Assignment Instructions

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy

Humanistic Theory

Psychodynamic Theory

For this assignment, write a paper that applies a social work theory and evidence-based interventions associated with your practice experience during the role plays.

Describe a specific theory and an intervention used for each of the following:

  • An individual meeting.
  • A family session.
  • A clinical group.

When developing your paper, use information from the course resources and from the synchronous sessions in which you participated. State what interventions you used and why, which theory each intervention is associated with, and what research supports this intervention.



Social workers use a variety of theories and interventions to guide their practice with individuals, families, and groups. Three common theories used in social work practice are Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT), Humanistic Theory, and Psychodynamic Theory. This paper will describe a specific theory and an evidence-based intervention used for each of the following: an individual meeting, a family session, and a clinical group.

Cognitive Behavioral Therapy:

CBT is a type of psychotherapy that focuses on changing negative thoughts and behaviors to improve mental health. One intervention associated with CBT is thought restructuring, which involves identifying negative or unhelpful thoughts and replacing them with more positive and realistic ones. This intervention is commonly used in individual meetings with clients who struggle with anxiety or depression.

For example, during a role play session with a client who had generalized anxiety disorder, I used thought restructuring to help the client challenge their negative thoughts. The client had been experiencing intense worry and fear related to their job performance. We worked together to identify their negative thoughts, such as “I’m not good enough” and “I’ll never succeed.” We then explored evidence that contradicted these thoughts, such as past successes and positive feedback from colleagues. The client was able to reframe their thoughts to be more positive and realistic, which led to a decrease in anxiety symptoms.

Research has shown that CBT interventions, including thought restructuring, are effective in treating a range of mental health disorders, including anxiety and depression (Hofmann et al., 2012).

Humanistic Theory:

Humanistic theory emphasizes the importance of individual growth and self-actualization. An intervention associated with this theory is active listening, which involves giving full attention to the client and reflecting back what they have said to show empathy and understanding. This intervention is often used in family sessions to promote communication and understanding between family members.

During a role play session with a family, I used active listening to help each member feel heard and understood. The family was experiencing conflict related to parenting styles, and communication had broken down. As each member shared their perspective, I listened carefully and reflected back what I heard to ensure that everyone felt heard and validated. This intervention helped the family members to see each other’s point of view and work towards a resolution.

Research has shown that active listening can be effective in improving communication and reducing conflict in families (Reeves, 2019).

Psychodynamic Theory:

Psychodynamic theory emphasizes the role of the unconscious mind and past experiences in shaping behavior. An intervention associated with this theory is free association, which involves encouraging the client to share their thoughts and feelings without censorship or judgment. This intervention is often used in clinical groups to promote self-awareness and insight.

During a role play session with a clinical group, I used free association to help the members explore their unconscious thoughts and feelings. The group was focused on issues related to trauma and attachment, and many members had difficulty expressing their emotions. I encouraged each member to share their thoughts and feelings without censoring themselves, which led to a deeper understanding of their experiences and emotions.

Research has shown that psychodynamic interventions, including free association, can be effective in promoting insight and improving mental health outcomes (Shedler, 2010).


In conclusion, social workers use a variety of theories and interventions to guide their practice with individuals, families, and groups. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, Humanistic Theory, and Psychodynamic Theory are three common theories used in social work practice. The interventions associated with each theory can be effective in promoting mental health and improving outcomes for clients. It is important for social workers to use evidence-based interventions that are grounded in theory to ensure the best possible outcomes for clients.


Hofmann, S. G., Asnaani, A., Vonk, I. J. J.,

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