Social Work- Master of Arts

For information, contact:
Director of Graduate Studies
Department of Family Studies and Social Work
101 McGuffey Hall (513-529-2323)

Program Requirements

The Greater Miami Valley MSW Collaborative offered by Miami University and Wright State University seeks to prepare students to become advanced generalist social work professionals. The goals of the program are to prepare graduates to be advanced generalist social workers who use critical thinking skills and differential application of advanced social work knowledge, theories, skills, values and ethics in the assessment of and intervention with micro, mezzo, and macro level systems. Through an equitable collaboration between Miami University and Wright State University the graduate degree in social work seeks to contribute to the knowledge base of the profession of social work and provide leadership in practice and policies on behalf of the poor, oppressed, racial and ethnic minorities and at-risk populations.

Core course are offered in the FSW department at Miami University and Social Work department at Wright State University, with additional courses available across other departments. Emphasis in the graduate social work program is placed on the best practices and policy skills that advocate and enrich society and human diversity, promote social and economic justice and prevent and alleviate oppression in urban and rural areas through a curriculum that integrates foundation courses, concentration courses, concentration focus area courses, and field integration.

Foundation Courses

Collectively the foundation courses, which are taught in Year 1, provide students with the knowledge, values, and skills required of for generalist social work practice:

FSW 611 Social Welfare Policy I (3) and

FSW 612 Social Welfare Policy II (3)

FSW 617 Human Behavior and Social Environment I (3)

FSW 618 Human Behavior and Social Environment II (3)

FSW 621 Social Work Practice I (3) and

FSW 622 Social Work Practice II (3)

Social Work Research I (3)

FSW 615 Cultural Competency (3)

Social Work Field Education and Lab I (3)

Concentration Courses

The Concentration for all students admitted to the program will be Advanced Generalist Practice. Advanced Generalist Practice is grounded in the liberal arts and the person and environment construct that seeks to promote human and social well-being. Students in the program will develop the expertise to use a range of prevention and intervention methods in practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities. Students will also apply ethical principles, critical thinking and build on the strengths and resiliency of all human beings by engaging in research-informed practice. All students will graduate as Advanced Generalist Practitioners and not as only "clinical" or "administrative" social workers.

The Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice Concentration Courses are as follows:

Social Work Research II (3)

Social Work Research III (3)

Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice I (3) – direct practice

Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice II (3) – macro practice

Social Work Field Practicum & Lab II (3)

Social Work Field Practicum & Lab III (3)

Concentration Focus Area Courses

In addition to the Advanced Generalist Concentration, students in the program are expected to choose between two Concentration Focus Areas that are offered: Gerontology and Child and Family Studies. Effective practice and policy skill development in each of these areas is enhanced and grounded in social work values and ethics that make use of current research knowledge and skills that seek to improve systemic practice, programs and policies. Graduates of the program will be lifelong learners and leaders, contribute to the social work profession, promote diversity and cultural competency, social and economic justice, reduce oppression, and improve the broader human condition.

The concentration focus area courses are as follows:

Concentration Focus Area Practice Course (3)

Concentration Focus Area Policy Course (3)

Concentration Elective (3)

Field Education

Field education is the signature pedagogy of the program. All competencies and practice behaviors are applied in the practicum. Students demonstrate mastery of the practice behaviors by working collaboratively with the course instructors, field instructors, and field supervisors.

Students begin their field education during the second term of their first year. This provides students with their first HBSE and practice foundation courses before beginning field practicum. The practicum is the place where students apply all of the competencies and foundation practice behaviors. The foundation courses will also have assignments that students apply to their practicum.

Students have two different field practicum courses in their second year. During the first semester, students take direct practice courses that are applied to the practicum. During the second semester, students take macro practice courses that are applied to the practicum. Students take a two-semester research sequence in the second year with the goal of conducting evaluative research at their practicum agency.

Integration of Courses and Programs

The Greater Miami Valley MSW Collaborative integrates each of the aforementioned areas (foundation courses, concentration courses, concentration focus area courses, and field integration) for students whose interests and career goals include research or applied work in the field of social work. At the conclusion of the program, students will receive the Master of Arts degree with a major in Social Work only from the institution (i.e., MU or WSU) in which they were admitted. They will experience, however, the same nationally accredited curriculum, some of which will be shared through courses provided either as online applications, closed circuit television or at the regional campus/VOA sites.

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