Master of Social Work
Simmons's nationally regarded Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) Program provides a rigorous clinical social work education for women and men. The Program is highly respected for its fieldwork component, with internships three days per week in both years of the Program. We offer a progressive, hands-on curriculum that infuses education and practice with social justice values and multicultural perspectives.
SW401A: Social Policy and Services (required)
This two-semester course is an introduction to social welfare policy, and to the historical and contemporary forces that have shaped its evolution. The first semester focuses on the history of social welfare in the United States. Basic conceptual tools for analysis of social policy are introduced with a focus on the relationship of social policy to social work. In both semesters special emphasis is placed on understanding issues of poverty, racism, and other forms of oppression, and on understanding their relationship to social welfare policy. Two consecutive semesters of SW401 are required: SW401A and SW401B. Students must register for the same section each semester.
SW401B: Social Policy and Services (required)
The second semester of this course builds on learning from the first, using analytic tools developed in the previous semester to focus on social welfare policies as they affect current social work practice and society Prerequisite SW401A. Two consecutive semesters of SW401 are required: SW401A and SW401B. Students must register for the same section each semester.
SW402: Information Literacy Program (required)
This online course focuses on information literacy for graduate social work students. All students must complete SW402. 0 credits
SW407: Community Politics: Urban Leadership Program students only.
This course orients students to the structure and function of government at the federal level. Topics include an introduction to key concepts of government and the relationship of federal, state, and local levels. Current news and events will help illustrate how work gets done. 0 credits. If the needs of the Urban Leadership students are fulfilled, this class may be open to interested MSW students.
SW408: Oral Presentation Skills: Urban Leadership Program students only.
Social Workers often need skills in public speaking to effectively perform their roles. In case presentations, board meetings, legislative hearings, and team meetings, social workers must communicate their ideas in a clear and succinct manner. This course addresses the basics of public speaking, types of speeches, and helps prepare students for presentations that are either prepared or spontaneous. 0 credits. If the needs of the Urban Leadership students are fulfilled, this class may be open to interested MSW students.
SW409: Realities of Racism and Oppression in Today's World (required)
This course is an intensive examination of the dynamics of various forms of oppression in American society. The selection of the oppression of racism is deliberate. This acknowledges a visible stigma in current society of color, and the ongoing, complex and confusing dialogue about race. The course is organized around critical race theory and theories of intersectionality. Levels of analyses include institutional, psychological and applied perspectives. The course explores the costs of white racism to all individuals and its differential impact on whites and people of color. It provides a framework for confronting racism/oppression more resourcefully on personal and professional levels. The importance of power and the dynamics of domination and subordination in all forms of oppression will be explored. Practice issues will be examined in relation to multi-level interventions (i.e. individual, group, organizational and institutional).
SW411A: Human Behavior in the Social Environment (required)
Theoretical perspectives inevitably inform social work practice. This two-semester course helps students learn and critically engage with formal theoretical approaches to individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities. Students learn the language and logic of selected developmental, systemic-ecological, and political approaches to human behavior. The first semester focuses on ecological and environmental and other social theories that shape individual behavior. Two consecutive semesters of SW411 are required: SW411A and SW411B. Students must register for the same section each semester.
SW411B: Human Behavior in the Social Environment (required)
The second semester of HBSE focuses on development throughout the life cycle. Developmental theories such as object relations, cognitive development, and self-psychology are presented as an integrated approach to an individual's development. The importance of attachment throughout the life cycle is presented. Students are introduced to the growing body of literature on neurobiological development. Personal strengths, societal inequities and the rich diversity of human experience is emphasized. Prerequisite SW411A. Two consecutive semesters of SW411 are required: SW411A and SW411B. Students must register for the same section each semester.
SW414: Assessment and Diagnosis (required)
This course focuses on current systems for diagnosis and assessment in mental health. The current model is examined for its strengths and limitations. The importance of a five axis diagnosis is underscored. The course addresses the interrelations among biological, psychological, and socio-cultural systems. Students are challenged to learn diagnostic assessment in a way consistent with a multicultural and strengths perspective. Prerequisite SW446B.
