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Social Work

The Social Work Major

Admission to the Social Work Program

Although students may declare a social work major through the Advising or Registrar's Offices, formal acceptance to the social work program occurs when the following criteria have been met. Admission to the social work program requires the successful completion of SOWK 214 and SOWK 215; selected Liberal Arts courses; grade point average of 2.50; a personal statement (assignment in SOWK 214), completion of the Application for Admission (assignment in SOWK 215), and approval by the social work faculty. Students apply for admission to the social work program after the above requirements have been met and before the student begins the field practicum. As part of this process, the social work faculty assesses the student’s aptitude and motivation for a career in social work including the demonstration of values consistent with the Social Work Code of Ethics. If the faculty do not believe the student is ready for unconditional acceptance into the program, the faculty will work with the student to overcome any areas of concern.

Admission to La Sierra University

To access information about admission procedures return to the La Sierra University homepage and select Admissions. The Admissions Office may be contacted by calling (951) 785-2176 or by e-mail admissions@lasierra.edu.

Admission to Academic Completion Educational Solutions (ACCESS)

Some students may qualify for the Academic Completion and Educational Solutions (ACCESS) program through the Division of Continuing Studies (DCS).  Social work majors who are part of the ACCESS program have the same academic requirements and earn the same degree as traditional students.  To qualify for the ACCESS program an individual must meet the following requirements:

 §  be 22 years of age or older

 §  have a minimum of  44 quarter/30 semester transferable units*, and

 §  a minimum cumulative GPA of at least 2.0

 The staff of the Division of Continuing Studies works with ACCESS students to facilitate the registration process.  Inquiries should be directed to the DCS office at (951) 785-2300.  Further information about the ACCESS program is also available on the La Sierra University website at:  www.lasierra.edu/dcs.

 *Current or former La Sierra University students require a minimum break of two (2) years before being allowed to transfer to DCS/ACCESS programs.  All other qualification requirements must be met.

 Social Work Curriculum

Major courses are grouped under the following six content areas. Students also take a capstone course that solidifies the knowledge base and integrates all content areas. In addition, students have the opportunity to take social work elective courses to gain specific knowledge on a chosen topic.

 

I. Social Work Practice

  • SOWK 204A Colloquium: Intro. to Social Work Program (1 unit)
  • SOWK 204B Colloquium: Fields of Practice (1 unit)
  • SOWK 204C Colloquium: Case Management (1 unit)
  • SOWK 214 Social Work Practice I (prerequisite for all methods courses) (4 units)
  • SOWK 215 Social Work Practice II (prerequisite for all methods courses) (4 units)

II. Human Behavior and the Social Environment

  • SOWK 311 Human Behavior & the Social Environment I (prerequisite for field) (4 units)
  • SOWK 312 Human Behavior & the Social Environment II (prerequisite for field) (4 units)

III. Social Work Methods

  • SOWK 314 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Individuals (prerequisite for field) (4 units)
  • SOWK 315 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Groups (4 units)
  • SOWK 316 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Communities & Organizations (4 units)
  • SOWK 317 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Children & Families (4 units)

IV. Social Welfare and Policy

  • SOWK 205 Heritage of American Social Work (prerequisite for policy) (4 units)
  • SOWK 405 Social Welfare Policy (4 units)

V. Research

  • CPTG 104 Computer Information Systems (prerequisite for quantitative psychology) (4 units)
  • MATH 121 College Algebra (prerequisite for statistics) (4 units)
  • MATH 251 Statistics (4 units)
  • SOWK 252 Understanding SOWK research methods (4 units)
  • SOWK 349 Generalist SOWK research methods (5 units)

VI. Field Experience

  • SOWK 388 Field Orientation (prerequisite for field) (1 unit)
  • SOWK 488 Field Seminar (6 units)
  • SOWK 498 Field Practicum (12 units)

VII. Capstone Experience

  • UNST 404-P Religious, Moral and Social Aspects of Social Work (4 units)

VIII. Social Work Electives offered on topics such as substance abuse, gerontology, criminal justice, mental health and medical social work (2-3 units per course)

 

Bulletin Description of Social Work Classes

Accreditation: The undergraduate baccalaureate degree program (B.S.W.) is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

BACHELOR OF SOCIAL WORK
Required*:
66 units (47 upper division), as follows;
SOWK 204 (3 units), 205, 214, 215, 311, 312, 314, 315, 316, 317, 388, 405, 488 (6 units), 498 (12 units)
4 units SOWK electives to be chosen from SOWK 286 or 386

*Work and/or life experience or portfolio credit may not be used to substitute for required major coursework

Required cognates:
BIOL 107 Human Biology (or equivalent)
CPTG 104 Intro. to Information Systems (or equivalent)
MATH 251 Intro. to Statistics (or equivalent)
PSYC 104 General Psychology
SOWK 252 Understanding SOWK research methods
SOWK 349 Generalist SOWK research methods
A course in sociology

