Understanding social justice in social work: A content analysis of course syllabi

Philip Young P Hong, David Hodge

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

26 Scopus citations


In spite of the importance of social justice to the profession of social work, little research exists on the topic, contributing to what some have called a "conceptual muddle." To help clarify the profession's understanding of social justice, this study analyzed a representative sample of social justice syllabi (N= 31). To analyze the textual data, keyword, cluster, and linking analyses were preformed. The findings suggest that (a) some groups and issues are highlighted at the expense of others and (b) a four-dimensional conceptualization of social justice may be embedded in course syllabi, implicitly informing professional discourse. The results are discussed in light of recent professional controversies related to social justice.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)212-219
Number of pages8
JournalFamilies in Society
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Sciences (miscellaneous)


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