Social Work, B.S.W.

The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program provides students the knowledge and skills to succeed in the social work field. The BSW program will prepare students for generalist social work practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities. The BSW program emphasizes social justice for underserved and/or vulnerable populations. Students who obtain the BSW degree may apply for a Certification in Social Work with the State of New Jersey. Students may also continue to graduate school for a Master of Social Work as advanced standing students.

There is a separate admission process for the BSW major at NJCU once admitted to NJCU general admissions. Students are encouraged to contact the BSW Program Director to apply to the BSW Program. The application process requires review of the following: 1) grade point average of 2.5; 2) resume; and 3) essay explaining the applicant’s motivations to major in social work and acknowledgement of the rigorous internship requirement.

Program Curriculum                                                                                                                                   

Core curricula and the BSW program requirements will not exceed 120 credits. The BSW program requirements total 48 credits. The core curricula and BSW curricula will be described below.

             As required by NJCU, students will complete the General Education program by moving through the Tiers in order—first Tier I, then Tier II, and finally Tier III—though some overlap may be necessary during certain semesters. Tier I consists of a required English Composition course and Math course, plus four seminar courses in the Modes of Inquiry. Tier II consists of English Composition and six seminar courses in the Modes of Inquiry. All Gen Ed students take at least two seminars (at least 6 credits) in each of the four Modes of Inquiry for a total of ten seminar courses (at least 30 credits) across Tiers I and II. All students take one Tier III capstone course (3 credits) in the final semester of General Education, however, this is built into the BSW major. Intermodal courses count toward the distribution requirements in two Modes of Inquiry. Transfer students who enter NJCU with 30 or more credits may receive Gen Ed credit for up to six Tier I courses transferred in and may take as few as four Tier II courses to reach the required total of ten Tier I and II courses (at least 30 credits).

            The BSW curricula is designed to move from courses that are concentrated in specific competency areas to achievement of holistic competency. The Foundations of Social Work class is designed to anchor students in social work and facilitate professional development. The BSW curricula can be taken as a part-time or full-time student. The junior year or year one and two in the part-time sequence courses are organized to provide foundation professional practice, theory, policy, research, and assessment knowledge, values, and encourage critical thinking and self-reflection. The senior year or year three in the part-time program are focused on practice. It is expected that students will take general practice, skills, and complete their field practicum concurrently, although the skills course will always be required simultaneously with field practicum. The CSWE recommends that students always have at least one practice related course to be taken concurrently, so students are learning and supported while they are in their field practicum. 

Core Requirements39
SOCI SWK 302Diversity, Engagement, Inclusion, & Social Justice 3
SOCI SWK 304Policy & Advocacy: National, Global & Technological Context3
SOCI SWK 306Human Behavior in the Social Environment – Individuals & Families 3
SOCI SWK-307Human Behavior in the Social Environment II – Groups, Organizations, & Communities3
SOCI SWK 311Social Work Foundation & Ethics 3
SOCI 360Sociological Research Methods3
SOCI 344Social Change3
SOCI SWK 406 Seminar and Skills Labs I2
SOCI SWK 407 Capstone Seminar & Skills Lab II 2
SOCI SWK 410Generalist Social Work Practice I: Engagement, Assessment, & Planning Across Levels of Practice 3
SOCI SWK 411 Generalist Social Work Practice II: Intervention & Evaluation Across Levels of Practice3
SOCI SWK 416Social Work Field Practicum Part I 4
SOCI SWK 417Social Work Field Practicum Part II 14
Electives (Select 9 credits from the following:)9
SOCI 201Women and Family in Different Cultures3
SOCI 205Life in Society3
SOCI 221Human Services in Aging3
SOCI 225Class, Status and Power3
SOCI 232Sociology of the Aging3
SOCI 235Labor and Society3
SOCI 243Death and Dying3
SOCI 245Sociology of Religion3
SOCI 246Sociology of Education3
SOCI 247Native Americans3
SOCI 248Human Origins3
SOCI 252Evolution of Culture3
SOCI 253Visual Sociology3
SOCI 254Urban Sociology3
SOCI 255Juvenile Delinquency3
SOCI 257Comparative Cultures3
SOCI 259Community Organization:Theory & Practice3
SOCI 265Racial & Cultural Minorities3
SOCI 266Criminology3
SOCI 268Urban Anthropology3
SOCI 310Basic Interviewing Skills3
SOCI 341Law and Social Values3
SOCI 343Population Studies3
SOCI 346Social Structure and Personality3
SOCI 351Sociology of Law3
Total 48
1

Social work capstones and field practicum courses must be taken concurrently pursuant to the Council on Social Work Education. You must take SWK 406 and SWK 416 (fall), and SWK 407 and SWK 417 (spring) together.   

