Group work is our passion.

The Association for Specialists in Group Work—a division of the American Counseling Association—exists so that members and other helping professionals are empowered with the knowledge, skills, and resources necessary to practice effective, socially just, and ethical group work in a diverse and global society. We value the creation of community; service to our members, their clients, and the profession; and group leadership as a process to facilitate the growth and development of individuals and groups.

Fulfilling our mission will result in the following OUTCOMES benefiting ASGW members and the profession of group work:

  1. Members experience a vibrant, caring, and diverse community.
  2. Research relevant to group work is systematically supported and disseminated.
  3. ASGW professional standards exist, continue to evolve, and guide group work.
  4. Helping professionals practice evidence-based and innovative group work models.
  5. Group work professionals benefit from opportunities and resources for training, practice, and professional growth.
  6. The principles of multiculturalism, social justice, and global perspectives permeate all group work.

Take sometime to get to know us, explore our resources, and then join our group.

 

ASGW Professional Standards for Training Group Workers

The purpose of the Professional Standards for the Training of Group Workers is to provide guidance to counselor training programs in the construction of their curricula for graduate programs in counseling (e.g., masters, specialist, and doctoral degrees and other forms of advanced graduate study). Specifically, core standards express the Association’s view on the minimum training in group work all programs in counseling should provide for all graduates of their entry level, master’s degree programs in counseling, and specialization standards provide a framework for documenting the training philosophy, objectives, curriculum, and outcomes for each declared specialization program.


ASGW Best Practices Guidelines

These Best Practice Guidelines are intended to clarify the application of the ACA Code of Ethics to the field of group work by defining Group Workers’ responsibility and scope of practice involving those activities, strategies and interventions that are consistent and current with effective and appropriate professional ethical and community standards. These Best Practice Guidelines address Group Workers’ responsibilities in planning, performing and processing groups.


Multicultural and Social Justice Competence Principles for Group Workers

ASGW has endorsed this document with the recognition that issues of multiculturalism and social justice affect group process and dynamics, group and individual outcomes, facilitation, training, and research. Oppressive systems (e.g., racism, classism, sexism, heterosexism, ableism, sizeism, nationalism, adultism, ageism) affect everyone in substantial and different ways. As individual members of this organization, it is our personal responsibility to address these issues through developing multicultural awareness, knowledge, and skills, and social justice advocacy skills. We are responsible for increasing our awareness of our biases, values, and beliefs, and how they impact the groups we form, facilitate, participate in, and evaluate. Finally, we must increase our ability to facilitate groups that are diverse on many dimensions, leading with confidence, competence, and integrity as we assist group members informing and maintaining relationships that emphasize respect.

Special Webinar Opportunity for ACA/ASGW Members

The State of the African American Community in Contemporary Society and Our Role as Counselors

International Association of Addictions and Offender Counselors (IAAOC) is sponsoring a webinar and has decided to make it open to all ACA members as a way to promote the courageous conversations needed to promote change. Please find registration information below for a special webinar being held on 9/21/2016.

Topic: The State of the African American Community in Contemporary Society and Our Role as Counselors
Host: Jennifer McClendon LPC, LCADC, NCC, ACS
Date and Time: Wednesday, September 21, 2016 1:00 pm (Eastern Daylight Time)
Registration password: PQRS7

This webinar is being facilitated by Don P. Trahan, PhD Chair of the ACA Human Rights Committee, Iman En-Nabut, 2016-2017 President-Elect Louisiana Counseling Association, and Onaje Salim, EdD Public Health Advisor with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), Center for Substance Treatment (CSAT). 

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To register for the online event
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1. Go to iaaoc.webex.com/iaaoc/onstage/...
2. Click "Register".
3. On the registration form, enter your information and then click "Submit".

Once the host approves your registration, you will receive a confirmation email message with instructions on how to join the event.


Defining Moments in Group Work

Burt Bertram, EdD, LMHC, LMFT shares his experiences on how momentary shifts in group process can impact members and the flow of a group. 

 


The Journal for Specialists in Group Work (JSGW)

As the official publication of the Association for Specialists in Group Work, The Journal for Specialists in Group Work (JSGW) is an indispensable resource for both practitioners and educators working with groups in clinical, organizational, educational and community settings. Members in ASGW enjoy print copies of current issue mailed directly to them and full access to archived issues. Click here for more information.

If you have questions for the JSGW editor or ideas for a special issue, please click here. 


 ASGW Awards

Awards Nomination Deadline:  January 17, 2017
For 2017, these awards will be presented at the American Counseling Association Conference in San Francisco, CA, March 16-19, 2017.

Group Work Practice Award

The ASGW Awards Committee is seeking nominations for the Group Work Practice Award. The purpose of this award is to recognize an outstanding practitioner in group work. Recognition may be for any area of group work covered by the ASGW Professional Standards and nominees must be members of ASGW.

A nomination letter and two supporting letters should address the following points:
Scope of practice of nominee to include:

  • Type of group work
  • Client population served
  • Practice setting
  • Innovations in group work practice by the nominee.
  • How nominee has disseminated group work skills through workshops, conference presentations, supervision, or training.
  • Evidence of nominee's significant contribution to group work practice.

