skip to main content columnskip to left navigation

Field Education

Department of Social Work


Field Internship Educational Emphases (Goals)

The Field Internship goals help direct a student's learning throughout the master's program. These goals are global statements of intent that apply to the foundation and advanced content of the curriculum.

  1. Professional Growth and Development
    This includes promoting each student's development as a learner, identity as a social worker, and the conscious and disciplined use of self as a professional person. The value orientation of the profession, its ethics, norms, and legal sanctions all contribute to the student's professional identity. Each student needs to recognize and respect individual difference in life style, culture and ethnic heritage. Further, each student needs to carry out the responsibilities inherent in the professional role, as defined by the field setting.

  2. Organizational and Community Context of Practice
    This focuses on the interacting contexts of practice and their influence on policy formulation and service delivery. Since social work practice typically occurs in an organizational setting, the student needs to understand the mandate, structure and operation of an agency and its intraorganizational relationships. Further, the unique characteristics of the community or population served affect the development of the programs, the delivery of the services, and, consequently, the conduct of individual professional practice.

  3. Clinical Practice, Knowledge and Skills
    This addresses the application of a problem solving process to actual situations. Students need to know how to identify and assess problems which call for personal, interpersonal, or organizational change. They need to obtain, sort, organize, and analyze relevant information so that they can accurately understand a problem and its context. Based on their assessment, students must be able to select an appropriate course of action, develop feasible objectives, and implement an intervention plan using appropriate practice roles. Throughout the intervention process, students must be able to use empirical evidence to evaluate the methods and outcomes of their efforts.

Students must be able to form a variety of professional relationships. This requires the ability to use a range of interpersonal communication skills and to selectively engage in collaboration, bargaining, and conflict management with clients, colleagues, or administrative personnel.

Finally, students must be able to evaluate the effectiveness of a variety of practice theories, methods, and techniques in reducing the problems that social workers are charged to address. As an essential professional skill, they must be able to integrate research findings with practice.

icon for left menu icon for right menu