Description of Field Practicum

Field education is the signature pedagogy of social work education. Field education has separated social work from other counseling/helping professions because of the rigorous field practicum experiences that students undergo during the course of their social work education. The Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) requires a minimum of 400 supervised field practicum hour under the proper supervision in an internship. The BSW degree prepares individuals for generalist practice positions (such as casework), where you engage with clients (e.g., individuals, families, communities), assess their needs, link them to services, and monitor their progress. The NJCU BSW Program will require students to complete 450 hours, broken down as 225 hours each semester, fall and spring in the final year of the program. This averages as 15 hours per week for 15 weeks. This means that students will need to reserve two days per week in the field during their final year in the program. The program will provide some flexibility to students and supervisors to take on special projects and make adjustments to the suggested schedule as needed. There are three important roles in managing students in field practicums. First, students will have a clinical professor assigned to them. This person will teach them in their skills lab as well as oversee their progress in their internship by communicating with the student as well as their field supervisor. This professor will monitor all paperwork, such as time sheets, process recordings, and the field evaluation completed by the field practicum supervisor. The professor will be responsible for visiting the student at the agency and giving the student a final grade at the end of each semester. In order to maintain impartiality, the clinical professor will not be the Director of Field Education for the program.

The Director of Field Education is responsible for all student field placements and any decision to remove or change a student placement. In the NJCU BSW Program, Social Work Field Practicum Part I & Part II will be in one placement setting for the entire year. The purpose of one placement setting is to ensure that a student has a full year to implement knowledge, skills, values, critical thinking, and reflection in practice. The field setting is also critical for determining student growth in the program and the student’s performance is assessed mid-year and at the end of the year. The end of the year evaluation data is used for program assessment. Lastly, the University carries liability insurance for students that leave campus and go to field sites. All field processes for the program will be outlined in the NJCU BSW Program Field Manual which will be reviewed by CSWE.

Students should consult with the Director of Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) Program as a freshman for scheduling guidance and to learn how to apply to the social work major, about double-majoring in sociology and social work, and various minor options. Students should apply to the BSW program by December of sophomore year, but may apply as a freshman. Students are strongly encouraged to follow the scheduling path below, so that they will meet the Sociology core requirements by fall of junior year unless the student has made a plan with an advisor to work towards another dual major or minor(s).

Plan of Study Grid
Freshman
Semester 1Credits
ENGL 101
English Composition I
or English Composition I for English as a Second Language Students
4
INTD 101 Orientation to College 1
MATH 140
Statistics I
or Contemporary Mathematics
3
SOCI 111 Principles of Sociology 3
General Education Tier I Course 3
General Education Tier I Course 3
 Credits17
Semester 2
ENGL 102
or ESL 102
English Composition II
or
4
SOCI 233 Introduction to Social Work 3
General Education Tier I Course 3
General Education Tier I Course 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
 Credits16
Sophomore
Semester 1
Sociology Elective (200 level or higher) 3
Sociology Elective (200 level or higher) 3
SOCI 360 Sociological Research Methods 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
 Credits15
Semester 2
SOCI SWK 302 Diversity, Engagement, Inclusion, & Social Justice 3
SOCI SWK 306Human Behavior in the Social Environment: Individuals & Families 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
General Education Tier II Course 3
 Credits15
Junior
Semester 1
SOCI 344 Social Change 3
General Education Tier III Capstone Course 3
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
Sociology Elective (200 level or higher) 3
 Credits15
Semester 2
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
SOCI SWK 304Policy & Advocacy: National, Global & Technological Context 3
SOCI SWK 307Human Behavior in the Social Environment II: Groups, Organizations 3
SOCI SWK 311 Social Work Foundation & Ethics 3
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
 Credits15
Senior
Semester 1
SOCI SWK 406  Seminar and Skills Labs I 1 2
SOCI SWK 410 Generalist Social Work Practice I: Engagement, Assessment, & Planning Across Levels of Practice 3
SOCI SWK 416 Social Work Field Practicum Part I 1 4
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
 Credits15
Semester 2
SOCI SWK 407  Capstone Seminar & Skills Lab II 1 2
SOCI SWK 411 Generalist Social Work Practice II: Intervention & Evaluation Across Levels of Practice 3
SOCI SWK 417 Social Work Field Practicum Part II 1 4
Elective, Minor, or Dual Major 3
 Credits12
 Total Credits120
1

