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Masters Program Courses & Curriculum

curriculum

I. Program Goals

The goals of the MSW program are to:

1. Prepare advanced generalist practitioners who demonstrate ability to use their knowledge, values, and skills to work at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels of practice within local, national and global contexts;

2. Educate graduates to utilize social justice and human rights frameworks in their work and to embrace social action practice;

3. Inspire graduates who lead efforts to improve health and wellness in the lives of all people and to create a more just and life-affirming society;

4. Promote the ability of graduates to engage in critical, self-reflective and ethical practice;

5. Develop practitioners who utilize strengths-based, person-in-environment and empowerment approaches in all their work that are informed by a respect for human dignity, diversity, and inclusiveness; and

6. Educate practitioners who are able to engage in research-informed practice models and who are able to contribute to the creation of knowledge in the field of Social Work by engaging in practice-informed research processes

The goals for our MSW program are clearly derived from our mission statement, and reflect the values, emphases, and perspectives articulated there. The first goal purposefully aligns with our stated premise to educate for all systems levels of practice in local, national, and global contexts. The second goal emphasizes the importance of social justice and human rights frameworks in our graduates’ ability to embrace social action. The third goal is an expression of our commitment to leadership in improving health and wellness for both individuals and in the society—this affirms our commitment to social and environmental justice as well as a reflection of our location within a health sciences infrastructure. Our fourth goal reflects the importance of social workers practicing ethically and from a value base. Our fifth goal expresses a commitment to compel graduates to use frameworks that are informed by human dignity, diversity and inclusiveness. Our sixth goal commits us to educate practitioners who seek and utilize knowledge in their work at all levels.

II. CSWE Competency Framework

The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the accrediting body for schools of social work, has identified core competencies for social work education. These competencies guide and inform curriculum and course content.

1. Demonstrate Ethical and Professional Behavior
2. Engage Diversity and Difference in Practice
3. Advance Human Rights and Social, Economic, and Environmental Justice
4. Engage in Practice-Informed Research and Research-Informed Practice
5. Engage in Policy Practice
6. Engage with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
7. Assess Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
8. Intervene with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
9. Evaluate Practice with Individuals, Families Groups, Organizations, and Communities  

Each competency is represented by a set of practice behaviors at the Foundation and Advanced levels of the curriculum. The practice behaviors will be used in various forms of assessment to determine the degree to which students have achieved competency in these nine (9) areas. Overall assessment is reported, in aggregate, on the school’s website.


III. The MSW Degree

The graduate program prepares students for advanced social work practice. It provides students with the needed theoretical and practice expertise to function with maximum competence at different administrative or policy levels in social welfare fields and/or in the provision of direct services to individuals, families, groups, and communities. The school provides opportunities for study and practice that utilize the wealth of interdisciplinary resources available in the Health Sciences Center, the University, and community agencies throughout the New York metropolitan area.  The requirements of the MSW Program as outlined here have been approved by the New York State Education Department as meeting the academic pre-requisites qualifying students to sit for both the LMSW and LCSW License Exams. 

Students who have graduated from a CSWE-accredited baccalaureate degree program in social work - within five (5) years from their initial matriculation are not required to repeat what has been achieved in their undergraduate program. 

The curriculum provides for a generalist foundation year of courses and field education for all students.  In the 2nd year, students concentrate on Advanced Social Work Practice in one of three areas of Specializations.

A. Curriculum: Introduction

The curriculum provides for a generalist foundation year of courses and field education for all students.  In the second year, students concentrate in advanced social work practice.  Some courses are offered in concentrated form during the semester, intersession and summer session.  Although some courses are offered for student convenience in Manhattan, be advised that in order to complete the program, all students are required to take one course at the Stony Brook campus. 

All students: Required Professional Development, 2 Credits

HWC 596 Community Learning and Professional Preparation I: First year; 1 credit
HWC 597 Community Learning and Professional Preparation II: Second Year; 1 credit

B.    Generalist Foundation Curriculum

In the first year, the array of courses and field education provides the basic professional foundation of knowledge, values and skills for social work practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities.

The professional foundation includes content on social work values and ethics, diversity, social and economic justice, populations historically devalued and oppressed, human behavior in the social environment, social welfare policies and services, social work practice, research and field education.

First year, Full-time MSW Requirements

  Fall Term:   
 Course Credits
 HWC 500 Field Education I      
4 - 6
 HWC 504 Human Behavior and the Social Environment I3
 HWC 509 Foundations of Social Justice: Challenging Oppression3
 HWC 511 Research I
3
 HWC 513 Social Work Practice I
3
 HWC 596 Community Learning and Professional Preparation I (Year-Long) 1
  
 Spring Term: 
 Course 
Credits
 HWC 501 Field Education II
4-6
 HWC 505 Integrating Seminar
3
HWC 510 Social Policy & Social Determinants3
 HWC 512 Research II    
3
 HWC 514 Social Work Practice II
3
HWC 596 Community Learning and Professional Preparation II (Year-Long)-


C.  Advanced Curriculum

The program prepares students for advanced generalist social work practice in a variety of professional roles, including direct services with individuals, families, groups, and communities and in the analysis, development, implementation, management and evaluation of human services, and health policies and programs.

