley software (my personal favourite) below:

Some universities may ask you to include a bibliography, as opposed to a reference list. These two things are not the same . A bibliography is similar to a reference list, except that it also includes resources which informed your thinking but were not directly cited in your dissertation. So, double-check your brief and make sure you use the right one.

The very last piece of the puzzle is the appendix or set of appendices. This is where you’ll include any supporting data and evidence. Importantly, supporting is the keyword here.

Your appendices should provide additional “nice to know”, depth-adding information, which is not critical to the core analysis. Appendices should not be used as a way to cut down word count (see this post which covers how to reduce word count ). In other words, don’t place content that is critical to the core analysis here, just to save word count. You will not earn marks on any content in the appendices, so don’t try to play the system!

Time to recap…

And there you have it – the traditional dissertation structure and layout, from A-Z. To recap, the core structure for a dissertation or thesis is (typically) as follows:

  • Acknowledgments page

Most importantly, the core chapters should reflect the research process (asking, investigating and answering your research question). Moreover, the research question(s) should form the golden thread throughout your dissertation structure. Everything should revolve around the research questions, and as you’ve seen, they should form both the start point (i.e. introduction chapter) and the endpoint (i.e. conclusion chapter).

I hope this post has provided you with clarity about the traditional dissertation/thesis structure and layout. If you have any questions or comments, please leave a comment below, or feel free to get in touch with us. Also, be sure to check out the rest of the  Grad Coach Blog .

social work dissertation writers

Psst… there’s more (for free)

This post is part of our dissertation mini-course, which covers everything you need to get started with your dissertation, thesis or research project. 

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Dissertation and thesis defense 101



many thanks i found it very useful

Derek Jansen

Glad to hear that, Arun. Good luck writing your dissertation.


Such clear practical logical advice. I very much needed to read this to keep me focused in stead of fretting.. Perfect now ready to start my research!


what about scientific fields like computer or engineering thesis what is the difference in the structure? thank you very much


Thanks so much this helped me a lot!

Ade Adeniyi

Very helpful and accessible. What I like most is how practical the advice is along with helpful tools/ links.

Thanks Ade!


Thank you so much sir.. It was really helpful..

You’re welcome!

Jp Raimundo

Hi! How many words maximum should contain the abstract?

Karmelia Renatee

Thank you so much 😊 Find this at the right moment

You’re most welcome. Good luck with your dissertation.


best ever benefit i got on right time thank you

Krishnan iyer

Many times Clarity and vision of destination of dissertation is what makes the difference between good ,average and great researchers the same way a great automobile driver is fast with clarity of address and Clear weather conditions .

I guess Great researcher = great ideas + knowledge + great and fast data collection and modeling + great writing + high clarity on all these

You have given immense clarity from start to end.

Alwyn Malan

Morning. Where will I write the definitions of what I’m referring to in my report?


Thank you so much Derek, I was almost lost! Thanks a tonnnn! Have a great day!

yemi Amos

Thanks ! so concise and valuable

Kgomotso Siwelane

This was very helpful. Clear and concise. I know exactly what to do now.

dauda sesay

Thank you for allowing me to go through briefly. I hope to find time to continue.

Patrick Mwathi

Really useful to me. Thanks a thousand times

Adao Bundi

Very interesting! It will definitely set me and many more for success. highly recommended.


Thank you soo much sir, for the opportunity to express my skills

mwepu Ilunga

Usefull, thanks a lot. Really clear


Very nice and easy to understand. Thank you .

Chrisogonas Odhiambo

That was incredibly useful. Thanks Grad Coach Crew!


My stress level just dropped at least 15 points after watching this. Just starting my thesis for my grad program and I feel a lot more capable now! Thanks for such a clear and helpful video, Emma and the GradCoach team!


Do we need to mention the number of words the dissertation contains in the main document?

It depends on your university’s requirements, so it would be best to check with them 🙂


Such a helpful post to help me get started with structuring my masters dissertation, thank you!

Simon Le

Great video; I appreciate that helpful information

Brhane Kidane

It is so necessary or avital course


This blog is very informative for my research. Thank you


Doctoral students are required to fill out the National Research Council’s Survey of Earned Doctorates

Emmanuel Manjolo

wow this is an amazing gain in my life

Paul I Thoronka

This is so good

Tesfay haftu

How can i arrange my specific objectives in my dissertation?


  • What Is A Literature Review (In A Dissertation Or Thesis) - Grad Coach - […] is to write the actual literature review chapter (this is usually the second chapter in a typical dissertation or…

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Social Work Dissertation Topics: 10+ Ideas To Get Started

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by  Antony W

May 9, 2023

Social Work Dissertation Topics

Your social work dissertation is an essential component of your degree program. You must select appropriate social work dissertation topics based on your area of interest if you wish to write a comprehensive research work that you can easily defend.

In this post, we provide a list of 20+ social work dissertation ideas with options for social work study topics and social work project subjects. Therefore, if you are having trouble selecting social work dissertation ideas and social work project topics, you may seek our assistance.

To enhance the lives of many individuals, you must adopt a cognitive approach if you intend to pursue a career in the field of social work. You can start by exploring an issue in this segment and have yourself assessment on how effective you’d be in the social work field.

Social Work Dissertation Help

Writing a social work dissertation isn’t as easy. The dissertation is a long assignment, often between 100 to 300 pages long, with multiple sections that you must address. Given the intensity of the research, the project can be quite a challenge and, at any given moment, it might feel excessively overwhelming.

Fortunately, you can get the writing help necessary to complete the task on time.

At Help for Assessment, we value helping students to achieve academic excellence in all assignments, and we can help you complete your dissertation through our dissertation writing service . Whether you’ve chosen a social dissertation topic that’s easy to explore or you’ve decided to focus on a more challenging area, our writers are here to help.

What is Social Work?

Social work is a practice-based field that fosters social change, development, community cohesiveness, and the empowerment of individuals and groups. Understanding human growth, behavior, and the social, economic, and cultural structures and relationships is essential to the practice of social work.

Professionals in social workers who deal with families and institutions have contributed to and advanced of unemployment benefits, human rights, reduced psychological health stigma, and disability worker’s compensation.

