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MSW Courses

The following is a list of all the courses offered in our Master of Social Work program.

Foundation Phase Curriculum

SWGS 6050—Human Rights and Social Justice (3 credits)
This course is an introduction to the human rights and social justice perspectives and how they intersect with social work history, values, ethics, and practice in local and global contexts. Students will learn a practice framework that integrates a human rights perspective promoting the dignity, respect, and well-being of all persons with a social justice perspective which seeks to understand, challenge, and combat oppression, unequal access to resources, and social inequities. Students engage in critical self-awareness and apply an integrated practice framework for use with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities that advance human rights and social and economic justice.

SWGS 6208—Human Behavior and the Social Environment I (3 credits)
The course will focus on human development from infancy through early childhood within the context of families and communities, employing a risk and resilience lens. Concepts of primary prevention and early intervention will be explored. We will introduce the concept of trauma, looking at the impact of domestic violence, child abuse and neglect on young children and their families. We examine family and community supports as promotional factors of well being in light of the central role of early attachment and research in neurobiology

SWGS 6209—Human Behavior and the Social Environment II (3 credits)
This course, the second in a two-semester sequence, looks at the promotion of well-being, human rights and social justice including the role of social supports, life stressors, coping strategies and resilience factors within the life course development of school aged children, adolescents, adults and older adults. At each of these stages we examine the role of risk and protective factors in the bio-psycho-social and ecosystemic environment. We approach the topic of death and dying from a life course perspective and we examine spirituality as a resource for coping and resilience. We also examine how immigration and the refugee experience affect developmental pathways. By the end of this course, students will be able to identify on a micro, mezzo and macro level the risk and protective factors in an individual’s life across the life course.
Prerequisite: SWGS 6208

SWGS 6801—Social Work Practice in Research I (3 credits)
This is the first of a two-semester course sequence. This course introduces students to social work research. It focuses the scientific method from the development of a researchable hypothesis to the point of data collection. This course focuses on social work problem formulation and provides a basic introduction to methodology. It also includes selected research experiences. Material covers the following areas: developing a researchable question; the values, ethical and political issues involved in developing the question; narrowing and specifying the question; sampling; design; data collection; and measurement techniques. Each topic is addressed through readings, lecture material and practical application. This practical application is usually related to the research project.

SWGS 6802—Social Work Practice in Research II (3 credits)
This course, the second in the two-semester research sequence, continues to teach social work research through a combination of didactic and experiential methods focusing on human rights and social justice. Students also work on the class research project, with an emphasis on the analysis and interpretation of the data collected. Through this work, students learn how research informs practice, and practice informs research.
Prerequisite: SWGS 6801

SWGS 6321—Generalist Social Work Practice with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations and Communities I (3 credits)
This is the first of a two-course sequence that uses a unifying generalist intervention framework to help students make sense of the breadth and depth of the social work profession. The unifying framework provides clear guidelines for how students proceed through each phase of practice when working with individuals, families, groups, organizations or communities by following a multi-step planned changed model. The model includes the practice phases of: preparation, engagement, assessment, planning/contracting, implementation, evaluation, termination/referral and follow-up. This approach allows a wide range of flexibility for the application of theories and specific skills. Students will gain a foundation upon which they can continue to add and build skills.

Generalist Practice I  begins by introducing  students to the parameters of professional social work practice including the values and ethical principles that guide  practice, the laws/regulations that regulate professional practice, and the knowledge and skills that inform social work practice on all levels.  Following this introduction, students will learn how to prepare, engage, assess, plan, implement, evaluate, terminate and follow-up when working with individuals and with organizations, two of the five client target levels that make up generalist social work practice.

SWGS 6322—Generalist Social Work Practice with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations and Communities II (3 credits)
This is the second of a two-course sequence that uses a generalist intervention framework to help students make sense of the breadth and depth of the social work profession. The unifying framework provides clear guidelines for how students proceed through each phase of practice when working with individuals, families, groups, organizations or communities, by following a multi-step planned change model. The model includes the practice phases of: preparation, engagement, assessment, planning, implementation, evaluation, termination and follow-up.  This approach allows a wide range of flexibility for the application of theories and specific skills. Students will gain a foundation upon which they can continue to add and build skills.

Generalist Practice II will focus on three of the five client target levels, families, groups, and communities. Following the same multi step planned changed model used in GPI, students will learn how to prepare, engage, assess, plan, implement, evaluate, terminate and follow-up when working with families, groups and communities.
Prerequisite: SWGS 6321

SWGS 6006—Social Policy I: Policy and the Profession (3 credits)
This course introduces students to the underlying values, assumptions, and philosophical perspectives as well as the social, economic, and political factors that have influenced the development of this country’s social welfare system. This course is intended to help students: 1) learn the history, mission, and philosophy of the social work profession and the evolution of social welfare policy; 2) develop a beginning understanding of major social policies that have been created specifically to address the needs of individuals, families, groups, and communities—particularly those who live in poverty; 3) be able to apply to practice the policies and services rendered by local, state, regional, national, and international agencies using comprehensive frameworks with special attention to human rights, equity, and social justice; 4) understand that improving well-being is the goal of effective policy change; and 5) recognize policy implications for social work practice.

SWGS 6007—Social Policy II: Human Rights Policy Analysis, Advocacy and Practice
The course introduces a rights-based approach to policy practice and advocacy. Using human rights principles, students learn how to use specific policy analysis frameworks to plan for and develop advocacy strategies that facilitate social change. Students will learn and apply specific advocacy skills, addressing policy issues in community, organization, and legislative settings. Prerequisite: SWGS 6006.

SWGS 6901—Field Work I (Yearlong)
Actual practice with a limited workload under close supervision designed to assist the student in applying theory to practice and to enable the student to master fundamentals of generalist practice. Includes 10, two-hour seminar sessions. Fourteen hours per week from September through July; 21 hours per week from September through May.

SWGS 6907—Field Practicum Laboratory Course for Students in the Experienced and Employed Social Service Practitioners (EESSP) Plan of Study
This required laboratory course for students who enter as experienced employees in the social services complements the Generalist Practice I and II with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities. The focus is on the integration of classroom learning with practice. Upon completion, students receive three credits and are eligible for SWGS 6908, Combined Field Work in the following academic year.

Clinical Practice Concentration

Required Clinical Courses

SWGS 6413—Clinical Social Work Practice I
Clinical Practice I expands and deepens the knowledge base of generalist practice, emphasizing advanced practice, especially the beginning stages of the clinical process, with vulnerable populations across the life cycle. Initial engagement, assessment and treatment planning with individuals and families are highlighted. The course is framed by a practice orientation that attends to human rights and social justice. It builds upon the knowledge base and skills of generalist practice for analyzing and interpreting bio-psychosocial, spiritual and cultural content, implementing professional values and ethics, and utilizing the professional relationship. By presenting advanced clinical practice within a framework of human rights and social justice, this course aims to develop practitioners who are competent in critical reflection of themselves and their work, value collaboration, facilitate the empowerment of marginalized populations, and build on the inherent strength and capacity for resiliency in individuals, families, and groups.

SWGS 6421—Clinical Social Work Practice II with Children, Youth, and Families
Clinical Social Work Practice II with Children, Youth, and Families uses a developmental framework within a dynamic ecosystems perspective as a foundation for advanced clinical practice. Attachment theory anchors assessment and intervention with preschoolers and their families; theories and models of play therapy and social competency are examined as ways to promote social and emotional mental health for school-aged children. This course addresses the impact of trauma on children, youth and families. Intervention with adolescents focuses on individual as well as family system intervention, group practice in school and residential contexts, and community-based multi-system models. The role of prevention, early intervention, and trauma treatment are explored in relation to children, youth and their families. This advanced clinical practice course focuses on the use of evidence to inform practice and the implementation of evidence-based treatment models as they support best-practices. This course aims to create reflective practitioners, who can make differential assessments, understand the use and purposes of different modalities of intervention, and learn to develop integrated treatment interventions that are theoretically informed and research-based. The multiple modalities examined in this course include culturally responsive work with parent-child dyads, psycho-education for multi-family groups, parent education, individual, group and family interventions as well as community based practices. The course prepares MSW students to engage, intervene and evaluate diverse, vulnerable populations in an ethical, culturally responsive, and collaborative way.  Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322, 6413. Concurrent with Field Instruction required. (You may choose SWGS 6421 OR SWGS 6420.)

SWGS 6420—Clinical Social Work Practice II with Adults and Families
Clinical Practice II with adults and families expands and develops the knowledge base of Clinical Practice I, emphasizing advanced clinical practice with groups, clinical interventions with adults across the life cycle, practice monitoring and evaluation, and endings and follow-up in clinical practice. This course builds on the theoretical and conceptual frameworks covered in Clinical Practice II by helping students to understand and apply clinical strategies and practice models that emerge from those frameworks, are guided by client needs, and are informed by empirical and research evidence. Case examples will be selected that demonstrate clinical practice with diverse client populations from various cultural groups.  Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322, 6413. Concurrent with Field Instruction required. (You may choose SWGS 6420 OR SWGS 6421.)

SWGS 6430—Advanced Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis I
This course focuses on a biopsychosocial understanding of mental wellbeing and mental illness from human rights and social justice perspectives. It gives special attention to the social work view in relation to the person-in-environment and other classification systems available to the practitioner. The course emphasizes an appreciation of the critical influence of culture, class, race and ethnicity, religion, and social values of the individual, family, group, and social institutions in the assessment of client strengths and vulnerabilities. The course critically reviews current classification systems and major theories regarding the nature of mental disorders, their diagnoses and etiologies, and the treatment approaches available to help people in their recovery. Throughout its modules, the course presents skills and content specific to assessing children, adolescents, adults, and older adults (e.g., presentation of mood symptoms in children versus older adults). It introduces the types of psychotropic medications used for different disorders with an assessment of their value and drawbacks. In the second half of the semester, the course presents material on mental well-being and disorder in the areas of managing moods, managing anxiety, and using and abusing substances. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322.

SWGS 6431—Advanced Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis II
This course continues the work of biopsychosocial assessment from a social-work value base that was presented in Advanced Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis I. After a review of the core human rights and social justice values that serve as foundation for both 6430 and 6431, it focuses on specific areas of biopsychosocial well being and illness, beginning with those first observable in childhood and adolescence. In subsequent modules, the course considers biopsychosocial functioning related to confronting trauma, connecting to reality, relating to others, managing the body experience, being cared for, and responding to the vicissitudes of life. The course presents the skills and knowledge for the differential assessment of people across the life span, emphasizing the importance of recognizing both strengths and vulnerabilities at all ages and in all areas of functioning. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322, 6430.

SWGS 6415—Seminar in Clinical Social Work Practice
This seminar provides an opportunity for students to reflect critically on their social work practice with individuals, families and small groups through a written and oral presentation of case material, open discussion with peers about their work, and written reflections on their experiences in class. By preparing and presenting a case from their internship practice, students demonstrate their ability to: use research literature to inform practice; organize case data meaningfully; formulate assessments clearly and succinctly; communicate their clinical thinking about treatment issues; and invite constructive feedback from colleagues. The seminar is designed to engage students in reflection and critical thought about their practice and reinforce their professional identity as clinical practitioners anchored by the principles of human rights and social justice. Prerequisite: SWGS 6413; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6902—Field Work II (Yearlong)
Actual practice with a limited workload under close supervision designed to assist students in applying theory to practice and to enable students to adapt fundamentals of practice to a particular concentration and field. Includes 10, two-hour seminar sessions. Prerequisite: SWGS 6901; Advanced Standing students are exempt from this prerequisite. Fourteen hours per week from September through July; 21 hours per week from September through May.

SWGS 6908—Combined Field Work (Yearlong)
Open only to students admitted to the Experienced and Employed Social Service Practitioners (EESSP) Plan, this course combines a review of fundamentals of practice with a focus on applying fundamentals in a particular concentration and field of practice. Students are in placement 28 hours per week from September through May, and are required to attend 10, two-hour seminar sessions during the workday or in the evening. Prerequisite: SWGS 6907.

Clinical Elective Courses

Students who are registering for Clinical electives must have completed the full Foundation level of the program or have the permission of the area chairperson to enroll in the course.

SWGS 6028—Child Abuse and Family Violence
This course focuses on intervention with abused children and battered women from an ecological perspective. It highlights the need for trauma-specific interventions with individuals and families, as well as system-wide advocacy with social and cultural institutions that contribute to the continuation of abuse within family relationships.

SWGS 6030—Death and Dying
This course examines the experience of death as encountered by social workers in clinical practice. Additional emphases include strategies, techniques and goals of interventions in clinical work with the bereaved.

SWGS 6104—Spirituality and Social Work Practice
This course explores a number of holistic concepts under the definition of “spirituality.” A range of methods of spiritual practice and approaches to healing are taught.

SWGS 6109—Meeting the Challenges of Poverty: Capacity Building with Faith Communities
This course introduces students to capacity building with the faith community on behalf of the poor. Specific methods for capacity building include asset-based community development, use of a strengths perspective, empowerment practice and building sanctuary, and understanding social work traditions of community development, advocacy, and community-based clinical practice. Students are introduced to faith capacity building initiatives in New York City, creating refuge and sanctuary, mentoring programs for the formerly homeless, and emergency food services. This is a transverse elective.

SWGS 6403—Family Oriented Treatment

This course provides an introductory overview of major themes of family intervention. The approach is eclectic and integrates theory and practice. The styles of Ackerman, Satir, Minuchin, Bowen, and others are emphasized.

SWGS 6404—Crisis Intervention and Trauma Treatment
This course emphasizes the theoretical base that guides crisis intervention and trauma treatment with individuals, families, and groups across the lifecycle. Case materials illustrate the assessment and resolution of crisis and trauma in a variety of contexts.

SWGS 6408—Social Work Practice with Children
The focus of this course is on the application of theories, concepts and principles in the direct treatment of children. A range of interceptive modalities is presented including individual, family, and group treatment, as well as interdisciplinary collaboration and psycho-educational approaches.

SWGS 6409—Practice with Older People and Their Families
This course focuses on direct practice with older people and their families. The course examines the social context of aging, the aging process, associated changes, and the effects on older people and their families. Emphasis is on the nature of support systems and the social work role in maintaining and enhancing older people’s functioning and well-being.

SWGS 6417—Practice with Abusers of Alcohol and Other Substances
This course examines the diagnostic and treatment implications for social work practice with alcoholics and those dependent on other drugs. Addictions are viewed from a bio-socio-psychological perspective. The diversified roles of the social worker are emphasized.

SWGS 6418—Social Work Practice in Schools
This course focuses on the knowledge, values, and skills appropriate for social work practice within the school setting. Understanding of the school context and its politics is highlighted. Special attention is given to working with students, teachers, parents, and administrators as well as on interfacing with the community.

SWGS 6422—Individual Oriented Treatment
This course provides an overview of the principles, premises and practices of a selected sample of current theories and methods of intensive individual treatment. Examining and comparing the clinical dimensions of history-taking, diagnosis, symptomatology, time and relationship, it focuses on critical appraisal of commonalities and differences across theories with a view toward developing an integrated approach to direct social work treatment of individuals.

SWGS 6426—Cognitive and Behavioral Brief Treatment with Children and Adults
This course focuses on the theory and practice of cognitive behavioral social work. Several common problems of children, adolescents, and adults are examined including aggression, depression, and anxiety disorders. Techniques that effectively treat these problems such as cognitive reframing, behavior modification, assertiveness training, stress management, the use of homework and bibliotherapy, and the evaluation of practice are introduced.

SWGS 6427—Brief Treatment: Current Models
This course provides an overview of the theory, premises, practice principles, methods, and techniques used in the major current brief treatment models. It examines these elements, the models from which they are drawn, and the client populations and problems best served by a brief approach. The efficacy of these different approaches is also examined.

SWGS 6428—Social Work Practice with Adolescents
Adolescence is explored within a developmental context in this course. The importance of maturational norms, family dynamics, class and cultural factors, and peer group influence are examined. Particular attention is paid to adolescents at psychosocial risk and to the development of assessment and intervention skills with the adolescent client.

SWGS 6429—Methods of Group Intervention
This course focuses on group practice as an integral part of social work intervention. It includes theories and methods of work with groups for prevention and treatment, and the use of groups in staff and team relationships. Theory and practice are integrated through an eclectic approach. Teaching is augmented by group exercises.

SWGS 6433—Relational Practice with Children, Adolescents and Adults
This course emphasizes the application of relational theories—attachment theory, ego psychology, object relations theory, self-psychology, and women’s relational theory—to social work practice. Risk and protective factors in child development are also considered. Case materials of children, adolescents, and adults are discussed.

SWGS 6434—Evidence Based Mental Health Practice
This course is aimed at developing the knowledge and skills necessary for working with individuals with a diagnosis of serious mental illness using recovery-oriented, evidence-based practices. Students become familiar with evidence-based practices, within a recovery-oriented paradigm, as a general approach to practice as well as specific evidence-based interventions to use for individuals with a diagnosis of serious mental illness. Students learn to examine research literature to determine the various levels of support for specific interventions and essential principles for translating research into practice. In addition, they identify the appropriate treatment outcomes that reflect effective, quality mental health practice. Prerequisite: SWGS 6430.

SWGS 6435—Spirituality and Clinical Practice
This course explores the concept of spirituality as it broadly relates to professional assessment and treatment. The course focuses on assessment and culturally and spiritually sensitive interventions with clients who may be dealing with a range of issues including trauma, loss, guilt, bereavement, etc. Course participants also explore ethical considerations in employing spiritual strategies.

SWGS 6436—Trauma Treatment for Children and Adolescents
This course introduces students to the common concepts underlying evidence-based treatment for traumatized children and adolescents, using a case analysis format. The course highlights the role of development, culture, and empirical evidence in trauma-specific interventions with children, adolescents, and their families. It addresses the level of functioning of primary care giving environments and assesses the capacity of the community to facilitate restorative processes.

SWGS 6437—Social Work Practice with Hispanic/Latino(a)s
The purpose of this course is to prepare social work students to understand culturally competent practice and socially just services to members of the Latino population in the US. The course aims to provide students with an opportunity to deepen their clinical practice knowledge, skills, and values with these populations.

SWGS 6438—Social Work Practice with LGBT Individuals
This lifespan-based course examines issues affecting lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) individuals and the implications for social work practice. Based upon an understanding of the ways in which heterosexism and homophobia are embedded in the social milieu, students identify strategies for serving these populations. The course focuses on the mental and physical healthcare needs of LGBT people.

SWGS 6439—Evidence Based Mental Health Practice with Children and Families
The course provides an introduction to definitions and competencies connected with evidence-based practice (EBP) and an overview of the history, theoretical foundations, and implementation of several nationally (and internationally) acclaimed evidence-based family treatment models. Over the course of the semester, students receive didactic training in the theory and practice of these treatment models, and hands-on training utilized within the models. Didactic presentation and discussions are supplemented by case presentations by providers of the models and by testimonials from families who have received in-home services.

Leadership and Macro Practice Concentration

There are two ways to pursue the Leadership and Macro Practice Concentration:

1. Human Service Leadership or Focus A: Focuses on managing organizations and systems, developing policy, writing grant proposals and obtaining funding.

2. Community-based Practice and Leadership or Focus B: Focuses on management responsibilities, as well as direct clinical practice with clients.

Required Courses—Focus A (Human Service Leadership)

SWGS 6627—Leadership and Macro Practice I
The first of a two-semester course sequence in the management of direct service agencies, this course broadens and deepens the knowledge base of macro generalist practice, introduces the concept of client-centered management, and focuses on the management roles of social workers engaged in practice with clients. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6628—Leadership and Macro Practice II
This is the second of a two-course sequence in advanced management. It expands upon managerial roles and skills for improving or changing programs and service delivery. Special attention is given to inter-agency collaboration, enhancing community capacity, and managing programs and agencies faced with challenges related to funding, staffing, competing values, and changing environments. Prerequisite: SWGS 6627; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6009—Social Policy Analysis for Macro Practitioners
This course focuses on significant management areas including strategic planning, designing and restructuring organizations; managing finances; managing a diverse and multicultural workplace; evaluating programs, performance, and agencies; and managing the environment.

SWGS 6625—Philanthropy and Resource Development
This course introduces the key knowledge and skills needed to effectively manage human service programs, units or agencies. Content focuses upon the generic requirements of managers, regardless of organizational role, function, position, or setting. Different perspectives are used to examine the manager’s job in human service organizations. Special attention is given to becoming a manager, possible obstacles to effective management and issues around leadership, motivation, gender, ethnicity, and race. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322.

SWGS 6902—Field Work II (Yearlong)
Actual practice with a limited workload under close supervision is designed to assist students in applying theory to practice and enable students to adapt fundamentals of practice to a particular concentration and field. Includes 10, two-hour seminar sessions. Prerequisite: SWGS 6901; Advanced Standing students are exempt from this prerequisite. Fourteen hours per week from September through July; 21 hours per week from September through May.
OR
SWGS 6908—Combined Field Work (Yearlong)

Required Courses—Focus B (Community-based Practice and Leadership)

SWGS 6627—Leadership and Macro Practice I
The first of a two-semester course sequence in the management of direct service agencies, this course broadens and deepens the knowledge base of macro generalist practice, introduces the concept of client-centered management, and focuses on the management roles of social workers engaged in practice with clients. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6628—Leadership and Macro Practice II
This is the second of a two-course sequence in advanced management. It expands upon managerial roles and skills for improving or changing programs and service delivery. Special attention is given to inter-agency collaboration, enhancing community capacity, and managing programs and agencies faced with challenges related to funding, staffing, competing values, and changing environments. Prerequisite: SWGS 6627; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6413—Clinical Social Work Practice I
The first of a two-course sequence in advanced clinical social work practice, this course expands and deepens the knowledge base of generalist practice, emphasizing advanced assessment with clients across the lifecycle and evaluation of practice. Treatment planning with individuals, families, and groups are all explored. Special attention is given to the assessment of trauma. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322; concurrent Field Instruction required.

SWGS 6420—Clinical Practice II with Adults and Families
OR
SWGS 6421—Clinical Practice II with Children, Youth, and Families

SWGS 6430—Advanced Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis I
This course focuses on a biopsychosocial understanding of mental wellbeing and mental illness from human rights and social justice perspectives. It gives special attention to the social work view in relation to the person-in-environment and other classification systems available to the practitioner. The course emphasizes an appreciation of the critical influence of culture, class, race and ethnicity, religion, and social values of the individual, family, group, and social institutions in the assessment of client strengths and vulnerabilities. The course critically reviews current classification systems and major theories regarding the nature of mental disorders, their diagnoses and etiologies, and the treatment approaches available to help people in their recovery. Throughout its modules, the course presents skills and content specific to assessing children, adolescents, adults, and older adults (e.g., presentation of mood symptoms in children versus older adults). It introduces the types of psychotropic medications used for different disorders with an assessment of their value and drawbacks. In the second half of the semester, the course presents material on mental well-being and disorder in the areas of managing moods, managing anxiety, and using and abusing substances. Prerequisites: SWGS 6321, 6322.

SWGS 6902—Field Work II (Yearlong)
Actual practice with a limited workload under close supervision is designed to assist students in applying theory to practice and enable students to adapt fundamentals of practice to a particular concentration and field. Includes 10, two-hour seminar sessions. Prerequisite: SWGS 6901; Advanced Standing students are exempt from this prerequisite. Fourteen hours per week from September through July; 21 hours per week from September through May.
OR
SWGS 6908—Combined Field Work (Yearlong)

Leadership and Macropractice Elective Courses

SWGS 6605—Community Organization and Community Capacity Building
This course provides a history of community organizing, especially in the context of the social work profession and as a way of meeting the needs of vulnerable and at-risk populations and communities. Focus is on the various community organizing models and the array of roles and functions of community organizers. Emphasis is on practice strategies and tactics for assessing, planning, implementing, and evaluating community organizing projects and campaigns.

SWGS 6615—Supervision and Staff Development
This course examines supervision and staff development as management functions in diverse agency settings and within the context of social work values and ethics. Emphasis is given to the knowledge and skills required to motivate and retain an effective and multicultural workforce, and to effectively supervise varying levels of staff (volunteers, nonprofessionals, professionals) during turbulent times.

SWGS 6616—Program and Proposal Development
Students learn, step-by-step, to develop and prepare proposals, design programs, seek foundation funding and respond to grant requests. Attention is given to what makes programs and proposals effective and would enhance the likelihood of funding.

SWGS 6624—International Social Development and Capacity Building in a Global Context
This course expands students’ understanding of the global context and equips students to work with diverse communities locally or internationally. The course focuses on enhancing students’ skills in the areas of community building, community needs assessment and capacity mapping, community organizing, stakeholder analysis, and advocacy. This is an administrative elective.

SWGS 6705—Comparative International Social Welfare
This course explores the similarities and differences among helping systems in the US and other societies. This includes consideration of historical, economic, political, and social forces that influence the nature and functioning of those systems. Other topics covered include social development and the globalization of social problems.

Research Practice Concentration

Required Courses

SWGS 6812—Advanced Research I
This is the first of a two-semester course in advanced research in which students plan, develop, and conduct a research project of their own submitted as a master's thesis. The course focuses in the first semester on: 1) definition of a researchable problem; 2) techniques of conducting and writing a literature review, 3) formulating a study design, sampling plan and methods of data collection; 4) understanding measurement concepts, instrument construction and scaling methods. Emphasis is placed on the role of research practice in contributing to the knowledge base in ways that will advance social and economic justice. The importance of ethical issues and cultural sensitivity at each phase of the research endeavor is stressed.

SWGS 6813—Advanced Research II
This is the second of a two-semester course in advanced research in which students plan, develop, and conduct a research project of their own submitted as a master's thesis. The course focuses in the second semester on: 1) data collection; 2) data management; 3) data analysis; and 4) written and oral reporting of findings. Emphasis is placed on critical evaluation of the validity of study findings and the role that research findings can play in the aiding social workers and social service agencies in their efforts to advance human rights and social justice.  Prerequisite: SWGS 6812.

SWGS 6902—Field Work II (Yearlong)
Actual practice with a limited workload under close supervision designed to assist students in applying theory to practice and to enable students to adapt fundamentals of practice to a particular concentration and field. Includes 10, two-hour seminar sessions. Prerequisite: SWGS 6901; Advanced Standing students are exempt from this prerequisite. Fourteen hours per week from September through July; 21 hours per week from September through May.

SWGS 6908—Combined Field Work (Yearlong)
Open only to students admitted to the Employed Social Worker Plan, this course combines a review of fundamentals of practice with a focus on applying fundamentals in a particular concentration and field of practice. Students are in placement 28 hours per week from September through May, and are required to attend 10, two-hour seminar sessions during the workday or in the evening. Prerequisite: SWGS 6907

SWGS 7001—Statistics I
This course provides an introduction to descriptive statistics (frequency distributions and cross-tabulated data, measures of central tendency and variability), concepts related to inferential statistics (probability and the normal curve), and common bivariate significance tests. Computer analysis using statistical software is taught with an emphasis on interpretation of results.

Research Concentration Elective Courses

SWGS 6806—Program Evaluation
The use of evaluative research in social welfare planning, program development, and theory building is examined. Recent evaluations of social work practice including interventions on a social policy, neighborhood, family, and individual level are reviewed. Traditional research designs are considered, but emphasis is placed on emerging models of evaluation.

Note: Research students, with approval from the director of the doctoral program, may enroll in the SWGS 7000 course series listed in the PhD Courses page.

SWGS 7002—Statistics II
Building on SWGS 7012, this course covers such topics as ANCOVA, MANCOVA, linear regression methods, logistic regression, and an introduction to path analysis. The course links theory, statistics, hypothesis testing, and measurement. Students are expected to be proficient in the use of SPSS statistical packages.

SWGS 7003—Qualitative Research Methods
This course explores the conditions under which qualitative research methods are desirable and feasible, the nature of qualitative information, and the relationship between the researcher and the research subject. Methods of qualitative research, as well as the process of developing inferences from findings are examined.

SWGS 6616—Program and Proposal Development
Students learn, step-by-step, to develop and prepare proposals, design programs, seek foundation funding, and respond to grant requests. Attention is given to what makes programs and proposals effective and would enhance the likelihood of funding. Emphasis is on how program proposals relate to both organizational mission and funding interests and offer opportunities to serve underserved, neglected, vulnerable, and at-risk populations.

Transverse Elective

SWGS 6008 —Social Work and the Law
The legal foundations for social welfare policies and programs are examined including the history and development of the rule of the law, civil liberties and civil rights, sources of different systems of law, due process and legal institutions. Special attention is given to professional relations between lawyers and social workers, their differing values and ethical systems and on preparing social workers to practice in and with the courts.

SWGS 6017—Empowerment Practice with Immigrants and Refugees
An advanced lecture-seminar course that focuses on critical approaches to practice with/in immigrants and refugees. This course builds on HBSE, social policy, research, and micro and macro practice content in the Foundation Curriculum.

This course examines principles of case management, models of service delivery, clinical issues in case management, and the range of service delivery systems. Special attention is given to the diverse populations using case management (e.g., persons with HIV/AIDS, mental illness or frailty). The advocacy role of the social worker in case management is emphasized, as is the range of social work practice activities used in case management.

SWGS 6036—Social Work Practice with Service Members, Veterans, and Their Families
This course explores the role of social work within the military in meeting the needs of active duty soldiers, veterans, and their families. Students analyze and critique current methods of intervention at all levels of practice and consider ways that the social work profession could further contribute to meeting the needs of active duty soldiers, veterans, and their families.

SWGS 6103—Social Work and HIV/AIDS
This course focuses on the impact of HIV and AIDS upon individuals, families, and communities. A knowledge base from social work, social sciences, psychology, psychiatry, medicine, law, and public policy is used to explore policy and practice implications. Advocacy and case management interventions are stressed.

SWGS 6108—Sexuality and Social Work
This course presents an integrated approach to understanding human sexuality and the range of human sexual expression using the ecosystems and strengths perspectives. Students learn to assess and to explore sexual issues that social workers frequently encounter in organizational practice settings and develop an overview of the social worker’s professional role in helping clients with sex-related concerns. This course emphasizes the social worker’s ethical responsibility to clients within diverse social work practice settings to promote the highest practice standards. This is a transverse elective.

SWGS 6110—Forensic Social Work Practice
The course prepares social workers to practice at the intersection of social work, public health, and the legal system in order to tackle contemporary social problems, such as health disparities and mass incarceration. Course participants learn and apply a human rights legal framework and social justice and empowerment theories to guide multilevel prevention, assessment, and interventions with historically underserved individuals, families, and communities.

Course participants also are exposed to innovative practice, research, and advocacy solutions that address the psychosocial determinants of health, well-being, and legal/justice involvement. The course also offers unique opportunities action projects and to participate in field visits to innovative local and global organizations that advance human rights and caring justice.

Note: The Graduate School of Social Service reserves the right to withdraw or modify any of the courses or programs listed herein, or to cancel any course or program for which it deems the registration insufficient, or to make any change considered necessary or desirable.