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Degree Requirements 2020-2021

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

  • BIO 121 – Human Biology
  • PSY 105 – Principles of Psychology
  • SOC 121 – Introduction to Sociology
  • SWK 280 – Diversity and Inequality in Professional Practice*
  • 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 – Social Justice in Urban America
    • POL 325 – Politics and Public Policy
  • Select one of these three courses:
    • SOC 362 – Statistical Analysis
    • MAT 163 – Introductory Statistics
    • MAT 164 – Introductory Statistics for STEM

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, MAT 164 or SOC 362.

GPA Requirement

After admission to the program, a cumulative 2.50 GPA is required (in the supporting courses, upper division courses, and overall) to remain in good program standing.  A grade of C is required for each required social work course.   All Social Work majors must take their social work courses with traditional grading.

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)

Courses with an asterisk are open to non-social work students.

Social Work Semester in Mexico

Each spring social work majors who are juniors may attend our Social Work In Mexico Semester and complete their coursework and field placement at Augsburg’s Mexico Campus:

  • SWK 261 – Social Welfare: The U.S. Mexican Context
  • SWK 271 – Comparative Social Policy: Social Policy and Social Change in Mexico and the United States
  • SWK 316 – Social Work Practice 2: With Families and Groups
  • SWK 317 – Field Work 2: Integrative Seminar
  • Spanish Language Requirements are often taken
  • Students who go to the Social Work in Mexico Semester are not required to take SWK 280

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 social work 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 – Introduction to Political Science
    • 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 or 240 hours over the course of two semesters. The BSW FIeld Director assists students in finding and retaining field placements. Augsburg has relationships with hundreds of organizations, public and private, across the Twin Cities.

No credit for non-academic work

In accordance with national social work accreditation standards, the Social Work Department cannot grant credit for life experience or previous work experience.

Departmental Honors

The Social Work Department offers eligible students the opportunity to earn departmental honors through the completion of an applied or scholarly project during a student’s senior year. Students may apply for departmental honors if they have earned and maintained an overall GPA of 3.50 and maintain a cumulative GPA of 3.60 in all Social Work classes at the 300-level and above. Honors applicants may take up to two non-social work courses as P/LP/N (pass/low pass/no credit) and must complete a minimum of 56 traditionally-graded Augsburg credits.

Departmental honors requires the successful completion of a paper or project designed to demonstrate a deep and critical understanding of one area in the field of social work. A faculty mentor will guide and supervise work on this paper or project. Please consult with the advisor or BSW Program Director for complete details and deadlines.

Social Work Honor Society

Phi Alpha Omicron Delta is the Augsburg University chapter of the national social work honor society.  Phi Alpha fosters high standards of education for social workers and invites into membership those who have attained excellence in scholarship and achievement in social work.

The national honor society requirements allow membership to juniors and seniors who have completed at least one semester in the social work program and who rank in the top 33 percent of student cumulative GPA’s. Invitations are sent in the spring of each year.

Social Work Study Abroad Opportunities

All social work students are encouraged to study abroad at some point in their academic career. Through The Center for Global Education and Experience, the BSW program offers an award-winning semester study abroad program in Cuernavaca, Mexico. The Social Work department also offers a rotating selection of faculty-led, short courses to countries such as China, Slovenia, South Africa, Mexico, and India. Students are also encouraged to study abroad for elective credit.

Social Work Course Sequence

The Social Work major offers two ways to begin the degree: SWK 100 is for those students interested in the breadth of the profession; SWK 210 is for students whose interest is in environmental justice and social change strategies. Both courses are equal as introductions to the major. Each course features an experiential learning component.

Social Work upper-level courses (300s and 400s) are taught in a two-year sequence. Courses are taught once a year and are required to be taken sequentially. Students move through the program in a cohort allowing for deep peer relationships and strong connections to faculty.


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