relationship questions ), identify two different types H u m a n i t i e s

relationship questions ), identify two different types H u m a n i t i e s

Discussion: Solution-Focused Model: Asking Questions

Social workers who utilize the solution-focused model are mindful of how their conversations with their clients, families, groups, or even community members facilitate their thinking about solutions. The client is always the “expert,” and therefore social workers ask questions to explore how the client perceives the problem and situation.

Social workers may use solution-focused questions such as the miracle question. For example, “Suppose you woke up one morning and by some miracle everything you ever wanted, everything good you could ever imagine for yourself, had actually happened—your life had turned out exactly the way you wanted it. What would be different in your life?” When clients are asked this, it forces them to reflect on what they want or would like to achieve. By projecting themselves into the future, clients are more likely to imagine what is possible rather than focusing on the past and their failures. This allows for the possibility of developing solutions.

In this Discussion, you apply the solution-focused model and solution-focused questions. You provide other solution-focused questions, similar to the miracle question that was provided for you.

Although the textbook provides actual examples of solution-focused questions, always think about your client—you may have to modify the question a bit to take into account the client’s age, cognitive and developmental stage, culture, etc., so that the question makes sense to the client.

To prepare:

  • Recall a case from your fieldwork experience to use for this Discussion.
  • Review and focus on pages 520–521 in your textbook.

By Day 3


  • In 1 to 2 sentences, briefly identify and describe the problem as perceived by the client, family, or group that you dealt with in your past fieldwork experience.
  • From the list of solution-focused questions on page 520 (e.g., exception questions, coping questions, scaling questions, and relationship questions), identify two different types of questions, and ask each question as if you were actually asking the questions to the client. (Remember, do not use the miracle question.)
    • Remember that the goal of these questions is to assist clients in identifying a solution
  • Explain how asking these two questions would help the client in coming up with the solution.
  • In 1 to 2 sentences, reflect and explain how asking these questions made you feel and perhaps how the client might feel.

By Day 5

Respond to two colleagues:

  • Identify a barrier that might make it difficult to implement the solution-focused model with the client described.
  • Discuss how a social worker could help a client re-focus on the present, rather than on their past.

Colleague 1: Allison


In my fieldwork experiences, there have many different problems that have come up that needed to be solved conjunctively. One problem that I faced was my client not having enough caregivers to take care of him throughout the day until his wife and daughter got home. He was completely bed-bound and required all of his ADLs to be done for him besides feeding himself.

To better my understanding of the solutions that the patient and his family wanted I could ask exception questions. The first question would be: What are the qualities of a caregiver that you could not tolerate when receiving a caregiver to assist you? This question is so important because of the poor work that has been done previous in his caregiver experiences. Second, I would use a coping question. My question to him and his family would be: How have you been handling being by yourself when your family isn’t home and there is no caregiver so far?

These questions would help the client and his family come to a solution by allowing them to explore what has gone right and wrong so far in their caregiver’s experiences with various agencies, and then what deal breakers should be added to the list for optimal care. These questions do help me feel more secure because then I know exactly what they don’t want and do want. Making my choices in solutions for them will be accurate and educated. These questions were also good for the patient because they allow him and the family to have a voice and advocate for what best care for the client looks like.


Turner, F. J. (Edu.). (2017). Social Work Treatment: Interlocking theoretical approaches (6th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

Colleague 2: Kelly Evans

In doing my fieldwork, I had a 16-year-old adolescent that came to me with the history of molestation. This was perpetuated on her by a family friend over the course of two years. The two different questions that I would focus on are the coping question and the scaling question. Question one would be, how have you been able to cope with your day-to-day activities, like school and such? Question two would be, on a scale of 1 to 10, with one being the worst and 10 being the best, how would you rate yourself? Why would you pick that number and what would you have to do in order to be a number higher?

In solution focused therapy, coming up with coping questions and scaling questions lays the foundation for setting goals. Looking at these questions is necessary for the social worker to understand exactly what the client desires for their goals. In coming up with goals it will lead to a solution and therefore success in asking these two questions. I felt as though I could really get somewhere with my client, I believe my client would feel as though I really cared for her and that the questions were really thought-provoking.

Turner, F. J. (Edu.). (2017). Social Work Treatment: Interlocking theoretical approaches (6th ed.). New York, NY: Oxford University Press.

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