C. Tayloe Harding, Jr., Interim Dean
Academic Advisement Services: Undergraduate students are unique in that they are at the very beginning of the development of their academic and professional careers and members of a larger university setting. Due to these unique student qualities and experiences, social work advisors are sensitive to the needs, questions, and concerns of students. Because undergraduate degree requirements are often complex and confusing, academic advisors foster ongoing and welcoming processes for students. Professional and academic advisors provide advisement services to students, which will involve their academic, professional and personal careers goals.
Professional Advisement Services: While in development to become professional social workers, students often are challenged to re-examine their values, behaviors, and commitments to the profession. Therefore, social work advisors are available to provide information to help students in their professional and personal career goals as social work practitioners. As a result of the ongoing relationship in the classroom, field education, organizations, and service project, the faculty members are viewed as professional advisors. In many ways, faculty members are mentors and coaches who encourage and facilitate the growth and strengths of students’ professional identity. Through professional advisement, the program ensures that students who enter the program continue their commitment to social and economic justice that builds on the strengths and empowerment perspectives for generalist practice, particularly with poor, vulnerable or oppressed populations.
Independent Study and Special Topics Courses
SOWK 399 (Independent Study) will be offered each semester, contingent upon availability of an instructor.
The College of Social Work offers undergraduate courses on special topics, current issues, or electives that may be open to students who register for social work courses as a minor, cognate, or elective.
The College of Social Work also offers independent learning courses through the Distance Education Program, which enable students to enroll in the minor regardless of geographic location. Interested students should consult with the Social Work Undergraduate Director about these options.
Undergraduate Enrollment in M.S.W. Courses
- University of South Carolina students may seek permission to enroll in selected Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) courses during their senior year of study. To do so, a student must have a cumulative GPA of 3.50 or higher. Admission to individual courses and to specific course sections is on a space-available basis.
- Students who qualify may enroll for up to 9 hours of the following courses: SOWK 712, 716, 791, and 792. Because the college’s courses are taught in a one-day per week, three-hour format, students may find that evening technology-assisted course offerings and Saturday sections best suit their schedules.
- Accreditation requirements of the Council on Social Work Education do not allow entry into the M.S.W. program without a bachelor’s degree from an accredited undergraduate program. However, if subsequently admitted to the M.S.W. program, a student will be allowed to waive any graduate social work courses successfully completed while an undergraduate with a grade of B or better. The number of graduate hours required for the M.S.W. degree will be reduced accordingly.
- Successful completion of graduate courses while an undergraduate is not a guarantee of admission into the M.S.W. program. Admission to the program is on a competitive basis.
- Students will be advised by the social work undergraduate program director.
Programs and Courses
The College of Social Work offers a four-year undergraduate program on the Columbia campus leading to a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW). This BSW program is in the candidacy and accreditation process prescribed by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE). Additionally the College of Social Work offers a minor in Social Work, which provides students in other academic majors a background in social work.