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Direttore Responsabile: Giulia Golo

Teaching Social Advocacy in the Digital Era: an Experimental Project

TitleTeaching Social Advocacy in the Digital Era: an Experimental Project
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2022
AuthorsSanfelici M, Bilotti A
Secondary TitleItalian Journal of Sociology of Education
Date Published02/2022
PublisherPadova University Press
Place PublishedPadova, IT
ISSN Number2035-4983
KeywordsDigital advocacy, Digital social work, Macro practice social work, Social advocacy, social work education

This article presents the theoretical framework and the evaluation process of an educational project, designed to encourage and train social work students to use digital media for macro practice interventions. In our Digital Advocacy Laboratory we involved students in a project-work that asked them to be leaders of an advocacy campaign to promote social rights of individuals or communities. The aim was twofold: on the one hand, fostering awareness and critical reflections on social issues that require collective responsibility; on the other hand, to share and increase competencies in the use of digital technologies to promote social justice. A wider theoretical framework oriented the design of the project, through an hybridization of concepts from the ecological-system theory, the strengths perspective and an anti-oppressive approach. Moreover, to guide the educational program, we found useful to combine two models: the Hobbs’s model on digital and media literacy competencies and the Bliss’ social work advocacy practice model, with concepts drawn from the social work literature. The project’s strengths and limitations that emerged from the evaluation process will be discussed, as well as the main lessons learned in designing and carrying out digital advocacy campaigns in social work.