SW205 Introduction to Social Work

for FA 2011

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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.


SW 205 Introduction to Social Work


FA 2011 HO


Kisthardt, Walter E.


Professor; Chair/BSW Program Director


Ph.D. Social Work: University of Kansas
MSW: University of Hawaii
BA Sociology/Social Work: Elizabethtown College, Pa.

Office Location

225 Underground

Office Hours

Tues. 9:00am - 10:00 am: 1:00pm - 2:00pm: 3:45pm - 5:00pm and Monday 9:00 am 4:00pm

Daytime Phone


Other Phone




Semester Dates

August 15- Dec. 2, 2011

Class Days


Class Time

2:25 -3:40 PM in MA 222 underground



Credit Hours



No required Texts for this course:
On Reserve in Library and in Social Work Office  
Social Work: A Profession of Many Faces.
Armando T. Morales, Bradford W. Sheafor, and Malcom E. Scott
11th edition. Pearson:Allyn and Bacon  ISBN 0-205-47772-0

Textbooks can be purchased through the MBS bookstore

Textbooks can be purchased through the Parkville Bookstore

Additional Resources:

Walter E. Kisthardt, Ph.D. (2009) The Opportunities and Challenges of Strengths-Based, Person-Centered Practice. Chapter 3, pp. 47-71 in D. Saleebey (ed.) The Strengths Perspective in Social Work Practice. Allyn & Bacon: Boston.  On reserve in Library


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Course Description:
SW205 Introduction to Social Work (MGE): This course introduces students to the profession of social work and provides an overview of the professional knowledge, skills, and values necessary for generalist social work practice. The various settings for social work practice and the types of services provided by social workers are explored. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

At all times I will strive to model the values and skills that are at the heart of the profession of social work. Just as in the helping process, teaching should be a collaborative, mutually enriching experience. I believe that learning is best achieved in an environment that is respectful, safe, affirming, challenging, and highly interactive.

I understand that every person has wisdom in their lived experience and a unique world view and perspective. I recognize that each of us learns in different ways and I will strive to present concepts in a manner that promotes your learning. If you are having difficulty with any aspect of the class I hope that you will make this known to me. I truly want this class to be enjoyable as well as educational.  As there is no "required text" for this class I expect you to be active in researching the topics for the day through your own on-line investigations using the multitude of resources on the Internet. For example, if the topic for the day is "the history of social work" you can find many references by typing these key words into a search engine.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Describe a beginning understanding of concepts related to generalist practice.
  2. Identify in basic terms the origins, structure and characteristics of the American social welfare system.
  3. Articulate methods of helping, influencing and assisting people at micro, macro, and mezzo levels within a generalist framework.
  4. Exhibit foundation skills in effective verbal and non-verbal communication, including assertiveness, active listening, constructive feedback and advocacy.
  5. Describe a beginning awareness for ethical behavior and be familiar with the National Association of Social Work “Code of Ethics” and how these principles are applied.
  6. Describe the social work profession as it relates to mental health, health care, public education, public welfare, family & child welfare, corrections, business and industry.

Core Assessment:

·  Mid-term (LO 1,2,3,5,6)

·  Pop Quizzes (LO 1,2,3,5,6)

·  News Review (LO 1,2,3,5,6)

·  Web Site /Search (LO 1,2,3,5,6)

·  Reaction Paper  (LO 1,3,4)

·  Core Assessment: Position Paper:  (LO 1-6)

·  Career Development Pathway  (LO 1,4)

·  Final Exam (LO 1,2,3,5,6)

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:

Mid-Term Exam: Given in class on Thursday, October 6 : Multiple Choice & Short Essay (25 points)
Interview with a professional social worker and written summary due Thursday September 22 (10 points). I will give you guidelines for this interview.
Written summary and class presentation of service learning project...Paper Due Thurs. December 2: (Paper 10 points, presentation 10 points). Class Presentations will begin Tuesday, November 1: 2 presentations per period.
I will give you the framework to guide the writing of this paper and to organize your class presentation.
Completion of Person-Centered Strengths Assessment and Personal Wellness Plan (10 points) Due Thursday, September 8
Final Comprehensive Examination (25 points)  Given at time scheduled for final exams.

Class participation
: (10 points). This class is highly interactive and experiential. Your presence and active involvement is critical to creating the most effective learning atmosphere. You will be expected to display the same listening skills, attentiveness, respect, professional dialog, and compassion with and for each other as colleagues as you display when working with a service participant. You are allowed two (2) unexcused absences without point deduction. For each subsequent absence two (2) points are deducted from your class participation grade. If you have 5 unexcused absences you will receive no credit for class participation. You are expected to get to class on-time. If there are circumstances that may complicate this expectation please discuss these with me so that accommodation may be given. I also expect you to remain in class for the entire period. Our goal is to co-create a learning atmosphere of respect, affirmation, dialog and engagement. 



