Social Work

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Mission

The CSC Social Work program has been accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) since 1993. Students who graduate from Chadron State College in Social Work are prepared for social work practice in a multicultural context within the region, as well as nationally and globally. The challenges of and capacities for addressing human diversity are integrated throughout the social work curriculum. The social work curriculum is also designed to encourage the development of knowledge and skills in collaboration, collegiality, and networking. Graduates of the CSC Social Work program are prepared to provide professional leadership within the region.

The Bachelor of Arts in Social Work at Chadron State College provides an undergraduate experience that fosters student development of practice behaviors and competencies including the knowledge, skills, and values in order to function as generalist Social Workers. The acquired competencies prepare social workers who demonstrate practice abilities that enhance the capacities and quality of life for individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities within the region of western Nebraska, southwest South Dakota, southeast Wyoming, and northeast Colorado.

In order to carry out the Social Work Program mission of Chadron State College, the Social Work faculty strive for excellence in teaching, scholarship, and service. Social Work faculty teach foundation curriculum with a sensitivity to student needs and with an awareness of the requisite practice behaviors and values appropriate to a competent social work practice at a baccalaureate level. To maintain student learning, Social Work faculty use innovative technology, experiential and active learning approaches, and outcome-based learning that individualize curriculum and instruction to the needs of individual learners.

Social Work faculty continually evaluate courses through student process evaluations, course evaluations of teaching and objective attainment, peer reviews of teaching, assessment of written assignments, and tests of student learning and evaluation of student demonstration of competencies through practice behaviors identified by the Council on Social Work Education. Social Work faculty seek to integrate scholarship with student learning through presentations at regional and national conferences, special projects, and community consultation. Social Work faculty provide service to the College, community, and professional associations by serving on local and regional boards and committees and participating in projects with local human service systems.

Student Learning Outcomes

To carry out the mission of the Social Work Program and Chadron State College, the Social Work Program seeks to prepare Social Work Professionals who will, upon completion of the Program, be able to:

  1. Critically engage, assess and intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities using multidimensional theories and strategies that enhance the social functioning and interactions of individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities by involving them in recognizing assets and strengths, accomplishing goals, developing resources, and preventing and alleviating distress. Monitor and evaluate intervention efficacy. Apply knowledge of human development across the lifespan and age appropriate prevention interventions.
  2. Utilize the skills and knowledge to successfully practice within the context of rural settings with diverse cultures, reflected by but not limited to age, gender, mission/orientation, sexual preference, racial or ethnic background, disability, marital status, religious orientations, and life style. Communicate the value of diversity in all social institutions. Recognize the impact of societal values that marginalize or grant privilege to individuals and groups on local and global levels.
  3. Utilize knowledge of basic human rights, the forms and mechanisms of oppression/social/economic injustice, integrate a value-base that fosters commitment to advocacy, and develop social skills, practice behaviors, and political skills necessary to alleviate oppression/social/economic injustice.
  4. Critically analyze and implement social welfare policies, services, and programs through political and organizational processes in order meet basic human needs and support the development of human capacities. Demonstrate understanding of historical and current social policies and services.
  5. Work collaboratively within rural human service agencies and human service delivery systems with supervisors and professional colleagues and develop personal/professional/political support systems.
  6. Engage in research-informed practice. Utilize the knowledge and skills of research, evaluate professional practice using qualitative and quantitative research methods, use and solicit collegial feedback, and apply existing knowledge to advance Social Work practice.
  7. Practice Social Work with an ethical orientation compatible with the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers and to apply strategies of ethical reasoning, and act professionally and intentionally in situations with ethical dilemmas. Conduct one’s personal life ethically by recognizing and managing personal values in order to allow professional standards of ethical practice to guide practice.
  8. Develop an identity as a professional Social Worker and practice Social Work with the highest regard for the strengths/capacities, integrity and value of all beings whether as individuals or in families, groups, organizations and communities. Demonstrate application of the value base of the profession and relevant laws to practice.
  9. Apply critical thinking, logic, scientific inquiry, and discernment. Demonstrate creativity and ability to communicate relevant information to others.
  10. Enter a graduate program in Social Work with advanced standing.