There are typically three levels of social work practice: micro, mezzo, and macro. At each level, social work experts supply target groups with somewhat varied services.

At the micro level, social workers provide one-on-one, family, and small-group services to individuals dealing with a variety of socioeconomic problems. These may include housing assistance, treatment for substance misuse, and mental health therapy.

Mezzo social workers work with groups of individuals, such as in schools, prisons, hospitals, and communities. They may deal with students facing academic difficulties, people dealing with drug addiction, or patients who are in hospitals for long-term care.

Social work at the macro level comprises policy formulation, research, and community-based activities. At this level of practice, social workers are more likely to focus on and assist in addressing bigger societal concerns such as homelessness, substance misuse, housing, and others.

Social Work Dissertation Topics: 20+ Ideas to Consider for Your Research

  • The reaction of the social work profession to societal concerns
  • Examining instances in which gifts are utilized unethically and unfairly
  • The function of social workers in earthquake victim rescue processes
  • Knowledge of social circumstances and social issues are analyzed
  • Social work practitioners’ exposure to the dangers posed by epidemic zones
  • A study on the positive effects of social work on society and communities
  • Significant issues that arise while dealing with kidnapping victims’ children
  • The significance of social work in slum regions for domestic violence
  • Using systems theory and constructivism to investigate the link between social work and societal issues
  • Evaluating the legal rights of the families of social workers in vulnerable locations – the United Kingdom
  • Examining the effect of social work on the mental health of blind individuals
  • Helping stray animals can contribute to the improvement of living conditions – a qualitative investigation.
  • What are the primary causes of homelessness in the United Kingdom?
  • Values, conundrums, and political difficulties encountered by social workers
  • How may social workers contribute to constructive societal changes and advancements?
  • The function of social work in the mainstream development of low-income groups
  • How is social work helping to the resolution of social issues in developing nations?
  • The significance of openness and responsibility in the field of social work
  • Analyzing the socioeconomic problems that impact social workers’ roles.
  • The influence of technology on mass communication and its dissemination to the public
  • Based on qualitative investigation, examine the future of the publication.
  • The function of social workers in the development of children from violent households
  • Can social workers persuade individuals to act responsibly and morally?
  • The connection among sociology, social work, and social issues
  • What measures may social workers employ to assist the elderly as volunteers?
  • How can social workers expose societal issues and help to the development of remedies to lessen them?
  • Exist any relationships between race and the incidence of child abuse within families

How to Social Work Dissertation Topics

Consideration of the following when looking for the best dissertation topic for your social work research:

Choose a topic supported by one or more studies by U.S. or international research teams with strong article-related citation metrics, often published in reputable peer-reviewed academic journals .

The social work dissertation topic you choose should be practical. Theoretical research is vital, but nothing outdoes practical knowledge and effective intervention tactics. However, this characteristic may also rely on other variables, so for students, for instance, theoretical topics are acceptable.

You can also choose a dissertation topic that defies preconceptions. If you think about it, people are drawn to issues that challenge their preconceived assumptions, so such topics naturally attract attention.

It’s important to make sure that the social work dissertation topic that you choose to work on corresponds to current trends.

We know that not everything that is current merits consideration. However, there is a rationale for the emergence of trends.

Moreover, there are sometimes substantial benefits to diving into a field/subject that was only recently founded.

We hope this guide was useful in helping you find the best social work dissertation topic to work on. If you’re having a difficult time with your assignment, or you don’t know where to begin with your research, take advantage of our writing service and let us help you get the work done on time.

About the author 

Antony W is a professional writer and coach at Help for Assessment. He spends countless hours every day researching and writing great content filled with expert advice on how to write engaging essays, research papers, and assignments.

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What Is a Dissertation? | Guide, Examples, & Template

Structure of a Dissertation

A dissertation is a long-form piece of academic writing based on original research conducted by you. It is usually submitted as the final step in order to finish a PhD program.

Your dissertation is probably the longest piece of writing you’ve ever completed. It requires solid research, writing, and analysis skills, and it can be intimidating to know where to begin.

Your department likely has guidelines related to how your dissertation should be structured. When in doubt, consult with your supervisor.

You can also download our full dissertation template in the format of your choice below. The template includes a ready-made table of contents with notes on what to include in each chapter, easily adaptable to your department’s requirements.

Download Word template Download Google Docs template

  • In the US, a dissertation generally refers to the collection of research you conducted to obtain a PhD.
  • In other countries (such as the UK), a dissertation often refers to the research you conduct to obtain your bachelor’s or master’s degree.

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Table of contents

Dissertation committee and prospectus process, how to write and structure a dissertation, acknowledgements or preface, list of figures and tables, list of abbreviations, introduction, literature review, methodology, reference list, proofreading and editing, defending your dissertation, free checklist and lecture slides.

When you’ve finished your coursework, as well as any comprehensive exams or other requirements, you advance to “ABD” (All But Dissertation) status. This means you’ve completed everything except your dissertation.

Prior to starting to write, you must form your committee and write your prospectus or proposal . Your committee comprises your adviser and a few other faculty members. They can be from your own department, or, if your work is more interdisciplinary, from other departments. Your committee will guide you through the dissertation process, and ultimately decide whether you pass your dissertation defense and receive your PhD.

Your prospectus is a formal document presented to your committee, usually orally in a defense, outlining your research aims and objectives and showing why your topic is relevant . After passing your prospectus defense, you’re ready to start your research and writing.

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The structure of your dissertation depends on a variety of factors, such as your discipline, topic, and approach. Dissertations in the humanities are often structured more like a long essay , building an overall argument to support a central thesis , with chapters organized around different themes or case studies.

However, hard science and social science dissertations typically include a review of existing works, a methodology section, an analysis of your original research, and a presentation of your results , presented in different chapters.

Dissertation examples

We’ve compiled a list of dissertation examples to help you get started.

  • Example dissertation #1: Heat, Wildfire and Energy Demand: An Examination of Residential Buildings and Community Equity (a dissertation by C. A. Antonopoulos about the impact of extreme heat and wildfire on residential buildings and occupant exposure risks).
  • Example dissertation #2: Exploring Income Volatility and Financial Health Among Middle-Income Households (a dissertation by M. Addo about income volatility and declining economic security among middle-income households).
  • Example dissertation #3: The Use of Mindfulness Meditation to Increase the Efficacy of Mirror Visual Feedback for Reducing Phantom Limb Pain in Amputees (a dissertation by N. S. Mills about the effect of mindfulness-based interventions on the relationship between mirror visual feedback and the pain level in amputees with phantom limb pain).

