Social Work (SW)

SW 424 - Introduction to Social Work

Credits: 4

Introduces the learner to the field of social work with emphasis on the "person-in-environment" and attention to a range of practice approaches to understanding and assisting of the human condition. An overview of the history, values, and ethics of the profession. Includes various fields of practice in which social workers are employed. Special fee.

Equivalent(s): SW 524

SW #440A - Honors/Healthy Communities: Personal Accountability and Social Change

Credits: 4

This course utilizes theory and concepts from biology, sociology, psychology, political science, history, urban planning as well as social work to examine and promote healthy communities. Students will develop an interdisciplinary knowledge of community health and a value-based understanding of social advocacy in the community context. Important course topics include: social-economic-environmental justice, sustainable communities, community organization, community capital, and empowerment. Prereq: permission.

Attributes: Honors course; Social Science (Discovery)

SW 444 - You've Got Your Troubles, I've Got Mine

Credits: 4

A seminar for traditional first- or second-year students. Examines the many personal losses typical for students leaving home for the first time. Guest speakers from various disciplines (e.g., social work, therapeutic recreation, nursing, family studies). The various ways one may find and give informal support to others dealing with loss are explored. In addition, the personal responses allowing one to better cope with adversity and ways of expressing grief are explored. Group work brings the class together as an informal support network. Students exchange ideas in techniques used to deal with personal loss and develop an informal support network to use after the course has ended.

Attributes: Social Science (Discovery); Inquiry (Discovery); Writing Intensive Course

SW 525 - Social Welfare Policy: History of Social and Economic Justice

Credits: 4

An overview of the history and current status of social welfare policy in the United States. Considers the origins, development, and analysis of significant policies, values, attitudes and other issues related to the social welfare system and the delivery of service. Focuses on policy analysis from a social and economic justice perspective.

Attributes: Historical Perspectives(Disc)

SW 550 - Human Behavior and Social Environment I

Credits: 4

Introduces human behavior and development as it influences and is influenced by multiple factors in the social environment, including individual genetic and biological composition, race, gender, age, socioeconomic status, ethnicity, geographic location, physical appearance, and ability. How these factors operate throughout the life cycle. Provides a knowledge base and perspective to understand a client's behavior, attitude, and values in relation to the attitudes and values of the social work professional and the larger society.

Attributes: Social Science (Discovery)

SW 551 - Human Behavior and Social Environment II

Credits: 4

Agents of socialization that most significantly affect family, group, and organizational development and behavior within an ecosystems framework. Particular attention is paid to the influence of class, gender, race, ethnicity, religion, age, sexual orientation and other aspects of diversity on development and behavior of larger systems.

Attributes: Social Science (Discovery)

SW 565 - Introduction to Child Life

Credits: 4

When facing acute, chronic, or life-threatening illness and traumatic injuries, children and families have unique needs within the medical system. The purpose of this course is to provide an introduction to the theory and practice of the child life profession and family centered care. Topics include children’s emotional reactions to hospitalization, use of play, preparation, and family support, designing healing environments, and specializations within the field.

Equivalent(s): HDFS 565

SW 601 - Research Methods in Social Work

Credits: 4

Introduces students to practitioner-researcher role in social work. Critical evaluation of, and introduction to research including project design, survey and evaluative methodologies. Introduction to statistics used in research process. Each student completes an individual research project. Cannot be taken for credit after SOC 601 or PSYC 502. Prereq: SW 424 and junior or senior standing or permission. Writing intensive.

Attributes: Writing Intensive Course

Equivalent(s): PSYC 502, SOC 601, SOC 601W

SW 622 - Social Work Practice: Interventions with Individuals and Families

Credits: 4

Introduces methods and practice. Basic principles, values, and ethics, interviewing skills, problem assessment, and contracting of social work practice with individuals and families are studied. Skills training in lab sessions. Prereq: SW 424 or permission of instructor. Must have junior or senior status. Writing intensive.

Attributes: Writing Intensive Course

SW 623 - Social Work Practice: Interventions with Groups, Organizations and Communities

Credits: 4

Continuation of SW 622. Delineation and study of intervention and change strategies differentiated with individuals, groups, and communities. Prereq: SW 622. Writing intensive.

Attributes: Writing Intensive Course

SW 625 - Social Welfare Policy in a Global Context

Credits: 4

Builds on the curricular content covered in Introduction to Social Welfare Policy (SW 525). Both courses view social welfare policy as the framework from which social work services are developed and delivered. This course examines the macroeconomic context for policy analysis and advocacy and integrates policy and practice through student research and analysis of specific social problems. Policymaking is analyzed in legislative, community, organizational, and global environments emphasizing advocacy in the pursuit of social and economic justice. Prereq: SW 424, SW 525. Special fee.

