The mission of the Longwood University undergraduate Social Work Program is to prepare generalist practitioners who have a foundation in social work knowledge, theory and research through a strong liberal arts based education; to prepare competent and effective generalist practitioners who become citizen leaders in their respective communities, while representing and empowering oppressed individuals, groups, and communities to improve the quality of life; to reduce the inequalities in society through the use of social justice strategies and effective practice; and to contribute to the knowledge base of practice, research, and theory regarding the needs of diverse populations served by professional social workers.
- Provide strong liberal arts based education that incorporates coursework from the natural sciences, humanities, social sciences, and mathematics and computer sciences.
- Provide guided field instruction experiences that promote the delivery of effective services to diverse populations.
- Provide social work curricula that build on the knowledge and skills acquired in the liberal arts education and that focuses on research, knowledge, theories and skills that develop effective generalists’ social work practitioners.
- Encourage understanding and respect for the person-in-environment conceptualization, diversity, inequalities and changing needs of a complex society and use this information to address social injustices.
- Support faculty and student research and knowledge building to ensure excellence in learning and teaching.
- Prepare students to be self-aware and accountable to themselves, the profession and the community by promoting social work ethics and values to include worth and dignity of the person, service, integrity, competence, importance of human relationships, and social justice.
- Upon completion of the Social Work Program, social work students should be able to:
- Communicate effectively, both orally and in writing, with diverse constituencies.
- Think critically and apply analytic skills in understanding current issues and in providing effective services to diverse clientele.
- Use current technology to locate and disseminate information.
- Understand the biological and psychosocial developmental stages of individuals.
- Recognize the importance of diversity and its implications for effective social work practice.
- Understand the core values that form the basis of the profession of Social Work to include service, social justice, dignity and worth of the person, importance of human relationships, integrity, and competence.
- Integrate knowledge, skills and abilities to provide direct and indirect services in diverse practice settings.
- Use information gained from continuous self-assessment to recognize when changes in behavior and practice are needed.
- Enable faculty to engage in research, practice, and other knowledge building activities.
- Synthesize and use various theoretical approaches in understanding the needs of clientele and in the provision of services to clientele at the micro, mid and macro levels of practice.
- Conduct and understand the results of research projects and apply the information to practice settings of diverse sizes.
- Present self in a professional manner.
- Recognize the impact of oppression and discrimination on historically underrepresented populations.
- Use knowledge and skills to reduce inequalities and injustices in society.
Any student accepted to Longwood University may declare Social Work as a major. However, the student will be officially accepted to the Social Work Program at the conclusion of their sophomore year after established criteria have been met.
To be admitted to Longwood University Social Work Program, a student must:
- Submit a completed application to the Social Work Program by February 15th during Spring semester of the sophomore year, or October 1st during the Fall semester once requirements are met.
- Provide two professional references with one from a Longwood Social Work professor.
- Complete 55 earned credit hours, which must include successful completion of ENGL 165, and SOWK 201. Completion of SOCL 105, MATH 171 and BIOL 101 are mandated within the 55 credit hours. Transfer students who meet the above criteria upon entering Longwood must complete one semester at Longwood and provide a reference from one of Longwood’s Social Work professors. (A recommended course of study is included in the student handbook that students declaring Social Work as their major receive in their first advising session as a social work major.)
- Have a 2.30 cumulative grade point average (which is the current GPA requirement to enter field instruction).
- Earned no grade less than a C in any Social Work course. If a grade of C- or below is received in any social work course, the course must be retaken to receive a grade of C or above.
- Student/Faculty with concerns may request a formal interview.
The Social Work program provides an undergraduate course of study of unique and personalized instruction accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, leading to the Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work. The curriculum prepares graduates for first-level professional social work practice as practitioners utilizing the generalist perspective. Program graduates frequently pursue advanced study in graduate schools and may be eligible for admission into advanced standing one-year MSW degree programs. They may utilize their professional credentials for careers as generalist-based, professional practitioners according to the standards of the National Association of Social Workers in such areas as:
Medical Social Work
Global Social Work
School-based Social Work
The faculty of the Social Work Program, reflecting the generalist orientation, provides an individualized focus on each student’s professional growth and development. Specifically, the Program faculty, using academic and practice courses as well as internships in human service agencies, work strategically with each student to develop proficiency in professional knowledge and skills.
Junior Field Instruction consists of an agency placement or field practicum concurrent with integrative course work and involves 180 hours of instruction in a field setting. A grade point average of 2.3 both in the major and overall is required for placement in a field instruction setting. Students transferring into the program later in their academic pursuits are afforded the opportunity to enter the accelerated 9 1/2-week summer program. Senior Field Instruction usually occurs during the last semester and consists of 500-600 hours (15 weeks, 40 hours per week) of field instruction in an agency setting. Only those students who are social work degree candidates may be admitted to the field practicum experiences. Enrollment in social work practice courses (SOWK 330, SOWK 425, and SOWK 430) is restricted to social work majors only! Practicum experiences are readily available throughout the state, and many students choose to live at home during this experience, thus saving money and greatly enhancing their professional career entry. The Social Work Program, in compliance with CSWE accreditation standards, grants no academic credit for life experience and/or previous work experience in lieu of the field practicum or in lieu of courses in the professional foundation content areas.