Discussion: poverty in young and middle adulthood

Poverty has a strong influence on the lives of adults. When an adult lives in poverty, the effects extend beyond that individual to all those who depend on the adult. The problem of poverty in the life of an adult becomes a family or community problem, and few social problems are more impactful than poverty.

As a social worker, you are likely to address the needs of clients whose adverse circumstances are strongly influenced by poverty. Increasing your understanding of poverty and its influence will equip to you to better understand and assist your clients.

As you read this week’s resources, select the theory of poverty that most resonates with you to address in your Discussion post for this week.

By Day 3

Post a Discussion that includes the following:

  • An explanation of how poverty impacts the experience of individuals in young and middle adulthood
  • A statement as to whether you think poverty is the result of cultural or individual. characteristics; provide support for your position
  • An answer to the following questions about the theory of poverty you selected:
    • What aspects of this theory would be most suitable for your practice? Why?
    • What aspects of this theory do you find problematic in terms of your knowledge of social work practice? Explain.

Learning Resources

Required Readings

Zastrow, C. H., & Kirst-Ashman, K. K. (2016). Understanding human behavior and the social environment (10th ed.). Boston, MA:  Cengage Learning.
Chapter 12, “Sociological Aspects of Young and Middle Adulthood” (pp. 549-616)

Plummer, S.-B., Makris, S., Brocksen S. (Eds.). (2014). Sessions: Case histories. Baltimore, MD: Laureate International Universities Publishing. [Vital Source e-reader].
“The Hernandez Family” (pp. 3–5)

Required Media

Laureate Education (Producer). (2013). Hernandez family: Episode 6 [Video file]. Retrieved from https://class.waldenu.edu

Note:  The approximate length of this media piece is 3 minutes.

Accessible player –Downloads–Download Video w/CCDownload AudioDownload Transcript

Optional Resources

Use the link below to access the MSW home page, which provides resources for your social work program.
MSW home page

Sutin, A. R., & Costa, P. T. (2010). Reciprocal influences of personality and job characteristics across middle adulthood. Journal of Personality, 78(1), 257–288.

Whitbourne, S., K., Sneed, J. R., & Sayer, A. (2009). Psychosocial development from college through midlife: A 34-year sequential study. Developmental Psychology, 45(5), 1328–1340.

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