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Social Work Program Diversity Statement Admission to the Social Work Program
Mission, Goals and Objectives Continuation in the Social Work Program
Mission Statement Transfer Students
Program Goals Reapplication to the Social Work Program
Program Objectives Social Work Major


 Social Work



Elizabeth T. Blue, Professor

Judy Anne Dwyer, Associate Professor

Monica Roth Day, Assistant Professor

Jay Wolterstorff, Associate Professor


Social Work is one of three programs housed in the Department of Human Behavior and Diversity. The other two are the Psychology and the First Nations Studies programs.


The undergraduate major in Social Work offers a Bachelor of Science in Social Work Degree, with an ethnic-sensitive, ecological, generalist focus, which educates and prepares entry-level generalist social workers for effective direct practice with individuals, families, small groups, organizations, institutions and communities. Specific areas of concern for the program are the well-being of regional American Indian people and communities, as well as that of elderly persons and persons with developmental and other disabilities. The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.


UW-Superior Social Work Program Diversity Statement

Respecting and celebrating diversity is an inherent part of the mission of the UW-Superior Social Work program and is a central theme of service when social workers are working in the community. In promoting the dignity, worth and empowerment of the individual client while working to improve and sustain the social environment, our program seeks to strengthen students’ interest in, respect for, and skills in working effectively with diverse and vulnerable populations. Our program also seeks to sensitize and prepare students to help service systems toward constructive change when relating to diverse populations.


Academic credit for life experience and previous work experience shall not be given, in whole or in part, in lieu of any required course.


Social Work Program Mission, Goals and Objectives

The undergraduate Social Work Program at UW-Superior is structured as a competency based program.  The program implements this structure through its mission, six goals and eleven objectives and through its specific course goals and competency objectives.


Mission Statement

We serve as a student and community resource, providing holistic undergraduate social work


Program Goals

GOAL 1: Generalist Preparation

To prepare students for entry-level ecologically-based generalist practice at all levels of intervention (individuals, groups, families, organizations, and communities), utilizing a liberal arts foundation.


GOAL 2: Diversity

To prepare students for inclusive practice with diverse and vulnerable groups in society throughout a variety of local, regional and international human service settings, particularly practice with American Indian people, elderly persons, and persons with disabilities.


GOAL 3: Ethics

To prepare students for ethical decision-making guided by the values, principles and standards of the social work profession, particularly the values of self-determination, empowerment, and regard for diversity.


GOAL 4: Social Justice

To prepare students to recognize and apply social justice principles in practice situations calling for social change and advocacy.


GOAL 5: Professional Development

To prepare students for continuing professional development, including future graduate study.


GOAL 6: Service

To support on-campus, local, regional and international constituencies with research, continuing education, consultation and assistance, which promote social justice and social development.


UW-Superior Social Work Program Objectives

Upon completion of the UW-Superior Social Work Program, students will be able to:


1. Make use of effective communication to employ a planned change approach which supports client interventions across systems levels (individuals, families, small groups, agencies, and community);


2. With diverse, misunderstood and/or oppressed populations, use both ethnic-sensitive (including a specific focus on First Nations people) and socially sensitive (including a specific focus on persons with developmental disabilities, persons with mental health issues, and aging people) generalist practice approaches; 


3. Demonstrate how ecological and empowerment frameworks, as well as other theoretical frameworks, can be employed to inform practice decisions across system levels;


4. Appraise the structure of organizations, service delivery systems, and communities and, under supervision, advocate for organizational and community change based on the principles of social and economic justice;


5. Integrate knowledge of the history of the social work profession and current social welfare structures, fiscal imperatives, policies, and issues with the ability to analyze their impacts upon client systems, human service agencies and systems,  and social work practitioners;


6. Apply critical thinking skills in problem solving with social work values and ethics, human diversity issues, the dynamics of discrimination and oppression, social and economic justice, and interactions among systems;


7. Distinguish their personal values in relation to professional social work ethics, especially the values of self-determination, empowerment, and regard for diversity;


8. Understand and apply the values base and ethics of the profession to practice situations across systems levels;


9. Evaluate the impact of professional use of self in practice situations across systems levels;


10. Identify and make appropriate use of supervision and consultation;


11. Conduct research to evaluate their own social work interventions and those of others, as well as to evaluate agency and community practice.


Admission to the Social Work Program

To seek formal admission to the program, the student files an application with an academic advisor before entering SOW 340, Methods of Practice I, and SOW 341, Methods of Practice II, usually by the end of the sophomore year. Admission requirements include: a grade of C or better in SOW 121 Introduction to Social Work, an overall grade point average of at least 2.3 at time of admission, and demonstration of suitability and capacity to enter the profession of social work according to Admission/Continuation Competencies listed in the “Social Work Student Handbook.” All applicants meet with a Review Committee as a part of the admission process. The Review Committee consists of social work faculty and may also include a member of the Social Work program's Community Advisory Committee. Students transferring into the program may be granted a conditional admission while they finish the introductory course satisfactorily.


Continuation in the Social Work Program

Continuation in good standing in the program is contingent upon the following:

1. Earning a grade of C or better or pass (P) in all required social work courses, and retaking any required social work course in which a grade below C or pass (P) was received.