The Social Work Program consists of pre-professional studies in the freshman and sophomore years and the professional major which is usually completed during the student’s junior and senior years of study. Except for some transfer students, incoming students who want to major in Social Work are given the status of a Pre-Professional Social Work major. The Pre-Professional Social Work major is determined by the student indicating Social Work as an area of interest when first enrolling in college. Identifying an interest in Social Work permits the School of Education, Human Performance, Counseling, Psychology, and Social Work to assign the student to a Social Work faculty advisor. Prerequisite courses to the Professional Social Work Program include the following courses:

BIOL 121
121L
HUMAN BIOLOGY
and HUMAN BIOLOGY LABORATORY
3
ECON 130SURVEY OF ECONOMICS3
LS 236FAMILY LAW3
PSYC 131INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY3
PSYC 242MEASUREMENT AND RESEARCH DESIGNS3
SW 231PROFESSIONAL SOCIAL WORK3
SW 251HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT I3
SW 252HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT II3
SW 271SOCIAL WELFARE HISTORY & SERVICE DELIVERY SYSTEMS3

Students considering Social Work should consult the Social Work faculty early in their academic career to insure that the necessary Prerequisite coursework is completed prior to admission to the Professional Social Work program.

Admission to the Professional Social Work Program

The admissions policy of the Chadron State College Professional Social Work Program is to accept all qualified students within the limits of its resources, facilities, and mission. Qualified students are admitted without regard to age, race, marital status, gender, religion, national origin, or disability. Educational policies, scholarship and loan programs, and other programs and activities, are administered without discrimination. Chadron State College offers a B.A. degree with a comprehensive major in Social Work which is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Graduating students are prepared to practice as competent beginning Social Work professionals.

Generally, students make application to the Professional Social Work Program during the fall semester of the junior year. Students who change majors or transfer to Chadron State College make application to the Professional Social Work Program when they have either completed or enrolled in all Prerequisite Social Work courses. Applications to the Professional Social Work Program are available online in the Social Work Student Handbook.

Admission Criteria

Admission to the Chadron State College Professional Social Work Program is based on the following criteria:

  1. Junior standing
  2. Cumulative grade point average of 2.50 and a 2.75 GPA in Prerequisite Social Work courses
  3. Completion of an Application to the Professional Social Work Program by deadlines published during the fall semester. An Application to the Professional Social Work Program includes: the application form, three letters of reference, written responses to questions identified on the application form, a personal statement, and a current resume
  4. Completion of the following required courses:
    1. BIOL 121
      121L
      HUMAN BIOLOGY
      and HUMAN BIOLOGY LABORATORY
      3
      ECON 130SURVEY OF ECONOMICS3
      LS 236FAMILY LAW3
      PSYC 131INTRODUCTION TO PSYCHOLOGY3
      PSYC 242MEASUREMENT AND RESEARCH DESIGNS3
      SW 231PROFESSIONAL SOCIAL WORK3
      SW 251HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT I3
      SW 252HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT II3
      SW 271SOCIAL WELFARE HISTORY & SERVICE DELIVERY SYSTEMS3
  5. Documentation of 40 hours of volunteer experience in a social service setting must be completed by the beginning of the fall semester of the senior year.
  6. Completed interview with Social Work faculty and the Social Work Program Advisory Committee.
  7. Signed statement of acknowledgement of student’s willingness to abide by the NASW Code of Ethics.

In accordance with the educational standards of the Council on Social Work Education and Chadron State College, the Social Work Program does not grant academic credit for life experience for any social work course requirement.

After discussion with Social Work faculty, a student who does not meet the admission requirements for the Social Work Program may petition the Social Work Advisory Committee for special consideration.

Once accepted into the Professional Social Work program, students who apply to enter the Social Work Field Program are required to complete a criminal background check. The background check will include states and counties of prior residence and will be completed at the expense of the student.

A student with a major felony conviction(s) including but not limited to the use of weapons or abuse of vulnerable individuals may not be able to complete SW 464 SOCIAL WORK FIELD PRACTICUM, depending upon the Program’s ability to find a field placement site. If a student completes the Social Work Professional Program, he/she may not be able to secure a license to practice Professional Social Work, depending upon a given state’s social work licensing board’s standards or depending upon a given agency’s hiring standards. Students with questions about prior convictions must schedule a meeting with the Social Work Program Director and Field Director to discuss circumstances and options available.

