University Catalog

Social Work

College of Professional Studies

Master of Social Work

Faculty

Mekada Graham, Program Director

Saana Polk, Director of Admissions

Susan Nakaoka, Director of Fieldwork

Larry Ortiz, Professor

Dennis Corbin, Assistant Professor

Diane L. Miller, Assistant Professor

Susan D. Einbinder, Assistant Professor

Carol Bittmann, CalSWEC Coordinator

Lynn Harris-Henderson, IUC Coordinator

Program Office: WH B-385, (310) 243-3170

Program Description

The Master of Social Work (MSW) program at California State University, Dominguez Hills is intentionally designed to address the diverse social service needs, issues and problems particular to a large metropolitan area such as Los Angeles County.  Building on the diversity of the various ethnic groups and cultures residing in the area, the program will prepare social work students for contextually competent social work practice, inclusive of the issues of culture, race, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, religion, class and gender.  The effects of bias, prejudice and institutionalized racism are examined so that students understand how these issues can affect social work practice, policy development and program implementation.  Students learn a variety of perspectives and ways of identifying strategies and interventions for addressing these concerns and other problems in social work practice with individuals, families and communities. 

The Department of Social Work promotes a psychosocial, ecological and cross-cultural approach to social work practice with Critical Race Theory and Intersectionality serving as the theoretical framework for contextually competent practice.  The curriculum is developed and organized as a coherent and integrated whole consistent with program goals and objectives.  California State University, Dominguez Hills offers one concentration: Social Work Practice in Communities (SWPC) and three specializations that students can choose from: Children, Youth and Families, Community Mental Health and Community Capacity Building.  

The MSW program requires completion of 60 semester credit hours which can be accomplished with three program options:  A two year full-time program with classes that meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays throughout the day, with fieldwork hours on Monday, Wednesday, and some Fridays, a three-year part-time program with year-round classes held in the evenings and weekends and fieldwork occurring in the second and third years during normal business hours, and a four year part-time program with classes being held on Tuesdays and Thursdays and fieldwork in years two and three during regular business hours.  The curriculum is organized around the following core areas: Human Behavior in the Social Environment, Practice, Policy, Research and Field Education.  At the end of the foundation year, students are expected to have acquired a sense of professional responsibility and the ability to use knowledge on behalf of the individual, the group, and the community.  In the advanced year, the curriculum is planned to combine the concentration around major intervention systems, or specializations that build on a generalist base obtained in the first year of study.  This combination enables graduates to move into the social work community with a combination of knowledge and skills in a broad area, as well as in-depth knowledge and skills in a particular method or area of service.

Academic Advisement

Interested students should contact the Department of Social Work at (310) 243-3170 or visit www.csudh.edu/cps/hhs/sw for more information. Students and applicants should consult the website for updated information.

Admission to the Master of Social Work Program

Applicants must apply to both the University and the Department of Social Work.  Applications for admission to CSU Dominguez Hills may be obtained on-line at www.csumentor.edu. Applications for the department of Social work can be found on our website www.csudh.edu/hhs/sw. Completed applications and supporting documents for the Department of Social work should be mailed to:

     College of Professional Studies
Master of Social Work Program

Welch Hall A-310
CSU Dominguez Hills
1000 East Victoria Street
Carson, CA 90747

Admission Requirements

1.  Completion of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited four year institution with a liberal arts foundation and a GPA of 2.75 (on a scale of 4.0) or better in the last 60 semester/90 quarter units.

2.  Following is a list of eight courses that span four educational areas that a successful applicant should have satisfactorily completed:

  • Elementary Statistics (students must pass the course)
  • Human Development (students must pass the course)
  • Three courses in the behavioral sciences (social work, sociology, cultural anthropology, psychology, economics, political science, gender or ethnic studies)
  • Two courses in the humanities (philosophy, history, literature, religious studies, performing or visual arts, etc.)
  • One course in English composition.

     Students without this background are encouraged to apply and may be admitted to the MSW program but will likely be required to complete certain liberal arts requirements prior to matriculation.   

3.  Official transcripts of all previous college work submitted to the Social Work Department as well as to the Office of Admissions.

4.  Good standing in the last institution attended.      

5.  Students must submit a 4-6 page personal statement (guidelines found in the supplemental application).

6.  Three letters of recommendation from individuals who can evaluate the applicant's potential for graduate study (guidelines found in the supplemental application).

