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MSW Field Experience

The  MSW Foundation-Generalist Field Experience provides students with opportunities and experiences that demonstrate the multiple and varied roles that social workers perform, as well as day-to-day operations within social, human, and health care agencies, programs, and organizations.

This Foundation-Generalist Field Experience requires that Regular Standing* students complete a 300 hour, agency placement either during the first or second year of the program (depending on degree plan). Full-time students begin their foundation placements in early October of their first year and complete 300 hours by the end of April (approximately 12-16 hours per week). Part-time students begin their foundation placements in late June between their 1st and 2nd year and complete 300 hours by early December (approximately 12-16 hours per week).

During the semesters that students are engaged in field placements, they will also been rolled in SOWK 581 professional seminars. These interactive seminars serve to help the student articulate and demonstrate how they have successfully integrated and applied the social work skills, theories, values and beliefs in a real world, social work practice setting. All students will receive additional, detailed information regarding field placement requirements during a Field Education Briefing session scheduled during the academic year.

All students begin the MSW Specialized-Advanced Field Experience in August of their final year.Full-time students complete 600 hours between mid-August and late April (approximately 16-20 hours per week). Part-time students complete 600 hours between mid-August and late June (approximately 14-16 hours per week). Students will enroll in SOWK 682 for professional seminars while completing their field experiences.

Students in Specialized-Advanced Placement will concentrate more intensively and autonomously in levels of intervention which reflect the elements of the Advanced Integrated curriculum, including work at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels of practice.The Specialized-Advanced placement is meant to prepare students for entry into social work practice employment, with the understanding that students have already grasped the generalist concepts, theories and roles, as well as appropriate professional behavior. MSW students coming into the program with Advanced Standing** are required to complete this field education experience only.

Please review the MSW Field Placement FAQs for more information.

For additional information on the MSW Field Experience, please contact Lindsey Rinehart, Field Education Director, at 

*Regular-Standing applies to students whose undergraduate degree is in an area other than social work, or whose social work undergraduate degree is more than 8 years old.

** Advanced-Standing students have earned an undergraduate degree in Social Work that is less than 8 years old, and are only required to complete the Specialized-Advanced Field Education Experience. 

Important: Impact of Criminal Background, Failure to pass drug screen, and/or substantiated CPS or APS Complaint upon Field Placement and/or Degree Program Completion.