IU School of Social Work is headquartered on the IUPUI campus with locations on 8 IU Campuses. The school also has the Department of Labor Studies
Dr. Margaret Adamek, Director of the Indiana University School of Social Work, has been selected to receive a Fulbright Award to for a five-month teaching project in Ethiopia during this coming fall semester.
This will mark Dr. Adamek’s fourth trip to Ethiopia, where she has been involved with the Addis Ababa University (AAU) School of Social Work and Social Development since 2008. The PhD program at AAU is the first PhD Program in Social Work in Ethiopia.
T he PhD program enrolled its first t cohort of 8 PhD students in 2007. Dr. Adamek was recruited to teach a Scholarly Writing course to the second cohort of 10 PhD students in 2008, and then taught again in 2009 to the third cohort of 12 students, and a third time in 2010 to the fourth cohort of 10 students. In addition, two of the students from the first cohort sat in on the course despite having completed their required coursework. Thus, Dr. Adamek has directly instructed 34 of the 40 students in the PhD Program to date.
Much of the teaching work involved in this project will be one-on-one consulting sessions with PhD students in Social Work at AAU. Dr. Adamek will also be available to facilitate small group seminars organized around practical topics such as “Assembling the Research Portfolio,” “Selecting a Feasible Dissertation Topic,” and “Preparation for the Final Defense.” She has organized a similar Dissertation series for PhD students in Social Work at Indiana University.
Dr. Adamek is seen as well-suited for such an endeavor, having served as the Director of the PhD Program in Social Work at Indiana University for the past 10 years and has chaired or been a member of over a dozen dissertation committees.
In addition to one-on-one consulting with students on their research portfolios, dissertation proposals, and final dissertations, Dr. Adamek will teach the PhD seminar that aims to ground doctoral students in the Social Work profession and provide a foundation in the values and mission of the profession. This seminar is critical to students’ development as Social Work scholars since nearly all of the students come from other disciplinary backgrounds.
Dr. Adamek would also be available to offer continuing support and mentoring to PhD students regarding other types of scholarly products such as conference abstracts, manuscripts for publication, research reports, and grant proposals. Her involvement with the students is expected to support and even accelerate their movement toward degree completion.
In her three visits to Ethiopia to teach the Scholarly Writing course, Dr. Adamek has discovered that the PhD students in Ethiopia and her PhD students in the U.S. are more alike than different. One difference she has noticed is that the Ethiopian students seem to be especially eager to learn and to put forth whatever effort is necessary to access learning materials and accomplish their research. The Ethiopian students are very appreciative of learning materials and any resources that may support their research projects. While the U.S. students are accustomed to active participation in the classroom as well as online learning, the Ethiopian students are eager to learn about and engage in such student-centered pedagogical approaches. Though student-centered and active learning strategies are not customary in Ethiopia, the Ethiopian students have responded very well to such approaches and appreciate the opportunity to actively participate in various classroom exercises.
The project also involves a research component in which Dr. Adamek will examine the perceptions of social science faculty throughout Ethiopia about the writing abilities and needs of students and about the resources and strategies needed to strengthen and support students’ writing. The teaching component of the proposed project aims to support Ethiopian doctoral students at the Addis Ababa University (AAU) School of Social Work and Social Development to progress toward degree completion.
The Fulbright Award will help cover Dr. Adamek’s living expenses as well as travel costs to take five members of her family, including her husband, three children and a foster daughter to Ethiopia.
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