What is Social Work?
According to the International Federation of Social Workers “The social work profession promotes social change, problem solving in human relationships and the empowerment and liberation of people to enhance well-being. Utilizing theories of human behavior and social systems, social work intervenes at the points where people interact with their environments. Principles of human rights and social justice are fundamental to social work.”
Social Work is not only a major, but a way of life. Social Work is the professional activity of helping individuals, families, couples, groups, communities and/or organizations improve,strengthen, and enhance functioning; to empower people and the environments and systems with which they interact. Did you know that 85% of the psychotherapists in the United States are Clinical Social Workers? The Department of Veterans Affairs is the largest employer of social workers. V.A. employs 6,000 social workers to assist veterans and their families with counseling, substance abuse treatment, crisis intervention, and other services.
For More Information:
Sylvia Senften, EdD
Associate Professor of Social Work
Shotwell Hall S304
What Careers Exist in Social Work?
Individuals who major in Social Work obtain employment in:
• child welfare
• community organization
• criminal justice/corrections
• developmental disabilities
• health care
• mental health
• higher education
• school social work
Courses currently offered comply with the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) mandated curriculum for a
BSW program applying for accreditation. Specialized elective topics are also offered on a regular basis. Courses
include Ethnicity, Diversity and Cultural Awareness; Human Behavior and the Social Environment; Social Policy;
Social Work Practice; Crisis and Diaster; Family and Child Welfare.
General Description of the Program:
West Liberty University currently offers a minor in Social Work and expects to begin offering a major beginning in the
Fall of 2010.
What types of students might be interested in such a program?
Common characteristics for social workers include flexibility, concern for people, patience, ability to express ideas, resourcefulness, and emotional and physical energy. Ask yourself: Are you interested in people? Do you believe in human potential for growth and change? Do you have patience, perseverance, and the ability to follow through? Do you work well with people? Are you interested in your own personal growth and well-being? Are you interested in developing your problem-solving skills? Are you interested in the larger picture? If you answered yes to these questions, social work is a profession for you.
Distinctive features of the program:
West Liberty has begun the process of accrediting our Social Work Program with the Council on Social Work Accreditation (CSWE) which will allow students to graduate with a BSW (Bachelors in Social Work). Accreditation is a statement that the social work program has complied with nationally recognized standards. It is like having the “Good Housekeeping Seal of Approval.” An accredited BSW degree is required for employment in most states and for advanced standing acceptance into MSW programs. Graduating with a BSW also allows a student to sit for licensure in many states, including West Virginia. The full accreditation process takes approximately three years to
complete, however programs that are granted candidacy status are permitted to graduate students with an accredited BSW degree.
SAMPLE CURRICULUM – BACHELOR OF SOCIAL WORK
I. GENERAL STUDIES 48 cr
II. REQUIRED SOCIAL WORK COURSES 63 cr
ECON 101 – Principles of Macroeconomics
PSYC 101 – Intro to Psychology
SOC 150 – Basic Concepts of Sociology
SWK 200 – Introduction to Social Work
SWK 201 – Ethnicity, Diversity and Cultural Awareness
POLS 201 – American Government
EDUC 201 – Human Development
SS 250 – Statistics in the Social and Behavioral Sciences
SWK 300 – Social Welfare Policies and Services
SWK 306 – Counseling Theories
SWK 310 – Social Work Research Methods
SWK 400 – Social Work Practice I
SWK 401 – Social work Practice II
SWK 402 – Social Work Practice III
SWK 416 – Human Behavior and the Social Environment I
SWK 417 – Human Behavior and the Social Environment II
SWK 480 – Social Work Field Placement I (9 cr)
SWK 484 – Social Work Field Placement Seminar
III. RESTRICTED ELECTIVES from the following to total 128 cr (must be approved by adviser)
SPAN 101 – Beginning Spanish I
SPAN 102 – Beginning Spanish II
CJ 238 – Juvenile Delinquency and Juvenile Justice
HS 300 – Understanding Death and Dying
SOC 302 – Marriage and Family Relations
SS 302 – W.Va. and the Appalachian Region
SWK 304 – Growth and personal Awareness
EDU 315 – Multicultural Education
SOC 320 – Victimology
SWK 308 – Crisis and Disaster Intervention
GEO 400 – Cultural Geography
HS 400 – Health Care Delivery Systems
SWK 403 – Family and Child Welfare
SWK 441 – Diagnosis in Mental Health