Applications for admission to the Professional Social Work Program are reviewed by the Social Work Program Advisory Committee. Students also interview with the Social Work Program Advisory Committee. Action on admission requests may include admission, conditional admission, or denial of admission. Students are notified of the decision of the Social Work Program Advisory Committee by an official letter from the Director of the Social Work Program. Students who are not accepted may appeal the decision by initiating the appeal process as outlined in the Social Work Program Student Handbook.

Transfer Students

Students transferring into CSC may upon completion of Prerequisite Social Work courses or upon enrollment in Prerequisite Social Work courses, apply for admission to the Professional Social Work Program. Before a student can be admitted to the Professional Social Work Program, the application process must be completed.

In situations where students are applying to the Professional Social Work Program while finishing Prerequisite courses, students may enroll in Professional Social Work courses on a conditional basis with permission of the Director of the Social Work Program.

Students wanting to transfer credits from another institution must submit an official transcript to Chadron State College for evaluation. Unless an articulation agreement related to Social Work courses exists between Chadron State College and the institution, students must submit syllabi from prior Social Work courses to the Director of the Social Work Program. For Social Work Program courses, the final decision concerning content and acceptability of transferred courses rests with the Director of the Social Work Program.

Termination Policy

Please refer to the Chadron State College Termination from Social Work Program policy for further details.

SW 230 TOPICS IN SOCIAL WORK1-3 Credits

Special topics in social work. May be repeated with a change of emphasis.

SW 231 PROFESSIONAL SOCIAL WORK3 Credits

Surveys the social work profession, including but not limited to social work leaders of the present and past, social work theories, beliefs, values, and ethics, social work fields of practice, methods, special populations, and human diversity in a rural area. Introduces systems theory, person-in-environment and U.S. political spectrum. Discusses the social work code of ethics. Students engage in personal values clarification relative to this code.

SW 251 HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT I3 Credits

Examines theories of human development from prenatal to old age using a multidimensional, multicultural perspective that includes bio-physical, psychological, social, economic, and spiritual. Students apply developmental knowledge to understand person and environment and demonstrate introductory level practice behaviors in observation and interviewing.

SW 252 HUMAN BEHAVIOR/SOCIAL ENVIRONMENT II3 Credits

Examines theories and perspectives on human behavior in organizations and communities, including political-economic motivations, expectation sets, joining behaviors in the rural context. Competencies for dealing with power differentials, negotiation and coalition building are addressed. Issued associated with race/ethnicity, minority status, disabilities, and economic status involving vulnerable populations or at-risk population are emphasized. Students apply developmental knowledge and multidimensional perspectives through self-reflection, observations, interviews, and written analysis.

Prerequisites: SW 251

SW 271 SOCIAL WELFARE HISTORY & SERVICE DELIVERY SYSTEMS3 Credits

Examines the developmental history of social welfare with a focus on political, social, cultural ideologies and systems during periods in European and American history. Explores the context for the development of social programs and the treatment of various out-groups, including persons considered poor, developmentally disabled, mentally retarded, ethnic and racial minorities, women, disabled, children, gay men and lesbian women, and religious minorities within the international community. Students analyze policy implementation of local social service delivery systems using a descriptive model of policy analysis.

Prerequisites: SW 231, SW 251, and SW 252

SW 330 DIVERSITY IN THE RURAL ENVIRONMENT4 Credits

Examines practice competencies needed for generalist social work practice in the context of the rural setting. Social issues (poverty, isolation, transportation, and housing) and theories related to the life experience of African Americans, Native Americans, Asian Americans, and Hispanic Americans. Explores cultures and heritages of these groups along with other social groups such as women and sexual minorities in the rural context. Discusses factors of service provision with emphasis on capacity building in rural communities and issues of accommodation, acculturation, and assimilation.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

