Title page for ETD etd-05152007-134241

Document Type Master's Dissertation
Author Mboniswa, Motlogelwa Bertha
URN etd-05152007-134241
Document Title Perspectives of social workers regarding supervision in the department of Social Development, Johannesburg
Degree MSD (Management)
Department Social Work
Advisor Name Title
Ms P N E Masango Committee Chair
  • perspectives
  • methods
  • process
  • social worker
  • supervision
  • supervisee
  • supervisors
  • functions
  • contracting
  • development
Date 2006-02-02
Availability unrestricted
Supervision is the process in which the supervisor helps supervisees to use their skills and knowledge to deliver effective services to the clients, thus achieving organisational objectives. For the organisation to render effective and efficient services to their clientele, supervision is necessary to all employees to ensure that they receive the relevant education and support for effective job performance.

This study was conducted to explore the perspectives of social workers regarding supervision in the Department of Social Development in Johannesburg. The study was conducted amongst social workers working for the Department of Social Development in Johannesburg. The researcherís motivation for choice of study emanates from the observation and experience she had regarding supervision during her deployment as a Social worker in the Limpopo Department of Health and Welfare, and during her deployment in the Department of Social Development in Johannesburg. The researcher never received formal supervision, and this resulted in development of interest by the researcher in determining the viewpoints of other social workers regarding supervision within the Department.

In undertaking this research, a quantitative approach was utilised to understand the social workerís perspectives, with the intention of making practical recommendations to the Department of Social Development on how to offer quality supervision. In this context, an applied research method was used as the findings will directly benefit the Department in improving service delivery by social workers by offering them effective supervision. A quantitative-descriptive design was used whereby a questionnaire was used to collect data from the respondents. No sampling was done for this study as all the social workers were made part of the study because of the small population. Relevant ethical procedures were taken into account such as ensuring that the respondents complete a written consent form, Confidentiality and anonymity were guaranteed, and no harm was posed to respondents whether emotionally or physically. Literature review regarding the study of supervision focusing on the functions, methods, roles, phases and model of supervision was done. The researcher consulted various sources to obtain different viewpoints about social work supervision.

The study was conducted by distributing 90 questionnaires to the supervisors to give to social workers and only 45 respondents participated in the study. Returned questionnaires were analysed by means of a computer. Data was presented by means of tables, bar chart, graphs, and pie chart. The data was interpreted using the researcherís viewpoints and the views from the literature.

The research findings indicated that social workers regard supervision as necessary and important because they will receive guidance and support in performing their duties. Though the study confirmed that supervision within the Department of Social Development was not formalized, most social workers felt that the supervision they received was effective. This could be attributed to lack of knowledge by social workers on what supervision entails or it could be that the social workers are comfortable with the structure of supervision as it is currently in the Department.

It was also revealed by this study that the highest qualification of social workers was a four year B.A. (SW) degree. None of the social workers furthered their studies in MA Supervision. It was found that there was lack of knowledge on supervision process by the supervisee and supervisors. With this lack of knowledge on supervision, it is possible that the social workerís expectations of the supervisors have diminished, thus impacting on their views about supervision.

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