SW205 Introduction to Social Work

for SP 2013

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Mission Statement: Park University provides access to a quality higher education experience that prepares a diverse community of learners to think critically, communicate effectively, demonstrate a global perspective and engage in lifelong learning and service to others.

Vision Statement: Park University, a pioneering institution of higher learning since 1875, will provide leadership in quality, innovative education for a diversity of learners who will excel in their professional and personal service to the global community.


SW205 Introduction to Social Work


SP 2013 HO


Tamara Tucker


Social Work Faculty



Office Location


Office Hours

Tuesdays and Thursdays at 1pm-2pm & 3:45pm-5:45pm &  by appointment

Daytime Phone


Other Phone




Semester Dates

January 14, 2013 - May 10, 2013

Class Days

Tuesday & Thursday

Class Time

2:25pm - 3:40pm /  MA222

Credit Hours



The Social Work Experience: An Introduction to Social Work and Social Welfare
Connecting Core Competencies Series
Mary Ann Suppes, Carolyn Cressy Wells
6th edition. Pearson ISBN 0-205-22309-5

* I have reserved a copy of the above referenced text in the library for your use.  You are not allowed to "check them out" of the library but can use them while in the library.

I also 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. 

I have also provided multiple resources (documents, pdfs, weblinks, etc... both in the weekly course home tab and in Doc Sharing sections in our e-companion classroom) related to each weekly topics/concepts.

Additional Resources:

The following resource is very helpful and highly recommended to enhance and support your learning:
The Opportunities and Challenges of Strengths-Based, Person-Centered Practice. Walter E. Kisthardt, Ph.D. (2009). Chapter 3, pp. 47-71 in D. Saleebey (ed.) The Strengths Perspective in Social Work Practice. Allyn & Bacon: Boston.
* I have reserved 2 copies of the above referenced text in the library for your use.  You are not allowed to "check them out" of the library but can use them while in the library.

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.

Course Description:

SW205 Introduction to Social Work: 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.  
          The Ten Core Competencies as set forth in the 2008 CSWE accreditation standards are infused throughout this course. Emphasis is placed upon engagement, advocacy, self-reflection and competency (1a-e; 2a-d; 4a-d). Students will demonstrate the ability to identify with the Social Work profession, Engage and Advocate. 

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 worldview 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.

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:

Your learning in this course will be assessed via the following:
 Class Engagement/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 miss 5 classes you will receive 0 points for class participation. You are expected to be in class on-time and remain, fully attentive and participatory in class for the entire period. Our goal is to co-create a learning atmosphere of respect, affirmation, dialog and engagement.

Person-Centered Strengths Assessment & Personal Wellness Plan
   (10 points) - Due Week 3 (Feb 1)

These are two separate tools (documents). Each assessment tool is located in the e-companion's Doc Sharing; complete and submit in the designated e-companion drop box. 

Interview with a professional Social Worker
  (10 points) - Due Week 6 (Feb 22)

Complete interview and write summary paper. Please see guidelines for this assignment listed in e-companion's Doc Sharing.

Midterm  Exam
 (20 points) - Due Week 8 (March 8)

The exam will cover all the concepts from Week 1-7.  It will consist of multiple choice, true/false, short answer and essay questions.  Please see study guide listed in e-companion's Doc Sharing

Service Learning Project
(30 points) - Due Week 12 thru 15 (paper due April 26; presentations TBA)
Please see guidelines to this project (for both the 10 hours of service learning experience/presentation  [15 points] and written paper [15 points]) listed in e-companion's Doc Sharing.

Final Exam
 (20 points) - Due Week 16 (May 7)
The exam will be a comprehensive exam. It will consist of multiple choice, true/false, short answer and essay questions.  Please see study guide listed in e-companion's Doc Sharing

It is very important to me that you understand the criteria for grading and that you perceive this process as fair and reasonable. I do not “give” grades... students earn grades through their work and performance.



 Person-Centered Strengths Assessment

 Personal Wellness Plan


Interview with a Social Worker - Assignment


Midterm Exam


Service Learning Project (service hours = 15 points & paper =15 points)


Final Exam


Total Points



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

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Assignments are to be submitted in the designated dropbox on the course's e-companion site.  All assignments are due by midnight on the date indicated in the course syllabus, unless otherwise noted. The student remains responsible for lost, misdirected or incompatible formatting of electronic submissions. In extenuating circumstances (as determined by the instructor) and with timely notification an exception may or may not be granted.