Add Consent: Department Consent

SW 331 SERVICES TO CHILDREN AND FAMILIES3 Credits

Needs of children and families and services appropriate to satisfy these needs. Focuses on difficulties, strategies for intervention based upon a multi-cultural strengths perspective and rural practice context. Social services for children and families are identified. Practice behaviors for legal and protective intervention, court process, and a variety of treatment interventions are explored. Field trips and/or agency guest lecturers provide an opportunity for on-site observation.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

SW 332 SERVICES TO ELDERLY AND DIFFERENTLY ABLED2 Credits

Practice behaviors and competencies of generalist social work practice with the geriatric population are addressed. Needs of the elderly and the physically and mentally differently abled are explored. Intervention and advocacy on behalf of these vulnerable populations is emphasized. Current services and alternatives will be considered. Rural context, myths and values will be discussed along with specific treatment modalities. Professional social work program course.

Co-requisites: SW 435 and Sophomore or above status

SW 338 CROSS CULTURAL PRACTICE SKILLS3 Credits

Explores the practice skills and cultural competencies necessary to practice social work with peoples of color, specifically Native Americans, African Americans, Hispanic Americans and Asian Americans. Examines the historical and regional context of social service interventions, current areas of need and skills and competencies required to provide social work interventions within a cross-cultural setting.

Prerequisites: SW 271 and Sophomore or above status

SW 339 ALCOHOL AND SUBSTANCE ABUSE3 Credits

Examines the current state of knowledge associated with alcohol and substance use, abuse and dependency, including the physical and pharmacological effects on the human body. Explores social work roles and values related to assessment and interventions with substance abuse issues in the context of individuals, families, organizations and communities. Focus includes alcohol use, alcohol abuse, alcohol dependence, the disease concept, social issues, other chemical abuse and dual diagnosis of substance and mental illness. Ethno cultural factors in substance dependency are examined.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

SW 340 MENTAL HEALTH SOCIAL WORK3 Credits

Examines the current state of knowledge in the field of mental health and mental health treatment, including theories of mental health and health illness and condepts of: case management, determination of need, mental health service systems, scope and variety of interventive methods, role of the interdisciplinary team, evaluation and impact of discrimination.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

SW 343 RESEARCH METHODS3 Credits

Introduces qualitative and quantitative world views, basic research methods, including developing single subject, survey and grounded theory research designs to evaluate practice. Students develop competencies with critiques of research articles and application of existing social work knowledge and empirical research to design multi-level interventions and evaluation methods with individuals, families, groups, communities, and organizations. Students will demonstrate beginning generalist competency through individual and group projects. Professional social work program course.

Prerequisites: SW 231, SW 251, SW 252, SW 271 and MATH 232 or PSYC 242 and Sophomore or above status

Co-requisites: SW 343L

Add Consent: Department Consent

SW 343L RESEARCH METHODS LAB1 Credit

Students apply knowledge of SPSS and Qualitative software involving data entry and data analysis on data generated from group projects developed in SW 343 Social Work Research Methods. Students complete developmental assignments on use of SPSS and qualitative analysis. Professional social work course.

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

Co-requisites: SW 343

SW 371 INTERNATIONAL SOCIAL WELFARE3 Credits

Examines globalization, salient global issues, development of institutions of social welfare, and their impact on social well-being, and human need. The role of international organizations, sustainable agriculture, economic development, alternate economic structures, political systems, and policies in third world nations are examined. Emphasis is placed on the relationship between human rights, social, and distributive justice and social intervention.

Essential Studies Outcome: ES10

Prerequisites: Sophomore or above status

SW 400 INDEPENDENT STUDY OR RESEARCH1-3 Credits

Study or research in an area of special interest. The number of credit hours is determined by the topic and the amount of work required. Permission of instructor and Dean is required.

Add Consent: Instructor Consent

SW 430 TOPICS IN SOCIAL WORK1-3 Credits

Special topics in social work. May be repeated with a change of emphasis.

Add Consent: Instructor Consent

SW 431 GENERALIST METHODS LAB1 Credit

Students acquire knowledge and practice behavior skill in professional use of self in various interpersonal situations, including professional interviewing, therapeutic relationships, and personal assertiveness. Students record role plays with peer evaluations, individually complete programmed learning exercises to demonstrate engagement, assessment, intervention planning with clients and evaluation of practice. Professional Social Work Program course.

