PROFESSIONAL PRACTICE PAPER
Deadline: 11:59pm on January 10, 2020.
Please choose either Option 1 OR Option 2:
Option 1: Interview a mental health professional who specializes in counseling about sexuality issues or a professional who specializes in sexuality education.
Purpose: The purpose of this assignment is to learn how to locate appropriate professionals in the field of sexuality counseling or sexuality education and to develop an understanding of the nature of their work, their clientele and their organization. This assignment provides you with the opportunity to connect what you have learned in this course with the perspectives of professionals who are currently working full-time in the field of sexuality. Examples of appropriate professionals to interview are sex therapists, family and marital therapists, licensed professional counselors, social workers, psychologists, nurses, health educators or any other professional who deals with this subject on a regular basis. Please note that you cannot select someone who occasionally does sexuality counseling or a health teacher who teaches a couple of classes on sex education. It needs to be a professional who works primarily in the area of sexuality counseling or primarily in the field of sex education. Titles of people you could interview include a psychotherapist specializing in sexuality issues, an HIV counselor, a nurse at a prenatal clinic for pregnant teens, staff at Planned Parenthood (or any other organization that provides reproductive health services), an outreach worker at a community organization for gay and lesbian homeless youth, a physician who provides abortion services, a hospital social worker who counsels rape survivors, a counselor who works with sex workers, etc. You get the idea. Each semester, one or two students will find someone from the internet who lives in another state and who has a website. They will either use information from their website or in a rare instance actually contact them for an interview. This is not an appropriate person to interview. It must be someone within your local community, in other words someone who you can refer people directly to from your local community if they needed help. If you have a certain professional in mind but unsure if he/she qualifies for this assignment, please contact me. If you interview someone who is not considered appropriate for this assignment you will earn a zero, so I strongly recommend you run your choice by me before doing the assignment.
Instructions: Your task is to conduct an interview with a sexuality professional and to write a report of this interview. Discuss what you learned from this exercise and relate it to material covered in this course.
Use the following questions as your guide:
1) Full name and contact information of the interviewee
2) Their position and place of employment
3) Academic and professional background of interviewee
4) Reason why they chose their profession
5) A detailed description of their role and responsibilities
6) Common challenges they face in their work
7) Any ethical dilemmas they have encountered
8) Their views about various sexuality issues
9) What advice can they offer someone who is interested in work in this area
10) If there was something that they could change in their job, what would it be and why
Note: You are expected to come up with at least five other questions on your own. Your report should be in narrative/essay form. You can write down each question but make sure you follow it with a paragraph or two that paraphrases the person’s answer. And relate each response to the material covered in the course. Think of it as writing an interview article for a magazine not just a Q & A format.
Option 2: Write a paper on the status of sex education in schools and recommendations for the future
Purpose: The purpose of this assignment is to identify the problems and pitfalls of providing sex education in schools and to suggest ways to improve sex education for children and teens.
Instructions: Conduct a thorough review of the professional literature (using at least 5 peerreview journal articles if you are a HEA 307 student or at least 8 peer-review journal articles if you are a HEA 507 student) and write a paper that includes the following:
1) What are some major issues currently being debated at the national level that pertain to sex education in schools?
2) What are some problems or challenges facing teachers when it comes to sex education for children and teens?
3) What solutions or strategies have been proposed to improve sex education in schools and for addressing current issues?
4) What are the strengths and weaknesses of the various solutions or approaches to sex education in schools?
5) How does sex education in US schools compare to sex education in schools in other countries? Provide examples.
6) If you were instructed by the principal of your school to develop a working group on improving sex education in your school, how would you go about forming this group and who would you include, and why?
7) Identify and describe one local and one national organization involved in promoting sex education among children and teens.
8) What were your own experiences with sex education in schools when you were growing up? In looking back, what would you change and why?
Remember the following (for both options):
HEA 507 students, your paper should be 6-8 pages long (excluding cover page and bibliography). Please choose your words carefully and thoughtfully and consider each paper as an opportunity to improve your writing skills.
• Please use Times New Roman, 12 pt font. Your paper should be double-spaced.
• Use 1″ margins. No large gaps between paragraphs. Each paragraph should be joined to the next paragraph. Begin each paragraph by indenting it 0.3″.
• Your paper needs to be written in a professional manner. That means you need to have a title for your paper on the first page followed by your name. Your paper should be formatted properly as instructed above. Make sure you number each page.
• Please make sure that you properly cite all your sources in your paper and provide a bibliography at the end. Make sure you follow the APA style. I do not want to see any quotes. You need to put everything in your own words, and you need to cite all your sources. It is not acceptable to copy a sentence or paragraph and think it is okay as long as you cite the source. You need to put everything in your own words and cite your source. There will be a penalty of -5% for every sentence that is copied directly from the author. Again, everything needs to be written in your own words and there are to be no quotes. Make sure you click on the “WRITING TIPS” button on the left for information about writing papers as well as how to use the APA style. I have also attached a handout (“Professional Writing 101”) which is a summary of the APA style. You risk losing valuable points if you do not read and follow this handout.
• Plagiarism will not be tolerated and will result in a zero grade. Please click on the COURSE POLICIES and ACADEMIC RESOURCES buttons on the left for information and policies about plagiarism.
• Please make sure you read the grading rubric that is attached before you submit your assignment. It is intended to help you identify which areas are good and which areas are weak before you submit it. You can see how well you have completed this assignment before you submit your work. I want you to get into the habit of assessing your own performance before you submit your work rather than waiting for someone else to give you a grade and feedback. When you finally get your grade and feedback, there should be no surprises
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