chapter  11
Casework
ByCelia Doyle
Pages 13

One of the most succinct yet accurate definitions of casework comes not from the plethora of textbooks with ‘casework’ in their title but from the Oxford Illustrated Dictionary. It defines casework as ‘social work done by personal study of cases (individuals or families)’. This definition captures some of the essential features of casework: it is an approach used by social workers rather than other helping professionals; it involves ‘study’, the application of theories drawn from a range of social sciences to practice; it is a personal service and one which is offered to individuals or small groups of individuals in their family context.