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Department of Sociology, Anthropology, and Social Work


Required Courses

The social work major requires a comprehensive set of courses that integrate knowledge, skills, and values to prepare students for entry into the social work profession. These requirements are designed to produce individuals, both as citizens and as social work professionals, who function intelligently and responsibly to serve the special needs of the less fortunate in our society.

Students completing a bachelor's degree with a major in social work must complete 51 hours of core social work courses along with additional courses in social sciences, humanities, general education, and electives.

A minimum of 120 hours are required for graduation. In order to graduate with a major in social work, a student must maintain a 3.0 GPA in the core courses; with no core course grade below a “C”) and a 2.5 GPA in all courses taken at KSU.

Specific course requirements and checklists for completing courses can be found below:

Core Social Work Courses

SOCWK 100: Social Work: The Helping Profession

An introduction to the profession of social work and the various fields of social service by observing, experiencing, and analyzing social work and its place in society. An opportunity for the student to test social work as a possible career choice.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 315: Human Behavior in the Social Environment

An introduction to the relationship among biological, social, psychological, and cultural systems as they affect or are affected by human behavior as it relates to the social work model of practice. Emphasis on social systems and understanding of human development and behavior.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 330: Introduction to Social Work Research

The first of two research courses. An emphasis on social work research methodology. Examines the ethics and processes of research.

Offered in-person in spring

SOCWK 510: Social Welfare

The development and present status of social welfare in meeting changing human needs and the requirements of other parts of our social system; the analysis of present-day philosophy and the functions of social welfare.

Offered in-person in fall; offered online in fall and spring

SOCWK 530: Seminar in Applied Social Work Research

Second of two research methods courses. Emphasis on designing and conducting social work  research projects appropriate for baccalaureate social work practice. Attention given to research strategies for the evaluation of social work practice.

Offered in-person in fall

SOCWK 550: Field Practicum Preparation

Social work majors take this course in the semester before enrollment in SOCWK 562 Field Experience, in preparation for the field practice experience. Students explore various fields of practice in social work settings and work with the instructor to plan their practicum for the following semester.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 560: Social Work Practice I

Continued development of social work practice skills. The social systems perspective is used to guide the development of a problem-solving methodology with attention to information gathering, assessment, and problem identification. The values of clarification and self-awareness are emphasized and the skills needed for intervention, termination and evaluation are introduced.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 561: Social Work Practice II

Continuation of SOCWK 560 with emphasis on skill development in intervention techniques, and practice evaluation from a social systems perspective. A variety of intervention strategies and techniques are presented with emphasis on the development of a social work frame of reference. 

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 562: Field Experience

Supervised field experience in community agencies and programs as a practical application of social work knowledge and skills gained from major course work. Emphasis on direct work with clients, whether individuals, groups or communities. Seminars make use of student’s experiences to analyze social work theory and practice.

Offered in-person in fall, spring, and summer

SOCWK 564: Social Work Professional Seminar

A review of various theories in the behavioral sciences that influence the practice of social work. Primary focus of the course is on the use of these theories in implementing change in various client systems.

Offered in-person in fall, spring, and summer

SOCWK 565: Social Policy Formulation and Analysis

Examination of policies and programs developed to cope with various social problems. Emphasis will be placed on analysis of existing programs and policies and the formulation of alternative policies. Attention will be given to policy change through organizational and legislative action.

Offered in-person in spring

SOCWK 568: Macro Practice and Theory

Continuation of social work practice sequence with focus on skills development for macro-level social work practice and an understanding of macro-systems using the ecological perspective as a framework. Community and organization intervention strategies with emphasis on the development of a social work frame of reference. Focus on institutional racism, institutional discrimination, and the importance of recognizing these functions within society.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 570: Social Work with Groups

Taken concurrently with SOCWK 561. Course provides the theoretical framework for effective generalist social work practice with groups, facilitates the development of group leaders who possess an understanding of group dynamics and effective leadership skills through group discussion, experiential exercises and leadership experiences.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

Social Work Electives

SOCWK 200: Basic Skills for Working with People

Course develops basic skill components for the helping professions. Students learn fundamentals of interpersonal communication.