Recommended:
Spanish minor 28 units, including SPAN 329 and one literature course. Any of the summer abroad programs strongly recommended. (See Department of Modern Languages)
ECON 254 Principles of Macroeconomics
ECON 255 Principles of Microeconomics
MGMT 304 Management and Organizational Behavior
HIST 106 Race, Ethnicity & Class in American History
PSYC 304 Social Psychology
PSYC 314 Psychology of Gender
SOCI 307 Diversity in America
SOCI 414 The Family
SOCI 418 Sexual Behavior & Gender Roles

Courses: Lower Division

SOWK 104 Introduction to Social Work (4)
Designed to introduce the social work profession. Fundamental concepts of social work, client systems, fields of practice, history and the current status of social work are covered. Special emphasis will be placed on how gender, race, and culture affect the social and economic vulnerability experienced by people. Students participate in field trips to local agencies and service learning. Open to non-majors.

SOWK 204 Colloquium (1)
A seminar of selected topics related to generalist social work practice. Colloquium fall quarter introduces the student to the social work program, winter quarter examines the fields of social work practice, and spring quarter focuses on case management. Three units are required. Students are recommended to take courses sequentially, fall, winter, and spring.

SOWK 204A Intro. to Social Work
SOWK 204B Fields of Practice
SOWK 204C Case Management

SOWK 205 Heritage of American Social Work (4)

Analysis of historical development of the social welfare system within the context of economic, political, religious, and sociocultural influence of each period; implications for social welfare services and policies; historical development of the social work profession, casework, group work, and community organization.

SOWK 214 Introduction to Social Work Practice I (4)
Study of theory and principles of generalist social work practice within an ecological framework. Introduction to the generalist intervention model across the micro, mezzo, macro continuum. Introduction to professional social work values and ethics and issues of diversity underlying generalist practice.

SOWK 215 Introduction to Social Work Practice II (4)
Continuation of SOWK 214, Introduction to Social Work Practice I, with emphasis on generalist assessment, planning, intervention, evaluation, termination and follow-up across the micro, mezzo, macro continuum. Special attention given to biopsychosocial spiritual assessment, child abuse assessment, suicide assessment, crisis intervention, and content on diversity, oppression and social justice.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214

SOWK 286 Special Topics (2-3 units)
Topics of current interest in the field of social work. Each course covers the historical development, central theories, generalist practice assessment and interventions, and policy issues related to that specific topic. Different sections may be repeated for additional credit.

SOWK 286A Substance Abuse
SOWK 286B Gerontology
SOWK 286C Criminal Justice

Courses: Upper Division

Admission to the social work program requires the successful completion of SOWK 214 and SOWK 215; selected Liberal Arts courses; grade point average of 2.50; completion of the application for admission; a personal statement; and approval by social work faculty. Lower division courses and permission of the instructor are prerequisites for upper division coursework.

SOWK 311 Human Behavior and the Social Environment I (4)
Social systems and ecological approach to understanding human development and behavior from infancy through adolescence; patterns of normative and abnormal development across the lifespan; biopsychosocial and spiritual factors affecting individuals, families, groups, and communities; implications for the generalist intervention model across the micro, mezzo, macro continuum. Emphasis on gender, race and class issues.

SOWK 312 Human Behavior and the Social Environment II (4)
Social systems and ecological approach to understanding human development and behavior from young adulthood through senescence; patterns of normative and abnormal development across the lifespan; biopsychosocial and spiritual factors affecting individuals, families, groups, and communities; implications for the generalist intervention model across the micro, mezzo, macro continuum. Emphasis on gender, race, and class issues.
Prerequisite: SOWK 311

SOWK 314 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Individuals (4)
Application of generalist practice to working with individuals. Professional skill development in utilizing effective techniques of worker-client communication, structuring helping interviews, establishing, maintaining, and terminating effective working relationships within a generalist model. Special attention is given to legal and ethical issues, case recording and working with diverse populations.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215.

SOWK 315 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Groups (4)
Application of generalist practice to working with groups. Historical overview of group work and introduction to major theories about group dynamics; emphasis on group development and stages; introduction to interventions with groups.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215

SOWK 316 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Communities and Organizations (4)
Application of generalist practice to working with communities and organizations. Exploration of the theoretical foundations of community organization as a focus of social work intervention; identification, analysis, and evaluation of community problems; understanding the concepts of power, social policy, social change, and the community as a social system; introduction to and comparison of community organization strategies. Emphasis on ethnic and minority issues, and application of interventions in a variety of macro arenas.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215

SOWK 317 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Children and Families (4)
Application of generalist practice to working with children and families within a systemic and developmental framework; introduction to primary stressors and problems affecting families; and study of interventions which target transactions between families and other social systems; examination of diverse family systems and macro influences; brief introduction to family policy.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215

SOWK 324 Children’s Services (4)
A survey of services for children with an emphasis on the resources that affect the well-being of children and youth. The impact of class, ethnicity, gender and oppression on children’s potential will be addressed. Emphasis will be given to understanding the systems affecting children and the resources available to them through government and private agencies. Offered alternate years.

