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Social Work

Master of Social Work – Credits: 39 (advanced standing program) - 57 (regular program) (program code: 0350)

Program Description

The Master of Social Work (MSW) program is committed to developing students’ personal and professional growth, appreciating diversity, using an advanced generalist perspective to make a difference in rural environments, and preparing graduates to be highly competent, effective and well regarded social work practitioners. Our MSW program prepares students to respond professionally and creatively to the increasingly complex matrix of rural human needs and strengths in a changing society. It also provides students with a theoretical and professional practice focused curriculum in social work that promotes an understanding and appreciation of cultural diversity and its importance to competent advanced generalist practice. Built on a professional advanced generalist curriculum model, the program prepares students to work in direct and indirect practice and develops their leadership capacities to prevent and meet needs that affect people in southwestern Pennsylvania, including urban environments, and is designed for students with bachelor’s degrees in psychology, social sciences, sociology, liberal arts and other disciplines.

The 57-credit regular MSW program begins in the fall semester. The full-time regular program requires two years (four semesters). The part-time regular program takes three years; students must register for at least 6 credits each semester, are required to follow the plan for appropriate course sequencing, and must complete degree requirements within six years. The advanced standing program has 39 credits, and is designed for students with bachelor's degrees in social work from Council on Social Work Education accredited programs. It takes three semesters of full-time study (fall, spring, fall). Part-time advanced standing students follow requirements for part-time students and normally finish in two years (four semesters). 

Delivery Mode

Traditional (on-ground, face-to face delivery, with some online/distance elements)

Accreditation

Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)

Admission Criteria

Admission Requirements (Regular)

  • Regular Full/Part Time: Bachelor’s degree with a GPA of 3.00 or higher (Students with a GPA below 3.00 may apply for conditional admission)
  • Advanced Standing Full/Part Time: Bachelor of Social Work degree within six years of application to the MSW program with an overall GPA of 3.00 and a 3.25 or higher in the undergraduate social work major. (Students with a GPA of 3.00 to 3.24 in the undergraduate social work major may still be reviewed for an Advanced Standing decision at the discretion of the department/coordinator. Students who do not meet the requirements for advanced standing may be considered for regular admission)
  • Official transcripts from an accredited undergraduate institution
  • For International Applicants

Conditional Admission Requirements

Conditional Admission may be granted with the following modifications of the Regular Admissions Requirements. Those admitted conditionally based on any missing document/s have up to a maximum of one term to satisfy the requirements:

  • Regular Full/Part Time: Bachelor’s degree with a GPA under 3.00 will be reviewed for a decision
  • Unofficial transcripts

Program Requirements

  • MSW Application
  • Professional Portfolio Statement
  • Resume
  • 3 Letters of Reference
  • The admission process will begin once the department receives a completed MSW packet
  • Submit ALL Program Requirements to:

         Master of Social Work Program, Box 90
         California University of Pennsylvania
         250 University Avenue
         California, PA 15419
         724-938-5977- Fax
         Pankratz@calu.edu

Curriculum

Full-time Regular Program (57 credits):
Course
Credits
Foundation Year, First Term
*SWK 701 Generalist Practice I3
*SWK 705 Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
*SWK 709 Social Welfare Policy, Services and Program Design3
SWK Elective3


Foundation Year, Second Term
*SWK 702 Generalist Practice II3
*SWK 707 Human Diversity3
*SWK 716 Social Work Research Methodology and Data Analysis3
SWK 730 First Year Field Practicum I6


Concentration Year Two, First Term
SWK 801 Advanced Generalist Practice3
SWK 803 Differential Assessment3
SWK 806 Rural Family and Community Policy3
SWK 829 Advanced Field Practicum I6


Concentration Year Two, Second Term
SWK 808 Advanced Practice Evaluation 3
SWK 812 Practice in Supervision and Administration3
SWK Elective3
SWK 830 Advanced Field Practicum II6

*May be waived through examination

Full-time Advanced Standing Program (39 credits):
Course
Credits
First Term
SWK 705 Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
SWK 715 Research, Policy and Rural Social Work Practice3
SWK 801 Advanced Generalist Practice3
SWK 829 Advanced Field Practicum I6


Second Term
SWK 812 Practice in Supervision and Administration3
SWK 808 Advanced Practice Evaluation3
SWK 830 Advanced Field Practicum II6
SWK Practice Elective3


Third Term
SWK 803 Differential Assessment3
SWK 806 Rural Family and Community Policy3
SWK Elective3
Advanced Practice Special Topics
Course
Credits
SWK 811 Practice with Aging in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 813 Practice in Health Care and Health Planning in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 814 Practice in Mental Health/Mental Retardation in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 815 Juvenile and Adult Justice System Practice in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 816 Practice with Children and Youth in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 821 Social Work with Substance Abuse/Addictions in Rural and Small Town Environments3
SWK 840 Electives (varied)3

Field Practicum: The program makes extensive use of a wide variety of practicum sites.

Advisement

Students in the social work program receive academic and professional advisement from the program coordinator and program faculty. Each student is assigned to an academic adviser from the time he/she is accepted into the program of study. Advisers work with students to discuss, monitor and provide advisement as it relates to their program of study.

How to Apply

  • Complete the Graduate School Application online
  • Submit the non-refundable $25 Application Fee
  • Mail official transcript to:
    • School of Graduate Studies and Research
      California University of Pennsylvania
      Box 91, 250 University Ave.
      California, PA 15419
  • Submit unofficial transcripts and other documents by mail (using the address above, email (gradschool@calu.edu), or fax (724-938-5712)

Application Questions

Phone: 724-938-4187
Email: gradschool@calu.edu

For Additional Information

Email: gradschool@calu.edu
Phone: 724-938-4187

Program Coordinator

Norma Thomas, D.S.W. (University of Pennsylvania), M.S.W. (Temple University), B.S.W. (Pennsylvania State University), Assistant Professor
          Web Page
: http://www.calu.edu/academics/faculty/Norma-Thomas.aspx
           Email: thomas@calu.edu
           Phone
: 724-938-1597

Program Faculty

Sheri Boyle, B.A. (University of California, Los Angeles), M.S.W. (University of Pennsylvania), Assistant Professor, Field Coordinator

Margaret Christopher
, M.S.W., M.P.H., Ph.D. (University of Pittsburgh), B.A. (Mount St. Mary's College), Associate Professor

Gwendolyn D. Perry-Burney,
Ph.D. (University of Pittsburgh), B.S.W., M.S.W. (Temple University), Associate Professor

Rosalie Smiley,
M.S.W., L.M.S.M., M.P.H., Ph.D. (University of Pittsburgh), Professor

Pamela C. Twiss,
Ph.D., M.S.W. (University of Pittsburgh), B.A. (Point Park College), Associate Professor

For faculty bios, visit: www.calu.edu/academics/faculty/index.htm.