Welcome from Faculty and Staff
Welcome to the newly CSWE accredited Masters of Social Work (MSW-UTC) program. You are entering an exciting profession with countless career possibilities. Social Work is one of the fastest growing and diverse professions in the United States. The profession is unique, however, in its dedication to working and empowering people who are vulnerable, oppressed, or living in poverty. While social workers practice as lobbyists, administrators and policy makers, they frequently choose to work directly with individuals, families, and groups.
What does it mean to be accredited by the CSWE? CSWE stands for the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) the accrediting body for social work education. The CSWE supports a competency-based educational program that focuses on teaching social work students the value of “critical thinking, affective reactions, and exercising judgment in unique practice situations” (CSWE, 2016). As of spring 2019, the MSW-UTC program is officially accredited by CSWE.
The MSW-UTC program is a professionally oriented, evening program designed to prepare individuals for advanced social work practice with individuals, families, groups, and communities as they age through the life course. Advanced practice at the MSW level refers to refined training of candidates for use of social work knowledge, values, and skills in specialized areas of practice. Advanced social work practice encompasses knowledge and methods of engagement, assessment, intervention, and evaluation used in non-profit, for-profit, public, and private social service settings to promote the well-being of targeted populations. The knowledge and skills learned in an MSW program are used across a wide variety of career fields, including medical social worker, hospice social worker, clinical social worker, volunteer coordinator, group home manager, and nephrology social worker.
Field Education is the signature pedagogy of social work education. The MSW-UTC program is pleased to offer a wide variety of agencies that can serve as field internship sites. Students complete 900 hours during their internship experiences. Employment-based internships may be available for those already working in a social work setting, as long as a new learning experience can be provided.
MSW students, you will be encouraged to pursue your own interests and goals as well as the goals of the program in order to become an active and independent learner. Each member of the MSW-UTC faculty stands ready to assist you, and we look forward to establishing a team effort towards your social work education and career.
The University of Tennessee at Chattanooga MSW (UTC-MSW) program has achieved full accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education’s Commission on accreditation.
Full Accreditation by the CSWE indicates that UTC’s MSW program has demonstrated the ability to inculcate its students with a “holistic competence” of the standards set by the Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards of 2015. Full compliance of these standards includes providing the necessary knowledge, values, skills, and cognitive and affective processes needed to work with the various demographic groups that a social worker might interact with on a daily basis.
Students entering a fully accredited program will have more employment opportunities as some employers require proof of education from a CSWE accredited program. Students will also have the option of sitting for licensure in all fifty states and the District of Columbia.
For more information about CSWE’s Accreditation Standards, we encourage you to visit the CSWE website.