SW421A: Social Work Practice (required)
This two-semester course exposes students to selected generalist practice theories for social workers. The course will examine various levels of intervention, practice settings, and theoretical perspectives. Students are introduced to the general processes that are common to every client system level: preparation and engagement, differential use of self, assessment, contracting, intervention planning, intervention evaluation, and termination of services that are applicable no matter the setting or client group. Considered over two semesters is work with individuals, families, groups and the social context in which these client groups exist. A special concern is the impact of diversity and oppression for client and worker. Emphasis of this semester is mastering multi-level assessment. Actual practice dilemmas are examined through case discussions, videotapes, role-play, and other exercises. Two consecutive semesters of SW421 are required: SW421A and SW421B. Students must register for the same section each semester. Must be concurrent with SW446A.
SW421B: Social Work Practice (required)
The second semester of the yearlong course will focus on the action of social work practice, and on various ways of reflecting on that action. The course will continue and deepen application of the basic processes of social work practice to a wide range of issues and problems. In the first semester, particular attention has been given to a multilevel approach to assessment and intervention, and developing the skills sets that facilitate the helper-client relationship. In this semester, we will continue to deepen knowledge and skill in assessment, intervention and differential use of self, while introducing a variety of practice circumstances and contexts including societal and family violence, trauma, substance dependence and several theoretical and practice approaches including cognitive behavioral and psychodynamic. We will examine practice situations through case discussions, videotapes, role-plays, and experiential exercises.
Prerequisite SW421A. Two consecutive semesters of SW421 are required: SW421A and SW421B. Students must register for the same section each semester.
SW424: Advanced Clinical Practice (required)
Contemporary clinical social work practice is ever evolving and is shaped by a number of stakeholders. Within this context of transition and change sound clinical social work practice is culturally responsive, flexible, and demonstrably effective, and when appropriate, community-based. Building on foundational knowledge and skills mastered from the first year social work practice course, this course will have four foci: 1) professional use of self; 2) the professional/therapeutic relationship; 3) continued development and refinement of more sophisticated assessment skills; and 4) mastery of brief/time-effective approaches to intervention/treatment. The goal is for students to acquire skill sets related to a variety of practice frameworks/theoretical perspectives and to learn how to decide which particular approach is most beneficial for each specific client in achieving positive outcomes. Prerequisite SW421B.
SW425: Family Approaches in Clinical Social Work
This course focuses on advanced ways to conceptualize, assess, and intervene in families. Modern and postmodern theories will be examined, practiced, and critiqued. Practice examples will include nontraditional and traditional families, and applications of family and systems theories to work with individuals and dyads will additionally be discussed. Developing one's own clinical voice and attending to ethnicity, class, and other social identities will be emphasized. Students are encouraged to bring case materials and to take full advantage of varied experiential learning techniques. Prerequisite SW421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW438: Alcohol, Drugs & Social Work Practice
The focus of the class is on exploring the nature, etiology and treatment of substance abuse disorders and how they relate to social work practice. Students are introduced to different theories that frame substance abuse treatment models, including harm reduction neurobiology and the traditional medical model. Students explore self-help programs such as AA and NA and other modes of treatment, including CBT, motivational interviewing, outpatient treatment and psychopharmacology. Policy, prevention and education issues are also addressed.
Prerequisite SW411 B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW441: Social Work Research (required)
In this introductory course, students examine the research process as it applies to the specialized interests and needs of social work. Illustrations are chosen from the studies of social work practice. The course is designed to enable students to be critical consumers of research, to understand the principles and process of research and the evaluation of practice, to become familiar with ethical considerations when designing and implementing a project, and to be capable of participating in practice related research. Sections with some online class sessions are designated as "blended".
SW446A: Field Education Year 1: Foundation (required)
Weekly agency based field placement, which focuses on foundation social work skills. Students complete agency based assignments in addition to process recordings and assessments.
- SW446A section 01 is for students doing a 24 hour per week field placement (Sept-May)
- SW446A section 02 is for students doing a 16 hour per week field placement. (Sept-Aug)
The field department must approve all 16 hour placements prior to a student registering. Must be concurrent with Social Work Practice (421A).
