'n Verkenning van assesseringspraktyke van maatskaplike werkers in die bepaling van binding tussen die middelkinderjare-kind en sy versorgers
Assessing the attachment between a child and caregiver is an important task within the social worker's professional domain. This is mostly restricted due to a lack of training and expertise with regard to methods and techniques used in assessing attachment. The identified problem led to the implementation of a descriptive study aimed at exploring effectiveness of scales for the assessment of attachment between the child in the middle childhood years and his/her caregiver. The goal was achieved by studying and exploring available practices derived from an extensive literature review and empirical study. Seven social workers in Bloemfontein participated in the study. Target-sampling was undertaken to ensure that participants represented different areas in the work-field that employ the assessment of attachment. Social workers in South Africa show preference to qualitative assessment procedures, including an assessment of the child, an assessment of the caregiver, observation and a collateral investigation. Although such an approach is generally consistent with literature, the present study highlighted an additional need for the standardization of assessment scales for attachment in middle childhood to be utilized in conjunction with qualitative methods of assessment. The literature review confirmed the availability of a range of reliable scales, though not validated thoroughly, but thus far unexplored by social workers in South Africa. A qualitative approach within the Developmental and Utilization Model enabled the researcher to conduct an in-depth analysis of the existing problem. Information was gathered with regard to relevant aspects of attachment in middle childhood in a successful attempt to formulate guidelines for the development of an effective model for the assessment of attachment between the child in middle childhood years and his caregiver.
- Humanities