About the Social Work Bachelor’s Program
The Bachelor of Arts in Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Graduates of this program are eligible to sit for the corresponding national exam with the Association of Social Work Boards, one requirement for licensing in Texas and many other states. The curriculum is based on the generalist social work model, which is intended to prepare graduates for entry-level work in a wide variety of social work settings with diverse populations. For those interested in pursuing their social work education at the master’s level, the bachelor’s in social work provides the advantage of making the student eligible for advanced standing in most graduate programs.
Social Work Major. Social work majors are expected to complete the core curriculum requirements of the university, the General Degree Requirements of the College of Arts & Sciences, 30 hours of structured social work classes (SW 1300 , SW 2301 , SW 2311 , SW 3312 , SW 3331 , SW 3332 , SW 3333 , SW 3339 , SW 4311 , SW 4340 ), the 6-hour social work field placement (SW 4611 ), an 18-hour minor, and the following adjunct requirements:
Students should keep in mind that at least four long semesters are required to complete the social work curriculum.
Admission to the Practice Course Sequence. At a midpoint in the social work curriculum, social work majors’ progress is evaluated and a determination is made about whether they appear compatible with the profession and have been adequately prepared by the foundation curriculum to enter the sequence of social work practice specific courses (SW 3332 , SW 3333 , SW 4340 , and SW 4611 ). At that point, students should have a good sense of what social work is all about and how they might fit in. The application is due mid-semester before enrollment in SW 3332 for the next long semester. Students should refer to the BASW Student Handbook for additional details about this process.
Professionalism. Students seeking a degree in social work are expected to demonstrate levels of professionalism commensurate with their exposure to professional standards throughout the program. These expectations include compatibility with social work values and ethics, a high level of engagement during academic activities, satisfactory academic progress (a social work GPA of 2.5 should be maintained throughout the program), and sufficient emotional and cognitive competence for successful professional practice. Concerns about students’ professional behavior are handled through the BASW Student Concern and Professional Review Committee (SCPRC) and failure to meet expectations may prevent a student from progressing further in the program.
Social Work Field Placement. The field experience allows students to demonstrate their abilities to assess client systems and to apply generalist skills with populations at risk across micro, mezzo, and macro systems. It is a 400-hour, closely supervised individual experience in a social agency selected and certified by the social work program. Students should keep in mind that field experience hours will occur during normal business hours (8 am to 5 pm) weekdays, and it is generally not possible to hold full-time employment or complete additional coursework, except as indicated, during this capstone semester.
An Application for Field Experience must be completed prior to the field placement. Some field sites may have additional requirements, such as background checks or medical testing. Students should refer to the BASW Field Instruction Handbook for additional details about the placement process. Professional liability insurance is required during the field placement and payment is the responsibility of the student.
Criminal Backgrounds. Students seeking a degree in social work should know that state boards usually consider conviction histories of those applying for licensing as social workers. Types of and time since convictions may have significant impact on whether an application for state licensing will be approved. The Texas State Board of Social Work Examiners will “evaluate, upon request, the criminal history of potential applicants to determine if they are ineligible to hold a license” (www.dshs.texas.gov/plc_cheval.shtm) in Texas.
Transfer Students and Transfer Credit. While the program typically accepts up to 9 hours of transfer credit for social work courses, especially from CSWE-accredited programs, practice sequence coursework (SW 3332 , SW 3333 , SW 4340 , and SW 4611 ) must be taken at the institution.
No Credit for Life Experience. The social work program does not give credit for work or other life experiences.
Communication Literacy Requirement. Communication Literacy courses for the B.A. in Social Work include: SW 3332 , SW 3333 , and SW 4311 .