The very first page of your document contains your dissertation title, your name, department, institution, degree program, and submission date. Sometimes it also includes your student number, your supervisor’s name, and the university’s logo.

Read more about title pages

The acknowledgements section is usually optional and gives space for you to thank everyone who helped you in writing your dissertation. This might include your supervisors, participants in your research, and friends or family who supported you. In some cases, your acknowledgements are part of a preface.

Read more about acknowledgements Read more about prefaces

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The abstract is a short summary of your dissertation, usually about 150 to 300 words long. Though this may seem very short, it’s one of the most important parts of your dissertation, because it introduces your work to your audience.

Your abstract should:

  • State your main topic and the aims of your research
  • Describe your methods
  • Summarize your main results
  • State your conclusions

Read more about abstracts

The table of contents lists all of your chapters, along with corresponding subheadings and page numbers. This gives your reader an overview of your structure and helps them easily navigate your document.

Remember to include all main parts of your dissertation in your table of contents, even the appendices. It’s easy to generate a table automatically in Word if you used heading styles. Generally speaking, you only include level 2 and level 3 headings, not every subheading you included in your finished work.

Read more about tables of contents

While not usually mandatory, it’s nice to include a list of figures and tables to help guide your reader if you have used a lot of these in your dissertation. It’s easy to generate one of these in Word using the Insert Caption feature.

Read more about lists of figures and tables

Similarly, if you have used a lot of abbreviations (especially industry-specific ones) in your dissertation, you can include them in an alphabetized list of abbreviations so that the reader can easily look up their meanings.

Read more about lists of abbreviations

In addition to the list of abbreviations, if you find yourself using a lot of highly specialized terms that you worry will not be familiar to your reader, consider including a glossary. Here, alphabetize the terms and include a brief description or definition.

Read more about glossaries

The introduction serves to set up your dissertation’s topic, purpose, and relevance. It tells the reader what to expect in the rest of your dissertation. The introduction should:

  • Establish your research topic , giving the background information needed to contextualize your work
  • Narrow down the focus and define the scope of your research
  • Discuss the state of existing research on the topic, showing your work’s relevance to a broader problem or debate
  • Clearly state your research questions and objectives
  • Outline the flow of the rest of your work

Everything in the introduction should be clear, engaging, and relevant. By the end, the reader should understand the what, why, and how of your research.

Read more about introductions

A formative part of your research is your literature review . This helps you gain a thorough understanding of the academic work that already exists on your topic.

Literature reviews encompass:

  • Finding relevant sources (e.g., books and journal articles)
  • Assessing the credibility of your sources
  • Critically analyzing and evaluating each source
  • Drawing connections between them (e.g., themes, patterns, conflicts, or gaps) to strengthen your overall point

A literature review is not merely a summary of existing sources. Your literature review should have a coherent structure and argument that leads to a clear justification for your own research. It may aim to:

  • Address a gap in the literature or build on existing knowledge
  • Take a new theoretical or methodological approach to your topic
  • Propose a solution to an unresolved problem or advance one side of a theoretical debate

Read more about literature reviews

Theoretical framework

Your literature review can often form the basis for your theoretical framework. Here, you define and analyze the key theories, concepts, and models that frame your research.

Read more about theoretical frameworks

Your methodology chapter describes how you conducted your research, allowing your reader to critically assess its credibility. Your methodology section should accurately report what you did, as well as convince your reader that this was the best way to answer your research question.

A methodology section should generally include:

  • The overall research approach ( quantitative vs. qualitative ) and research methods (e.g., a longitudinal study )
  • Your data collection methods (e.g., interviews or a controlled experiment )
  • Details of where, when, and with whom the research took place
  • Any tools and materials you used (e.g., computer programs, lab equipment)
  • Your data analysis methods (e.g., statistical analysis , discourse analysis )
  • An evaluation or justification of your methods

Read more about methodology sections

Your results section should highlight what your methodology discovered. You can structure this section around sub-questions, hypotheses , or themes, but avoid including any subjective or speculative interpretation here.

Your results section should:

  • Concisely state each relevant result together with relevant descriptive statistics (e.g., mean , standard deviation ) and inferential statistics (e.g., test statistics , p values )
  • Briefly state how the result relates to the question or whether the hypothesis was supported
  • Report all results that are relevant to your research questions , including any that did not meet your expectations.

Additional data (including raw numbers, full questionnaires, or interview transcripts) can be included as an appendix. You can include tables and figures, but only if they help the reader better understand your results. Read more about results sections

Your discussion section is your opportunity to explore the meaning and implications of your results in relation to your research question. Here, interpret your results in detail, discussing whether they met your expectations and how well they fit with the framework that you built in earlier chapters. Refer back to relevant source material to show how your results fit within existing research in your field.

Some guiding questions include:

  • What do your results mean?
  • Why do your results matter?
  • What limitations do the results have?

If any of the results were unexpected, offer explanations for why this might be. It’s a good idea to consider alternative interpretations of your data.

Read more about discussion sections

Your dissertation’s conclusion should concisely answer your main research question, leaving your reader with a clear understanding of your central argument and emphasizing what your research has contributed to the field.

In some disciplines, the conclusion is just a short section preceding the discussion section, but in other contexts, it is the final chapter of your work. Here, you wrap up your dissertation with a final reflection on what you found, with recommendations for future research and concluding remarks.

It’s important to leave the reader with a clear impression of why your research matters. What have you added to what was already known? Why is your research necessary for the future of your field?

Read more about conclusions

It is crucial to include a reference list or list of works cited with the full details of all the sources that you used, in order to avoid plagiarism. Be sure to choose one citation style and follow it consistently throughout your dissertation. Each style has strict and specific formatting requirements.

Common styles include MLA , Chicago , and APA , but which style you use is often set by your department or your field.

Create APA citations Create MLA citations

Your dissertation should contain only essential information that directly contributes to answering your research question. Documents such as interview transcripts or survey questions can be added as appendices, rather than adding them to the main body.

