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Do existing social work texts contribute to a student's recognition of professional values and issues and of the implicit ideological bases for these? The following study contends that they do not, and that their failures are quite similar to those found by Mills in his examination social pathology texts.

The books examined here are all designed to be used in basic undergraduate and graduate courses on the structure and function of social welfare institutions. The survey includes both widely adopted books and recent texts in the field. The books chosen for this study appear, in fact, to represent the universe of introductory social welfare texts currently in print. It is recognized that text books do not represent a total picture of course material, but it seems obvious that they play a role in shaping course content. This is particularly important in a discussion of introductory courses, which may constitute a student's first close look at social work and social welfare, and where texts may be relied upon more heavily than in advanced courses..

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