Date of Paper

5-2013

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)

Department

Social Work

First Advisor

Katharine Hill

Abstract

Teen fathers are often left out of public conversation and social work interventions, and research with this population is minimal. The purpose of this project was to explore social workers’ perceptions of teen fathers, both how their perceptions are related to their practice and how they may differ from other social service professionals. Utilizing a mixed-mode questionnaire, 47 social service professionals from multiple work settings were surveyed about their perceptions and interventions with teen fathers. Quantitative data were analyzed using the data analysis software SPSS to produce descriptive and inferential statistics. Qualitative data were analyzed using content analysis to discover common themes in responses. The findings demonstrated that social service professionals believed teen fathers play an important role in their child’s life and barriers exist in accessing services. Social workers and other social service professionals differed in the factors they consider when working with teen fathers, the importance of teen father’s involvement in intervention programs, and what prevents teen fathers from accessing interventions. Findings supported previous research that teen fathers are often neglected from social work interventions. Qualitative responses demonstrate the importance of further research with the teen father population to improve intervention efforts.

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