Topics (Choose one topic from the following list as a focus for your research project):

  1. Mandated Reporting of Child Abuse: Laws requiring the mandated reporting of child abuse have been enacted in every state in the United States. Mandated reporting laws cross disciplines (counseling, psychology, medicine, nursing, education, etc.). Some professionals have criticized these laws on the basis of interfering with their professional relationship with children.
  2. Mental Health Parity: Mental health parity laws and regulations have been enacted at the state and federal level. This “hot” issue affects not only the mental health community, but also the welfare and traditional healthcare sectors.
  3. Prison Diversion: Many states and counties have developed court-based diversion program to provide an alternative to prison time for minor offenses, drug offenses, and offenses committed by juveniles or mentally ill individuals. There are several facets of this issue that can be examined from a cross-disciplinary perspective.
  4. Prescription Privileges for Psychologists: There are efforts by both the state and federal level focused on granting psychologists the right to prescribe psychotropic medications to patients. This controversial issue crosses several disciplines.

After you have selected a topic, you will prepare a comprehensive  paper that analyzes all of the following areas from a cross-disciplinary perspective:paper   5000 words.   

  • Define the human service policy topic you have chosen from a cross-disciplinary perspective. What are the problems, areas, and disciplines that you will explore in your paper? (2-3 pages)
  • Briefly summarize and review the relevant federal and state regulations, laws, or court rulings relevant to your topic. (2-3 pages)
  • How do these laws and regulations impact the provision of services? Ensure you address the impact the development of budgets, management of staff and volunteers, the ability to engage in advocacy efforts in this analysis.  (6-8 pages)
  • What future research/policies/law/regulations are needed to address this issue adequately? (2-3 pages)



Required Text

Herzberg, J. T. (2015). Foundations in human services practice: A generalist perspective on individual, agency, and community. Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson. ISBN: 9780205858255; eISBN: 9780205982233 
Chapter 3: Interviewing: A Human Services Practice

Karger, H. J. & Stoesz , D. (2018). American social welfare policy: A pluralist approach (8th ed). Upper Saddle River, New Jersey: Pearson. ISBN: 9780134628127; eISBN: 9780134543468
Chapter 15: Child Welfare Policy

Recommended References

ChildHelp. (n.d.). Child Abuse Statistics & Facts. Retrieved from (Links to an external site.)

Henderson, K. L. (2013). Mandated reporting of child abuse: Considerations and guidelines for mental health counselors. Journal Of Mental Health Counseling, 35(4), 296-309.


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