Date of Award


Degree Name

Leadership Studies


College of Education and Professional Development

Type of Degree


Document Type


First Advisor

Dr. Ronald Childress, Committee Chairperson

Second Advisor

Dr. Bobbi Nicholson

Third Advisor

Dr. Robert Rubenstein


This study utilized a qualitative phenomenological approach to gather the insight and perceptions of social work field instructors about the role and effect of technology on the student field practicum experience. Through convenience and purposeful sampling techniques, social work field instructors from the seven accredited social work programs in West Virginia were chosen to participate in this study. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 22 field instructors to gather their perspective on the integration of technology into the supervision of field students. Thematic analysis was utilized to organize and interpret the information gathered from these interviews. It was found that technologies such as videoconferencing programs, written communication methods, and agency specific technology and documentation programs were commonly utilized in placement experiences. Trainings, various supervisory techniques, ethical standards, and agency policies were all incorporated to train, monitor, and evaluate student usage of technology. The efficiency, conveniences, and potential for improved engagement provided by the addition of technology was seen by field instructors to improve student field experiences, yet service delivery issues, internet instability, lack of accessibility, ethical concerns, distractions, and trouble building rapport were found to be challenges. Findings suggest field instructors believe students are still getting quality field experiences when technology is incorporated and overall support the use of technology in field, especially when combined with in-person face-to-face experiences or as a hybrid model.


Social work education – Curricula – West Virginia.

Social work education – Study and teaching (Graduate) – West Virginia.

Social work education – Technological innovations – West Virginia.

Marshall University.

West Virginia University.

West Liberty University.

Shepherd University (Shepherdstown, W. Va.).

Bethany College (Bethany, W. Va.).