Date of Paper


Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

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


Social Work

First Advisor

Colin Hollidge


Social Work


This systematic review looks at the quality of life outcomes employment gives individuals with severe mental illnesses. Fourteen studies conducted between 1991 and 2016 were included for the final review. Studies that examined health and functioning generally found connections between work and improvements in both functioning and symptoms. Studies that investigated interpersonal aspects of quality of life found connections between work and the size of social networks, but also noted the dual nature work played regarding interpersonal relationships. Half of the studies discussed outcomes related to self-views, with some making the connection between work and identity formation and others noting the connection between work and self-esteem. Finally, studies that looked at how work affected participants’ outlooks on life were mixed between whether they found a connection between work and life satisfaction. Limitations of this study and future suggestions for research are also discussed.

Included in

Social Work Commons