Read more about appendices

Making sure that all of your sections are in the right place is only the first step to a well-written dissertation. Don’t forget to leave plenty of time for editing and proofreading, as grammar mistakes and sloppy spelling errors can really negatively impact your work.

Dissertations can take up to five years to write, so you will definitely want to make sure that everything is perfect before submitting. You may want to consider using a professional dissertation editing service , AI proofreader or grammar checker to make sure your final project is perfect prior to submitting.

After your written dissertation is approved, your committee will schedule a defense. Similarly to defending your prospectus, dissertation defenses are oral presentations of your work. You’ll present your dissertation, and your committee will ask you questions. Many departments allow family members, friends, and other people who are interested to join as well.

After your defense, your committee will meet, and then inform you whether you have passed. Keep in mind that defenses are usually just a formality; most committees will have resolved any serious issues with your work with you far prior to your defense, giving you ample time to fix any problems.

As you write your dissertation, you can use this simple checklist to make sure you’ve included all the essentials.

Checklist: Dissertation

My title page includes all information required by my university.

I have included acknowledgements thanking those who helped me.

My abstract provides a concise summary of the dissertation, giving the reader a clear idea of my key results or arguments.

I have created a table of contents to help the reader navigate my dissertation. It includes all chapter titles, but excludes the title page, acknowledgements, and abstract.

My introduction leads into my topic in an engaging way and shows the relevance of my research.

My introduction clearly defines the focus of my research, stating my research questions and research objectives .

My introduction includes an overview of the dissertation’s structure (reading guide).

I have conducted a literature review in which I (1) critically engage with sources, evaluating the strengths and weaknesses of existing research, (2) discuss patterns, themes, and debates in the literature, and (3) address a gap or show how my research contributes to existing research.

I have clearly outlined the theoretical framework of my research, explaining the theories and models that support my approach.

I have thoroughly described my methodology , explaining how I collected data and analyzed data.

I have concisely and objectively reported all relevant results .

I have (1) evaluated and interpreted the meaning of the results and (2) acknowledged any important limitations of the results in my discussion .

I have clearly stated the answer to my main research question in the conclusion .

I have clearly explained the implications of my conclusion, emphasizing what new insight my research has contributed.

I have provided relevant recommendations for further research or practice.

If relevant, I have included appendices with supplemental information.

I have included an in-text citation every time I use words, ideas, or information from a source.

I have listed every source in a reference list at the end of my dissertation.

I have consistently followed the rules of my chosen citation style .

I have followed all formatting guidelines provided by my university.


The end is in sight—your dissertation is nearly ready to submit! Make sure it's perfectly polished with the help of a Scribbr editor.

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Home » Blog » Dissertation » Topics » Social Work » Social Work Dissertation Topics (25 Examples) For Research

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Social Work Dissertation Topics (25 Examples) For Research

Mark Jun 20, 2020 Jun 18, 2020 Social Work No Comments

If you are planning to make a career in the field of social work, you need to take a cognitive approach to improve the lives of many people. Your social work dissertation would be an important part of your degree program. You need to choose the right social work dissertation topics considering your area of […]

social work dissertation topics

If you are planning to make a career in the field of social work, you need to take a cognitive approach to improve the lives of many people. Your social work dissertation would be an important part of your degree program. You need to choose the right social work dissertation topics considering your area of interest.

We offer a list of social work dissertation topics providing suggestions on research topics on social work and project topic on social work. So, if you are stuck in choosing social work dissertation topics and project topics on social work, you can take our help. We not only help in topic selection but also offer writing services.

List of Social work dissertation topics

The role of social workers in the evolution of children raised in violent families.

Studying the impact of social work on the mental health of visually impaired people.

The importance of social work for domestic violence in slum areas.

The role of social workers in rescuing procedures of earthquake victims.

The risks involved in the areas of an epidemic for social work professionals.

Evaluating the legal rights of families of social workers working in susceptible areas – case of the UK.

Investigating the role of social work in the mainstream development of low-income groups.

The significant problems associated with dealing with children related to the victims of kidnapping.

How social workers can help in bringing positive changes and developments in society?

How social workers highlight the problems of society and contribute to developing solutions to reduce problems?

Impact of technology on mass communication and how it reaches the public.

What are the main reasons behind homelessness in the UK?

Are there any connections between race and the occurrence of child abuse in families?

Exploring the relationship between social work and social problems studying systems theory and constructionism.

The relationship between sociology, social work, and social problems.

Analysing the knowledge of social conditions and social problems.

How social work is contributing to solving social problems in underdeveloped countries?

The strategies that can be used by social workers to volunteer for helping elderly people?

Helping stray animals can help in creating a better place to live in – A qualitative analysis.

A literature review on how social work has a positive impact on society and communities.

Can social workers convince people to act responsibly and ethically?

Exploring the future of the newspaper based on qualitative analysis.

Values, dilemmas and political controversies faced by the professional social workers.

Analysing the societal challenges that affect the role of social workers.

Critique the social work profession’s response to social problems.

Discussing the cases of how the donations are used unethically and inappropriately.

Importance of a journalist’s integrity while reporting.

The importance of transparency and accountability in the field of social work.

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6 Social Work Dissertation Writing Tips by Professionals

Social Work Dissertation Writing Tips

Table of Contents

First Tip - Relax and Don't Waste Time in Complaining

Second tip - introduce yourself to brainstorming, third tip - bring out the hidden researcher, fourth tip - prepare an outline, fifth tip - pay attention to the quality, sixth tip - proofread carefully.

Life is a big daring adventure for the social workers. Your noble thought to work for the upliftment of society is indeed praiseworthy. However, before starting to work on the social issues, you will have to go through a back-breaking task which is none other than writing a social work dissertation.

As an online Assignment writing service provider, we have witnessed a lot of deadly anxieties amongst the final year students who are bound to submit the lengthy research paper at the climax of their academic career. And for that reason, our expert dissertation writers have listed below some crucial social work dissertation writing tips to reduce the fear of writing among the students. Let's cling on the post!

