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Graduate Catalog 2014-2015

CatalogGraduateCollege of Arts and SciencesSWRKCourse Descriptions

Social Work Course Descriptions

All course descriptions carry behind the name and number a parenthesis ( ) indicating the credit hours, lecture hours, and the lab hours per week. For example: NSCI 110 (4-3-2). The first number in the parenthesis indicates the credit value of the course (4); the second number indicates the number of lecture hours (3) per week; and the third number indicates the number of lab hours per week (2).

SWRK 510  (3-3-0)  Social Welfare Policy and Services: This course is an advanced study of the historical development of social welfare and the evolution of social work values and ethics. Emphasis is placed on the major fields of social work such as children and family services, mental health, health care, income maintenance, and corrections. Analytic frameworks with regard to social welfare policies and services are introduced. Frameworks identify strengths and weaknesses in the social welfare system with respect to multiculturalism and diversity. Policy at the national, state, and local levels, with emphasis on poverty, inequality; social and economic justice is addressed.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 515  (3-3-0)  Forensic Social Work: This course addresses working with criminals in clinics, prisons, juvenile and adult services, corrections, court mandated treatment and psychiatric hospitals for defendants being evaluated and treated on issues of responsibilities and competence to stand trial. As well, the course will address the related issues of working with the families of these offenders. Students will develop familiarity with the adversary process and the issues social workers confront in the civil and criminal justice system. This course also includes experiential learning from field trips. Students will interface/interact with the inmates and the prison staffs during these trips.
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SWRK 516  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice with Black Families: This course examines the past and current status of Black families and alert students to specific knowledge, skills values and strategies required to work successfully and culturally with the target group. It incorporates the study and analysis of problems and issues faced by social workers in working effectively with Black families, including the integration of theory, cultural factors, social work policy, human behavior and social work practice. A particular emphasis is placed upon greater understanding of the challenges and dynamics affecting practice with Black families, including economic and social justice, empowerment, and oppression. Additionally, from an empowerment and strengths perspective, this course will examine historically the capabilities and strengths of Black families and how such capabilities and strengths can be sued in effective social work practice with Black families.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540 Or SWRK 425
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SWRK 517  (3-3-0)  International Social Work: This course introduces students to the international dimensions of social work practice. Special attention is given to the present and future role of International social work professionals. Additionally, the role and responsibilities of United Nations, global human rights organizations, international aid agencies, intergovernmental and nongovernmental agencies are addressed. Students develop and understanding of poverty, violence, structural adjustment, debt crisis, migration, human rights issues, exploitation of children and women, other populations at risk, and social and economic justice issues within a global perspective. Also addressed are international aspects of domestic practice, policy formulation and advocacy from a global perspective.
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SWRK 520  (3-3-0)  Human Behavior and the Social Environment I: This course focuses on the physiological, cognitive, intellectual and emotional development of individuals. Theoretical explanations of human development over the lifespan are explored. Major social issues relating to human growth and development, ecological systems, culture, race, ethnicity, gender and socioeconomic forces as applied to the analysis of individuals, families, small groups, organizations and communities are addressed. Focus will be given to oppression, privilege, and discrimination, and factors that help individuals and small social systems to change.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 525  (3-3-0)  Human Behavior and the Social Environment II: The course emphasizes social processes that transcend the individual, aiming to increase students' conceptual sophistication about the social context of human action and social work intervention. Within the person-in-environment framework, this course presents social theories and concepts that become tools for students' critical analysis of society, communities, social institutions and organizations, populations, and social structures, and cultures is a main component of the course. Special attention is given to human diversity and social inequalities.
Prerequisite: SWRK 520
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SWRK 530  (3-3-0)  Social Work Statistical and Data Analysis: This course is designed to develop understanding of probabilistic analysis, quantitative reasoning, and inferential statistics. Students are provided opportunities to do data analysis on the computer and concentrate on research and policy applications.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 540  (3-3-0)  Social Work Intervention with Individuals and Families: This course will introduce students to content on theories of assessment, intervention, diversity, evaluation and termination. Specific attention is given to the development of skills in communication, rapport building, interviewing, and the utilization of professional self in working with individuals and families. Multigenerational family life cycle is explored. Models of family therapy and other intervention approaches are reviewed. Challenges and concerns encountered by vulnerable families, low-income families, families of color, and nontraditional families are reviewed. The dynamics of small groups are emphasized. Students develop an understanding of how values and ethics impact social work practice.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 560  (3-3-0)  Applied Social Work Research Methods: Students apply quantitative and qualitative research to promote understanding of scientific, analytic, and ethical approaches to building knowledge for practice. Students learn to develop, use, and effectively communicate empirically based knowledge, including evidenced-based knowledge. The content prepares students to utilize research to provide high quality services, initiate change, improve practice, policy, and service delivery systems as well as evaluate their own practice. Major research designs are reviewed, and students develop skills in collecting, analyzing and using data. Sampling methods, data collection techniques, and statistical and graphical approaches to data analysis are emphasized. The course integrates themes related to multiculturalism, social justice, social change, prevention, intervention and treatment.
