Connecting Personal and Professional: The Power of Narratives in Clinical Practice

Date and Time

December 7, 2023
2 p.m. - 5 p.m. EST

Offered via live webinar.

Completion of this class will result in the receipt of three (3) continuing education hours.

  • Increasingly, stories and narratives are utilized in education and clinical experiences. Research suggests that clinician’s own experiences of loss and death may be connected to professional practices in these areas. Critical reflection is a core aspect of narrative practice, providing the narrative competence to “recognize, absorb, interpret, and honor” the stories of self and others. In this class, participants will be exposed to literature and theory on narrative practices and will consider how they relate to various practice settings. Participants will learn narrative techniques and engage through interactive exercises and personal reflection. Additionally, participants will have the opportunity to connect to, interpret, and honor the stories of other participants as a practical example for how narrative practice may enrich communication with clients, families, and interprofessional teams. 


    Social workers who take this class will be able to:

    1. apply narrative theory to various settings in healthcare practice,
    2. describe narrative skills for attending to, understanding, and compassionately responding to clients’ stories,
    3. examine their own stories through experiential & reflective activities and consider how those relate to their professional identities & practice.
    4. utilize narrative techniques in facilitating difficult conversations with patients, families and interprofessional teams.
  • headshot of cara wallace

    Cara L. Wallace, PhD, LMSW, APHSW-C

    Dr. Cara Wallace is the Votsmier Endowed Chair and a Professor in the Valentine School of Nursing at Saint Louis University. Her work is informed by years of social work practice in hospice and hospital systems. Dr. Wallace’s research focuses on issues related to end-of-life care within three related areas: barriers to care, quality of care, and educating students, professionals, and the general population to face issues surrounding death, illness, loss, and grief. She coordinates SLU’s Interprofessional Gerontology Certificate Program and teaches courses related to end-of-life, aging, and healthcare. She has more than 30 peer-reviewed publications, in journals such as Journal of Palliative Medicine, Journal of Pain and Symptom Management, and Journal of the American Medical Directors Association, among others. She is currently funded through National Institutes of Health through the National Institute of Nursing Research as PI on an R21 and through National Institute of Aging for a supplement grant. She is also a 2020 recipient of the Cambia Health Foundation’s Sojourns Scholar Leadership Program which funds national, interprofessional leaders in palliative care. She serves on multiple local and national end-of-life and aging-focused boards and in 2020, she received the Social Work Hospice & Palliative Care Network’s Award for Excellence in Psychosocial Research.

  • Class fees are listed below:

    • Full Tuition - $90
    • GSS Alumni - $75
    • Current Field Instructor to a Fordham MSW student - $75
    • Current Adjunct Online Faculty - $75
    • SWHPN Member - $75
    • 3+ from one agency at same time - $60
    • Current Military and Veterans - $60
    • Non-Fordham Current MSW or Social Work Doctoral Student - $45
    • Current Fordham MSW or PhD Student - $30
    • Fordham Alumni Palliative Care Fellow - $30
    • Field Instructor or Career Mentor to a CURRENT Palliative Care Fellow - $0
    • Fordham faculty and staff - $0
    • Current Fordham Palliative Care Fellow or Montefiore Fellow - $0

    Continuing Education Hours

    Completion of this class will result in the receipt of three (3) continuing education hours. CEHs are not awarded for partial completion of the class.

  • You will receive the Zoom link for joining the class by the day before the class. IF YOU HAVE NOT RECEIVED THE LINK BY THIS TIME, PLEASE CHECK YOUR SPAM FOLDER. 

    You will need a computer and a reliable WiFi connection. The computer may be a desktop or a laptop. It may be an Apple or Windows computer.

    If you have never used Zoom before, you will likely be prompted to download an applet, which is a small program that allows Zoom to communicate with your computer. This is safe and you will need to do this to join the class.

    It is NOT advised that you participate using a table (e.g., an iPad) or a cellular phone. The software is not optimized for these devices.

    Please plan to join the online class 15 minutes before the start time to be sure that you don’t have any problems connecting. We cannot provide technical support to you and refunds won’t be offered if you have technical problems. If you have any questions or concerns about this, please contact us at [email protected] at least a few days before the class.