Crap! A lot of work needs to be done. How would I be able to complete it within the deadline? Most of the students become extremely nervous unnecessarily before even starting to write the paper. Our experts suggest that instead of wasting time in complaining and crying over the work that is required to be done, the students must learn to relax. It doesn't mean putting the feet up and not worrying about anything. It means to relax the mind so that the negative thoughts do not overtake the positivity. Always remember half of the problems get sorted when you start to believe in your potential. Replace the doubtful thoughts with the positive ones. Say to yourself that I can do it no matter what!

To grab the master's degree in social work, aspirants have to move out and analyze the deplorable situations of the society. But to write a research paper on a winning dissertation topic, you need to take out some time to brainstorm by sitting at a quite corner. Think a lot before coming to any conclusion.

You may find several social work dissertation topics over the internet. But the only problem is that it doesn't guarantee the uniqueness and freshness as you never know the topic you're choosing has already been selected by your classmate. If you really want to present a distinctive social work research paper, then you can anytime take beneficial suggestions from our professional writers. Be clever and choose us as you can get plenty of social work dissertation ideas from us.

Dissertation help for College students

Your wish to score exceptional grades will come true when you support your dissertation argument with the relevant findings and facts. So, if you have the researching skills deep inside you, then now is the high time to bring them on! Without seeking enough knowledge on the topic, you won't be able to write a scoring research paper . Make sure that you never take the task of research for granted. If the topic you have chosen requires travelling to distant places, then try your best to do it. Do not leave any stone unturned! You can use the most quintessential research methods to garner the useful data. Primary and secondary both sources can be used to collect the facts. So, what are you waiting for? Soak yourself in the books, journals, magazines, search engines and show yourself that a researcher lies within you.

Writing an outline doesn't require more effort and time. So make sure you wrap up as quickly as possible as major work process is ahead of you. By doing this, you will actually save the time for writing the final draft. Club your findings and put it on your rough document. Do not avoid the task of working according to your university guidelines. We come across several students every now & then who face rejections just because of not following the given guidelines by their university professors. Give your dissertation writing a proper structure so that it never experiences a refusal.

Never forget that to gain high distinction grades, it is essential for you to never lose focus on the quality. Quality does matter, and you must make efforts to meet it anyhow. Just don't write for the sake of writing and submitting the document, but write to enlighten and inform others through your observations and findings. Make sure that you take small breaks to give freshness to your work.

Do not hurry to submit the dissertation, proofread and revise the paperwork that you have been doing since long. Do not give the initial shock to your professor by committing silly grammatical errors and spelling mistakes. You can also have someone around to do this task for you. Take the expert help of our excellent proofreaders and editors. Our team will help you submit a flawless social work dissertation that you always dreamed of.

You may also like:  What to Do If I Fail My Dissertation? What is the Solution? 

We are confident that the tips stated above will certainly help you out. We are available round the clock, so in case you need any writing assistance from us, then do not wait to give us a call!

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We Can Help with Your Social Work Essay Writing

Social work is about so much more than essays – let us take care of those while you spend your time learning the important things

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Running out of time.

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Clinical social worker: "With the Trump Bible, one must consider dementia"

"a person who isn't cognitively impaired should be doing a cost-benefit analysis", by chauncey devega.

Fascism is a type of political religion. Donald Trump is preaching the religion of fascism.

History has repeatedly shown that fascism and other forms of political religion almost always end in widespread violence and destruction. With his promises and threats of “bedlam” and a “bloodbath,” Trump, the dictator in waiting, has basically guaranteed such an outcome if he “wins” the 2024 election. And that outcome is perhaps just as, if not more, likely if he were to be defeated by President Biden.

"Trump has turned Holy Week into an opportunistic carnivalesque grift."

Over the last few months, Donald Trump has escalated his claims of god-like prophet-messiah status. He has declared that “Jesus Christ” and “God” chose him to win the presidency and defeat President Biden in the 2024 election. He has promoted a video online declaring that “God made Trump” – again elevating himself to near superhuman status as a force of destiny and divine retribution against his and the MAGA movement’s enemies. The corrupt ex-president has taken to comparing himself to Jesus and just announced that he is selling his own Trump-branded version of the Bible with “exclusive” content. Even for those of us who are not Christians, Trump’s behavior is obscene and absurd to the extreme.

On this, Amanda Marcotte told this powerful truth in a recent essay here at Salon :

The teachings of Jesus Christ were always a poor fit for Republicans. They're just way more into decimating Social Security than they are into loaves and fishes. What Trump offers when it comes to Christianity is what he offers his followers in every other aspect: permission to stop pretending to be good people. His gift to them is his shamelessness. Through Trump, his followers can realize their fantasies of being unapologetic bullies. This is the same schtick as MAGA members who claim to be "patriots" while attacking the rule of law and democracy. Trump tells them what they want to hear: You can be a Christian without compassion…. Replacing the real Bible with Trump Bibles is a too-perfect symbol of what has happened to evangelical Christianity. The mistake is in believing Trump's followers are confused or ashamed about their devotion to a  godless creep who laughs at true believers . In Trump's hands, the Bible is not a text for prayer and reflection, it's just a weapon. It's much easier to beat people down with a book if it's closed.    

Ultimately, once God is invoked, and a malign actor such as Donald Trump anoints himself as a type of prophet, messiah, or Chosen One, there can be no compromise, negotiation, or consensus politics within a real democracy. Religious crusades (or specifically with the union of Christofascism, Trumpism and today’s Republican Party and larger “conservative” movement as a form of political religion), almost by definition are winner-take-all all to the extreme. Such extremism is an existential threat to American democracy and the good society.

In an attempt to better understand Trump’s Christofascism and the threat to democracy, I recently spoke to a range of experts.

These interviews have been lightly edited for clarity and length : 

Katherine Stewart  is the author of “ The Power Worshippers: Inside the Dangerous Rise of Religious Nationalism ."

Most of the people who follow Trump don’t expect him to behave like a religious person. They are not going to hold him to account for his heresies or irreligious pronouncements, because they don’t truly believe he is religious anyway, and they don’t care. For them, religion is far less about religion than identity, so they have no interest or concern about whether Trump is blasphemous or not. For a good number of those who lend their support to the Christian nationalist movement, professed faith in the literal word of God is little more than performative. To be sure, some do have familiarity with some parts of the Bible, but their religious identity has become entwined with signaling in-group membership and loyalty to their chosen leaders.