SW446B: Field Education Year 1: Foundation (required)
Continuation of SW446A, weekly agency based field placement which focuses on foundation social work skills. Students complete agency based assignments in addition to process recordings and assessments.
- SW446B section 01 is for students doing a 24 hour per week field placement
- SW446B section 02 is for students doing a 16 hour per week field placement
The field department must approve all 16 hour placements prior to a student registering. Prerequisite is SW446 A. Course must be concurrent with Social Work Practice (421B)
SW447A: Fall Semester Field Education Year II: Advanced (required)
SW447A must be concurrent with SW424.
- SW447A section 01 is for students doing a 24 hour per week field placement
- SW447A section 02 is for students doing a 16 hour per week field placement
The field department must approve all 16 hour placements prior to a student registering.
The goal of field education is to learn the application of theoretical concepts and social work principles and values learned in the classroom to clinical practice. Field education provides supervised learning of advanced practice skills with individuals, families and groups in a variety of clinical settings.
SW447B: Spring Semester Field Education Year II: Advanced (required class)
SW447B must be concurrent with a Clinical Practice elective.
- SW447B section 01 is for students doing a 24 hour per week field placement
- SW447B section 02 is for students doing a 16 hour per week field placement
The field department must approve all 16 hour placements prior to a student registering.
The goal of field education is to learn the application of theoretical concepts and social work principles and values learned in the classroom to clinical practice. Field education provides supervised learning of advanced practice skills with individuals, families and groups in a variety of clinical settings.
SW447C: Summer Semester Field Education Year II: Advanced (advanced standing only)
The goal of field education is to learn the application of theoretical concepts and social work principles and values learned in the classroom to clinical practice. Field education provides supervised learning of advanced practice skills with individuals, families and groups in a variety of clinical settings. This course section is for Advanced Standing students only in their summer semester of study.
- For the One Year Placement Option Field course, please see SW547 Field Education
- For the Advanced Standing Field course, please see SW596 Field Education
SW451: Leadership Skills for Social Work Practice (required for Urban Leadership students) Urban Leadership Students only.
The course will expose students to a working definition of leadership and the various contexts in which leadership skills are exercised. Beginning with a vision of leadership, students will have the opportunity to examine their own leadership skills, learn to understand leadership in an urban organizational context, explore leadership practices in multicultural environments and reflect on their own multiple identities and their influence on leadership. In addition, the similarities between social work skills and leadership skills will be discussed. This course meets the requirement for a social action course. Must be concurrent with SW446B.
SW452: Leadership in Action for Social Work Practice (required for Urban Leadership students) Urban Leadership Students only.
The course will expose students to practical examples of the various contexts of social work leadership. The focus of SW 452 will be to apply the theoretical concepts studied in SW 451 to current case examples and real "live" leadership challenges. Students will identify an adaptive challenge in their current placement and analyze the individual, cultural, and institutional factors that contribute to the identified problem. In small group discussions, students will discuss these adaptive challenges in detail and develop action plans to address the problem. Speakers, role plays, and small group exercises will give students the opportunity to integrate the theoretical/ conceptual framework of leadership to their daily practices as social work leaders in urban environments. Prerequisite is SW451. Must be concurrent with SW447B.
SW458: Advocacy &Social Action in Child &Family Welfare
This course is designed to provide an in-depth analysis of the needs of children and their families, child and family policy and practices. The course examines definitions of the family and how such definitions influence the development of policies and services. Societal responses to address the needs of children and families will be explored with a focus on the broad range of child and family policies, services and practices that support family, supplement the roles of family, or substitute for family when families are unable to care for their children. Students are required to identify gaps in services, issues of social injustice or oppression and develop a social action or advocacy agenda to effect improvement in the availability or delivery of services for clients. This course meets the requirement for a social action course. Prerequisite is SW401A&B.
