Teaching social work at Governors
State University is a special, exciting privilege. As a professor, I have the opportunity to
teach a range of students — from individuals new to social work, to experienced professionals
who are returning to school to continue their education. The cooperative classroom learning
environment allows each student to help focus and add to the discussions in the
class and online. In addition to
teaching, I enjoy the advising relationships I develop with my students as they
plan their education, select their field experience in agencies and focus their
I enjoy teaching in the social work practice
classes (how to engage and work with clients with a variety of problems) and
the human behavior sequence (development throughout the life span). My previous professional experience included
working in community mental health (counselor) and various jobs in the criminal
justice system (with victims, offenders, and prisoners). Prior to coming to GSU in 2006. I worked as an
administrator for Loyola University of Chicago’s School of Social Work where I
I currently have two areas of
research interests. I am interested in
the unprofessional and unethical conduct of professionals and the risk of harm
to their clients. My research results
have informed my teaching; my students appreciate exploring the risks for
complaints and sanctions in the profession. I have been fortunate to receive two national grants from the
Association of Social Work Boards (the national licensing association for
social workers).Secondly, I am
interested in exploring how mental health problems such as depression impact
individuals and families. For example,
one of my published articles looks at the connection between postpartum
depression and child development risk factors.
I am interested in
learning more about the ethical dilemmas and challenges that social workers
face. Information about social workers who have been sanctioned by state
regulatory boards helps to identify ethical dilemmas and challenges so that
professors, social workers and supervisors can better prepare social work
I received two grants
from the American Foundation for Research and Consumer Education in Social Work
Regulation, Inc., a foundation of the Association of Social Work Boards. The most recent award (2014-2016) will
include two research studies on licensing boards. Dr. Carlean Gilbert of Loyola will lead a
qualitative research study of problems and challenges identified by licensing
board members from various state regulatory boards. I will conduct research on the attitudes of
social workers toward their state licensing boards.
The first grant I
received (2009-2011) funded three studies on social workers.
Social Workers Sanctioned by State Regulatory Boards (Link)
This research study
identified the behavior of social workers that has resulted in sanctions from
state regulatory boards from 2000-2009. This builds on an earlier study
published in the October issue of the journal Social Work from the National
Association of Social Work (NASW) Press (Boland-Prom, 2009). Results from
the current study added to our understanding of regulatory boards’ practices
related to protecting the public and identifying challenges in social work practice.
The results are included in a report on the grant and two national
Report of results from
the grant funded research were presented at two national conferences:
- Boland-Prom, K. (2012, April 29) Posting Information Online About
Sanctioned Social Workers: Empowerment, Public Protection, and Professional
Development, Association of Social Work Boards, Annual Meeting, Invited
speaker, Association of Social Work Boards, Spring Education Meeting,
- Boland-Prom, K.
(2012, November) National Study of Social Workers Sanctioned by State
Licensing Boards, Council on Social Work Education. Annual Program Meeting,
Washington, D.C. *
School Social Workers Sanctioned by State Regulatory Boards
This research identified
how state boards of education handle complaints against social workers who are
employed in the kindergarten through high schools (K-12); and, what types of
complaints are made against school based social workers. The results from
this study have been published (Boland-Prom & Alverez) in a peer reviewed
journal Children & Schools from NASW Press.
I approach teaching cognizant that
students have a variety of learning styles. This awareness guides the delivery of lectures and the organization of class discussions, role-plays and other activities. The diversity of student styles and abilities requires that I monitor and be available to facilitate students demonstrating their knowledge in discussions and activities, as well as papers.
The teaching metaphor that I embrace is being a mentor artist to students as we explore social work subjects. Within this metaphor framework, I see each social work class period as a canvas or art medium which can evolve into a complex multi-dimensional work. Depending on the level of student engagement, the actual class experience (the final result) is expanded from my class agenda to a collaborative learning environment with students' questions, cases and personal expertise.
When I have effectively
engaged the students by sparking their imaginations and eliciting their
participation, our class experience has a translucent complexity that reflects
both cooperative creativity and analytical thinking. This description of my teaching philosophy
captures both my analytical style of organizing and presenting curriculum and
my creative approach to teaching in a classroom. It is a privilege to be a GSU professor who
is involved in educating social workers.
the past few years, my service in the community has included a committee of
dedicated school district professionals (superintendent, principals, social
workers and counselors). The committee
methodically conducted research efforts to identify the problems that teachers
and students experienced. The committee
has been able to change policies and procedures, select and implement an
anti-bullying campaign, and improve education and prevention efforts for teen
depression and suicide.
In the social
work profession, I volunteer for the National Association of Social Workers
Press as a reviewer for articles and book proposals. I am interested in consulting with community
organizations through research efforts or service delivery. If I can be of help, please contact me to
discuss your agency’s needs. It may be
that I or my students can help in your efforts.
K., Johnson, J. & Gunaganti, G.S.
(in progress) Sanction patterns of social work licensing boards.
& Alvarez, M.E., (under review) Ethical challenges in school social work: A
Boland-Prom, K., & Alvarez,
M. E., (in press) School social workers
sanctioned by state Departments of Education and Licensing Boards. Children and Schools.
(2013) Sanctioned social workers: Research from regulatory boards and ethics
committees. Offered online by Pearson Allyn & Bacon.
Boland-Prom, K. &
MacMullen, N. (2012) Postpartum depression within a social work paradigm. Journal of Human Behavior in the Social
Environment, 22 (6), 718-732. DOI: 10.1080/10911359.2012.692563
Boland-Prom, K. (2011)
Sanctioned Social Workers: Research Results from Three Studies. Executive
Summary Report for the American Foundation for Research & Consumer
Education in Social Work Regulation.
Boland-Prom, K. (2009)
Results from a national study of state licensing board actions against social
workers. Social Work, 54 (4),351-360.
Bye, L., Boland-Prom, K., Tsybikdorzhieva,
B., Boldonova, I. (2006). Utilizingitechnology to infuse international
content into social work curriculum: A Siberian Correspondent Model. Journal
of Teaching in Social Work. 26,
K. and Anderson,
S. (2005). Teaching ethical decision-making utilizing dual relationship
principles as a case example. Journal
of Social Work Education, 41(3), 495-510.
K. (2004) Control and social support variables during pregnancy and the
development of depressive symptoms during the postpartum period. (Doctoral dissertation, Portland State
Boland‑Prom, K. and Winter, C. (1993).
Recidivism Study: Preliminary Results. Diversion Program Analysis. WA: Clark County
Link to Full CV