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Course Descriptions

Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) Program

SW 203
Introduction to the Social Work Profession
3 credits

This course introduces students to social work as a profession. The history, values, and development of the social work profession are discussed. The course emphasizes students developing 1) self-awareness and identity as a professional social worker, 2) an understanding about the effects of oppression on social and economic justice and 3 roles and functions of a professional social worker as a leader in promoting resilience in client systems.

SW 315
The Personal, Social, Cultural Influences on Helping
3 credits

This is an experience-oriented course directed toward helping students become aware of their own interpersonal processes and how these may influence their skill and effectiveness as professional helping persons. This course explores formal and informal approaches to helping in various cultures and societies and, examines the implications of cultural values as well as their strengths and limitations. Emphasis will be placed on the importance of critical thinking in helping at the individual, group and community levels.

Pre-requisite: Introduction to the Social Work Profession

SW 355
Human Development
3 credits

This course provides a social work context in introducing students to theories and theoretical models that explain reciprocal influences and risk and resilience in shaping human behavior. This course uses a developmental framework to examine growth and maturation over the life course with attention to the person-environment configuration. This course emphasizes the relevance of factors including culture, ethnicity, gender, social constructions of age, social norms, socioeconomic inequality, spirituality, sexual orientation, and trauma in influencing the outcomes of transactions between the person and the environment over time. Special attention is paid to the applicability of course content to social work practice in human service settings.

Pre/ Co-requisite: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice

SW 495
Field Education I

This senior year course requires student to complete 140 hours of supervised clinical practice in a Field Agency in addition to attendance in a 14-week Skills Lab. The Skills Lab prepares students for their field education experience by providing content relative to the basic skills of social work practice. The Skills Lab also provides ongoing integration of clinical theory and practice skills.

Pre-requisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Human Development; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Social Work in the Social Service Environment; Environmental Context of Social Work Practice: Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma.

Co-Requisites: Models of Intervention for Clinical Social Work Practice; Introduction to Clinical Assessment

SW 497
Field Education II
4 credits

This senior year course requires students to complete 280 hours of supervised clinical practice continuing in the same Field Agency. In addition, students are required to attend a 14-week Skills Lab. The Skills Lab continues to support students’ learning and demonstration of competence in their field education experience by providing ongoing integration of clinical theory and practice skills.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Human Development; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Social Work in the Social Service Environment; Environmental Context of Social Work Practice: Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma; Models of Intervention for Clinical Social Work Practice; Introduction to Clinical Assessment; Field Education I

Co-Requisite: SW 4XX – Introduction to Trauma and Resiliency

SW 323
Service Learning and Social Work Practice
3 credits

This course introduces social work students to a Service Learning modality framed within social work practice. The course emphasizes the value and significance of academic growth within a social service setting. Students are required to venture out from their familiar traditional classroom and engage in community based experiential learning. For social work students this experiential format involves work with vulnerable populations in social service settings across Miami-Dade and neighboring counties. A strengths-based, ecological framework is the underlying theory by which students examine social service settings and the clients served. Students are required to dedicate 60 hours to an identified social service agency.

Pre/Co-requisite: Introduction to the Social Work Profession

SW 360
Environmental Context of SW Practice: Poverty, Oppression and Trauma
3 credits

This course provides students with knowledge and skill necessary for engaging client systems within an ecological context. Its focus on understanding client behavior within the larger social environment uses a ”bio-psycho-socio-cultural-political” lens to explore how difference and diversity within the social environment can affect social functioning. Poverty, oppression, and trauma are examined as issues of social justice that challenge resiliency in client systems, and require competency in leadership and advocacy on the part of practitioners.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Social and Cultural Influences on Helping; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Human Development

Co-requisite: Social Work in the Social Service Environment

SW 327
Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice
3 credits

This course introduces students to the basic processes of critical thinking and application to the assessment of client systems, social policy and research. Skills of critical appraisal and decision making within a bio-psycho-social framework are practiced with special attention to culturally based sources of knowledge.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Service Learning and Social Work Practice

Co-requisite: Human Development

SW 369
Social Work in the Social Services Environment
3 credits

This course introduces students to social welfare service structures and delivery mechanisms, including organizational roles and functions, and how these are experienced by helping professionals and vulnerable populations. Students will examine connections between society’s organized public responses to personal problems, especially through social service delivery. Attention to organizational roles in enhancing social justice for vulnerable populations is emphasized.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Social and Cultural Influences on Helping; Service Learning; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Human Development

Co-Requisite: Environmental Context of Social Work Practice; Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma

SW 417
Models of Intervention for Clinical Social Work Practice
3 credits

This course introduces students to social work practice with individuals, families, and groups in contemporary practice settings with an emphasis on identifying appropriate and effective models of intervention. Students will become familiarized with multiple models of intervention at the micro and mezzo levels of social work practice and learn to make effective practice decisions regarding the selection and implementation of various intervention models.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Human Development; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Social Work in the Social Service Environment; Environmental Context of Social Work Practice: Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma.

Co-requisite: Field Education I; Introduction to Clinical Assessment in Social Work Practice

SW 411
Introduction to Clinical Assessment in Social Work Practice
3 credits

This course introduces students to a variety of assessment methods utilized in clinical social work practice. Grounded in the ecological model, students gain competency in bio-psycho-social-spiritual assessment within a person in environment context.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Human Development; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Social Work in the Social Service Environment; Environmental Context of Social Work Practice: Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma.

Co-requisite: Field Education I; SW Models of Intervention in Clinical Social Work Practice

SW 433
Introduction to Trauma and Resiliency
3 credits

This course provides the student with an overview of psychological trauma, including the history and current theories in the field, the nature of trauma (sexual abuse, combat, and natural disasters), how trauma affects individuals and systems, grief reactions, and traumatic stress. Resilience Theory is introduced. Also included in this class, is the exploration of the professional’s response to trauma, vicarious traumatization, disenfranchised grief, crisis intervention, co morbid disorders and general treatment issues. Finally, students have the chance to review evidence-based practices in the trauma field, including cognitive, neurobiological, clinical, and socio-cultural. A culturally-informed approach to learning is used.

Prerequisites: Introduction to the Social Work Profession; Personal, Cultural, and Social Influences on Helping; Human Development; Ways of Knowing for Social Work Practice; Service Learning and Social Work Practice; Social Work in the Social Service Environment; Environmental Context of Social Work Practice: Poverty, Oppression, and Trauma; Field Education I; Models of Intervention in Clinical Social Work Practice; Introduction to Clinical Assessment in Social Work Practice

Co-requisite: Field Education II

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