Neurobiology For Clinical Social Work, Second Edition

Theory and Practice

Norton Series on Interpersonal Neurobiology


Janet R. Shapiro (Author, Bryn Mawr College), Jeffrey S. Applegate (Author, Bryn Mawr College)

Overview | Contents

Demystifying neurobiology and presenting it anew for the social-work audience.

The art and science of relationship are at the core of clinical social work. Research in neurobiology adds a new layer to our understanding of the protective benefits of relationship and specifically, to our understanding of the neurobiology of attachment and early brain development. 

This second edition of Neurobiology for Clinical Social Work explores the application of recent research in neuroscience to prevention and intervention in multiple systems, settings, and areas such as the neurobiology of stress and the stress response system, the impact of early adversity and toxic stress on brain development, early childhood and adolescent brain development, and the application of this science to prevention and intervention in areas such as child welfare and juvenile justice. 

Social workers collaborate with individuals, families, communities, and groups that experience adversity, and at times, traumatic stressors. Research in neuroscience adds to our models of risk and resilience; informing our understanding of the processes by which adversity and trauma impact multiple indicators of wellbeing across time. Social workers can use this knowledge to inform their work and to support the neuroprotective benefit of relationship in the lives of individuals, families, and communities. This text provides essential information for cutting-edge social work practice.

Book Details

  • Hardcover
  • August 2018
  • ISBN 978-0-393-71164-6
  • 6.4 × 9.6 in / 384 pages
  • Sales Territory: Worldwide

Endorsements & Reviews

“Translating complex researching to useful practice, Neurobiology for Clinical Social Work offers a foundational understanding of how attachment, memory, trauma, and relationships can influence client physiology, affect, and functioning, and offers clinicians powerful strategies to help clients shift from neuroadversity to neuroprotection.” — Psych Central

“In this book, Shapiro and Applegate provide social workers with a useful foundation in neuroscience for engaging in more sensitive, informed, and effective clinical practice. Understanding how early trauma and non-nurturing relationships influence our clients' physiology can only enhance clinical practice, irrespective of the clinical models employed or the treatment arena. The case studies are especially useful for social work educators and bring to life the science they so clearly discuss.” — Terri Combs-Orme, PhD, Urban Child Institute Endowed Professor, College of Social Work, University of Tennessee

“A must-have resource for clinical social workers and educators. This information-packed volume succinctly presents the latest research and clinical applications of neurobiology.With an emphasis on attachment, memory, stress, and childhood adversity, the authors highlight advances that are particularly relevant to vulnerable populations. The book also features well-chosen case examples that illustrate concepts introduced in the text. Neurobiology for Clinical Social Work, Second Edition accomplishes the almost impossible task of translating complex research into scholarship that is understandable to practitioners at all levels.” — Judith Siegel, PhD, LCSW, Editor-in-Chief Journal of Family Social Work

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