90-100 points = A
80-89 points = B
70-79 points = C
60-69 points = D
below 60 points= F

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Assignments are to be turned in on the date noted in the syllabus. No assignment will be accepted after the due date unless there are extenuating circumstances that you have discussed with me prior to the due date.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

I expect you to to listen attentively when the professor or one of your classmates is speaking. You are expected to be on-time for class and remain in class for the entire period. If you have circumstances that may effect your ability to adhere to these expectations please talk to me about these as soon as possible. (see class participation rubric noted above).
Checking facebook and texting will not be tolerated during class.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week 1:  Review syllabus, assignments, expectations, grading, rules of conduct. What is "Social Work"?
                                 The Seven Core Functions of Generalist Social Work. To prepare for these classes please get on-line  
                                  and review the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) website. naswdc.org
                                   Review the Person-Centered Strengths Assessment and Personal Wellness Plan. I will send you  
                                   copies so you may begin work on this assignment.
Week 2.  The Strengths Perspective in Social Work. Read Dr. Kisthardt's chapter on reserve in the library. "The Strengths Perspective in Social Work Practice." 
              To prepare for these classes please google "Strengths Perspective" to gain a deeper understanding of this concept 
              in social work. How does the Strengths perspective compare with the "Medical" "Problem Solving" Models?  
Week 3: The Core Values of the social work profession. Go on-line and review the NASW code of ethics.
             Person-Centered Strengths Assessment and Personnal Wellness Plan Due on Thursday, Sept. 8 
Week 4: The Purpose of Social Work in Society:  The importance of social workers as advocates for vulnerable and oppressed people. This History of Social Work as a profession.
Week 5: The Many Fields of practice in Social Work.  
Week 6: The Importance of Social Welfare Policy and Research in Social Work. Interview with Social Worker paper due Thursday, Sept. 22.
Week 7: The Theories that guide and direct Social Work Practice: Do a search for Eco-Systems Theory, Cognitive Theory, Behavioral Theory, Cultural Theory, Theological Theory, and Power Theory. Hand out mid-term study guide on Thursday.
 Week. 8: Review for Mid term exam on Tuesday: Take exam during class period on Thursday October 6.
Week 9: Fall Recess! Have a great time and work on the short term goals of your wellness plan.
Week 10: Review mid-term: CSWE 10 Competencies required for generalist social work practice. Review at CSWE.org
Week 11: The tradition of group work in Social Work.  Research types of groups and theory of group development.
Week 12-15:  Presentations of Service Learning Experience. Your attendance at these presentations is very important as I will include material that is related to each student's presentation and my comments. Your attendance is also important to show support to your colleagues.
Week 16: Review of semester, evaluate course, and review for final exam. I will update the study guide and get it to you after class on December 1.
Week 17: final exam week. Check on-line to see when our class final is scheduled.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life. Park University students and faculty members are encouraged to take advantage of the University resources available for learning about academic honesty (www.park.edu/current or http://www.park.edu/faculty/).from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. from Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 93

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  3. 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 "F".
  4. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  5. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  6. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2011-2012 Undergraduate Catalog Page 96
Remeber that I expect you to come prepared to ask questions and engage in the discussion. Class attendance does not automatically translate into class participation. If you miss a significat number of classes, for whatever reason, your class participation grade will be affected.

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 Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case 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: http://www.park.edu/disability .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)
(3) 85-100
(2) 70-84 (1) 60-69 (0) Below 60 
Critically assesses the two points of views on the selected topic and relates the views to either current practice or conventional thinking Examine 2 points of view on a topic relative to the practice of social work Examines 1 point of view on topic relative to the practice of Social Work No evidence of thorough review of research 
Goes beyond the minimal requirements and examines 4 or more research articles Identifies and incorporates at least 2 research articles that are appropriate and relevant to the target issue Identifies and incorporates only 1 research article that is relevant to the target issue Research article is only minimally or tangentially relevant 
Is able to develop a novel insight into the relevance and interpretation of the theoretical information Compares and contrasts the information in a fair and objective manner and justifies position Comparison or contrasts are poorly thought through or evidence of personal bias exists Fails to provide meaningful comparison 
Supports position with multiple sources of information or experiences. Summarizes conclusions into a well founded report validating conclusions and/or position Is unable to support conclusions Fails to draw conclusions based on the research 
Body of paper is 7-10 pages with meaningful content Body of paper is 5-7 double spaced pages, 1-inch margins in 12-point font.  Tiles and reference pages are additional
Prepares a 3-5 minute individual class presentation on topic, methods, and conclusions
Body of paper is less than 5 pages or missing title and/or reference pages Body of paper is 3 or fewer pages 
Technical Skills                                                                                                                                                                                                                                           
APA style is used throughout the paper with fewer than 3 errors APA style is used with no more than 4-6 errors APA style is utilized, but there are 7 or more errors Failure to use APA style 
1st Literacy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Liberal Arts Systems                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 
Clearly understands and articulates the impact of the target issue on society as a whole. Demonstrates an understanding that the target issue may have a broad impact Conclusions are only peripherally related to the impact of the target issue  
2nd Literacy                                                                                                                                                                                                                                               
Compares and contrasts cultural issues relative to the target issue. Demonstrates an understanding that there may be cultural differences relative to topic Evidence of only minimal understanding of multicultural issues Fails to successfully address multicultural issues 


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Last Updated:7/19/2011 11:33:30 AM