Promoting systemic thinking, and therapeutic and relationship based approaches in social work


Promoting systemic thinking, and therapeutic and relationship-based approaches in Social Work

Developing Skills for Critical Practice


Friday 28th June


Online via Zoom


9.30am - 1pm




Dr Stephen Cowden

Bookings will begin 6 weeks prior to the event, please keep this date free in your diary if you would like to attend.

Many practitioners would like to practice more ‘critically’ but feel so busy with the day to day that doing this can feel like another thing on top of everything else. But it doesn’t have to be like this. This workshop starts from the premise that ‘critical practice’ represents a different way of engaging with the people we work with.
The workshop introduces the concepts of ‘Critical Pedagogy’ which come from the work of the Brazilian educationalist Paulo Freire. After introducing the theory of Critical Pedagogy the workshop then applies these to social work practice, thinking particularly about the skills we need to practice more critically.

Stephen Cowden Profile picture

About Stephen Cowden

Dr. Stephen Cowden is Senior Lecturer in Social Work and Research Lead for Social Work at the University of Gloucestershire. He was one of the editors of The Routledge Handbook for Critical Pedagogies in Social Work (2019). His most recent publication is ‘Reconciling a Broken Heritage: Developing Mental Health Social Work in Guyana’ written with Coya Halley in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 2023, 20, 6931.

Want to know more about Critical Pedagogy?

Sophie McKenzie-Brook, who one the student category Clare Winnicott Essay Award in 2022 wrote about the use of Critical Pedagogy in Social Work. Her essay was published in the Journal of Social Work Practice, you can read it here:

Critical pedagogy and open dialogue – their parallels and importance for social work practice – Sophie Mckenzie-Brook – Student Category 2022

Bookings will begin 6 weeks prior to the event, please keep this date free in your diary if you would like to attend.

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