Motivational Interviewing: A Workbook for Social Workers

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Oxford University Press, Jun 7, 2016 - Social Science - 192 pages
Motivational interviewing is a person-centered, collaborative method for exploring ambivalence and enhancing motivation to change. Compatible with social work values and ethics, it is applicable to the wide range of problems and helping situations with which direct practice social workers are involved. One such by-product of working with vulnerable and oppressed clients -- people to whom social work is committed -- is that social workers are often employed in public agencies with people who have been ordered by the courts to attend services. In order to work successfully with mandated populations, helpers have to consider how they will access those who initially appear unmotivated to change. Motivational interviewing provides the stance and the tools to be able to achieve this effectively, while maintaining human dignity and respect of the individual. And although it can be used as a stand-alone model, motivational interviewing has also been employed as an initial intervention so that people become more motivated to participate in other services; it can be used flexibly on its own or integrated with other, more action-oriented interventions. This workbook, with its infusion of examples and numerous exercises, will help students and beginning practitioners develop the knowledge and skills to work collaboratively with clients and to build their motivation to change problem behaviors.

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1 Introduction and Overview
2 The Stages of Change Model and Motivational Interviewing
3 Reflecting Statements and Empathy
4 Open Questions
5 Responding to Sustain Talk
6 The Affirming Spirit in Action
7 Exploration of Ambivalence
8 The Helping Process and Motivational Interviewing
9 Motivational Interviewing and Depression
10 Intimate Partner Violence and Motivational Interviewing

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About the author (2016)

Jacqueline Corcoran, PhD, MSSW, is a professor at Virginia Commonwealth University School of Social Work, where she has been on faculty since 2000. Before that, she was on faculty at the University of Texas at Arlington School of Social Work. Dr. Corcoran teaches research, direct practice, and mental health, has written 14 textbooks, and also has published fiction and non-fiction in the popular market. Her website is

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