7.  Completion of the CSUDH Graduate School application.

 

 

Master of Social Work

Total Course Requirements for the Master's Degree (60 units)

The students must maintain a 3.0 grade point average to remain a student in good standing in the Social Work program.  A student will be placed on academic probation if, in any term, he or she fails to earn a grade point average of 3.0 or higher for work taken through that term.  During a subsequent probationary term of one semester, the student must achieve a grade point average sufficiently high enough to bring the cumulative grade point average to 3.0 or better.  Failure to do so will result in disqualification from the program.

Students may not earn social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.

See the "Requirements for the Master's Degree" in the University Catalog for complete details on general degree requirements.

A.  Foundation Year (30 units):

MSW 500. Human Behavior and the Social Environment I (3)

MSW 501. Human Behavior and the Social Environment II (3)

MSW 510. Social Welfare Policy I (3)

MSW 511. Social Welfare Policy II (3)

MSW 520. Generalist Social Work Practice I (3)

MSW 521. Generalist Social Work Practice II (3)

MSW 523. Social Justice in Social Work Practice (3)

MSW 530. Social Welfare Research (3)  

MSW 540. Fieldwork Practicum I (3)

MSW 541. Fieldwork Practicum II (3)

 

B.  Concentration Year (21 units)

1.  Children, Youth and Families Specialization (CYF):

MSW 550. Advanced Social Work Practice in Communities (3)

MSW 553. Multicultural Perspectives of Practice (3)

MSW 555. Advanced Practice in Administration and Leadership (3)

MSW 560. Social Welfare Policy III (CYF) (3)

MSW 570. Fieldwork Practicum III (3)

MSW 571. Fieldwork Practicum IV (3)

MSW 580. Seminar in Child Welfare Issues (3)

2.  Community Mental Health Specialization (CMH):

MSW 550. Advanced Social Work Practice in Communities III: (CMH)

MSW 553. Multicultural Perspectives of Practice (3)

MSW 555. Advanced Practice in Administration and Leadership (3)

MSW 561. Social Welfare Policy (3)

MSW 570. Fieldwork Practicum III (3)    

MSW 571. Fieldwork Practicum IV (3)

MSW 582. Seminar in Mental Health Issues (3)

3. Community Capacity Building Specialization (CCB):

MSW 550. Advanced Social Work Practice in Communities (3)

MSW 553. Multicultural Perspectives of Practice (3)

MSW 555. Advanced Practice in Administration and Leadership (3)

MSW 551. Social Welfare Policy III (CCB)

MSW 570. Fieldwork Practicum III (3)    

MSW 571. Fieldwork Practicum IV (3)

MSW 581. Seminar in Community Capacity Building (3)

 

C. Electives (3 units)

 

D. Capstone Project (6 units):

1.  Directed Project or Thesis (6)

MSW 595. Special Topics (3)

MSW 598. Directed Research (3)

MSW 599. Thesis or Project (3)

 

 

Course Offerings

The credit value for each course in semester units is indicated for each term by a number in parentheses following the title. For course availability, please see the list of tentative course offerings in the current Class Schedule.

Graduate

MSW 500        Human Behavior and the Social Environment I (3).

Co-requisites: MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 523, and MSW 540.

Focus on individual and family life span. Examine individual and family development in the context of social, political, historical, and cultural variables. Individual and family behavior is examined for its unique expressions of strength and abilities in the course of achieving psychosocial, cognitive, moral, and spiritual developmental tasks.

MSW 501        Human Behavior and Social Environment II (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 523, and MSW 540.

Co-requisites: MSW 511, MSW 521, MSW 530, and MSW 541.

Examines the interrelationships among social institutions, social structure, and social processes, on the one hand, and the realities of the lives of individuals, families, groups, communities, organizations, and societies, on the other.

MSW 510        Social Welfare Policy I (3).

Co-requisites: MSW 500, MSW 520, MSW 523 and MSW 540.

Philosophical and historical foundations of the profession of social work and the domain of social welfare. Includes a review of major federally sponsored social policies and programs in the US and the relationship between social problems and programmatic professional responses.

MSW 511        Social Welfare Policy II (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 523 and MSW 540.

Co-requisites: MSW 510, MSW 511, MSW 530 and MSW 541.

Analysis of social welfare policies and program operations, including the linkages of social, economic, cultural, political, administrative and legal dimensions. Comparisons of various policy analysis frameworks; the legislative process and involvement of social workers therein.

MSW 520        Generalist Social Work Practice I (3).

Co-requisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 523, and MSW 540.

