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National College Credit Recommendation Service

Board of Regents  |  University of the State of New York

Temple University Credential for Strengths-Based Family Workers | Evaluated Learning Experience

Credential for Strengths-Based Family Workers

Temple University Family Development Credential (FDC) Consortium
80 hours of instruction divided into 14 modules which may be covered in 4 -12 months, dependent on the local schedule; in addition, a minimum of 10 hours of supervised competency-based field service component for a total of at least 90 hours.
Various approved facilities in Alabama (Community Action Partnership of North Alabama), Georgia (Sheltering Arms and Georgia Training Institute), and Pennsylvania (Temple University).

January 2013 - May 2021.

Instructional delivery format: 
Traditional classroom model
Learner Outcomes: 

This program, which leads to the awarding of the Credential for Strengths-Based Family Workers (SFW), is a competency-based, integrated learning experience, involving both a classroom and field service component. Many of the following learning objectives apply to both the classroom instruction and the field service component; however, they are listed under separate sections to better illustrate how the skills and knowledge acquired in Part 1 are applied in Part 2. Part 1, Classroom instruction: Identify competencies for strengths-based family work and key elements of various family theories; identify power relationships between help seekers and help giver; identify key elements in critical reflection; describe use of reflection in learning; identify key elements of the Effective Help Giving Cycle, provide a broad definition of culture; identify help seeking traditions and beliefs of different cultures; define cultural competence and cultural humility; explain key communication techniques that help workers communicate effectively with families and others; identify key elements of a framework for problem solving, mediation and conflict resolution; explain the extent to which a culture's norms and values may oppress, marginalizes, alienate, or create or enhance privilege and/or power; identify how culture relates to well-being and status; identify protective factors that promote well-being; describe a support system for protective factors; describe the human physical response to stress; describe cross-cultural communication challenges and models; define key elements of cross cultural relationships; identify the difference between positional power and personal power; describe various questioning techniques to elicit necessary information and identify the elements of powerful questioning; describe how to assist families in transforming their concerns into well-defined needs and goals; identify a framework for securing appropriate initial information, discuss reasons why plans and outcomes are reflective of the frequently changing needs and concerns of families; discuss the information that should be included in action planning with families; describe ways to evaluate program quality with different cultures; describe system encounter issues with different organizations; propose ways to address service challenges for different cultures; describe cultural factors related to disparity and identify patterns of disparity; discuss the importance of key issues related to confidentiality and ethical challenges of sharing information via technology; describe adult learning principles; discuss why building and maintaining effective relationships within a network of interdisciplinary systems is essential in family development work; define key elements of inter-agency collaborations and describe the worker role in agency and community. Part 2, Field Service and Portfolio Development Component: The competency-based portfolio work demonstrated in writing will confirm the worker's knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary for strengths-based work and assure maximum effectiveness. A learner's assessment plan will be completed on three occasions in order to identify competencies for strengths-based family work and allow the learner to identify which areas will be focused on and what strategies will be taken in order to increase competence. A Helping Relationship Inventory will be completed two times with a family to monitor their relationship with that family in order to support and maintain a collaborative relationship. It will further identify key elements of effective help giving cycle; identify power relationships between help seekers and help givers; and identify key elements of critical reflection. Culture will be defined and the worker will identify help seeking traditions and beliefs of different cultures; identify their own culture and define cultural competence and cultural humility. Using effective communication skills such as open ended questions, non-verbal messages, and emphatic responding, the worker will have a conversation about culture with either a co-worker or a family and will generate discussion to find out more about their key cultural influences. The worker will identify their bias through an assessment and complete a plan in order to address their bias. A Self Care Plan will be completed to understand the relationship between individual well being and ability to help others; describe physical response to stress; identify protective factors that promote well being; define toxic stress and identify techniques and activities that promote well being. The worker will practice problem solving in the workplace using effective communication skills; identifying key elements of problem solving; conflict management, negotiation and mediation. Three Family Goal Plans will be completed with the families to help them build skills such as brainstorming; setting priorities; focusing on a specific goal; action planning; assessing progress; identifying next steps; reflecting and celebrating. Many of the assignments include a process for critical reflection and will contain written reflections on a few key classroom activities.


Temple University has established a competency-based training program designed to foster the knowledge and skills that workers who interface with individuals and families need to assure maximum effectiveness in the delivery of helping services. Under the Temple Family Development program, the curriculum for Strengths-based Family Workers builds on several other training programs and academic curriculums that have been used over the past decade. The course content builds on the following 6 core competencies for an effective Strengths-based family worker: demonstrates professionalism and commitment to ethical practice; recognizes strength in diversity and difference, demonstrating sensitivity in practice;understands and utilizes the power of clear, non-judgmental communication; demonstrates self-care and lifelong learning; applies strengths-based principles to practice with families; and applies strengths-based principles to agency and community services. The Temple program is unique in its focus on the development and documentation of knowledge and skills needed for working with families. Workers who complete the program are better able to facilitate a family's ability to set and reach their own goals. Workers learn skills related to communication, problem-solving, action planning, critical thinking and evaluating performance and then share these skills with those who they are helping while supporting the dev elopement of skills in the help-seekers. The SFW training model incorporates a variety of evidenced-based training methodologies for the adult learner, that include: current supplemental readings, lectures, accelerated learning environment, group discussions, role plays and simulations, just-in-time training, activities in learning communities and portfolio development to include written exercises, guided design, and mentorship of a trained learning coach. Additionally, the training model uses a combination of classroom, on-line, and field experiences following a framework from Dunst, introduce, illustrate, practice, evaluate, reflect, mastery, and identification of next steps in the learning process. Major topics include: Strengths-based Family Development and the Help Giving Cycle, broad definition of culture, communication skills, impact of bias, importance of self-care, culture and communication, strengths-based assessment and measuring progress, developing plans with families, community engagement, cross cultural awareness, lifelong learning, family community and agency systems, and supporting and strengthening families through transitions and endings. NOTE: The classroom component concludes with a written examination. The field service component concludes with the student's submission of a portfolio of competency-based activities and exercises to be used in assessing the student's grasp of the skills and competencies required to receive the credential.

Credit recommendation: 

Part 1 only: In the lower division baccalaureate/associate degree category, 3 semester hours (didactic) in Child and Family Development, Human Services, Human Sciences, Social Sciences, Social Work, or related disciplines (10/12) (10/13) (11/14 review). Part 1 and 2: In the lower division baccalaureate/associate degree category, 7 semester hours (3 didactic and 4 field service) in Child and Family Development, Human Services, Human Sciences, Social Sciences, Social Work, or related disciplines (10/12) (10/13) (11/14 review). NOTE: The Credential for Strengths-Based Family Workers (formerly FDC) is awarded only to those who complete Parts 1 and 2.