Observant on Learning? Finding a Screening Tool to Support Social Workers’ Monitoring of Learning

Publikation: Bidrag til tidsskriftTidsskriftsartikelForskningpeer review


The disadvantaged educational positions of children placed in out-of-home care call for action in Denmark as elsewhere in the Western world. Currently, social workers have the obligation to monitor children’s educational needs when placed in out-of-home care. In the Nordic countries, however, social workers do not have a strong tradition of routine follow up of academic performance, nor are they trained in methods of assessing educational performance. To assist social workers in fulfilling their obligation, we searched for a relevant assessment tool. Based on seven criteria for its potential usage in social work with children in placements, we selected the questionnaire named Five-to-Fifteen (FTF), which offers a learning skills scale. An investigative literature review of the FTF questionnaire and its use in other studies was conducted, and the strengths and pitfalls of the FTF questionnaire were evaluated. Of 75 identified articles concerning the questionnaire, 12 describe the use of the learning skills scale in more detail. We identified no articles describing the specific use of FTF in the context of social work, but one intervention study was identified which focused on children placed in out-of-home care using FTF as an outcome measure. Based on earlier research we cannot deduce if the learning skills scale has the properties to make it relevant for use in social work with children in out-of-home care. However, some basic characteristics of the questionnaire make it worthwhile testing for its feasibility and acceptability in social work practice.

TidsskriftNordic Social Work Research
StatusAccepteret/In press - 2023


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