Students with a baccalaureate degree from a social work program accredited by CSWE may apply for admission to the Advanced Standing Program.  Admission to this program is only awarded to graduates holding degrees from baccalaureate social work programs accredited by CSWE, those recognized through the International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service, or covered under a memorandum of understanding with international social work accreditors.  

Students applying for Advanced Standing are eligible to waive the following required courses: Human Behavior and the Social Environment I; and Integrating Seminar (HWC 504 and 505), Research I and II (HWC 511 and 512), Foundations of Social Justice: Challenging Oppression; and Social Policy & Social Determinants (HWC 509 and 510), and Social Work Practice I and II (HWC 513 and 514), and Field Education I and II (HWC 500 and 501) if they have taken similar courses and received a grade of B or better. 

In addition to the required advanced social work practice courses and advanced field education experiences, students may choose from a variety of advanced practice electives. Elective offerings vary from term to term. Students are required to take a minimum of 9 credits of advanced practice electives. (See Section V. B. Credits) 

1. MSW Specializations

Stony Brook University School of Social Welfare requires students to select a specialization in their second year. The School has three areas of specializations, click here to learn more about each of the specializations.


2. Advanced Standing Program

Students who have graduated from a CSWE accredited baccalaureate program in social work within the past five years may apply for the Advanced Standing Program. Students applying for this option must demonstrate their readiness to function at the level of a second year MSW student.  Students generally complete the program in one year, or may take a reduced program and complete the requirements in 1½ to two years.  Students spend three days in a field education setting for one academic year and must complete the required and elective courses.  Students in this program cannot use their place of employment for their field placement and must earn all the 36 credits as matriculated students in the School of Social Welfare. Students in the Advanced Standing Program must choose a Specialization, but will generally follow the format listed here:


Fall Term: 
 Course     
Credits
HWC 502 Field Education III   
6
HWC Required Specialization Practice Course3
HWC Required Specialization Course3
HWC 519 Psychopathology and Psychopharmacology3
HWC Elective3
 
 
Spring Term: 
Course 
Credits
HWC 503 Field Education IV 
6
HWC Required Specialization Practice Course3
HWC Required Specialization Course
3
*Two Advanced Practice Electives   
6

*A minimum of nine (9) Advanced Practice elective credits are required. Elective offerings vary from term to term. (See Section V. B. Credits)

D. Part-Time Program

This option is designed for students who choose not to follow the regular full-time schedule. Students must take a minimum of two courses per semester (6 credits) but may take up to three courses per semester (9 credits). Part-Time students begin Field Education during the Fall semester of their second year. Social Work Practice courses must be taken concurrently with Field Education in the second year (HWC 513 with HWC 500; HWC 514 with HWC 501). HWC 505, Integrating Seminar, must be taken in the Spring semester of the second year. The degree requirements are typically completed in three to four years.

Fall Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (first Year)  
CourseCredits
HWC 509 Foundations of Social Justice: Challenging Oppression3
HWC 511 Research I3
   
Spring Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (First Year)  
CourseCredits
HWC 510 Social Policy & Social Determinants 
HWC 512 Research II 3

 

  
Fall Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (Second Year) 
Course  Credits
HWC 500 Field Education I4
HWC 504 Human Behavior in the Social Environment: Critical Applications of Social Work Theory3
HWC 513 Social Work Practice I 3

 

  
Spring Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (Second Year)
CourseCredits
HWC 501  Field Education II  4
HWC 505 Integrating Seminar 3
HWC 514  Social Work Practice II3

 

 

 
Fall Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (Third Year)
CourseCredits
HWC 502 Field Education III4
HWC Required Specialization Practice Course3
HWC Required Specialization Course3
*HWC Elective3
*HWC Elective or (HWC 519) Psychopathology 3
*Psychopathology and Three Electives may be taken in any semester after the successful completion of the Second Year.

 

 

Spring Class Schedule Part-Time Program - MSW Students (Third Year)
CourseCredits
HWC 503 Field Education IV4
HWC Required Specialization Practice Course3
HWC Required Specialization Course3
*HWC Elective or (HWC 519) Psychopathology3
*HWC Elective3
*Psychopathology and Three Electives may be taken in any semester after the successful completion of the Second Year. 

Additional Requirements: The following courses are required and may be taken in any semester after the successful completion of the Year II courses

*Psychopathology
*Three Electives 

Part-time students will develop a curriculum plan with their advisors designating in which semesters they will enroll in these required courses.  

For further information, please contact our Admissions and Student Services office at (631) 444-3170