2. Maintaining an overall grade point average of 2.3 from time of admission through graduation.


3. Maintaining a grade point within the major courses of 2.5 by the end of the junior year through graduation.


4. Continuing to demonstrate suitability and capacity for the profession of social work as expressed in the Students’ Rights and Responsibilities statement in the “Social Work Student Handbook.”


The Social Work program is administered and admissions are determined without discrimination on the basis of race, religion, national or ethnic origin, creed, handicap, age, sex or sexual orientation.


Transfer Students

Transfer students are expected to seek advisement with an intake advisor of the program at or before the time of their first registration. Contact the Admissions Office, the Center for Academic and Career Advisement or the Social Work program office to be referred to this advisor. The intake advisor will furnish transfer students with academic advisement and Social Work program materials, including the “Social Work Student Handbook.” Transfer students seeking formal admission to the program must be enrolled at UW-Superior for at least one semester before enrolling in senior practicum. Transfer students must meet all admission and continuation standards of non-transfer Social Work majors. Procedures for grievance and appeal and continuation in the program are the same for transfer students as for other Social Work majors.


If a transfer student requests that a requirement for the Social Work major be met by a transfer credit, the request may be granted if the course content is identical and if the grade for the course is computed as part of the grade point average requirements for the major in Social Work. In addition, any social work courses transferred in must have been taught by an MSW (Masters of Social Work) who graduated from an accredited social work program or must be accompanied by documentation that essential social welfare, and/or content about the development of social work as a profession have been incorporated into the course. Methods and practicum courses must be taken at UW-Superior.


Reapplication to the Social Work Program

Requirements for readmission to the program include:

1. Enrollment for a minimum of one semester at UW-Superior before reapplication.


2. Resubmission of an application following the standards expressed in Reapplication to the Social Work Program found in the “Social Work Student Handbook.”


3. Junior standing.


4. Grades of C or higher in all required social work courses, and an overall grade point average of at least 2.3, and a grade point in the major of at least 2.5 from the end of the junior year through graduation.


Social Work Major

The Social Work Major is a comprehensive major which consists of 65-68 credits depending upon courses chosen. In effect, an interdisciplinary minor is integrated into the requirements for the major, thus no minor is required.


Basic core (all required):

SOW 121 Introduction to Social Work                                                             3 credits

SOW 325 The Ecology of Social Welfare Policy Making                                  3 credits

SOW 326 Social Welfare Policy Practice                                                         3 credits

SOW 340 Methods of Practice I: Interpersonal Skills    for Social Workers       3 credits

SOW 341 Methods of Practice II: Individual Case Work                                  3 credits

SOW 344 Human Behavior in the Social Environment I                                     3 credits

SOW 345 Human Behavior in the Social Environment II                                   3 credits

SOW 365 Methods of Practice III: Family and Group Work                             3 credits

SOW 366 Methods of Practice IV: Agency, Community and Global Practice    3 credits

SOW 380 Social Work Research Methods                                                      3 credits

SOW 420 Preparation for Field Internship                                                        0 credit

SOW 422 Social Work Field Instruction I                                                        5 credits

SOW 423 Social Work Field Seminar I                                                            1 credit

SOW 427 Social Work Field Instruction II                                                       5 credits

SOW 428 Social Work Field Seminar II                                                           1 credit

SOW 480 Research Projects                                                                            3 credits

BIOL 115 Human Biology                                                                                3-4 credits

SOCI 273 Race and Ethnicity                                                                           3 credits

MATH 130 Elementary Statistics                                                                      4 credits


PSYC 301 Statistics for Psychological Research                                               3 credits


Other Required Electives:

Twelve additional credits in four elective categories are required.


Social Work Elective Category:

One three-credit course must come from any of the following social work elective offerings:

SOW 329 Crisis Interventions                                                                          3 credits

SOW 350 An Introduction to Addiction and Recovery                                      3 credits

SOW 386 Social Work Practice with American Indian Families                        3 credits

SOW 426 Special topics in Social Work                                                          3 credits

SOW 498 Independent Projects                                                                       1-4 credits


Micro Elective Category:

One three-credit course must be chosen jointly by the student and his or her social work advisor from a “micro” category. This allows the student to choose from a wide array of courses and disciplines, as long as the agreed upon course has a micro focus (an individual or family focus). An example might be a course with such a smaller system focus drawn from Psychology, Sociology, First Nations Studies or Women’s Studies.


Macro Elective Category:

The final three-credit course must be chosen jointly by the student and his or her social work advisor from a “macro” category. This allows the student to choose from a wide array of courses and disciplines, as long as the agreed upon course has a macro focus (an organization, community, international or societal focus). An example might be a course with such a larger system focus drawn from Political Science, Legal Studies, Geography, Economics, Psychology, Sociology, First Nations Studies or Women’s Studies.


Writing Requirement:

Social workers must be able to articulate their professional viewpoints relating to their work as well as be able to advocate effectively on clients’ behalf. Thus, students are expected to complete an additional writing course before graduation. They may choose either of the following:

ENGL 209 Business and Professional Writing                                       3 credits

ENGL 307 English Grammar                                                                3 credits


All 12 elective credits must be discussed with and approved by the student’s academic advisor.