Sandra Kopels is a Professor at the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). She received undergraduate, JD and MSW degrees from UIUC and is a licensed attorney.
Prior to joining the UIUC faculty, she was the Director of the Legal Advocacy Service of the State of Illinois Guardianship and Advocacy Commission. Kopels’ research and teaching focuses on legal and ethical issues as they affect social work clients and practitioners. She has received repeated recognition from the UIUC for her excellent teaching and is in demand as a conference presenter. She has authored dozens of journal articles and book chapters and has lectured extensively on subjects related to the confidentiality and disclosure of client information. Presently, Professor Kopels serves as the Editor of the School Social Work Journal and is a reviewer for numerous social work journals. Professor Kopels is a member of the Illinois Chapter of NASW and has served as a member of the State of Illinois Child Welfare Employee Licensure Board. Kopels has served as a Trustee, Vice-Chair and Chair of the NASW Legal Defense Fund and is a member of its Social Work and the Courts section. Professor Kopels is on the Legislative Committee of the Illinois Association of School Social Workers and is a member of its Board. She coauthored Social Work Records (Waveland Press, Inc., 2008) with Jill Doner Kagle.
Research and Practice Interests
Kopels’ interests include legal issues for social workers, confidentiality, duty to warn, ethics, special education, and substitute decision-making.Back to Faculty & Staff Directory