SW462: Advanced Group Work with Vulnerable Populations
This course builds on theories and skills learned in SW577. Focusing on vulnerable client systems in an array of settings, students will further develop the capacity to promote mutual aid by responding to and catalyzing group dynamics and process. Additional attention will be paid to the impacts of difference amongst group members, and between the worker and the group members. Through action and reflection, participants will examine their own group work practice very closely through the use of experiential exercises, journaling, and critical incident analysis, and by hearing about their colleagues' work. Students must have an ongoing group to facilitate or observe in order to benefit from this class. Prerequisite is SW577. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW463: Advocacy and Social Action with Disability and Chronic Illness
The course focuses on issues and interventions regarding disability and chronic illness that affect adults and children physically, cognitively, and/or emotionally. Students gain understanding of historical and contemporary experiences of that population from the perspectives of their oppression and their response to oppression through rights and self-advocacy movements. Philosophical and practical frameworks studied include civil rights, inclusion, interdependence, and universal design in the built and social environments. Techniques are discussed for actions as advocates and allies with individuals, as social activists in coalitions, and as policy change agents. Prerequisite is SW401 A&B. This course meets the requirement for a social action elective.
SW471: Spirituality in Clinical Social Work
What does it mean to integrate spirituality into one's social work practice? What models and forms of spirituality are appropriate and meaningful today? This class addresses how to best define, integrate, and use spiritual practices that will uphold the integrity and authenticity of the client, community, and practitioner. Readings, discussion, case presentations, and experiential exercises are used to deepen one's comfort level with spirituality in social work practice. Prerequisite is SW 411B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW474: Conversational Spanish for Social Workers
This interactive course gives students the opportunity to develop conversational Spanish skills from the start. Social work-related vocabulary and idiomatic expressions are introduced and practiced in authentic, real-life professional situations starting in the first class. Please note, a verbal proficiency level test must be taken prior to starting the course and a group of students at the similar level is needed to run this class. This class is a one credit enrichment class as of Fall 2010. It no longer meets an elective requirement.
SW474B: Intermediate Spanish for Social Workers
Students in this course will focus on further developing their listening, speaking, reading, and writing skills through a variety of activities. They will continue to study grammar and vocabulary and increase their Spanish language skills for active communication in social work and health care settings. The course will begin with a general review of elementary Spanish grammatical structures (simple verb tenses such as present, past &future). Students will increase their verbal and listening comprehension skills, practice intermediate level Spanish vocabulary, health-care and social work-related vocabulary, and complex grammatical structures necessary to communicate effectively in a wide variety of situations in social, health-care, and social work settings. This class is a one-credit enrichment class and does not meet an elective requirement.
SW475: Narrative Approaches
This course explores newer systematic approaches to work with groups, families, and individuals. Narrative/constructivist approaches that are often applicable to short-term work are examined. Students will also consider what it means to think of treatment as involving the co-construction of new narratives. The course incorporates experiential learning and makes use of student case material. Prerequisite SW421A. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW478: Social Work Practice in Healthcare
The course focuses on knowledge and skills essential for practice in health care settings including: understanding psycho-social influences on illness and the disease process; clinical analysis of problems, such as ethical dilemmas or end of life issues; the need to respond quickly in a fast moving system; knowledge in the scientific advances in health care as well as alternative therapies; intervening in multiple systems and the need to approach a situation from both macro and micro perspectives. Practice skills include rapid assessment tools, brief focused treatment, and "care mapping" strategies for a range of acute and chronic health issues across the life span. Course format includes students' case materials, live patient interviews, and guest lecturers. Prerequisite SW421B. This course meets the requirements for a clinical practice elective.