SW 640 - Social Work Field Experience I

Credits: 5

Majors are placed in a social welfare setting for a minimum of 225 hours; individual arrangements with faculty coordinator. Prereq; SW 622. Special fee. (No credit toward a minor.) Cr/F.

Co-requisite: SW 640A

SW 640A - Social Work Field Experience I: Seminar

Credits: 3

This weekly seminar, held concurrently with Social Welfare Experience I, integrates the field experience with social work theory and concepts learned throughout the curriculum by class discussion, exercises, readings and written assignments. Seminar I provides an opportunity for orientation to field, an overview of field requirements, review of the Code of Ethics, and use of small group discussion for problem solving. Students learn to use supervision effectively, to participate in the helping process, and to manage their own stress. Students learn to assess the impact of policy on the client system, agency and worker and to use research to inform practice. Prereq: SW 622.

Co-requisite: SW 640

SW 641 - Social Work Field Experience II

Credits: 5

A continuation of SW 640 with a minimum of 225 hours. Prereq: SW 640. (No credit toward a minor.) Cr/F.

Co-requisite: SW 641A

SW 641A - Social Work Field Experience II: Seminar

Credits: 3

This is a continuation of Social Welfare Field Experience I: SW 640A and builds upon the concepts presented in the student's first field practice seminar. This seminar meets weekly for one and a half hours and is held concurrently with the field placement. It is designed to integrate the field experience with social work concepts through class discussion, reading and written assignments. Topics include but are not limited to, understanding and using agency structure to enhance client interactions, preparing client assessment and other documents, enhancing the client-worker therapeutic interaction, effective use of supervision, effective use of self in practice, prevention of burn-out, termination with clients and with agency staff, and values and ethics. Prereq: SW 640/SW 640A.

Co-requisite: SW 641

SW 650 - Exploring Social Justice and Cultural Competency Using an Experiential Learning Approach

Credits: 4

This course explores the use of experiential activities to address social justice issues and cultural competency. Students will experience an interactive activity-based approach to build self-awareness and techniques for working with specific client groups. The course focuses on methods and activities using metaphoric development an facilitation to promote dialogue and reflection. (can be used to satisfy SW Distribution Requirement).

SW 660 - Exploring Issues in Housing and Homelessness

Credits: 4

This course examines the meaning we attach to shelter in our society, and will examine multiple perspectives on the issues of housing and homelessness. The course will begin with a macro perspective and will draw on economic, humanistic, and historical perspectives to respond to this question, is housing a right? Students will also examine community development approaches to housing and their neighborhood effects. The course will conclude with an in-depth look at the complexities of homelessness.

SW 697 - Special Topics in Social Welfare

Credits: 4

Seminar for advanced majors. Topics may include: Alcohol and Alcoholism, Drugs and Chemical Dependency, Income Maintenance, Health Care, Child Welfare, Aging, Mental Health, or Developmental Disabilities. or study travel experiences. May be repeated for different topics. Prereq: permission. Special fee for course trip.

Repeat Rule: May be repeated up to 1 time.

SW 702 - Aging and Society

Credits: 4

This course is designed to formalize students with biological, psychological, and sociological perspectives of aging and social services and policies for older people. This course covers a broad range of theories and contemporary issues in the field of aging. It also focuses on the strengths and limitations of existing programs and policies such as Social Security, Medicare, Medicaid, Supplemental Security Income, and other community services. Comparisons to developments in other countries will be made throughout the course to provide a broader context for understanding aging and programs/policies in the U.S.

SW 704 - Adolescents with Emotional and Behavioral Challenges

Credits: 4

This course focuses on the characteristics and needs of youth with emotional and behavioral challenges based upon socio-cultural and ecological theories, and provides exposure to family- and youth-driven practices and approaches that represent System of Care values and principles.

SW 705 - Child and Adolescent Risks and Resiliency: Program, Policy and Practice

Credits: 4

Examination of the major policy and program questions of child welfare with a focus on child care and protection, adoption and foster care, juvenile delinquency, service delivery, and concepts of treatment in public and private programs. Prereq: junior, senior status or permission.

SW 706 - Social Action in the Dominican Republic

Credits: 4

This course examines issues of culture, poverty, social development and social justice in the Dominican Republic through both service learning work and through preparatory and reflective class sessions and discussions. Students will examine social and economic development issues within a global framework and will explore efforts to improve conditions on this island nation. The service learning component includes working on a designated construction project and volunteering in a local elementary school. Students will also collaborate with community leaders to learn more about social, cultural and historical issues and will engage in a variety of cross-cultural activities. Students will engage with the local Haitian immigrant community, tour local schools and orphanages, and visit historical areas including the Zona Colonial of Santo Domingo. The primary part of the class with take place during March spring break. Special fee.

