Integrating Adolescent Substance Abuse Screening, Brief Intervention and Treatment (SBIRT) throughout Social Work and Nursing School Education

NORC at the University of Chicago has partnered with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the Center for Clinical Social (CCSW) and the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN) to engage nursing and social work schools, and their accrediting bodies, in a learning collaborative to develop and evaluate interactive, competency-based substance use screening, brief intervention, and referral to treatment (SBIRT) curriculum. This project is funded by a grant from the Conrad N. Hilton Foundation and is focused on encouraging the adoption of SBIRT by social work and nursing educators.

The project involves multiple steps to develop a model curriculum that will be used by faculty, students, field instructors, preceptors, and practitioners. The program goals include 1) engage leading national associations and accrediting organizations to develop, test and disseminate adolescent SBIRT curricula, 2) facilitate a learning collaborative of more than 100 nursing, social work, and inter-professional programs, 3) engage faculty in social work and nursing schools across the U.S. to infuse adolescent SBIRT training into undergraduate and graduate education, 4) recruit faculty, field supervisors, preceptors, and students to share knowledge, give feedback and provide guidance to ensure that the curriculum developed is meaningful and comprehensive, 5) offer stipends to schools of social work and nursing to support faculty implementation and evaluation of the curriculum. 

NORC will partner with Kognito, a leader in immersive learning experiences using virtual humans, to create a state-of-the-art online, interactive adolescent SBIRT training technology platform. View demo of recent Kognito SBIRT simulation at NORC plans to develop the adolescent SBIRT curricula with a suite of practical, engaging, easily accessible, clinically relevant training modules that can be offered by the schools at no cost to their students and that will not disrupt delivery of core educational curriculum. NORC will also conduct program evaluation of the simulation and curriculum.

Considerable evidence demonstrates the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of alcohol SBIRT for young adults and adults 15-19 and its effectiveness for reducing illicit or prescription drug use is promising. This project offers a scientifically-based approach based on the needs of future health professionals  who are graduating into an ever-changing healthcare landscape. The team is comprised of preeminent adolescent SBIRT researchers and educators who use evidence-based practices in a wide variety of clinical and inter-professional settings.

About the American Association of Colleges of Nursing (AACN)

AACN is the nation’s leading accrediting body for baccalaureate, masters, DNP programs, and postbaccalaureate residency nursing programs.

About the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)

CSWE is the sole accrediting agency for undergraduate and graduate social work education in the U.S.

About the Center for Clinical Social Work (CCSW)

CCSW is a not-for-profit national organization for the profession, conducts advocacy and education as well as practice-related certification (through its ABE unit) and community-building, networking, and membership services (through its ACSWA unit). The Center seeks to be a unifying force amid the diversity and dynamism of a profession with more than 200,000 members constituting the largest provider of behavioral healthcare and related services in the United States.