SW482: Domestic Violence and Family Welfare
This course is concerned with intimate partner violence with particular attention to the meaning of such violence in and for families. We will look at this subject both as social work practitioners and as people with an academic or research interest. Students will learn about current criminal justice, child protective, and health system responses to domestic violence, and will practice interviewing skills. We will also consider some of the important controversies in the field. Each student will select, study, and write about a particular topic or area. Prerequisite is SW411B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW483: Cognitive Behavioral Approaches and Treatment
The object of this course is to provide a working knowledge of the basic principles and specific techniques of a contemporary multi-modal approach to cognitive-behavioral therapy with consideration of its integration with other therapeutic approaches. Issues presented include: substance abuse, anger, interpersonal relationships, stress, anxiety disorders, depression, personality disorders with an emphasis on borderline personality disorder and issues of affect regulation. Prerequisite is SW421A. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW487: Legal &Ethical Issues in Clinical Social Work Practice
Using case based material and the Socratic Method, this course provides an understanding of legal and ethical issues confronted by social workers in clinical practice. The course includes an overview of basic legal concepts and principles as well as an examination of the NASW Code of Ethics. Students are expected to develop a systematic reasoning process through which values conflicts within clinical practice are addressed constructively and productively. Topics include informed consent and refusal; confidentiality and privacy; capacity and competence, guardianship and conservatorship; duty to warn/protect; assisted suicide and euthanasia; malpractice and risk management issues and mandated reporting for child, elder and disabled abuse and neglect.
Prerequisite is SW421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW494: Multiple Faces of Trauma
Understanding and intervening with trauma theoretically and clinically is a critical skill for clincial social workers. The course examines trauma both interpersonal and communal in various contexts and in relation to various vulnerable populations: people at war, women, residents of violence-torn communities. Acute traumatic events as well as the impact of persistent, developmental and historic trauma are examined. Students explore some of the theoretical and clinical controversies in the field and are asked to apply their learning to case situations.
Prerequisite is SW421A. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW501: Social Work Practice with Older Adults
This course is intended to support students' interest in gerontological social work practice, and to provide a solid foundation for assessment and intervention with older adults in direct service settings. Students will develop their ability to respectfully engage a broad range of older clients, will build bio-psychosocial assessment and treatment planning skills, will learn intervention skills and approaches that will enable them to effectively intervene to address common presenting problems, will develop greater understanding of clinical/ethical issues that are specific to treatment with elders, will build specialized knowledge for practice, and will increase their familiarity with various gerontological social work practice roles and settings. Each class will include time for informal case presentations, allowing students to share their work and its challenges and to take part in collective problem solving in order to build their repertoire of practice skills. Prerequisite is 421A. This course meets the requirements for a clinical practice elective.
SW507: Developing an Interdisciplinary Approach to Health Management for Older Adults
Health management for older adults is a major issue in today's society. Policy, economics, organizational structure, and clinical care are intermingled in responding on societal, institutional, and clinical levels. This course challenges creative and inquisitive students to approach the health of older adults by addressing these complex issues. It will focus on effective outcomes and understanding the range of roles professionals may adopt, as well as providing the knowledge base and skill set needed for interdisciplinary professional practice. Students and faculty from various disciplines will use a case study approach as the primary teaching model. Prerequisite is SW421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective. Enrollment is limited to 5 SSW students. The course is taught at the Harvard Medical Education Building on Longwood Avenue.
SW509: Evaluation in Social Work Practice (required)
Building on the concepts and principles from SW 441 this course prepares students in basic principles of practice and program evaluation and their application to social work practice in agency settings. Using their agency settings as laboratories, students learn the major approaches to evaluation (needs assessment, process, and outcome) with attention to the struggles, tensions, and ambiguities related to current evaluation models and agency demands for evaluation. Prerequisite is SW441 Concurrent with SW447A or B.
SW523: Advocacy and Social Action for Professional Social Workers
Relevant theories and strategies of social and political action that promote social justice within organizations and the larger community are the focus of this course. Students gain understanding of policy practice theory and skills in regard to social, economic, political, and organizational systems, and use this knowledge to then influence, formulate, and advocate for policy changes to meet the needs of clients. Students develop skills to create change at the client, agency, community, and/or societal level that is founded on the principles and ideals of social, distributive, political, and economic justice. Prerequisite is SW401A&B. This course meets the requirement for a social action elective.
