Apr 16, 2024  

Social Work BSW

The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) is a professional degree which prepares graduates for generalist professional practice and/or the opportunity to be admitted to a Master of Social Work (MSW) program with advanced standing within appropriate advanced standing GPA guidelines. In addition to the on-campus BSW program, the BSW program is offered as an off-campus program at Washington Adventist University, Takoma Park, Md. The off-campus BSW program is administered and delivered by the AU Department of Social Work and upon completion the BSW is conferred by Andrews University. The AU baccalaureate program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education through the year 2019.

The foundation curriculum consists of 10 core competencies that are required in every BSW program: (1) Professionalism, (2) Values and Ethics, (3) Critical Thinking, (4) Diversity and Differences, (5) Human Rights and Social Economic Justice, (6) Research, (7) Human Behavior and the Social Environment, (8) Social Welfare Policy and Services, (9) Contextualization, (10) Social Work Practice, plus two (2) additional departmental competencies: (11) Global Worldview and (12) Christian perspective.

Throughout the curriculum, the program integrates concepts of professional ethics and values, critical thinking, and sensitivity to diversity, oppression, social and economic justice, and populations-at-risk. Field education is an integral component of the program.

Although students may declare themselves as social work majors in their freshman or sophomore year, they must apply for acceptance into the social work program. Application is made in January of the sophomore year for formal acceptance into the program by the end of March. Applications are available from social work academic advisors of both the on-campus and off-campus sites.

BSW Student Handbook

The BSW Student Handbook has been designed as the social work student’s aid in understanding the program requirements, Social Work Department, and relevant policies of Andrews University.  Inside the handbook you will find information such as expectations of students, the BSW curriculum, departmental policies, and other relevant information.

You are responsible for the information found in this handbook, so please take the time to familiarize yourself with the handbook and know where to find questions and answers if the need arrises.

Field Education

The Field Manual has been designed as your aid in understanding field education requirements, your role as a student in a field agency, and relevant policies of Andrews University.

You are responsible for the information found in this handbook, so please take the time to familiarize yourself with the handbook and know where to find questions and answers if the need arises.

Admission Criteria

Students qualify for entry into the BSW program when they:

  • Earn a minimum GPA of 2.5 overall.
  • Receive grades of C- or better in all required program prerequisite and cognate courses.
  • Complete SOWK 100, SOWK 101, SOWK 315, SOWK 320, SOWK 325. Maintain a GPA of at least 2.50 in these courses.
  • Complete and submit BSW Program Application Packet.
  • Receive an acceptance letter from the Undergraduate Program Director.

English Language Requirement

For those applicants whose native language is not English, the following is required:

1. Demonstration of English proficiency by obtaining at least a minimum score on any one of the following exams.  Exam must be taken within two years prior to enrollment.

  • TOEFL ITP (paper-based) - A minimum score of 550
  • TOEFL iBT (internet-based) - 80 with a minimum of 20 on each section
  • MELAB - 80 with a minimum of 80 on each section
  • IELTS (Academic version) - 6.5
  • PTE (Academic version ) - 54

2. Nelson Denny - score of 13 and

3. Personal interview with BSW program director or designee

Applicants who fail to meet any of the above may be admitted only after committee consideration of the specific circumstances. Additional course work in English may be required.

A student who graduated from a four-year English-speaking high school, college or university may be exempted from all or parts of the above requirements.

Continued Enrollment and Professional Expectations

Continued enrollment is conditional upon the following:

  • Acceptable academic performance
  • Ethical conduct in compliance with the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics
  • Adequate knowledge and practice performance in the practicum setting.
  • Appropriate demonstration of Professional Expectations.

Students in the BSW and MSW Social Work programs are expected to read, know, and integrate the professional expectations listed in the Andrews University Department of Social Work Handbook. Consequences for violations of these expectations could include but are not limited to verbal or written warnings, denial of admission, suspension, dismissal, or expulsion from a course or the program.  Student Handbook can be obtained on the departmental website at www.andrews.edu/socialwork/.

General Education Requirements

See professional program requirements, see here , and note the following specific requirements:


  • professional degree requirements


  • professional degree requirements

Fine Arts/Humanities:

  • professional degree requirements

Life/Physical Sciences:

plus a second science course:


Computer Literacy:

Social Sciences:

  • fulfilled by Department of Social Work cognates

Fitness Education:

  • professional degree requirements


Students are also required to choose 4 credits of social work electives, in consultation with the student’s advisor.

Field Practicum

Students are required to complete a 400-hour field placement in a local human-service agency. Students are not eligible to take SOWK 401  or SOWK 402  or SOWK 435  before being admitted into the BSW program. The practicum is normally completed during the student’s senior year. Prerequisites include the following courses (which must be completed with a grade of C- or above): SOWK 331 , SOWK 332 , SOWK 350  and SOWK 402 , and a human biology course. Students may be dropped from the program or be required to complete additional practicum hours for the following reasons:

• Inability to demonstrate the skills, knowledge, and professional responsibilities required of a baccalaureate-level social work intern
• Clear violation of the NASW Code of Ethics

Past experience strengthens all BSW student applications. However, following Council on Social Work Education requirements, no social work course credit can be given for life experience or previous work experience.

Total Credits: 63