The Bachelor of Social Work degree (BSW) prepares students for entry-level generalist practice and/or for pursuit of the Master of Social Work (MSW), professionally regarded as the terminal practice degree. Austin Peay offers the BSW and,with Mid-Tennessee Collaborative partners Tennessee State University and Middle Tennessee State University, the MSW, both of which are accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Social work is rooted in a liberal arts perspective informed by the general education curriculum and elective courses. The undergraduate social work knowledge base builds upon this core through developing an understanding of the heritage and history of the profession, an appreciation for the values and ethics that inform practice, theories that endeavor to explain and predict human behavior and the various social and cultural factors that influence human life and interactions, and the skills needed to implement this knowledge into intervening with both individuals and larger social systems. BSW-prepared social workers are employed in state and county agencies, such as the Department of Children’s Services, Adult Protective Services, local health departments, courts and the correction system, case management with adults and children who seek assistance with mental and/or physical challenges, schools, long-term care and other residential facilities, substance abuse prevention and treatment, and numerous other areas. One of the advantages of a career in social work is the possibility of changing practice venues without having to pursue an additional degree. Master’s level social workers who become licensed have the additional options of medical social work, conducting therapy with individuals, groups, and families, and engaging in private practice. Social Work Field Study Requirements: Each semester as students enroll in SW 4400 (1-hour) Seminar for Field Instruction, the field coordinator verifies that each student has been formally admitted to the social work program. Each student’s degree evaluation is double-checked to ensure the student has not only a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or higher, but also has a social work GPA of 2.0 or higher. The pre-requisites/co-requisites are verified on the degree evaluation along with ensuring the student has received a C or better in practice courses. If the student is in a practice course as a co-requisite to SW 4400, the grades are checked at the end of the semester and if the student did not receive a C or better, the student is not allowed to proceed to field until the practice course is successfully completed. If a student does not meet the criteria to be admitted to field practice, the field coordinator meets with the student to develop a plan that will allow the student to meet the criteria and proceed to the field practicum.
Please visit the Social Work handbook for additional program requirements regarding admission, progression, dismissal, and program completion.