ACRL/EBSS Social Work Committee


To provide a forum for librarians who serve social work/social welfare fields in academic settings; to sponsor discussions and programs; to produce publications to meet the needs of their clientele; and to undertake liaison activities with other professional organizations as appropriate.

Learn more about the activities of the Social Work Committee in the EBSS Manual. The committee name was changed from Social Work/Social Welfare to Social Work in August 2016.


Amber Prentiss chairs the committee for 2017-2018. The complete Social Work Committee Roster (including previous and next year's appointments) is on the ACRL Web site (sign in required).

Current Projects & Publications

Social Work Liaison's Toolkit  - revised June 2014.

Committee Business

Conference Meeting Highlights & Minutes

Committee Posts on ALA Connect

About Social Work

According to the Social Work Dictionary by Barker (1995), social work is defined as: "The applied science of helping people achieve an effective level of psychosocial functioning and effecting societal changes to enhance the well-being of all people". [Barker, R.L. (1995). The social work dictionary (3rd ed.). Washington, DC: NASW Press, p. 357-358.]

Social work education is based upon a specific body of knowledge, values and professional skills. It is grounded in the profession's history in the charities, corrections, and public welfare movements and in its philosophy centered on privilege, oppression, diversity and social justice. Education for the profession promotes the development and advancement of interdisciplinary knowledge, practice skill, and services that further the well being of all people, even in a global perspective. The need to developed informed practice and policy, built upon evidence-based research is an evolving directive. Key professional organizations for social work education are the Council on Social Work Education, and the National Association for Social Workers.