Degree Requirements

Bachelor of Social Work

The BSW degree consists of ten upper level courses and a total of seven supporting courses. Social Work courses that are open to non-majors are designated with an asterisk.

The Supporting Courses

Select one of these three courses:

  • SWK 100 – Introduction to Professional Social Work*
  • SWK 210 – Environmental Justice and Social Change*
  • SWK 230 – Global Peace and Social Development*

Select one of these four courses:

  • ECO 112 – Principles of Macroeconomics
  • POL 121 – American Government and Politics
  • POL 122 – Metropolitan Complex
  • POL 325 – Politics and Public Policy

Take these four courses:

  • BIO 121 – Human Biology
  • PSY 105 – Principles of Psychology
  • SOC 121 – Introduction to Human Society
  • SWK 280 – Diversity and Inequality in Professional Practice*

Select one of these two courses:

  • SOC 362 – Statistical Analysis
  • MAT 163 – Introductory Statistics

Elective course, not required for degree:

  • SWK 240 – Intergroup Dialog

GPA Requirements for degree completion

The minimum GPA for admission to the program is 2.2 on a four-point scale. After admission to the program, a minimum grade of 2.0 is required for each upper level course and a 2.2 cumulative GPA is required in the supporting program.

Graduation Skills

The Critical Thinking (CT), Speaking (S), and Writing (W) graduation skills are embedded throughout the curriculum and are met by completing the major. The Quantitative Reasoning (QR) graduation skill is met by taking SWK 401 and MAT 163 or SOC 362.

Pass/No Credit Maximums for Majors

All Social Work majors must take their upper level courses with traditional grading. Social Work majors are allowed to apply up to six credits with a grade of Pass (P) toward graduation. Students seeking Latin and Department Honors may only take two P/N credits. (See Latin Honors in Academic Information for additional details.)

Social Work Major

Ten upper level courses:

  • SWK 301 – History and Analysis of Social Policy*
  • SWK 303 – Human Development and the Social Environment*
  • SWK 306 – Social Work Practice 1: With Individuals
  • SWK 307 – Field Work 1: Integrative Seminar
  • SWK 316 – Social Work Practice 2: With Families and Groups
  • SWK 317 – Field Work 2: Integrative Seminar
  • SWK 401 – Social Work Research and Evaluation
  • SWK 406 – Social Work Practice 3: With Communities and Policies*
  • SWK 407 – Field Work 3: Integrative Seminar
  • SWK 417 – Field Work 4: Integrative Seminar (Senior Keystone course)

Social Welfare Minor (for non-social work majors)

The goal of the social welfare minor is to give non-majors a sense of the impact of social work on society and a means to incorporate some social welfare perspectives to their chosen career.

Six courses including:

  • SWK 100 – Introduction to Professional Social Work
  • SWK 301 – History and Analysis of Social Policy
  • SWK 303 – Human Development and the Social Environment
  • SWK 406 – Social Work Practice 3: With Communities and Policies
  • SOC 265 – Race, Class and Gender
  • And one course from:
    • POL 121 – American Government and Politics
    • POL 158 – Political Patterns and Processes
    • POL 325 – Politics and Public Policy

Required Social Work Field Placement

Students are required to take a field placement at a social service agency in their junior and senior year.  The field placements are a total 120 hours each semester which is 240 hours over the course of one year.

No credit for non-academic work

In accordance with accreditation standards, the Social Work Department does not grant credit for life experience or previous work experience.

Admission to the Major

Students must apply to be admitted to the degree program in Social Work. This application process begins in the fall semester of the sophomore year at Augsburg or in the summer months for junior transfer students. Each Social Work major must complete the application materials and be officially admitted to the Social Work program before beginning the first field placement in the junior year. Social Work majors must have a cumulative 2.20 GPA to enter the program. Students who do not meet this minimum GPA standard will be given an opportunity to explain their GPA and may be considered for conditional admission. Admission to the program is required as a prerequisite for those 300- and 400-level courses restricted to Social Work majors only. Contact the Social Work Department for details.

Departmental Honors

The Social Work Department offers students the opportunity to earn departmental honors through the completion of an applied or scholarly project. Students may apply for departmental honors if they have earned and maintain an overall GPA of 3.3 and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.6 in all Social Work classes at the 300-level and above. Honors applicants may take up to two courses as P/N (pass/no credit) and must complete a minimum of 56 traditionally-graded Augsburg credits. Other requirements include the successful completion of a paper or project designed to demonstrate critical understanding of one area in the field of social work or social welfare. A faculty mentor will guide and supervise work on this paper or project. Please consult with the advisor or program director for complete details and deadlines.

Social Work Study Abroad Opportunities

The Augsburg BSW program is a leader in international education for its students. All majors are encouraged to study abroad at some point in their college career. Through The Center for Global Education, the BSW program offers an award-winning semester study abroad program in Cuernavaca, Mexico. Students in the spring semester of their junior year study social work in Mexico and finish their degrees on time. A similar option is offered for study in Norway. The Social Work department also offers a rotating selection of faculty-led, short courses to foreign countries such as China, Slovenian, South Africa and India.

Social Work Course Sequence

Social Work Entry Level Courses, SWK 280, and SWK 240 elective

The Social Work major offers three ways to begin the BSW degree: SWK 100 is for those students interested in the breath of the profession; SWK 210 is for students whose interest is in environmental issues and social change strategies; and SWK 230 is for students interested in international social work and global issues. All three courses are equal as introductions to the major.

All three courses feature an experiential learning component. Students volunteer 40 hours in a human service agency, program, or institution. The placement is selected by the student, approved by the course instructor, and supervised by agency staff. These courses are also open to non-majors. The department also offers a course in human diversity, SWK 280, which is to be taken after the entry level courses.

A special elective course SWK 240: Intergroup Dialogue is offered for students who want a more direct learning experience in human diversity.

Social Work upper level courses (300s and 400s) are taught in a two-year sequence. Courses are taught once a year. The senior keystone is SWK 417: Field Work 4: Integrative Seminar. Consult the BSW Program Manual for the degree course-schedule flowchart.

For a complete list of courses and descriptions, see the Course Description Search.