Course Descriptions


SW 202

Introduction to Social Work

This course is an introduction to the knowledge and skills of the generalist practice of social work. It includes an examination of the history, principles, practice, research and literature in the social welfare field. Theoretical and professional foundations, diverse client systems, areas of practice, contemporary social policies, strategies and social work values are examined. The student is given opportunities to visit community agencies.

SW 235

Human Behavior and Social Environment I

This course examines human behavior and the social environment using the generalist social work theoretical framework to explain the interactions of individuals, families, and groups. Special emphasis is given to the biological, social, and psychological factors which affect human behavior within these micro and mezzo systems.

SW 236

Human Behavior and the Social Environment II

This course examines human behavior and the social environment using the generalist social work theoretical framework to explain the interactions of communities, organizations, and society. Special emphasis is given to the biological, social, and psychological factors which affect human behavior within these macro systems. Pre or corequisite: SW 235.

SW 331

Social Work Practice I: Micro Methods

The basic class in social work helping methods, this course applies the generalist approach to social work practice with individuals and families. Discussion of case studies with emphasis on systems theory and the ecological method. While this course focuses on micro level practice, the methods introduced are applicable to all types of social work practice. Prerequisite: social work major; pre or corequisite: SW 235.

SW 332

Social Work Practice II: Mezzo Methods

This focus of this course is the generalist approach to problem solving and intervention practices at the small and large group levels, introducing the function and role of the social worker in these settings. The class examines the dynamics that occur when clients with common concerns are brought together for the purpose of helping one another. Actual group situations are used as a teaching method. Prerequisite: social work major; pre or corequisite: SW 235.

SW 333

Social Work Practice III: Macro Methods

This course introduces the function and role of the social worker in organizations, communities, and societies. While many of the processes used in micro, mezzo, and macro practice are similar, there are unique features involved in the macro context which are examined and illustrated. Organizational and community theories are linked to practice applications. Prerequisites: social work major; SW 235, SW 331, SW 332; pre or corequisite: SW 236.

SW 334

Social Welfare Policy and Service

Development of social welfare policy and service programs in response to changing social conditions. Focuses on the theory, history, scope, nature, organization, and implementation of current programs on local, state, and federal levels and in the private sector. Prerequisite: social work major or permission of instructor.

SW 340

Working with Diverse Populations

This course is designed to increase student knowledge of diversity in individuals, families, groups, communities, organizations and societies. Addressing issues and exploring values necessary for successful interaction with diverse individuals, their families, and the communities and organizations with which they interact. Groups to be addressed include ethnic, racial, cultural, religious, socio-economic/class distinctions, individuals with physical, mental and emotional challenges, women, older adults and youth, and sexual orientation. Designated theoretical frameworks that explain the interaction in the social systems of diverse individuals, families, groups, communities, organizations and societies will be discussed. The course also focuses on the relationship between diversity issues and human behavior, including prejudice and discrimination. Specific frameworks will be explored to understand the relationship between diversity and cultural, historical, biological, social and psychological variables.

SW 341


This course is designed to increase student learning in relationships through a discussion of sexuality and intimacy. Students will address these topics through knowledge of the biological, social, spiritual and psychological aspects of relationships, sexuality, and intimacy. Knowledge of and competence in understanding populations-at-risk who are experiencing issues with intimacy, sexuality and relationships will be explored.

SW 360

Health and Human Services Administration

This course is a real world introduction to the administration of health and human service organizations. Learn how to effectively manage interdisciplinary, interdepartmental, and interorganizational situations in and among health and human services organizations through real life and applicable learning techniques, such as case scenarios. Examine the principles and practices of health and human services administration, and policies related to the management of health and human services are examined. Diverse client systems and developing sensitivity and understanding of various cultural, ethnic, socioeconomic, and spiritual backgrounds of individuals and groups in health and human services are emphasized.

SW 365

DSM-5 and Mental Health Issues Across the Lifespan

This course will focus on the application of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DMS-5) for assessing and understanding mental health issues affecting human behavior across the lifespan with children, adolescents, adults, and families. Students will learn models of DSM-5 assessment to evaluate human functioning across the lifespan with emphasis on women and gender, vulnerable and diverse populations, and mezzo-macro issues.

SW 379

Interviewing Methods

A workshop course designed to assist students in learning interviewing techniques. Discussion and practical exercises will be used as well as video and audio facilities. Identification, observation, understanding, knowledge, demonstration and student practicing of interviewing methods are utilized. Prerequisites: juniors or seniors status or permission of the instructor.

SW 390

Special Topics in Social Work

A seminar focusing upon a selected areas of interest in social work. Topics may include such areas as social stress, death and dying, poverty, mental illness, drug addiction, women in society, occupations and professions, conflict, education, social psychiatry, criminal justice. This course may be repeated for credit with a different topic and the consent of the advisor. Prerequisites: SW 202 or permission of the instructor.

SW 430

Social Work Research Method

This course is designed to familiarize the student with various forms of research methods utilized in the social work discipline, including survey, single subject design, content analysis, field observation, participant observation, participatory research, historical research, and comparative analysis. Course material will focus on the types and application of research used in generalist social work practice including needs assessment, program evaluation, practice evaluation, and grant writing. Qualitative and quantitative analysis is utilized as well as statistical software, including SPSS. Prerequisites: SOC 372 or PSYC 201 or Math 114.

SW 486 - 487

Social Work Field Practicum I, II

Professionally supervised agency placement for the student so she may relate classroom learning to the practice setting. This experience provides the student with an opportunity to integrate knowledge, values, and practice, to deepen her understanding, and to develop proficiencies for beginning professional practice. 400 hours of direct field experience are required for the major in social work. Prerequisites: SW 202, 235, 236, 331, 332, 333, and 334. Graded: S/U. These courses must be taken prior to or concurrently with SW 488-489.

SW 488 - 489

Practicum Seminar I, II

An integrative seminar designed to help the student bring together material from course work and field experience into a coherent professional role. The field placement is the primary focus for discussion. Growing self awareness and a beginning frame of reference for professional practice are emphasized. Prerequisites: SW 202, 235, 236, 331, 332, 333, 334. SW 488-89 must be taken concurrently with or following SW 486-87.

SW 495

Senior Seminar

A social work program comprehensive seminar providing the student the opportunity to examine, in detail, her integration of the knowledge, values and skills of the profession. Seminar presentations and discussions, along with a major research paper are required of each student. Prerequisites: Declared social work major in the department, senior status and permission of the social work program director. (Formerly SW 499)

SW 497

Independent Study in Social Work

Independent readings, individualized seminars and directed field projects in selected areas of interest. These individualized study programs are designed to meet the special interests and needs of students. Prerequisites: SW 202 and approval of the instructor and the department chair. May be repeated for credit with a different topic for a maximum of six hours. Only six hours of independent study (including 497) may be earned in the department.