SOWK 386 Special Topics (2 – 3 units)
Topics of current interest in the field of social work. Each course covers the historical development, central theories, generalist practice assessment and interventions, and policy issues related to that specific topic. Different sections may be repeated for additional credit.

SOWK 386A Mental Health
SOWK 386B Medical Social Work

SOWK 388 Field Practicum Orientation (1)
Introduction to the concepts, components, and expectations of the senior field practicum. Assessment of student interests, skills, and suitability for placement in the practicum. Emphasis on interviewing, selecting, and securing an appropriate field placement. Required of all social work majors during spring quarter of the junior year.Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215, 311.

SOWK 405 Social Welfare Policy (4)
Systematic analysis of major social problems of the modern world and the formulation of social policies, including social welfare policies that influence social issues on all levels of society from individuals to communities and nations. Emphasis on policies and legislation relevant to ethnic and minority problems.
Prerequisite: SOWK 205.

SOWK 488 Field Seminar (2,2,2)
Integration of social work knowledge, skills and values with the field practicum. Application of the role of the generalist social work practitioner to multilevel client systems, agencies, and the profession. Required each quarter of the senior year. Must be taken consecutively fall, winter, and spring quarters.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215, 311, 312, 314, 338; concurrent enrollment in SOWK 498; completion of major admission procedures; senior standing and consent of the field coordinator.

SOWK 498 Field Practicum (4,4,4)
Internship program involving generalist practice with clients in local service agencies; application of generalist social work practice skills. Must be taken consecutively fall, winter, and spring quarters.
Prerequisite: SOWK 214, 215, 311, 312, 314, 388; concurrent enrollment in SOWK 488; completion of major admissions procedures; senior standing and consent of the field coordinator.
Recommended: SOWK 315 and 317.

SOWK 499 Directed Study (1-4)

 

Field Practicum
Integral to social work education is the application of the values, knowledge and skills gained in the classroom. This integration and application of practice skills occurs in the student’s senior year in the field practicum. Students participate in 480 hours of hands on training in an agency setting where they work directly with clients under the supervision of a professional social worker. The field experience consists of SOWK 488 Field Seminar (2 units each quarter) and SOWK 498 Field Practicum (4 units each quarter) which are taken concurrently and consecutively fall, winter and spring quarters. The Field Coordinator is responsible for the field practicum portion of the social work program and has prepared a field practicum manual as a resource for the field experience.

 

Prerequisites for Field Practicum
Prerequisites for field practicum include successful completion (grade C or higher) of:
SOWK 214 Introduction to Social Work Practice I
SOWK 215 Introduction to Social Work Practice II
SOWK 311/312 Human Behavior and the Social Environment I/II
SOWK 314 Social Work Methods: Generalist Practice with Individuals
SOWK 388 Field Practicum Orientation.

To enter the field practicum, students must also complete the admission procedures for the social work major, be of senior standing, and have the consent of the field coordinator

Field Placement Procedure
Students are introduced to the myriad of field placement opportunities available in SOWK 388 Field Practicum Orientation taken spring quarter of the junior year. The primary goal of SOWK 388 is to orient and familiarize students with the expectations, responsibilities, and outcomes of the field practicum. The field coordinator assists the students with:
-- Becoming aware of field practicum opportunities in the community
-- Completion of three interviews for possible field practicum sites
-- Matching student –field instructor (social work agency supervisor) preferences
-- Meeting with the field coordinator and instructor to secure and finalize
practicum site

A field practicum site must be secured by the end of the quarter the student is enrolled in SOWK 388.

 

Field Practicum Agencies
The following represents field practicum agencies utilized in the last few years. If a student wold like a field experience in an area of social work not represented below, the field coordinator will work on developing an appropriate placement in that area of social work.

  • Cameron Hills After Care Services
  • Catholic Charities - Caritas Counseling, Emergency Response Services
  • Inland AIDS Project
  • Jefferson Wellness Center
  • Loma Linda University Medical Center Adult Day Services
  • Perris Valley Recovery Program
  • Riverside County Adult Protective Services
  • Riverside County Child Protective Services
  • Riverside County Department of Public Health
  • San Bernardino County Department of Aging and Adult Services
  • Philos Adolescent Treatment Homes Center
  • Riverside County, Department of Education
  • Walden Family Services
  • Inland Multicultural Counseling Center
  • VITAS Hospice Care
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