SW420 Field Instruction I

for FA 2004

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Field Instruction I

 Fall 2004

Faculty:  Gary Bachman, Field Director

Office: MA225B

Office Hours: T&R 9am -12noon

Office Telephone (816) 584-6504

Faculty E-Mail: gary.bachman@park.edu

Dates of Semester: August 23-December 19, 2004

 Class days and times: Agency Determined

Prerequisite: Social Work Major, Concurrent Enrollment in SW421

Credit Hours: 5


University Mission Statement

The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement

Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


Course Description:  This course provides an educationally-oriented practice experience in an agency setting under the supervision of an approved agency-based field instructor.  It provides an opportunity for students to apply the knowledge, skills, and ethical principles presented in the classroom setting.  Students must complete a minimum of 225 hours in the Field Instruction setting.



Instructor’s Educational Philosophy:  Social work as a profession emerged in response to the many challenges, inequalities and threats to societies and the world’s most vulnerable populations.  The demographic of those populations is constantly evolving, as is the nature of challenges that increasingly confront us all. 

It is vitally important that students and new graduates, regardless of their professional identity, be prepared to efficiently and critically consider their environment in order to identify, strategize, and communicate an appropriate response to the matters before them.  This is as true in business, science, education and government service as it is in social work. 

It is the intent of the faculty in the Department of Social Work to facilitate learners in the acquisition of such knowledge as will serve them, their families and their communities, throughout their lives.  Through the semester, world and local events will occur which may influence our academic, personal, or professional pursuits. In light of such circumstances, the instructor reserves the right to amend the schedule of study.




Course Objectives:  It is expected that upon successful completion of this course the student will be able to:


  1. Function effectively within a generalist context as a beginning professional.


  1. Function effectively within the organizational context of the assigned field agency.


  1. Function effectively through the application of knowledge based practice skills.


  1. Function effectively within an ongoing process of interpersonal and supervisory evaluation.


Course Textbook:   None


Academic Honesty:  “Academic Honesty is required of all members of a learning community.  Hence, Park will not tolerate cheating or plagiarism on tests, examinations, papers or other course assignments.  Students who engage in such dishonesty may be given failing grades or expelled from Park.”


Plagiarism:  “…the appropriation or imitation of the language or ideas of another person and presenting them as one’s original work—sometimes occurs through carelessness or ignorance.  Students who are uncertain about proper documentation of sources should consult their instructors.”


Attendance: “Instructors are required to keep attendance records and report absences.  The instructor may excuse absences for cogent reasons, but missed work must be made up within the term of enrollment.  Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.  In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/ term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of “WH”.  A Contract for Incomplete will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.  Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance (TA) or Veterans Administration (VA) educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.  Reports of an F grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for students receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned above will be reported to the appropriate agency.”   Regular classroom attendance is both expected and essential for the attainment of course objectives. Material not found in the text will be presented and discussed in class.  Absences detract from your learning as well as that of others.


Late Submission of Coursework:   Assignments in field may be expected to have some measure of impact upon clients, the field supervisor and / or the agency.  Any assignments must be completed in a timely manner.  Failure to complete assignments in a timely manner may` result in termination of the field experience and failure of this five hour course.


Make up exams: There are no scheduled exams in this field experience.


Course Assessment:   In the first two weeks of the semester, the student will complete a learning contract as described in the Field Handbook.   Assessment by the Field Instructor will be an ongoing process through out the semester. Assessment will reflect the students’ acquisition of objectives identified in the learning contract as well as the instructor’s assessment of the students overall performance.   The Department of Social Work Field Director will visit the agency at least twice during the semester to meet jointly with the field instructor and student.  A formal evaluation will be completed at mid-term and at the end of the semester.  The Field Director will assign the final grade for the course based upon a joint meeting with the student and the field instructor.  Written assignments are to be double spaced, 12 font size, typed or word processed.


Classroom Rules of Conduct: In order to maintain a positive learning environment the following ground rules will be followed:


  1. Personal perspectives will be valued.  Degrading or discriminatory remarks or behaviors are not acceptable.
  2. Discussion will reflect an exchange of information, experiences, ideas, and opinions that have an educational value.
  3. If you work in groups, it is the responsibility of the group members to delegate work.  All members of a group must present on the project and all will receive the same grade.
  4. Because of our sensitive subject matter, courtesy needs to be maintained in the classroom at all times.  Students need to arrive on time.  Students will not hold private conversations when another person is speaking. Students will speak one at a time.
  5. If student’s behavior in the classroom is disruptive, the instructor will allow the student an opportunity to correct the behavior without consequences.  If the student’s behavior continues to be disruptive, that student may be asked to leave the classroom and will be referred to the Office of Academic Affairs.


Disability Guidelines:  "Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance.  These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal.  It is Park University’s policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the American with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities and, to the extent of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply.  Additional information concerning Park University’s policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: www.park.edu/disability ."

Course Schedule:    15 weeks / 225 hours 

SW420 Course Schedule: 


Week 1            Field instruction begins this week. Students are expected coordinate their

                         schedules with the field instructor and be on-site eighteen hours per week

                         through the semester, beginning this week.


Week 2            A draft of the learning contract should b reviewed with the field instructor.  


Week 3            Learning Contracts are due and are to be turned into the Field Director.


Week 4            Continued work on learning contract


Week 5            The first “process recording” is due. 


Week 6            Make sure to log all hours


Week 7            Mid semester evaluations and agency visits by Field Director this week.


Week 8            Mid semester evaluations and agency visits by Field Director this week.


Week 9            Review Learning Contract to assure it meets your needs. 


Week 10          Assignments: Final Process Recording is due.


Week 11          Beginning to think about termination process.    


Week 12          Assignments: The Final Portfolio Project is due for review.


Week 13          Summarize progress in personal identity with the social work profession.


Week 14          Final evaluations and end of semester agency visits by Field Director.


Week 15          Final evaluations and end of semester agency visits by Field Director.


Week 16          Finals Week – There will be no final exam in this course.   

NOTE:   “The Student Evaluation of Field Instructor and Agency,” and “The Student Evaluation of the Field Director,” are due this week. These evaluations will not be reviewed until after grades have been posted. However, a final grade will not be posted until these evaluations have been turned in to the department's administrative secretary.




Grading:    Every effort will be made to be fair and reasonable in grading your work and participation.  If you have questions or concerns about this, please speak to the field instructor and or the Field Director.


Scoring:       A= 90-100    B= 80-89    C= 70-79    D= 60-69    F= 59-0