Prerequisite: Graduate Standing in Social Work
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SWRK 570  (3-3-0)  Social Work Intervention with Groups, Communities, and Organizations: Social work practice with small groups, communities, and organizations are emphasized. Group membership, group goals and culture, group development stages, leadership roles and decision-making processes are explored. Theories and strategies for community and community organization development are examined. Students develop an understanding of the definitions, concepts, and roles of communities and community organizations. Major topics include community based planning, advocacy, governance, and residence participation.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 574  (3-3-0)  Multicultural Practice with Diverse Populations: This course promotes understanding, affirmation and respect for individuals from diverse backgrounds. Students learn to recognize diversity within and between groups and gain understanding on how diversity may influence assessment, planning, intervention, treatment, and research. Students develop skills in defining, designing, and implementing strategies for effective practice with individuals from diverse backgrounds with respect to race, class, gender, color, ethnicity, age, disability, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, and equality. The course integrates knowledge of cultures with particular emphasis on rural, urban, and military communities. Students analyze their own abilities to function as effective social work professionals in working with diverse populations. Attention is given to oppressed populations and social and economic injustice. Strategies for combating discrimination, oppression, and economic deprivation are addressed.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 580  (4-1-4)  Social Work Field Instruction I: This course is one of two courses that constitute the foundation field placement. The foundation placement is intended to help students develop basic knowledge and skills that provide the groundwork for their area of concentration. During this foundation placement students are in the field for 230 clock hours per semester. This amounts to two full days a week. Students are assigned to social service agencies and are supervised by experienced professionals. The field placement provides students the opportunity to integrate knowledge and skills within an agency setting and community context. Students will have experiences in working with individuals, families, groups, and organizations. The field placement is offered concurrently with seminar classes. Seminar will provide students an opportunity to enhance placement learning experiences by helping student further develop understanding of knowledge, skills, self awareness and professional use of self in advanced social work practice. Students may select rural or urban settings.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 585  (4-1-4)  Social Work Field Instruction II: This course is two of two courses that constitute the foundation field placement. The foundation placement is intended to help students develop basic knowledge and skills that provide the groundwork for their area of concentration. During this foundation placement students are in the field for 230 clock hours. This amounts to two full days a week. Students are assigned to social service agencies and are supervised by experienced professionals. The field placement provides students the opportunity to integrate knowledge and skills within an agency setting and community context. The field placement is offered concurrently with seminar classes. Seminar classes enhance placement learning experiences by helping student further develop understanding of knowledge, skills, self awareness and professional use of self. The field placement in conjunction with the seminar will provide students a series of assignments and tasks selected to complement foundation academic courses and provide a basis for generalist practice. Students may select rural or urban settings.
Prerequisite: SWRK 580
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SWRK 602  (3-3-0)  Independent Study: Individual study under the supervision of a member of the Social Work Program faculty.
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SWRK 605  (3-3-0)  Special Topics: This is an advanced course providing the students the opportunity to study new or advanced topics in social work. This course will vary according to the individual instructor and may be repeated under different subtitles.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 606  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice Seminar: This course will present content on theories of assessment, intervention, diversity, evaluation, and termination. Specific attention is given to the development of skills in communication, rapport building, interviewing, and the utilization of professional self in working with individuals and families. Multigenerational family life cycle is explored. Models of family therapy and other intervention approaches are reviewed. Challenges and concerns encountered by vulnerable families, low-income families, families of color, and nontraditional families are reviewed. The dynamics of small groups are emphasized. Students develop an understanding of how values and ethics impact social work practice. Content on social work practice with small groups, communities, and organizations are emphasized. Group membership, group goals and culture, group development stages, leadership roles and decision-making processes are explored. Theories and strategies for community and community organization development are examined. Students develop an understanding of the definitions, concepts, and roles of communities and community organizations. Major topics include community based planning, advocacy, governance, and residence participation.