Offered in-person in fall and spring

SOCWK 320: Dynamics of Working with Older Adults

This course will provide students in all fields a unique foundation upon which successful interaction with older adults is built. Specific communication techniques will be taught along with the knowledge, skills and values necessary to understand working with, or on the behalf of, older consumers, clients, patients and family members.

Offered online in summer and spring

SOCWK 350: Social Work with Criminal Offenders & Victims

This course offers an overview of social work practice and professional helping skills in criminal justice and legal systems.

Offered in-person in fall

SOCWK 370: Child Welfare

This course will provide students with an understanding of the dynamics of child maltreatment and the role of the child welfare system in responding to maltreatment. Explores maltreatment across generations, the role of societal norms in perpetuating maltreatment, and culturally competent services for ending the intergenerational cycle of abuse. Examines government policies over time to promote child welfare and the effect of these policies on child safety, permanency, and family reunification.

Offered in-person on the Salina campus with a Zoom-option

SOCWK 380: Social Work and Intimate Partner Violence

This course will provide students an understanding of the knowledge and skills necessary to respond to intimate partner violence in an ethical, victim-centered and trauma informed manner.

Offered in-person in fall

SOCWK 620: Global Social Work

International social work involves global issues experienced by people around the world such as natural disasters, wars and violence, international adoption, human trafficking, etc. Social workers also work with people including service recipients, coworkers, and other stakeholders from diverse cultures and countries of origin. This course deals with underlying theories and concepts of international social work and its history, international social work practice, global social issues, as well as international social work education, research, organizations, projects, and human rights.

Offred online in spring

Substance Abuse Electives

Completion of substance abuse electives allows social work students to become certified in person-centered case management and sit for the Licensed Addictions Counselor (LAC) licensing exam and upon completion of their bachelor's in social work. Contact Cheryl Calhoun (cherylcalhoun@ksu.edu) for more details on LAC course requirements. See flyer here.

SOCWK 360: Case Management & Holistic Recovery

This course examines how substance use disorders (SUDs) continue to be a growing problem faced by individuals and families served by social workers regardless of the specific nature of a social worker's employment. This course introduces students to the concept of case management and the role case managers play in helping persons with substance use disorders obtain and maintain recovery. While the course focuses on case management as it relates to substance use, practical skills developed in this course will translate to case manager duties and roles in almost any case management setting. Topics covered in this course include service delivery planning and implementation, relapse and relapse prevention strategies, and crisis management.

Offered in hybrid format spring of odd years (Zoom may be used for in person sessions)

SOCWK 610: Nature and Effects of Addictive Substances

This course explores the chemical nature of psychoactive drugs of abuse and dependence, along with the physiological, psychological, behavioral, and social effects of specific substances. Topics will include the biochemical action, symptoms of intoxication, withdrawal, and the toxicity of substances within each major classification of drugs.

Offered online in summer

SOCWK 610: Substance Abuse and Addictions

This course is designed to cover the content necessary to provide the student with a fundamental understanding of addiction at the micro, mezzo and macro levels. Topics covered in this course include theoretical approaches of the nature of addiction, bio-psycho-social-spiritual considerations, comparative exploration of the models of assessment and treatment of addictions, addictions and the family, addictions and non-dominant populations and public policy issues.

Offered online in summer

SOCWK 650: Assessment & Treatment of Substance Use Disorders

This course explores how drug addiction is a complex disorder that can involve virtually every aspect of an individual's functioning – and hence – results in most social service providers encountering clients with substance use issues regardless of whether the provider is knowledgeable in addiction counseling. This course is designed to provide a comprehensive examination of substance use treatment and rehabilitation and includes a thorough examination of the treatment models of addiction, recovery, and relapse. Students will practice providing evidence-based interventions based on their own professional assessments.

Offered online in fall of odd years