What is curious is how some people still insist on interpreting politicized religion through an individual lens: as men’s and women’s search for meaning or as an effort to grapple with the mysteries of the cosmos. We need to be clear: For leaders of the Christian nationalist movement, along with many followers, the politics comes first, and the religion is tailored to its needs like a cheap suit.

As far as Trump himself is concerned, these statements are just further evidence of his bottomless self-pity and narcissism. It would be nice to think that we live in a world where that would cause people who claim to support religious motives to think again, but for too many Trump supporters that is just not the case.

Add in how Trump is now profiting from the sale of Bibles and it is a masterclass from a grifting insurrectionist demagogue on how to win votes by conflating a fundamentalist religion in which he does not believe with a Constitution he has attempted to undermine. Patriotic bombast in a profit-making package.

Robert P. Jones is the president and founder of Public Religion Research Institute. He is the author of the New York Times bestseller " The Hidden Roots of White Supremacy and the Path to a Shared American Future ," as well as " White Too Long: The Legacy of White Supremacy in American Christianity ."

For the approximately two-thirds of Americans who identify as Christian, this is Holy Week, a solemn time of participation in worship services that evoke self-evaluation and repentance ahead of the holiest day on the Christian calendar, Easter Sunday. In the midst of this sacred week, the presumed Republican candidate for president, Donald Trump, has committed acts that in any other era would have created an outcry among serious Christians across the spectrum.

On Holy Monday, Trump compared himself to Jesus in a Truth Social post. This was not a one-off comparison. They echoed the claims he has made in other settings, such as his speech to white evangelicals at the National Religious Broadcasters annual meeting last month. There, Trump evoked the theological language of substitutionary atonement to describe himself as their savior. Trump claimed, "I’ve been very busy fighting and, you know, taking the, the bullets, taking the arrows. I'm taking 'em for you. And I'm so honored to take 'em. You have no idea. I'm being indicted for you…."

"Trying to hawk a $60 Trump Bible may be an indication of the poor judgment of early dementia exacerbated by narcissism that in the end may boomerang back on him." 

On Holy Tuesday, Trump began hawking a $60 “God Bless the USA Bible," posting this message on X: "Happy Holy Week! Let’s Make America Pray Again. As we lead into Good Friday and Easter, I encourage you to get a copy of the God Bless The USA Bible.” The book binds, within its brown leather cover, the text of the King James Version of the Bible (preferred by white evangelical Protestants) along with the Constitution, the Bill of Rights, the Declaration of Independence, the Pledge of Allegiance, and a handwritten chorus of Lee Greenwood’s song, “God Bless the USA,” which Trump regularly plays at rallies. This new venture — that includes a royalty deal collected through the same company handling his $400 gold sneakers — is a tangible, monetized embodiment of Trump’s white Christian nationalism.

That Trump has turned Holy Week into an opportunistic carnivalesque grift is not surprising given his character and the financial crunch he is facing from his legal troubles, but it should be appalling. Christian theology has a word to describe those who claim the attributes of Jesus for themselves and who treat sacred things with contempt and disrespect. It’s blasphemy. And the failure of Christians, especially white evangelical Christians to whom Trump is pandering, to speak out against such disgrace during the holiest week of the Christian year is a measure of their captivity and complicity in the denigration of both Christianity and our nation.

Paul Djupe is a political scientist at Denison University and the editor of the Religious Engagement in Democratic Politics series at Temple University Press. He is also the co-author of "The Full Armor of God: The Mobilization of Christian Nationalism in American Politics"  and co-editor of the new anthology,  "Trump, White Evangelical Christians, and American Politics."

It’s Christian holy week, so what better time than to keep the persecution narrative fully stoked? In a recent Truth Social post, Trump allowed a supporter to suggest that his legal plight is comparable to Jesus’s suffering on the cross . This has been Trump’s play since running for president in 2015: appealing to Christians who feel out of power with a promise to restore them to their believed rightful place. But Trump’s centrality to this narrative has changed drastically. Early in his presidential bid he was seen as the Christian Right’s bully – their protector in politics. As legal and political pressure mounted, Trump became the story, the proxy for how a fallen world treats Christians. He was called anointed by God and he even toyed with the idea in 2019 that he, himself, was the Chosen One.

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In the last year, with indictments piling up, he has been reinforcing his martyrdom, suggesting that he is “taking the arrows…for you and I’m so honored to take them, you have no idea.” He will continue to draw comparisons of his plight with Jesus’s persecution through to the election. He doesn’t stop there, but paints an apocalyptic scene in which his enemies are coming for Christians (“The radical left is coming after all of us.”) and only he stands in the way of broadscale persecution or even a “bloodbath.” There are so many problems with this language, but the most problematic is that the expectation of persecution serves to justify extreme measures to protect their basic rights and liberties up to and including violence. Such connections are being reinforced all over the Right, such as by Charlie Kirk who recently said, “If this election doesn’t go our way, the next day we’d fight.”

Hal Brown is a clinical social worker and was one of the first members of the Duty to Warn group. He has extensive expertise in working with multiple personality disorder (now called dissociative identity disorder) and police stress.

It has always puzzled objective observers, both mental health professionals and others, how many of Trump's lies, exaggerations, and acts of self-aggrandizement were done with him knowing full well that he was pandering to his cult, and how many he actually believed. If he believed even half of them, he'd be considered delusional. Giving him the benefit of the doubt, let's say all of this was performance art. Now with the Trump Bible, one must consider dementia as a cause since ⅓ of all people with dementia end up experiencing delusions. If you listen to his 3-minute spiel for the Bible where Trump seems to deviate from the teleprompter and ad lib you can see indications he actually believes some of what he is saying. For example, does he really think he has many Bibles in his house? His sales pitch for Trump Bible where he meanders into stream of consciousness suggests he may be delusional.

If Trump has even the slightest notion that he is some kind of Jesus-like deity he has become unmoored from reality. Whether this is due to psychosis, dementia, or a combination of the two can't be determined without a complete neuropsychiatric assessment that would include not only extended interviews with Trump and much more extensive testing than the MOCA test but also Melania who presumably would interact with him in unguarded moments and could be asked for other signs of dementia.

