"Social work practice training: International expreriences and Vietnam reality"

Monday - 24/12/2018 23:05
On December 21st, 2018, USSH and the Department of Social Assistance (Vietnam's Ministry of Labor-Invalids-Social affairs - MOLISA) co-held the international Conference "Social work practice training: International experiences and Vietnam reality".

Participating in the conference were Mr. Duong Van Ba (Department of Student Affairs, Ministry of Education and Training), Dr. Nguyen Van Hoi (Department of Social Assistance, MOLISA); Mr. Étienne Rolland-Piègue (Chargé d'affaires for Cooperation and Cultural activities, Embassy of France in Vietnam); Prof. Dr Tan Ngoh Tiong (Singapore National University of Social Sciences), Dr. Culas Christian (French National Center for Scientific Research); Prof. Dr Pham Quang Minh (USSH's Rector) and Assoc.Prof.Dr Bui Thanh Nam (Dean of Office for Academic Affairs). 

In 2010, the Vietnamese Prime Minister approved the Program of Developing Social Work (SW) in the period 2011-2020 aimed at professionalizing SW activities. Tasked with the management of that Program, the Department of Social Assistance (MOLISA) issued directives and instructions for SW training in general and practice training in particular to universities in Vietnam, including USSH, VNU Hanoi.

There have been many conferences and models dealing with this issue, but the results still show inefficiency in SW practice training at many universities, institutes and centers nationwide. This negatively affects the quality of students as well as SW human resources in the future.

In that context, the international Conference "Social work practice training: International expreriences and Vietnam reality" was held to discuss such issues as the practice training policies in Vietnam, the reality of training practical SW in Vietnam today, and the models and experiences of training practical SW in distinguished countries in the world. It will then suggest solutions for improving the efficiency and developing a network of institutions training practical SW in the whole Vietnam.

On behalf of the Department of Social Assistance, Dr. Nguyen Van Hoi confirmed the prominent development of SW since March 25th, 2010 when the Vietnamese Prime Minister issued Decision no 32 on developing this discipline. The Government also released Decree 103 on standardizing the system of SW service providers. Thanks to that, the current number of SW practitioners is estimated to be 200,000, among whom 30-40% are professionally qualified. There have been 80 institutions offering SW programs; the admission rate for this major has reached millions. In addition, in January 2019, Vietnam's MOLISA will submit the Program on SW Law to the Government and the National Assembly, which will legalize SW aspects in education, heathcare, security and national defense.    

Dr. Nguyen Van Hoi speaks at the conference

However, according to Dr. Nguyen Van Hoi, SW practice is currently unable to catch up with the fast development of the mechanisms and policies. The clarification and coordination among institutions that train theoretical and practical SW is not adequate. Meanwhile, in the curricula offered by universities in the US, Australia and the UK for example, practice always accounts for 50% of the training output. Thus, this conference was the first step for the stakeholders to discuss and provide input for creating a training progress that can adjust and improve SW's quality in the coming time. 

On behalf of USSH, Prof.Dr Pham Quang Minh emphasized the importance of SW to social sciences and humanities. In 10 years, USSH has been one of the leading institutions in training SW. On the other hand, the Rector recognized that the University's biggest shortcoming is its excessive focus on theoretical and overall aspects, leaving much to be desired in the practical areas.

Prof.Dr Pham Quang Minh speaks the conference

Thus, the conference was a chance for USSH to find solutions to harmoniously combining SW theoretical knowledge and practical skills. The Rector also hoped another bigger conference would be held at the national level, so the stakeholders can discuss and agree on the details of SW curricula. These events would also help connect businesses, local authorities with training institutions in a network that provides practical skills for students.

The participants take a ceremonial picture

After the opening session, the participants listened to 8 papers: 

  • "Some overall features of training SW human resources today and suggestions" by Mr. Duong Van Ba (Department of Student Affairs, Ministry of Education and Training)

  • "SW practice training in Vietnam today" by Assoc.Prof.Dr Nguyen Thi Kim Hoa (Faculty of Sociology, USSH)

  • "Supervision at the practical and internship institutions of SW students" by Assoc.Prof.Dr Nguyen Hoi Loan (Faculty of Sociology, USSH)

  • "Future of Social work: Asian Perspectives" by Prof.Dr. Tan Ngoh Tiong (Singapore National University of Social Sciences)

  • "SW practice training: Reality, challenges and lessons from international experiences" by Dr. Nguyen Thi Thai Lan (USSH) and MA. Nguyen Thi Thanh Huong (University of Labor and Social Affairs)

  • "The degree of contribution by social sciences to community development projects in Vietnam" by Dr. Culas Christian (French National Center for Scientific Research)

  • "SW practical expriences at the National Children's Hospital" by MA.Dr Duong Minh Thu (National Children's Hospital)

  • "The theory of balance between human, society and living environment through the concept of "health" by the World Health Organization - The contributions of several social sciences to SW practice training" by Assoc.Prof.Dr Trinh Van Tung, BA Nguyen Thi Thu Hoai (Faculty of Sociology, USSH), Dr Bui Van Tuan (Institute of Vietnamese studies and Development Science, VNU Hanoi)

Author: Tran Minh

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