Assignments not submitted on time will receive a deduction of 10% of the possible score, per day late. Core Assignments will not be accepted late (without preapproval of the instructor). Please be aware that there is no “extra credit” work in this course.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

This class is one that the subject matter can be sensitive at times.  It is important that students respect the opinions of others.  It is only through safe expression of thoughts and ideas that learning occurs.  In order to maintain a positive learning environment the following ground rules will be the norm for our interactions. Personal perspectives will be valued. Degrading or discriminatory remarks or behaviors are not acceptable. Discussion will reflect an exchange of information, experiences, ideas, and opinions which foster critical thinking, analysis, and synthesis. When you work in groups, it is the responsibility of the group members to delegate work. All members of the group must present on the project and all will receive the same grade. Because of the sensitivity of the subject matter relevant for consideration in social work; respect, sensitivity, and confidentiality must be maintained.

Students need to arrive on time. Students will not hold private conversations when a colleague is speaking. Private conversations include those with others within class, on cell phones and any other form of wireless media.  Please turn off your cell phones and any other wireless media devices during class. If a student’s behavior is considered to be disruptive, the instructor will give that person the opportunity to modify the behavior without point penalty. If the student’s behavior continues to be disruptive they will lose class participation points and may be referred to the Office of Academic Affairs.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week One    January 15 & 17

Welcome / Introductions & Check In

This week the following concepts are explored:

What is Social Work?
The Seven Core Functions of Generalist Social Work

Week Two    January 22 & 24

This week the following concepts are explored: 

The ‘Strengths Perspective’ in Social Work Practice
What is the purpose of a participant assessment and goal planning?

Social Welfare: Human Dignity

Week Three    January 29 & 31

         This week the following concepts are explored: 

Core values that guide and direct Social Work practice
United States society’s values


Assignments DUE February 1: 

·         Person-Centered Strengths Assessment 

·         Personal Wellness Plan

Week Four
    February 5 & 7

This week the following concepts are explored:

          The History of Social Work as a Profession

Social Work as a Profession: Purpose; Sanction; Values; Knowledge; Skills/Method
The Purpose of Social Work in Society

Week Five
   February 12 & 14

This week the following concepts are explored: 

The Many Fields of Social Work Practice
Professional autonomy, authority and responsibility
Sanction: Levels of Social Work Practice and Certification

Week Six   February 19 & 21

      This week the following concepts are explored: 

           Ethical considerations in Social Work practice

           NASW Code of Ethics

      Assignment Due February 22: 

·         Interview with a professional Social Worker – paper

Week Seven
   February 26 & 28
   This week the following concepts are explored: 

             Importance of Social Welfare Policy
             Research in Social Work


Week Eight   March 5 & 7 

             This week the following concepts are explored: 

The Theories that guide and direct Social Work Practice: Eco-Systems Theory, Cognitive Theory, Behavioral Theory, Cultural Theory, Theological Theory, and Power Theory.

·  Midterm Exam (available in e-companion online March 6-8)  Due March 8



*** If you have not completed your CORE assessment service learning hours or paper --- this would be a good time to work on it :) *** 


 Week Nine   March 19 & 21

            This week the following concepts are explored:

Competencies required for Generalist Social Work Practice
CSWE 10 Core Competencies 

Social Work practice with vulnerable populations

Week Ten
   March 26 & 28

This week the following concepts are explored:  

Spirituality in a Secular profession
Historical context of spirituality in human services
Religion, Spirituality and Cultural Competency
Spirituality, Faith and Social Justice in Social Work practice


Week Eleven   April 2 & 4  

This week the following concepts are explored:

Social Work in Action: current trends
Emerging Issues in Social Work Practice
Addressing Community Needs: Indirect and Prevention Tasks

Week Twelve
  April 9 & 11 

                        Presentations of the Service Learning Experience. 
Your attendance at these presentations is very important as I will include material and provide resources related to each student's experience.  It is also very important to practice and demonstrate support to your colleagues.

Week Thirteen
   April 16 & 18
                             Presentations of the Service Learning Experience.
Your attendance at these presentations is very important as I will include material and provide resources related to each student's experience.  It is also very important to practice and demonstrate support to your colleagues..

Week Fourteen  April 23 & 25

                            Presentations of the Service Learning Experience. 
Your attendance at these presentations is very important as I will include material and provide resources related to each student's experience.  It is also very important to practice and demonstrate support to your colleagues.

Assignment Due April 26:  
               Service Learning Project paper 

Week Fifteen    April 30 & May 2

               Review of semester, evaluate course and review for final exam.

Week Sixteen
FINALS WEEK  (May 6-10)  

FINAL Exam (available in e-companion online May 5-7)  Due May 7

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 95-96

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 95

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 98

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 .

Additional Information:

                                                                 PLEASE DISREGARD.

                            I will share an updated rubric related to the assessment of your final paper.


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:1/8/2013 4:55:10 PM