Another aspect of early dementia is an increase in signs of poor judgment. Poor judgment can sometimes precede memory loss. It isn't as extreme as somebody wandering off from a facility in the winter wearing only their pajamas. Somebody who is always garrulous and tends to go off on tangents when speaking may do this more frequently. They often lose their train of thought when speaking. People with early dementia can demonstrate a pattern of inappropriate decisions or actions which will ultimately be self-defeating based on their personality but not realizing that there will be predictable consequences that will hurt them.

Decision-making includes three components: courses of action, uncertain events and consequences. When you consider Trump's decision to market a special Bible just before Easter there are his narcissism and money-making inspired aspirational reason for doing this which has to be contrasted with foreseeable negative ramifications. A person who isn't cognitively impaired should be doing a cost-benefit analysis asking themselves whether the benefit will outweigh the cost. They should be able to weigh how uncertain the consequences of an action are. Trump with his narcissism would find it hard under normal circumstances to accept that there might be a final straw where one of his attempted grifts backfires on him, after all he's gotten away with so much. Trying to hawk a $60 Trump Bible may be an indication of the poor judgment of early dementia exacerbated by narcissism that in the end may boomerang back on him. 

Rick Wilson is a co-founder of The Lincoln Project, a former leading Republican strategist, and author of two books, "Everything Trump Touches Dies" and "Running Against the Devil: A Plot to Save America from Trump - and Democrats from Themselves."

There’s no doubt Trump is a snake oil salesman trying to make a quick buck selling overpriced Bibles to unwitting Christians during the holiest week of the year. But it’s also a clumsy attempt to sell himself as a God-fearing Christian because he’s rightly terrified that his criminal case for paying off a porn star and the E. Carroll lawsuit are making evangelicals rethink their support for him. It's just another example of Trump showing he’s willing to do or say anything to make a buck or grab a vote.

about this topic

  • "Hastening his deterioration": Dr. John Gartner on impact of court trials on "Trump’s fragile brain"
  • Lost in the malignant normality of the Trumpocene
  • "They’ve told me he’s Jesus": Unpacking Trump's empty pseudo-religion

Chauncey DeVega is a senior politics writer for Salon. His essays can also be found at . He also hosts a weekly podcast,  The Chauncey DeVega Show . Chauncey can be followed on  Twitter  and  Facebook .

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V. I. Lenin

The tasks of the working women’s movement in the soviet republic, speech delivered at the fourth moscow city conference of non-party working women, september 23, 1919.

Delivered: 23 September, 1919 First Published: Pravda No. 213, September 25, 1919 ; Published according to the text of the pamphlet, V. I. Lenin, Speech at the Working Women’s Congress, Moscow, 1919, verified with the Pravda text Source: Lenin’s Collected Works , 4th English Edition, Progress Publishers, Moscow, 1965, Volume 30, pages 40-46 Translated: George Hanna Transcription/HTML Markup: David Walters & Robert Cymbala Copyleft: V. I. Lenin Internet Archive ( 2002. Permission is granted to copy and/or distribute this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License

Comrades, it gives me pleasure to greet a conference of working women. I will allow myself to pass over those subjects and questions that, of course, at the moment are the cause of the greatest concern to every working woman and to every politically-conscious individual from among the working people; these are the most urgent questions—that of bread and that of the war situation. I know from the newspaper reports of your meetings that these questions have been dealt with exhaustively by Comrade Trotsky as far as war questions are concerned and by Comrades Yakovleva and Svidersky as far as the bread question is concerned; please, therefore, allow me to pass over those questions.

I should like to say a few words about the general tasks facing the working women’s movement in the Soviet Republic, those that are, in general, connected with the transition to socialism, and those that are of particular urgency at the present time. Comrades, the question of the position of women was raised by Soviet power from the very beginning. It seems to me that any workers’ state in the course of transition to socialism is laced with a double task. The first part of that task is relatively simple and easy. It concerns those old laws that kept women in a position of inequality as compared to men.

Participants in all emancipation movements in Western Europe have long since, not for decades but for centuries, put forward the demand that obsolete laws be annulled and women and men be made equal by law, but none of the democratic European states, none of the most advanced republics have succeeded in putting it into effect, because wherever there is capitalism, wherever there is private property in land and factories, wherever the power of capital is preserved, the men retain their privileges. It was possible to put it into effect in Russia only because the power of the workers has been established here since October 25, 1917. From its very inception Soviet power set out to be the power of the working people, hostile to all forms of exploitation. It set itself the task of doing away with the possibility of the exploitation of the working people by the landowners and capitalists, of doing away with the rule of capital. Soviet power has been trying to make it possible for the working people to organise their lives without private property in land, without privately-owned factories, without that private property that everywhere, throughout the world, even where there is complete political liberty, even in the most democratic republics, keeps the working people in a state of what is actually poverty and wage-slavery, and women in a state of double slavery.

Soviet power, the power of the working people, in the first months of its existence effected a very definite revolution in legislation that concerns women. Nothing whatever is left in the Soviet Republic of those laws that put women in a subordinate position. I am speaking specifically of those laws that took advantage of the weaker position of women and put them in a position of inequality and often, even, in a humiliating position, i.e., the laws on divorce and on children born out of wedlock and on the right of a woman to summon the father of a child for maintenance.

It is particularly in this sphere that bourgeois legislation, even, it must be said, in the most advanced countries, takes advantage of the weaker position of women to humiliate them and give them a status of inequality. It is particularly in this sphere that Soviet power has left nothing whatever of the old, unjust laws that were intolerable for working people. We may now say proudly and without any exaggeration that apart from Soviet Russia there is not a country in the world where women enjoy full equality and where women are not placed in the humiliating position felt particularly in day-to-day family life. This was one of our first and most important tasks.

If you have occasion to come into contact with parties that are hostile to the Bolsheviks, if there should come into your hands newspapers published in Russian in the regions occupied by Koichak or Denikin, or if you happen to talk to people who share the views of those newspapers, you may often hear from them the accusation that Soviet power has violated democracy.

