1.) Describe what is going on by noting: a. Who are the key actors? What do we know about each of them? b. What are

1.) Describe what is going on by noting: a. Who are the key actors? What do we know about each of them? b. What are the key systems involved? What do we know about each? c. What does the problem seem to be? What are the underlying problems/issues? d. What are the key sources of tension? What has lead up to this decision moment? What has changed to make this particular moment such a difficult one to negotiate? 2.) Explore the key sources of tension by considering: a. What roles do different actors play in creating/sustaining a tension? i. How can you make sense of these roles? How does an actor’s background, attributes, culture, beliefs, etc., shape his/her perceptions? His/her behaviors? It may spur your thinking to consider: How might things be different if a male actor were female? If a Black actor were white? b. What roles do systems play in creating/sustaining a tension (issue/problem)? i. How can you make sense of these roles? How does a system’s structure, organization, functionality, resources, location, rules, norms, expectations, etc., shape the kinds of experiences the key actors are having? c. How do interactions among actors and systems relate to a tension? 3.) Assess how additional knowledge and/or theory could deepen your understanding of the key sources of tension, and integrate that additional knowledge: a. What is known about people with the attributes of the key actors? (e.g. developmental stages, cultural differences, gender differences, life transitions, people experiencing particular types of stressors, etc.) – look for both theories and empirical evidence! b. What is known about systems like those at the center of this case? (e.g. bureaucratic systems, hierarchical versus flat organizational structures, segregated neighborhoods, the impact of high job stress and low resources on worker productivity, strengths-based versus deficit-based service environments, etc.) – look for both theories and empirical evidence! c. How does this additional knowledge shape your thinking about the key sources of tension? 4.) Develop a problem formulation that focuses attention on the central tension/issue that must be addressed if the decision-maker is to move things forward in a productive way, while clarifying the key individual and systems factors that are most salient to why/how this issue has come to be. 5.) Develop alternative strategies that the decision-maker could realistically use to address the central issue. Be sure that each strategy begins in the specific moment/situation in which the decision-maker finds him/herself – that is, if the decision-maker is in the midst of a heated argument, do not suggest a strategy that will start tomorrow, assuming that somehow he/she has gotten through the argument. Your strategy will often extend from the current moment into the near future, but you must articulate your strategy for getting from where things are right now, to a point where the key issue has been resolved enough to move forward productively. 6.) Look for evidence to support your strategies – what does the research literature tell us is likely to work? What does theory predict will happen if a particular strategy is selected? What does your own practice experience tell you about the pros and cons of each strategy? 7.) Choose the best strategy, and justify that choice. make sure that you , . A well-written introduction   succinctly identifies the setting, key people, and current situation. The   introduction: To set the   stage for action, a strong problem formulation what causes the problem in a concise, thoughtful,   critical, and useful way. The problem   formulation: A strong,   comprehensive contextual analysis provides an argument how essential elements relate, and the problem formulation.   The contextual analysis: After   identifying a successful outcome, a   strong set of alternative strategies will represent plausible options for   responding to the presenting problem and underlying issues. As a group, the strategies: Discussion of each strategy (distinguished by strategy   number 1, 2, and 3 below): A   strong, complete recommendation provides a rationale for choosing one   strategy over the others presented. The recommendation and rationale: No Yes Well written papers will   communicate clearly, persuasively, and without distractions, and will appear   professional quality. Strong writing is:

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