“You never know who’s watching”: how technology is shaping practice for social service professionals

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dc.contributor.author Clary, Pamela Carlson
dc.date.accessioned 2014-11-19T15:10:28Z
dc.date.available 2014-11-19T15:10:28Z
dc.date.issued 2014-11-19
dc.identifier.uri http://hdl.handle.net/2097/18687
dc.description.abstract The purpose of this qualitative study was to examine the phenomenon of social networking sites (SNSs) and its impact on practicing human service professionals. In this exploratory study, 33 interviews, comprised of family life educators and social workers, were conducted in order to gain the perspective of how SNSs were being used in practice. A phenomenological approach was used to get at the lived experiences of these professionals. In addition, a Johari Window lens provided a way to understand the level of transparency professionals had when interacting with the digital culture. Themes found described how SNSs were being utilized in practice. These centered on benefits to the agency, clientele, and to the professional. The changing technological climate was shown to be impacting the delivery of services, yet professionals were underutilizing SNSs in practice. Regardless if the professional was on or offline, being recognized as a professional was extremely important. As a result, professionals were cognizant of potential consequences of using SNSs for professional and personal use. This awareness not only led professionals to want to safeguard their privacy, but also provided an opportunity for these professionals to develop guidelines for ethical digital behavior. Implications for research include exploring how a person’s digital status should be defined, if at all, how do privacy and ‘connecting’ influence each other, and what is the impact of viewing others’ posts on the ego strength of the person. The biggest implication for practice was the need for specific policies designed around professional digital behavior. In the absence of specific guidelines, professionals established their own set of rules to guide their practice. However, as more agencies and professions begin to see the need for and develop policies for SNS use, professionals will need to assimilate these new guidelines into their practice. en_US
dc.language.iso en_US en_US
dc.publisher Kansas State University en
dc.subject Social networking sites en_US
dc.subject Digital status en_US
dc.subject Human service professionals en_US
dc.subject Netiquette en_US
dc.subject Digital transparency and self awareness en_US
dc.subject Johari Window en_US
dc.title “You never know who’s watching”: how technology is shaping practice for social service professionals en_US
dc.type Dissertation en_US
dc.description.degree Doctor of Philosophy en_US
dc.description.level Doctoral en_US
dc.description.department Department of Family Studies and Human Services en_US
dc.description.advisor Melinda S. Markham and Karen S. Myers-Bowman en_US
dc.subject.umi Education, Technology (0710) en_US
dc.subject.umi Individual & Family Studies (0628) en_US
dc.subject.umi Social Work (0452) en_US
dc.date.published 2014 en_US
dc.date.graduationmonth December en_US

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