Social work capstones and field practicum courses must be taken concurrently pursuant to the Council on Social Work Education. You must take SWK 406 and SWK 416 (fall), and SWK 407 and SWK 417 (spring) together.   

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the Social Work program, students will be able to:

  1. Describe and critically evaluate the major theoretical approaches of the discipline.
  2. Describe and critically evaluate the main paradigms guiding social work inquiry.
  3. Demonstrate quantitative literacy skills and understanding of empirical research.
  4. Demonstrate writing skills through a comprehensive research project or critique of a social work research article.

In addition to the learning outcomes above, the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) identifies the following competencies and behaviors for social work students:

1. Engage in ethical and professional practice

a. Make ethical decisions by applying the standards of the NASW Code of Ethics, relevant laws and regulations, models for ethical decision-making, ethical conduct of research, and additional codes of ethics as appropriate to context.

b.  Use reflection and self-regulation to manage personal values and maintain professionalism in practice situations.

c. Demonstrate professional demeanor in behavior; appearance; and oral, written, and electronic communication.

d. Use technology ethically and appropriately to facilitate practice outcomes.

e. Use supervision and consultation to guide professional judgment and behavior.

2. Engage in diversity and difference in practice

a. Apply and communicate understanding of the importance of diversity and difference in shaping life experiences in practice at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels.

b. Present themselves as learners and engage clients and constituencies as experts of their own experiences.

c. Apply self-awareness and self-regulation.

3. Advance human rights, social, and economic justice

a. Apply their understanding of social, economic, and environmental justice to advocate for human rights at the individual and system levels; and

b. Engage in practices that advance social, economic, and environmental justice.

4. Engage in practice informed research and research informed practice

a. Use practice experience and theory to inform scientific inquiry and research.

b. Apply critical thinking to engage in analysis of quantitative and qualitative research methods and research findings.

c. Use and translate research evidence to inform and improve practice, policy, and service delivery.

5. Engage in policy practice.

a. Identify social policy at the local, state, and federal level that impacts well-being, service delivery, and access to social services.

b. Assess how social welfare and economic policies impact the delivery of and access to social services.

c. Apply critical thinking to analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice.

6. Engage with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

a. Apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment, person-in-environment, and other multidisciplinary theoretical frameworks to engage with clients and constituencies.

b. Use empathy, reflection, and interpersonal skills to effectively engage diverse clients and constituencies.

7. Assess with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

a. Collect and organize data, and apply critical thinking to interpret information from clients and constituencies.

b. Apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment,

person-in-environment, and other multidisciplinary theoretical frameworks in the analysis of assessment data from clients and constituencies.

c. Develop mutually agreed-on intervention goals and objectives based on the critical assessment of strengths, needs, and challenges within clients and constituencies. 

d. Select appropriate intervention strategies based on the assessment, research knowledge, and values and preferences of clients and constituencies.

8. Intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

a. Critically choose and implement interventions to achieve practice goals and enhance capacities of clients and constituencies.

b. Apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment, person-in-environment, and other multidisciplinary theoretical frameworks in interventions with clients and constituencies.

c. Use inter-professional collaboration as appropriate to achieve beneficial practice outcomes.

d. Negotiate, mediate, and advocate with and on behalf of diverse clients and constituencies.

e. Facilitate effective transitions and endings that advance mutually agreed-on goals.

9. Evaluate with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities

a. Select and use appropriate methods for evaluation of outcomes.

b. Apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment, person-in-environment, and other multidisciplinary theoretical frameworks in the evaluation of outcomes.

c. Critically analyze, monitor, and evaluate intervention and program processes and outcomes.

d. Apply evaluation findings to improve practice effectiveness at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels.