Social Work Courses

The degree requirements outlined in this catalog are intended to be used for students entering Wheelock in the 2014-15 academic year.

SWK 205
Introduction to Social Work
4 credits
Provides an overview of the social work profession, its foundation in values and ethics, its theoretical framework, and its role in society. Also examines a variety of populations and fields of practice and focuses on the activities and responsibilities of social workers in diverse settings. Prerequisites: Open to students starting in the second semester of the first year.

SWK 227
Dynamics of Oppression and Privilege
4 credits
Provides an understanding of the dynamics of oppression, discrimination, and privilege in economic, political, and social systems. Explore experiences of oppression/discrimination and privilege, debate issues of equity as they emerge in contemporary social policy, and develop justice based action plans to promote change. Open to sophomores and juniors. Prerequisite: SWK 205; sophomore and junior BSW transfers may take concurrently with SWK 205. Introductory.

SWK 268
Social Research
4 credits
Introduces the purposes, types and basic methodologies of social research. Preparation to be informed consumers of research. Includes such topics as literature review, problem formulation, research design, data collection and data analysis and ethical/political issues. Prerequisite: Completion of or exemption from the college/core requirement in mathematics. For SWK majors: SWK 205. Open to sophomores, juniors and seniors.

SWK 345
Human Behavior and Social Environment
4 credits
Builds on the foundation of lifespan development content in the Human Growth and Development sequence. Focuses on the interaction between human behavior and the social environment from a multidimensional, holistic perspective which stresses the interdependence of biological, psychological, social, cultural, and spiritual components of functioning. Prerequisites: HDP 120/122 and HDP 121/123 or HDP 124/126 and HDP 125/127. Additional prerequisites for Social Work majors: SWK 205 and SWK 227.

SWK 355
Social Welfare Policy and Services
4 credits
Examines components of American and international social welfare systems, policymaking, policy advocacy, and policy analysis. Prerequisites: SWK 205, SWK 227, and AST 150. Open only to junior Social Work majors. Materials fee.

SWK 440
Social Work Practice and Skills Lab I
4 credits
The Social Work Practice sequence consists of three courses introducing the theoretical and methodological aspects of the problem-solving process of the generalist practice model. Each course features a segment of the process and applies it to micro, mezzo, and macro practice. SWK 440 examines interviewing skills and engagement. Prerequisites: SWK 205, HDP 120/122 and HDP 121/123 or HDP 124/126 and HDP 125/127, and passing the Wheelock Literacy and Communication Exam (WLCE). Open only to junior Social Work majors.

SWK 450
Social Work Practice and Skills Lab II
4 credits
The Social Work Practice sequence consists of three courses introducing the theoretical and methodological aspects of the problem-solving process of the generalist practice model. Each course features a segment of the process and applies it to micro, mezzo, and macro practice. SWK 450 examines assessment, planning, and contracting. Prerequisites: SWK 355 and SWK 440. SWK 268 or HDP 264 must be taken prior to or concurrently with this course. Taken concurrently with SWK 460. Open to senior Social Work majors.

SWK 455
Social Work Practice and Skills Lab III
4 credits
The Social Work Practice sequence consists of three courses introducing the theoretical and methodological aspects of the problem-solving process of the generalist practice model. Each course features a segment of the process and applies it to micro, mezzo, and macro practice. SWK 455 examines intervention, evaluation and termination. Prerequisites: SWK 268, SWK 450, and SWK 460. Corequisites: SWK 465. Open to senior Social Work majors.

SWK 460
Social Work Field Practicum and Seminar I
4 credits
Placement in a social service agency for two days/week for 15 weeks (200 hours). Apply practice theory to develop core competencies and skills for generalist social work practice. Bi-weekly seminar sessions integrate theoretical practice content with practicum experience and provide opportunity for discussion of professional and ethical issues. Corequisite: SWK 450. Open to senior Social Work majors. Prerequisites: SWK 205, SWK 227, SWK 355, SWK 440, WLCE.

SWK 465
Social Work Field Practicum and Seminar II
4 credits
A continuation of SWK 460. Focuses on further development of core competencies and skills for generalist social work practice. Students continue in a practicum in a social service agency for two days/week for 15 weeks (200 hours) and in a bi-weekly seminar. Taken Concurrently with SWK 455. Prerequisites: SWK 268 or HDP 264, SWK 345, SWK 450, SWK 460. Starts with students entering practicum in fall 2014.

SWK 499
Statistics for Social Workers
0 credits
Introduces students to statistics commonly used in social work research. Students learn how to explain and interpret descriptive and inferential statistics. Examples from social work practice and policy illustrate the concepts. Students evaluate findings and consider their social justice and human rights implications. Fulfills the MSW program statistics pre-requisite.

SWK 510
Human Behavior and the Social Environment I
3 credits
Foundation-year, MSW theory course related to individuals and families. Ecosystem approach to understanding human development and behavior across lifespan, focusing on the continuous, transactional relationship(s) between people and their environments, contextualized by race, class, history, culture, politics, religion. Critical approach to how theories evolve in context, inform social work practice, research, and policy. Offered fall.

SWK 511
Human Behavior and the Social Environment II
3 credits
Second MSW theory course prepares students to understand human behavior within groups, organizations, and communities through multidisciplinary theoretical approaches. Learn strengths based conceptual frameworks for understanding groups and environments in ways that are relevant to social work practice, policy, and research. Prerequisite: SWK 510. Offered spring.

SWK 520
Social Policy
3 credits
History of U.S. and international social welfare programs, policy as social justice, policy analysis and implementation and social policy advocacy as a foundation of justice-based social work practice. Offered fall.

SWK 530
Foundations of Social Research
3 credits
Introduces the purposes, types, methodology, and ethics of social research. Prepares students to be critical and informed consumers of research and also provides an applied learning opportunity through conducting a group research study. Prerequisites: Basic Statistics. Offered spring.

SWK 561
Dynamics of Oppression and Privilege
3 credits
Explore and analyze the dynamics of oppression, discrimination and privilege in structural and interpersonal systems/relationships, using intersectional analyses of diversity. Students explore their own and others’ socio-cultural location, the uneven distribution of social and material resources in society, and how to create change through justice-based social work practice. Offered fall.

SWK 540
Generalist Social Work Practice I
3 credits
First foundation–year MSW practice course; provides the knowledge, skills, and values for justice-based social work practice with diverse individuals and families in multiple systems. Students are introduced to generalist social work practice from ecological, strengths-based, collaborative, and empowerment perspectives. Concurrent with SWK 550. Offered fall.

SWK 541
Generalist Social Work Practice II
3 credits
Continues the generalist social work practice model. Develop knowledge, skills, and values for practice with small groups, organizations, communities. Emphasis is on strengths-oriented, justice-based approaches to these systems in historical, cultural, and sociopolitical contexts for practice that is collaborative, familycentered, community-based, and multiculturally competent. Prerequisites: SWK 510, 540, 550. Concurrent: SWK 546 and 551. Offered spring.

SWK 546
Multicultural Social Work Assessment
3 credits
A critical learning approach to essential assessment tools for social work practice with children and families and the settings in which interventions typically occur. Issues of diversity, multicultural competence, and social justice in assessment and practice are explored. Develop an assessment framework and social work philosophy-in-progress. Prerequisites: SWK 510, 520, 530, 540, 550. Corequisites: SWK 541, 551. Offered spring

SWK 550/551
Social Work Field Practicum and Seminar I and II
6 credits
Two-semester practicum experience provides students with a field-based environment in which to develop and begin to demonstrate mastery of curricular content. Students are also expected to know and apply the NASW Code of Ethics, values of the profession, approaches that reflect a celebration of differences, empowerment, and a commitment to human rights and distributive justice. Corequisite: foundation year practice classes. Offered once a year, in sequence, fall/spring semesters.

SWK 554/654
Social Work Field Practicum and Summer Seminar I and II
2 credits
Enhances competency based social work practice in field practicum settings. Intended for students who must begin or finish their field practicum hours during the summer months. Read and discuss topics pertaining to all areas of the field practicum experience and learn from input and support of peers. For Foundation (SWK 554) and Concentration (SWK 654) Year students starting field placement early, or completing field placement beyond the spring semester..

SWK 561
Dynamics of Oppression and Privilege
3 credits
Explore and analyze the dynamics of oppression, discrimination and privilege in structural and interpersonal systems/relationships, using intersectional analyses of diversity. Students explore their own and others’ socio-cultural location, the uneven distribution of social and material resources in society, and how to create change through justice-based social work practice. Offered fall.

SWK 610
Social Work Leadership and Administration
3 credits
Focuses on the advanced knowledge, skills, and values necessary for social work leadership in complex social service agencies. Organized around the following modules: organizational leadership, fundraising, grant development, and community asset building. Prerequisites: Prerequisites: SWK510, SWK511. Offered fall

SWK 620
Social Policy Practice
3 credits
An advanced policy course focusing on the development of skills in social policy practice, such as policy formation, policy analysis, policy advocacy, and evaluation of social policy related to children and families. Prerequisites: SWK 520. Offered spring

SWK 640
Social Work Practice with Children and Families I
3 credits
First required, advanced MSW practice course. Explore and develop skills with several strengths-based models for working with children and families. Integrates theory, research, policy, and practice skills for multiculturally competent, family-centered, and communitybased social work. Highlights connections to students’ fieldwork and other courses. Prerequisites: Completion of all foundation year courses. Concurrent with SWK 650. Offered fall.

SWK 641
Social Work Practice with Children and Families II
3 credits
Second required, advanced MSW practice course. Continues with development of advanced, justice-based family practice skills, particularly related to the complex issues impacting the lives of children and families in the 21st century. Highlights connections to students’ fieldwork and other courses. Prerequisites: completion of foundation year courses and SWK 640, 650; concurrent with SWK 651. Offered spring.

SWK 650/651
Social Work Field Practicum and Seminar III, IV
6 credits
Two-semester, advanced field practicum experience. Students are expected to integrate all areas of the MSW curriculum into advanced, justice-based practice interventions with children and families. Includes advanced application of social work values and ethics and capacity to select among differential approaches based on knowledge and skills that are collaborative and inter-professional in order to effect social change at the individual, family, group, organizational, and community levels. Prerequisites: completion of SWK 640, 650; concurrent with SWK 641, 651. Offered once a year, in sequence, fall/spring semesters.

SWK 670
Spirituality of Children and Families
3 credits
This inter-professional course will enable students to effectively utilize the spiritual values/ religious beliefs of clients and themselves to create positive change, human transformation, and healing. This will include exploration of spiritual development, supporting genuine respect for spiritual experiences and strengths of diverse clients during all stages of the helping relationship.

SWK 675
Family Violence Across the Lifespan
3 credits
This course will help students understand and apply theories and practice skills related to working with family violence. Topics will span child abuse and neglect; adolescent and adult intimate partner violence, including LGBT populations and working with victims and perpetrators of partner violence; and abuse of elders disabled family members.

SWK 690
Integrative Project Seminar I
3 credits
First half of a year-long course that serves as a capstone to the full MSW learning experience. Design and conduct human rights -based research projects that integrate the key concepts of the MSW program’s curricular themes and course work. Develop an integrative project proposal in this semester that contributes to the knowledge, skills, and values of justice-based social work practice. Prerequisites: completion of foundation year courses. Offered fall.

SWK 691
Integrative Project Seminar II
3 credits
Second half of the year-long integrative project course. Students complete the human rights action project begun in the fall. Projects focus on advancing human rights and social and economic justice for children, families and communities, through education, social action, and policy. Projects integrate the concepts learned in previous courses and reflect the curricular themes and justice-based focus of the program. Prerequisites: completion of foundation year courses and SWK 690. Offered spring.

SWK 801
Gateway Research and Policy in Larger System Environments
2 credits
Reaffirms the foundational knowledge of social work research, policy, and community-based practice. Engage in community action to better understand and apply skills related to data collection, policy research, and community assessment. Application of strengths perspective, empowerment theory, and justicebased frameworks to demonstrate competency in community-based practice. Fulfills Gateway Program requirement for incoming Advanced Standing students. Taken concurrently with SWK 802 and 803. Prerequisite: Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree.

SWK 802
Gateway Practice and Field Seminar
2 credits
Combines practice and field seminar content allowing students to express and review learning experiences from the field setting. Will apply practice behaviors and recognize the values of inter-professional and collaborative approaches to practice within organizations. Will explore one’s own personal beliefs, behaviors, and assumptions that may impact social work practice. Fulfills Gateway Program requirement for incoming Advanced Standing students. Taken concurrently with SWK 801 and 803. Prerequisite: Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree.

SWK 803
Gateway Multicultural Assessment and Dynamics of Oppression and Privilege
2 credits
Provides an overview of the interface present between the assessment and diagnosis process and aspects of diversity (race, gender, social class, age, sexual orientation, ability, religion, and spirituality). Will develop a working assessment framework and draft a philosophy of justice-based social work practice to be further developed in the advanced year. Fulfills Gateway Program requirement for incoming Advanced Standing students. Taken concurrently with SWK 801 and 802. Prerequisite: Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree. 

 

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