We, the representatives of Soviet power, Bolshevik Communists and supporters of Soviet power are often accused of violating democracy and proof of this is given by citing the fact that Soviet power dispersed the Constituent Assembly. We usually answer this accusation as follows; that democracy and that Constituent Assembly which came into being when private property still existed on earth, when there was no equality between people, when the one who possessed his own capital was the boss and the others worked for him and were his wage-slaves-that was a democracy on which we place no value. Such democracy concealed slavery even in the most advanced countries. We socialists are supporters of democracy only insofar as it eases the position of the working and oppressed people. Throughout the world socialism has set itself the task of combating every kind of exploitation of man by man. That democracy has real value for us winch serves the exploited, the underprivileged. If those who do not work are disfranchised that would be real equality between people. Those who do not work should not eat.

In reply to these accusations we say that the question must be presented in this way—how is democracy implemented in various countries? We see that equality is proclaimed in all democratic republics but in the civil laws and in laws on the rights of women—those that concern their position in the family and divorce—we see inequality and the humiliation of women at every step, and we say that this is a violation of democracy specifically in respect of the oppressed. Soviet power has implemented democracy to a greater degree than any of the other, most advanced countries because it has not left in its laws any trace of the inequality of women. Again I say that no other state and no other legislation has ever done for women a half of what Soviet power did in the first months of its existence.

Laws alone, of course, are not enough, and we are by no means content with mere decrees. In the sphere of legislation, however, we have done everything required of us to put women in a position of equality and we have every right to be proud of it. The position of women in Soviet Russia is now ideal as compared with their position in the most advanced states. We tell ourselves, however, that this is, of course, only the beginning.

Owing to her work in the house, the woman is still in a difficult position. To effect her complete emancipation and make her the equal of the man it is necessary for the national economy to be socialised and for women to participate in common productive labour. Then women will occupy the same position as men.

Here we are not, of course, speaking of making women the equal of men as far as productivity of labour, the quantity of labour, the length of the working day, labour conditions, etc., are concerned; we mean that the woman should not, unlike the man, be oppressed because of her position in the family. You all know that even when women have full rights, they still remain factually downtrodden because all housework is left to them. In most cases housework is the most unproductive, the most barbarous and the most arduous work a woman can do. It is exceptionally petty and does not include anything that would in any way promote the development of the woman.

In pursuance of the socialist ideal we want to struggle for the full implementation of socialism, and here an extensive field of labour opens up before women. We are now making serious preparations to clear the ground for the building of socialism, but the building of socialism will begin only when we have achieved the complete equality of women and when we undertake the new work together with women who have been ’emancipated from that petty, stultifying, unproductive work. This is a job that will take us many, many years.

This work cannot show any rapid results and will not produce a scintillating effect.

We are setting up model institutions, dining-rooms and nurseries, that will emancipate women from housework. And the work of organising all these institutions will fall mainly to women. It has to be admitted that in Russia today there are very few institutions that would help woman out of her state of household slavery. There is an insignificant number of them, and the conditions now obtaining in the Soviet Republic—the war and food situation about which comrades have already given you the details—hinder us in this work. Still, it must be said that these institutions that liberate women from their position as household slaves are springing up wherever it is in any way possible.

We say that the emancipation of the workers must be effected by the workers themselves, and in exactly the same way the emancipation of working women is a matter for the working women themselves. The working women must themselves see to it that such institutions are developed, and this activity will bring about a complete change in their position as compared with what it was under the old, capitalist society.

In order to be active in politics under the old, capitalist regime special training was required, so that women played an insignificant part in politics, even in the most advanced and free capitalist countries. Our task is to make politics available to every working woman. Ever since private property in laud and factories has been abolished and the power of the landowners and capitalists overthrown, the tasks of politics have become simple, clear and comprehensible to the working people as a whole, including working women. In capitalist society the woman’s position is marked by such inequality that the extent of her participation in politics is only an insignificant fraction of that of the man. The power of the working people is necessary for a change to be wrought in this situation, for then the main tasks of politics will consist of matters directly affecting the fate of the working people themselves.

Here, too, the participation of working women is essential —not only of party members and politically-conscious women, but also of the non-party women and those who are least politically conscious. Here Soviet power opens up a wide field of activity to working women.

We have had a difficult time in the struggle against the forces hostile to Soviet Russia that have attacked her. It was difficult for us to fight on the battlefield against the forces who went to war against the power of the working people and in the field of food supplies against the profiteers, because of the too small number of people, working people, who came whole-heartedly to our aid with their own labour. Here, too, there is nothing Soviet power can appreciate as much as the help given by masses of non-party working women. They may know that in the old, bourgeois society, perhaps, a comprehensive training was necessary for participation in politics and that this was not available to women. The political activity of the Soviet Republic is mainly the struggle against the landowners and capitalists, the struggle for the elimination of exploitation; political activity, therefore, is made available to the working woman in the Soviet Republic and it will consist in the working woman using her organisational ability to help the working man.

What we need is not only organisational work on a scale involving millions; we need organisational work on the smallest scale and this makes it possible for women to work as well. Women can work under war conditions when it is a question of helping the army or carrying on agitation in the army. Women should take an active part in all this so that the Red Army sees that it is being looked after, that solicitude is being displayed. Women can also work in the sphere of food distribution, on the improvement of public catering and everywhere opening dining-rooms like those that are so numerous in Petrograd.

It is in these fields that the activities of working women acquire the greatest organisational significance. The participation of working women is also essential in the organisation and running of big experimental farms and should not take place only in isolated cases. This i5 something that cannot be carried out without the participation of a large number of working women. Working women will be very useful in this field in supervising the distribution of food and in making food products more easily obtainable. This work can well be done by non-party working women and its accomplishment will do more than anything else to strengthen socialist society.

We have abolished private property in land and almost completely abolished the private ownership of factories; Soviet power is now trying to ensure that all working people, non-party as well as Party members, women as well as men, should take part in this economic development. The work that Soviet power has begun can only make progress when, instead of a few hundreds, millions and millions of women throughout Russia take part in it. We are sure that the cause of socialist development will then become sound. Then the working people will show that they can live and run their country without the aid of the landowners and capitalists. Then socialist construction will be so soundly based in Russia that no external enemies in other countries and none inside Russia will be any danger to the Soviet Republic.

Collected Works Volume 30 Collected Works Table of Contents Lenin Works Archive


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