SW528: Child and Adolescent Trauma
An advanced seminar addressing psychological, sociological, legal, and ecological aspects of family violence in its varied forms, especially in the sexual, physical, and psychological abuse of children and adolescents, as well as wife battering. Theories of and research on intra-familial and extra-familial abuse are discussed. Counter-transference phenomena are identified and alternate forms of treatment are explored. Prerequisite is 421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW529: Forensic Social Work with Adolescents &Adults
This seminar is designed for students in placement at or considering a career in the criminal justice system. Juvenile delinquency and adult sociopathy will be given equal focus. Teaching methods will include lecture, videos and case presentations, and will explore both the characterological issues of people who commit crimes as well as effective interventions. The work of forensic social work experts, specifically Garbarino, Gilligan, and Meloy, will be examined and discussed. Prerequisite is SW421B. this course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW530: Introduction to Grant Writing: Urban Leadership Program students.
This course exposes students to the principles and skills necessary for effective grant writing. Course topics include identifying the priorities of funders, developing ideas for a winning proposal, and writing succinctly and clearly. Each student prepares a grant proposal for the final course assignment. 0 credits. Required for all Year 2 Urban Leadership Program students concurrent with field placement. If the needs of the Urban Leadership students are fulfilled, this class may be open to interested MSW students.
SW531: Key Concepts for Fundraising and Development: Urban Leadership Program students.
Raising unrestricted dollars for agency budgets is a crucial skill in today's practice world. Focusing on the practitioner as fundraiser, students will learn about social entrepreneurship and the key factors for making fundraising decision. 0 credits. If the needs of the Urban Leadership students are fulfilled, this class may be open to interested MSW students.
SW532: Demystifying Agency Budgets: Urban Leadership Program students.
Direct practitioners are often confused by agency budgets. In this mini course you will learn to read and understand a standard agency budget. Emphasis will be on key indicators that guide reviewing budgets such as revenues, expenses, cash flow, restricted and unrestricted dollars. 0 credits. If the needs of the Urban Leadership students are fulfilled, this class may be open to interested MSW students.
SW534: Introduction to Supervision: Urban Leadership Program students.
This mini course will focus on the fundamentals of supervision including assessment of supervisees, contracting, assignments, and supervision techniques and strategies. 0 credits. MSW students may enroll if open seats remain after ULP students enroll.
SW538: Radical Social Action: Don't Mourn, Organize!
The economic and social systems in this country are in crisis and social workers are frequently asked to continue to "do more" with less time and resources. This class will attempt to examine some of the root causes of the crisis and develop action plans, which draw upon various models of empowerment theory and practice. Particular attention will be focused upon the Paulo Freire conceptual framework as it applies to organizing models in working class communities. Students will have the opportunity to meet experienced community organizers and learn about successful social justice campaigns here in Boston and in Latin America. Prerequisite is SW 401A&B. This course meets the requirement for a social action elective.
SW539: Social Work in the Schools
The course outlines the unique and demanding role that School Social Workers play in our public schools as the primary providers of mental health services, crisis intervention, teacher training and community and parent outreach. Students in this course will identify and explore critical issues related to School Social Work such as: confidentiality, school culture and climate, peer aggression, school violence and policies such as "No Child Left Behind." Students will learn to create and carry out school-based social work interventions. Students taking this course will be expected to participate in the learning process through discussions, interviews, intervention evaluations and case presentations. Prerequisite is SW421A. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW545: Political Action and Strategies for Professional Social Workers
The course is designed to help students learn, in depth, about the policy-making process at the federal level, and to develop skills for political action. The course includes seminars and workshops taught by faculty from Simmons SSW, George Washington University, and George Mason University. Other speakers will include key leaders and advocates in policy and lobbying organizations, as well as professionals from the NASW. Other goals include learning about the health care system in the United States and, specifically, the Medicaid Program. Prerequisites are SW401A&B. This course meets the Social Action requirement. Classes will be held at Simmons College and in Washington, D.C. Travel and housing expenses are in addition to the course cost.
SW547A &B Field Education- One Year Placement Option
Requires Instructor permission.
The goal of field education is the application of theoretical concepts and social work principals and values learned in the classroom to clinical practice. Field education provides supervised learning of advanced practice skills with individuals, families and groups in a variety of clinical settings. This course section is 32 hrs/4-days-per-week fall and spring semesters. Concurrent required courses are SW424 in fall and a clinical practice elective in spring. Enrollment in SW547 requires advisor approval.6 Credits per semester.