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SWRK 608  (3-3-0)  Statistics and Research Seminar: A review of basic research methods and an introduction to basic statistics for social work. Students apply quantitative and qualitative research to promote understanding of scientific, analytic, and ethical approaches to building knowledge for practice. The content prepares students to utilize research to provide high quality services, initiate change, improve practice, policy, and service delivery systems as well as evaluate their own practice. Major research designs are reviewed, such as single system designs, and students develop skills in collecting, analyzing and using data. Sampling methods, data collection techniques, and statistical and graphical approaches to data analysis are emphasized. Students develop an understanding of probabilistic analysis, quantitative reasoning, and inferential statistics. Students are provided opportunities to do data analysis on microcomputers. The course integrates themes related to multiculturalism, social justice, social change, prevention, intervention and treatment.
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SWRK 610  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice with Families: This course critically evaluates methods used for assessing families of diverse, social, economic, cultural, racial, and ethnic backgrounds. Students develop a knowledge base of theory, and models of family intervention. Family constellations are examined to include single parent families, extended and blended families, adoptive and foster care families, and gay and lesbian families.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 615  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice in Mental Health: This advanced course focuses on social work practice with persons who have mental illness, and the impact mental illness has on families and society. Primary focus is on the therapeutic relationships, assessments, treatment planning, interventions, psychotropic medication, and case management. Students develop an understanding of the classification and diagnosis of DSM-IV.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 620  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice with Children and Adolescents: This course focuses on multiculturally competent social work practice with children and adolescents living in diverse family arrangements. The continuum of services and resources available to children and adolescents and the roles and functions of the social worker in these settings are examined. Economic, social, and psychological concerns of vulnerable children are identified, and intervention strategies that will effectively meet these needs will be addressee. Students are presented with specialized knowledge and skills essential for working with children and adolescents.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 621  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice with Military Families I: Social work as it is practiced in the various branches of military service to include Army, Air Force, and Navy is examined. The history and role transitions of social work over the years with military families are explored. Ethical concerns that emerge from social work practice with military families are addressed. Military social worker' roles in mental health programs, medical settings, military operations, substance abuse programs, family advocacy, program administration, and policy-making are examined. Students compare and contrast civilian social work practice and military social work practice.
Pre-requisite: Graduate standing in social work.
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SWRK 622  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice with Military Families II: Students enhance knowledge and skills needed to work effectively with uniformed service members, veterans, and their families. There is discussion on how students demonstrate a professional demeanor that reflects awareness of and respect for military and veteran cultures and traditions. Students acquire further understanding of boundary and integration issues between military and veterans cultures and social work values and ethics. Knowledge of population characteristics and relevant physical health and mental health issues for current and former military is emphasized. Students acquire knowledge and skills in the interactive and reciprocal processes of therapeutic engagement, bio-psycho-social-spiritual assessment, and research-informed clinical interventions and programs.
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SWRK 625  (3-3-0)  Social Work with Chemically Dependent Families: Students study theory and knowledge on drugs and substance abuse as it relates to practice in social work settings. Dynamics of the chemically dependent family are assessed and culturally competent intervention approaches for working with the family system and subsystems use patterns will be discussed. Attention will be given to issues arising at different stages in the life cycle including recognition of signs of misuse.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 626  (3-3-0)  Substance Abuse Intervention: This course facilitates students' understanding of the diverse needs of clients with substance abuse addictions. Students receive and overview of the dynamics of alcohol and other psychoactive drug addictions. Additionally, students evaluate the motivation and behavior patterns of substance abusers in a broad social context. Risk factors, education, and prevention are explored. Substance abuse assessment, intervention, relapse prevention are addressed.
Prerequisite: SWRK 540
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SWRK 627  (3-3-0)  Assessment and Evidence-based Treatment of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): The definition and history of Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) are explored. Students gain a comprehensive understanding of the mechanisms of PTSD and acquire knowledge and skills on evidence-based interventions to mange and treat symptoms of PTSD. There is discussion on how to assess for PTSD symptoms and conduct interviews. The impact of PTSD on the development of substance abuse also is explored.
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SWRK 628  (3-3-0)  Assessment and Treatment of Suicidal Behaviors: Students acquire empirically grounded knowledge on suicidal behaviors, assessment, and evidence-based treatment. The significance of culture, race, and ethnicity with a special emphasis on military suicidal behavior are discussed. The impact of suicide on survivors is examined.
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SWRK 629  (3-3-0)  Social Work Practice and Traumatic Brain Injury: Students will develop knowledge and skills in counseling clients with traumatic brain injury. Students will acquire an understanding of TBI community resources and services. The physical, behavioral, cognitive, and emotional changes that can occur after a traumatic brain injury is discussed.