Co-requisite: INCO 589

SW 707 - Child Maltreatment

Credits: 4

This course introduces students to advanced concepts in child welfare with an emphasis on child maltreatment assessment and child protective services. The course addresses emerging assessment practices, data informed child protective service provision, the role of technology in child welfare practice, and workforce development.

SW 710 - SW and the Digital Age

Credits: 4

This course focuses on the ever-changing landscape of technology as it relates to the Social Work field. Students will explore topics such as telehealth, online communities, assistive technology as well as digital advocacy. Ethical implications of the integration of technology into Social Work will be explored throughout the course. Students will work independently or collaboratively at a distance to create a multi-media project focused on a topic of interest within Digital Social Work.

SW 711 - Understanding Mental Illness

Credits: 4

An overview of the public mental health system focusing on people affected by severe and persistent mental illness. Reviews the current service system and its history; major mental illness, psychosocial rehabilitation, and treatment; and community support systems. Prereq: junior, senior status or permission.

SW 712 - Understanding Developmental Disabilities

Credits: 4

Analysis of the complex social contexts of people with developmental disabilities. Explores and questions traditional approaches and the current system. Examines family and community services and resources. Prereq: junior, senior status or permission.

SW 713 - School Social Work

Credits: 4

The course examines the school as a social institution that serves to educate and socialize children into US society and the role of the social worker in the school setting. Readings, activities, and discussions provide practical skills and theory for school social work practice. The course content addresses the history of school social work integrating social work values into a school setting, systemic needs within school settings, the importance of networking and professional collaboration, and working with diverse and at-risk youth and their families. Students also examine the role of school social workers in helping students, schools and families adjust to and cope with trauma, special education needs, and related topics.

SW 714 - Drugs and Alcohol: Use, Misuse and Addiction

Credits: 4

This course examines a) historical, cultural, social aspects of alcohol, b) impact of alcohol on body and behavior, c) progression of drinking and the treatment and prevention of alcoholism, d) impact of addiction on families. Prereq: junior, senior status or permission.

SW 715 - Practice with Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender People

Credits: 4

Sexual minorities constitute the minority group social workers most consistently encounter wherever they work. Addresses practice with gay, lesbian, and bisexual people on both professional and personal levels for the social worker. The readings include theoretical, experimental, clinical, counseling, and personal perspectives, as well as providing an introduction to the gay/lesbian/bisexual subculture. A unit on gender minorities is included. Students are also required to explore and examine their own attitudes and assumptions about gays, lesbians, bisexuals, and gender minorities. Prereq: junior, senior status or permission. (Also offered as SW 815.)

SW 785 - Study Abroad: Comparative Social Welfare Systems

Credits: 4

Students examine the historical development of social welfare in another country including an analysis of the underlying values and attitudes that dictate practice and policy decisions. Includes agency site visits, lectures, themed readings, and visits to important cultural sites. Prereq: SW 424 and SW 525; junior, senior status or permission. Special fee.

Co-requisite: INCO 589

SW 795 - Independent Study in Social Service

Credits: 1-6

Independent work under department faculty guidance. Enrollment by permission only through arrangement with specific faculty. May be repeated with a different focus. Prereq: 12 hours social service coursework; permission. Cr/F. Special fee.

Repeat Rule: May be repeated for a maximum of 8 credits.

SW 796 - Independent Study: Teaching Assistantship

Credits: 1-6

Participating students provide leadership and supervision for small groups of social work majors in social work practice simulations. Student teaching assistants work closely with, and under the direction of, department faculty. Prereq: senior status; 16 hours in social work; and permission. Cr/F.

Repeat Rule: May be repeated for a maximum of 8 credits.

SW 797 - Special Topics in Social Welfare

Credits: 4

Seminar for advanced majors cross-listed with SW 897. Topics may include: alcohol and alcoholism, drugs and chemical dependency, income maintenance, health care, child welfare, aging, mental health, or developmental disabilities or study travel experiences. May be repeated for different topics. Prereq: permission.

Repeat Rule: May be repeated for a maximum of 12 credits.

SW 797H - Honors Thesis

Credits: 2-4

Working with an assigned faculty adviser, students propose and develop a thesis project for both oral and written presentation before the end of the semester. Prereq for 797H: admission to the SW honors program; senior status, 16 hours in social work and permission.

Attributes: Honors course

Repeat Rule: May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

SW #798H - Honors Thesis

Credits: 2-4

Working with an assigned faculty adviser, students propose and develop a thesis project for both oral and written presentation before the end of the semester. Prereq: satisfactory completion of 797H; senior status, 16 hours in social work and permission.

Attributes: Honors course

Repeat Rule: May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.