SW553: International Social Work
The course will focus on advocacy and social action from a global perspective. Themes pertinent to international social work in developing countries, such as poverty, hunger, education, globalization, sustainable development, colonialism, and imperialism will be addressed. In addition, the role of civil society, non-governmental organizations, the United Nations, the World Bank, WTO, and IMF in eradicating these conditions will be explored and analyzed using a social justice and human rights perspective in developing countries. In this course, students will also learn about what constitutes international social work, social action and advocacy, and the role of social work in promoting change. Students will be required to develop and implement a project that involves some aspect of advocacy and social action. Prerequisite is SW401A&B. This course meets the requirement for a social action course.
SW554: Healthcare Policy and Social Action
In this course students will gain understanding of health care policy and health care services in the U. S. The culture of illness and society's response to health care needs of individuals will be examined. We will also examine historical and contemporary health policy, as well as social, economic, political, and cultural theories of health and illness, poverty and social justice related to affordability, availability and accessibility of health care services. Managed care models, health maintenance organizations, community health centers, and private practice in health care, financing health care through private and public funding streams (e.g., Medicaid, Medicare, SCHIP, Employer provided, etc.) will also be analyzed for their utility. This course will focus on theories and practice of advocacy and, social and political action that promote social justice within organizations, the larger community, and society. Students will apply the knowledge gained to formulate, influence, and advocate for policy changes in health care delivery at the organizational and/or state and federal level. Prerequisite is SW401A&B. This course meets the requirement for a social action elective.
SW557: Clinical Practice with Immigrants and Refugees
Practice with refugees and immigrants require specialized knowledge about the unique issues of these populations. It also requires specialized adaptations and applications of services and interventions that are grounded in multiculturally responsive, flexible and when appropriate, community-based methods. This course will provide a comprehensive perspective of social work practice--a perspective that entails examination of the multiple factors that effect immigrants and refugees and relevant practice approaches. The course draws on multiple theoretical perspectives including empowerment, ecological, psychodynamic and systemic approaches to practice. Knowledge from political science and history, for example, facilitates an understanding of the influence of immigration policy on the lives of immigrants. Prerequisite is SW421A. this course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW561: Social Work Practice with Children in Schools and Therapeutic Settings
This course focuses on the knowledge and skills needed to work with children in schools and therapeutic settings. Students will learn the importance of understanding public school policy and building a strong relationship with the school's multidisciplinary team, whether employed within the public school, or as a clinician working in an outside agency. Students will learn assessment techniques, and will experience therapeutic strategies using play and art therapy methods. They will create functional behavioral assessments and behavioral intervention plans used in schools, and will study the special need's process, wraparound philosophy, strategies for engaging families and accessing community resources. Prerequisite is SW421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW566: Play Therapy: Theory and Techniques
This class is an introduction to a variety of theories and principles of play therapy. Case material, including student's own material will be used. Readings, videos, case discussions, and experiential activities will be used to deepen the student's understanding of theory and technique. Students will be encouraged to gain comfort in their work with children and to explore their own theoretical orientation. Upon completion, students will have a clear foundation from which to treat children of all ages. Prerequisite is SW421B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.
SW569: Advanced Standing Seminar
Required for students in the Advanced Standing program, this course is designed to provide a bridge to the concentration year clinical curriculum and field placement. A strong emphasis is on exploring the development of a professional social work identity and on supporting student's increasing self-awareness and ability to learn from practice experience. The course will focus on broadening the capacity for the use of self, promoting reflective practice, conceptualizing various theoretical perspectives and their application to clinical work and enhancing the ability to work across difference. Concurrent with Field SW596.
SW571: Clinical Social Work with Addictions
This course will focus on the nature, etiology and treatment of addictions. It will primarily focus on alcohol, but will also address other chemical and physiological substances. The course will consider the bio-psycho-social nature of abuse and dependence. We will consider the Twelve Step treatment tradition with its spiritual component as well as other treatment approaches such as harm reduction. Prerequisite is SW411B. This course meets the requirement for a clinical practice elective.