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SWRK 630  (3-3-0)  Assessment of Mental Disorders: Theories and concepts of mental health and illness are examined. Students are introduced to the Diagnostics Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Students study the etiology, symptomology, and treatment of mental disorders. The development of environmental, interpersonal, psychosocial and stress factors in human behavioral dynamics is explored.
Prerequisite: Graduate standing in social work
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SWRK 635  (3-3-0)  Management of Human Services Organizations: This course focuses on management and leadership theories, administrative decision-making processes and organizational communication. Students develop ability for application of administrative concepts, theories and management principles in social work practice settings. Program planning and development, budget preparation, organizational development, and program evaluation, fund-raising and grant writing are emphasized.
Prerequisite: SWRK 570
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SWRK 640  (3-3-0)  Professional Writing for Social Work: Students will learn about scholarly writing through modeling the writing of published authors. This course will introduce students to why social work requires them to write using the American Psychological Association (APA) style. The ethics of writing, indicating the acceptable forms and practices of recognizing the ideas and intellectual properties of others will be explored in this course. The course will explore the concept of plagiarism. The course contains general conventions, such as how to refer to the work of others in the body of a paper and tips for avoiding sexist language. The course will provide the students the opportunity to avoid grammatical and punctuation errors commonly found in social work papers. The course will provide students the opportunity to participate in proofreading exercises that will direct them to their PC's to detect areas of potential problems. This course will provide students with a real-world option for communicating scholarly thinking and findings. The course will address the importance of the use of the Internet and the information it provides in writing research papers. The course will also offer suggestions for using computer technology effectively at various stages of the research process. The course and its assignments will encourage students to use resources outside the library, such as conducting interviews, surveys, and using media such as radio and television. Much of the course will take place in the library where students will review the literature and develop their proposals and complete the writing of their literature review.
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SWRK 650  (4-1-4)  Social Work Field Instruction III: This course is one of two courses that constitute the advanced placement in student’s area of concentration. The advanced placement is intended to help students develop expanded knowledge and skills in their area of concentration. During the foundation placement, students are in the field for 250 clock hours. This amounts to three full days a week. Students are assigned to social services agencies and supervised by experienced professionals. The field placement is offered concurrently with seminar classes. The field placement, seminar classes, and assignments are consistent with student’s chosen area of concentrations. Students will have the opportunity to use advanced practice skills with individuals, families, groups, communities and organizations. Students may select rural or urban settings.
Prerequisite: SWRK 585 Or SWRK 585
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SWRK 655  (4-1-4)  Social Work Field Instruction IV: This course is two of two courses that constitute the advanced placement in student's area of concentration. The advanced placement is intended to help students develop expanded knowledge and skills in their area of concentration. During the foundation placement, students are in the field for 250 clock hours. This amounts to three full days a week. Students are assigned to social services agencies and supervised by experienced professionals. The field placement is offered concurrently with seminar classes. The field placement, seminar classes, and assignments are consistent with student's chosen area of concentrations. Students will have the opportunity to use advanced practice skills with individuals, families, groups, communities and organizations. Students may select rural or urban settings.
Prerequisite: SWRK 650
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SWRK 690  (3-3-0)  Independent Research Project Seminar I: The course is designed to assist students in preparing their research projects. The course will focus around discussion of students selected topics chosen for the research project. Students will conduct and individualized but structured investigation of problem definitions, research methodologies and statistical analyses associated with research project.
Prerequisite: Completion of 31 graduate hours in social work, including completion of SWRK 530 And SWRK 560
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SWRK 696  (3-3-0)  Thesis I: This course is an advanced independent endeavor in the student's concentration area. Course involves an original investigation in a subject approved by the student's Thesis committee. Detailed information on the preparation, form, organization, and defense of the thesis is presented in the Guide for the Preparation and Submission of Theses. The thesis involves the planning, implementation and evaluation of a topic in the student's specialty area. Based on student interest and future career plans, students will work on a thesis during the semester. Approval of the proposed project by a thesis committee recruited to serve as faculty advisors by the student is required prior to registering for the course.
Prerequisite: Completion of 31 graduate hours in social work, including completion of SWRK 530 And SWRK 560
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SWRK 698  (3-3-0)  Thesis II: Continued preparation of the thesis under the direction of an advisor and the Thesis Committee. This course builds on research acquired in SWRK 696.
Prerequisite: SWRK 696
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SWRK 899  (3-3-0)  Thesis Noncredit: This course is required for students who have completed their course work and the number of thesis hours for credit required in their graduate degree program. Students who will continue to use University resources in completing their thesis must enroll in this course.
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