Prerequisites: SW 231, SW 251, SW 252, SW 271, and Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 432

Add Consent: Department Consent

SW 432 METHODS I: INDIVIDUALS & FAMILIES3 Credits

Examines social work interventions with individuals and families based upon social work research and theory, particularly resilience and the strength's perspective. Examines approaches to assessment, planning, implementation, and evaluation. Specific emphasis is given to social work practice behaviors and considerations of diversity when working with individuals and families. Professional Social Work Program course.

Prerequisites: SW 231, SW 251, SW 252, SW 271, and Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 431

SW 433 METHODS II:THERAPEUTIC & TASK GROUPS3 Credits

Examines a broad range of groups, with emphasis on group theory, the nature and uses of therapeutic and task groups, including: group development, dynamics, facilitation skills, group assessments and outcome evaluation. Students demonstrate competencies, practice behaviors, and application of critical thinking, social work ethics in simulations and role plays with emphasis on assessment, design, and interventions with multi-cultural individuals, families, organizations and communities. Professional social work program course.

Prerequisites: SW 343, SW 432, and Junior or above status

SW 434 POLICY ANALYSIS AND ADVOCACY3 Credits

Examines theories on the development of public social welfare policy in the United States and explores the mechanisms and methods that sustain discrimination and oppression within policy processes. Competencies for advocacy including power differentials, negotiation and coalition building are addressed. Examines historical, content, process, political-economic, comparative, and constructivist models of policy analysis and applies these models to national and global social welfare issues for at-risk populations. Students demonstrate competencies through a policy analysis of a national policy with relevance to the local rural context, recommend proposed changes, and identify strategies for changing social welfare policies and practices. Professional Social Work Program course.

Prerequisites: Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 433

SW 435 METHODS III: ORGANIZATIONS AND COMMUNITIES3 Credits

SW 435 Methods III: Organizations and Communities Credit 3 hours

Explores strategies and tactics for organizational and community change using a strength's perspective with attention to changing barriers to out-group participation in society and with attention to building systems responsive to the physical, psychological, social and economic needs of minority populations. Students demonstrate competency in organizational and community assessments, identify change targets, and propose strategies and tactics for creating change. Students participate in a significant community level project. Professional social work program course.

Prerequisites: Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 332 and SW 434

SW 436 FORENSIC SOCIAL WORK3 Credits

Examines the application of social work knowledge and skills to law and the justice system, specifically in working with adjudicated individuals in clinics, prisons, juvenile and adult services, diversion programs, corrections, court mandated treatment and psychiatric hospitals. Explores perspectives on issues of responsibility and competence to stand trial as juveniles and adults.

Prerequisites: Junior or above status

SW 459 PRE-FIELD AND ORIENTATION1 Credit

Examines ethical dilemmas and ethical decision making. Social Work Code of Ethics, professional behavior, organizational entry, use of supervision, and field instruction policies and procedures. Field instructors and students complete written learning contracts with identified goals that will permit measurement of student attainment of practice behaviors and competencies applied in agency settings when in SW 464, Practicum. Professional Social Work Program course.

Prerequisites: Junior or above status

SW 463 PROFESSIONAL SEMINAR2 Credits

Explores ethical issues and dilemmas and skills in collegial support and feedback through mutual problem-solving. Examines life long learning, job seeking, job interviewing, professional networking, state certification, state licensure and Social Work licensing boards, NASW membership, professional memberships and graduate MSW applications. Students report progress on achievement of learning tasks and demonstrate use of empirical knowledge to guide practice based assessments and interventions. Advanced professional social work program course.

Prerequisites: SW 459 and Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 464

SW 464 SOCIAL WORK FIELD PRACTICUM5-10 Credits

Provides a structured educational experience in an approved social service agency with an approved field instructor based upon a written learning contract. Students complete a variety of learning tasks that demonstrate practice behaviors and competencies of a beginning generalist social work professional. Students should enroll for 10 credit hours and expect to work 34-36 hours per week for the semester for a minimum total of 450 hours. In special situations and with the approval of the field director, a student may register for 5 credit hours in each of two consecutive spring semesters. Professional social work program course.

Prerequisites: SW 459 and Junior or above status

Co-requisites: SW 463