All submissions must be sent via email (with attachments) to:  Ana Puig; anapuig@coe.ufl.edu.

Applications (nomination letter and two supporting letters) must be received by January 17, 2017. The award recipient will be announced during the ACA Conference in March 2017.

 

Eminent Career Award and Professional Advancement Awards

The ASGW Awards Committee is seeking nominations for the Eminent Career Award and for the Professional Advancement Award. Nominations in either category should address the nominee's outstanding activities and contributions to the field of group work. Additional letters speaking to the nomination would be welcome. Letters should identify which award is being sought.

Eminent Career Award:This highest award is intended to recognize major contributions made to the field of group work by an ASGW/ACA member. Credentials and letters of recommendation for the nominee should convey the national and/or international influence the individual has had on group work over a period of time.

Professional Advancement Award:This award is made to recognize the outstanding activities of an individual who has helped advance the field of group work through any one of the following: research, development of a new technique or theory, public relations, legislative activities, or group work practice.

All submissions must be sent via email (with attachments) to:  Ana Puig; anapuig@coe.ufl.edu.

Applications (nomination letter and two supporting letters) must be received by January 17, 2017. The award recipient will be announced during the ACA Conference in March 2017.


 ASGW Scholarships

Scholarship Nomination Deadline:  January 17, 2017
For 2017, these scholarships will be presented at the American Counseling Association Conference in San Francisco, CA, March 16-19, 2017.

PEG CARROLL SCHOLARSHIP

The ASGW Awards Committee invites applicants for the $2,000 scholarship given annually to honor Marguerite “Peg” Carroll, former ASGW President and pioneer in group work. The purpose of the award is to support the study of group work and further the understanding of group dynamics. Any student interested in the field of group work is eligible for consideration by the ASGW Awards Committee.

Applicants are requested to respond to the following questions:

1.   There are many types of group experiences such as: therapeutic and/or counseling, decision making, task oriented, psychoanalysis, quality circles, classroom meetings, etc. What area interests you the most and why?

2.   Where would you obtain training in your area of interest? Be specific in respect to trainers, institutions, workshop sponsors, etc. In addition, describe your intended degree program, if it applies.

3.   In what setting(s) and with what population do you hope to use your expertise?

4.   How do you plan to assess if you and your groups are making progress? Have you had any experience with these evaluation tools? Explain fully.

5.   List the types of groups in which you have participated. Describe their duration and the positive and negative aspects of each experience and your role (participant, leader, intern, etc.).

6.   Describe your participation in professional organizations related to group work.

 The application should have a cover sheet with name, address, home and work phone numbers, e-mail address, and the names and contact information of those writing letters of recommendation.

Letters of recommendation should be solicited from THREE professionals in the field who are familiar with the applicant’s work. These letters may be from supervisors, mentors, major professors, or other individuals who are knowledgeable about the applicant’s work with groups. These letters should be forwarded directly from the recommendation source to the address listed below and must be received by January 17, 2017. Recommendation letters should address topics such as group counseling skills of the applicant, evidence of ethical behavior, and evidence of professional commitment and potential.

All submissions must be sent via email (with attachments) to:  Angela D. Coker at cokera@umsl.edu.

Applications (nomination letter and two supporting letters) must be received by January 17, 2017. The award recipient will be announced during the ACA Conference in March 2017.

 

BARBARA GAZDA SCHOLARSHIP

Two $200 scholarships are available to support students and/or new professionals to attend the Association for Specialist in Group Work (ASGW) National Conference in early 2018.

Applicants must submit a 300-500 word written statement that:

(1)    Confirms ASGW membership;

(2)    Identifies the university and degree program in which the applicant is currently enrolled or from which the applicant recently graduated;

(3)    Includes a statement of the applicant's interest and experience in group work, including ways in which the applicant is likely to benefit professionally from attending the conference.

Applicants should also provide the following information: name, mailing address, e-mail address, and contact number(s).

All submissions must be sent via email (with attachments) to:  Angela D. Coker at cokera@umsl.edu.

Applications (nomination letter and two supporting letters) must be received by October 16, 2017. The award recipient will be announced during the ACA Conference in March 2017.

 


Looking for some inspiration?

Just look in the mirror! You can also click the buttons below to read past issues of the Group Worker that profile past award recipients.

Create Connections at the 2017 ACA National Conference

San Francisco, C.A. March 16-19, 2017

Featuring Keynote Speaker IRVIN D. YALOM!

As you may already know, ASGW holds conferences every two years, so our next conference is planned for early Spring 2018. We are busy making plans for that conference and will share details soon. Please keep checking here for more updates coming soon!

Fortunately, you don't have to wait until 2018 to join with other group workers to share knowledge, learn skills, and create community. ASGW will have many learning programs and networking events at the American Counseling Association (ACA) conference. Make plans now to attend the ACA conference in San Francisco, CA, March 16-19, 2017. When the ACA conference schedule is finalized, we will update this page with times and dates of the ASGW events taking place during ACA 2017.