MSW field experiences are a critical component of preparing students to become competent and principled advanced social work professionals. Internships provide students with the opportunity to integrate and apply knowledge, values and skills essential to social work in an increasingly diverse world.
Students must have a 3.0 GPA and a satisfactory field readiness evaluation to enter into field placement. Internships are typically weekdays 8:00 am - 5:00 pm, although some agencies may have evening programming and expectations for student interns. All students are expected to modify their schedule to meet this program requirement. After MSW students complete an extensive, individualized field application and interview with a field faculty member, students are guided to an available placement which best reflects their strengths, needs, interests and professional goals. Roles and responsibilities of the Social Work Program, field faculty, field liaison, agency, field instructors, and students are described in the section “Roles and Responsibilities.”
Students in the Traditional Program are required to complete two field experiences: First Year Generalist Placement (432 hours) and Second Year Advanced Clinical Placement (512 hours). Both field placements are completed in a block format. The first-year generalist placement builds upon the knowledge and skills developed during the first semester of the foundation year. It focuses on the acquisition and development of generalist practice skills using a strengths perspective while providing opportunities for the application and integration of classroom concepts and principles for the development of core skills in social work practice. The Second Year Advanced Clinical Placement prepares students for effective advanced social work practice through the completion of 512 hours focusing on the integration of classroom knowledge and skills with professional ethical practice. Both internships are completed in a full-time format, during one full semester, with the Advanced Clinical Placement taking place in the final semester of the program.
Advanced Standing Program
It is expected that students admitted to the Advanced Standing Program will have successfully completed an internship (400 hours minimum) in an accredited bachelor's program prior to acceptance. Advanced Standing Program students are required to complete one field placement (512 hours) over two semesters (concurrent format), the Advanced Clinical Placement. Advanced Standing students are admitted in the summer semester, and advanced field placement is 16 hours per week beginning in the fall semester and continuing into the spring semester, for a total of 32 weeks, or 512 hours. This field experience focuses on the development of advanced social work practice skills focusing on the integration of classroom knowledge and skills with professional ethical practice.
SOWO 7920 First Year Generalist Placement: Provides foundation year students with educationally-directed practice experience under the direct supervision of an approved MSW field instructor. This field experience is 432 hours and builds upon the knowledge and skills developed during the first semester of the foundation year. It focuses on the acquisition and development of generalist practice skills using a strengths perspective while providing opportunities for the application and integration of classroom concepts and principles for the development of core skills in social work practice. This field experience is completed in a full-time format, during one full semester.
SOWO 7930 Second Year Advanced Clinical Placement: Provides students with the opportunity to engage in advanced clinical practice with diverse populations under the direction and supervision of agency-based MSW field instructors. This clinical practice field experience prepares students for effective advanced social work practice through the completion of 512 hours focusing on the integration of classroom knowledge and skills with professional ethical practice. Students in the Traditional Program complete this internship in a full-time format during their final semester, while Advanced Standing students complete it over two semesters.
SOWO 7950 Integrative Field Seminar: Taken in connection with the Advanced Clinical Placement. This course integrates theoretical models and concepts with practice gained in the advanced clinical internship. The seminar utilizes an ecosystems perspective, focusing on the dynamic interaction between individuals, families, communities, organizations, and other social systems. Students focus on the social worker’s role in responding effectively to the challenges of working with and within these systems. Students explore their own personal views related to ethical practice, gender, ethnic minorities, sexual orientation, and persons with disabilities. Opportunities are provided for case presentation, discussion and peer consultation.
MSW Field Education Forms
Generalist Field Placement:
SOWO 7920 Application for Generalist Field Placement
SOWO 7920 Generalist Field Educational Learning Plan
SOWO 7920 Generalist Field Mid-Semester/Final Evaluation
Advanced Field Placement:
SOWO 7930 Application for Advanced Field Placement
SOWO 7930 Advanced Field Educational Learning Plan