Focus on theories, principles, and models underlying generic social work practice with primary emphasis on working with individuals and families. Emphasis is placed on effective and equitable multicultural and contextual deliver and interventions with poor, vulnerable and oppressed populations.

MSW 521        Generalist Social Work Practice II (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 523, and MSW 540.

Co-requisites: MSW 501, MSW 511, MSW 530, and MSW 541.

Theories, models, and principles for generic social work practice with groups, communities, and organizations. Emphasis is placed on effective and equitable multicultural contextual service delivery and interventions with poor, vulnerable and oppressed populations.

MSW 523        Social Justice in Social Work Practice (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 530 and MSW 540.

Co-requisites: MSW 501, MSW 511, MSW 521 and MSW 541.

Examines the impact of diversity in social work practice. Included will be an analysis life experiences of diverse ethnic populations.

MSW 530        Social Welfare Research (3).

Co-requisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520 and MSW 540.

Introduction to research methods, including conceptualization of research problems, literature review, research design, sampling, measurement, data collection and data analysis, and the strategies of evaluating service delivery in all areas of practice.

MSW 540        Fieldwork Practicum I (3).

Co-requisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, and MSW 523.

Supervised agency experience designed to develop generalist practice skills in working with individuals, families, groups and communities with emphasis on cross cultural practice. Two hours weekly seminar and 16 hours in agency placement. CR/NC grading.

MSW 541        Fieldwork Practicum II (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 500, MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 523, and MSW 540.

Co-requisites: MSW 501, MSW 511, MSW 521, and MSW 530.

Supervised agency experience designed to apply the knowledge, skills and values learned in MSW 520 and MSW 521 and activities of MSW 540. Two hours of seminar and 16 hours in agency placement. CR/NC grading.

MSW 550        Advanced Social Work Practice in Communities (3).

Prerequisites: Completion of foundation year courses.

Corequisite: MSW 570 and MSW 581.

This course provides in depth overview of Social Work from a Community Practice perspective.  It highlights contextual models of practice with communities as well as developmental, organizing, and planning approaches that are applicable to diverse populations.  It will examine skills used by social workers to conduct culturally competent interventions.

MSW 551        Social Policy III: Community Capacity Building (3).

Prerequisites: Advanced year status and declaration of Community Capacity Building as specialization.

Corequisite: MSW 570.

Community Capacity Building growing influence on social policies and achievements improving the well-being of individuals and families in poor urban neighborhoods are described and analyzed to prepare professional social workers to advance social, economic, and environmental justice. 

MSW 553        Multicultural Perspectives of Practice (3).

Prerequisites: Completion of foundation year courses.

Corequisite: MSW 570.

Theory and practice with ethnically, racially, religiously diverse populations utilizing a multidimensional, cross-cultural framework and case materials to analyze treatment issues and empowerment strategies.

MSW 555        Advanced Practice in Administration and leadership (3).

Prerequisites: MSW 510, MSW 520, MSW 521, MSW 550, MSW 540, MSW 541, MSW 550, MSW 570..

Corequisite: MSW 571.

Introduces the concept involved in leadership, administration, and management of a human services organization.  Students will be exposed to various theories on organizational development, human resource management, funding, program development and program evaluation.  Leadership styles will be examined.

MSW 560        Social Welfare Policy III: Children, Youth and Families (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to Candidacy and completion of foundation year courses.

Co-requisites: MSW 550, MSW 553, MSW 570 and MSW 598.

Advanced understanding of key issues, concepts, and skills associated with policy analysis and development of policy alternatives and political action within human service systems focused on children and families.

MSW 561        Social Welfare Policy III: Community Health/Mental Health (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to Candidacy and completion of foundation year courses.

Co-requisites: MSW 550, MSW 553, MSW 570 and MSW 598.

Designed to provide students with advanced understanding of key issues, concepts, and skills associated with policy analysis and development of policy alternatives and political action within human service systems focused on public and non-profit agencies delivering health and mental health services.

MSW 570        Fieldwork Practicum III (3).

Prerequisites: Completion of foundation year courses.

Co-requisites: MSW 550 or MSW 551.

Continued supervised agency experience at an advanced level in both direct and administrative program development areas within the student's area of concentration, with an emphasis on cross-cultural practice. One hour weekly seminar and 16 hours in agency placement. CR/NC grading.

MSW 571        Fieldwork Practicum IV (3).

Prerequisites: Completion of foundation year courses and MSW 550 or MSW 551, MSW 553, MSW 570, and MSW 598.
Corequisite: MSW 555.

Continued supervised agency experience at an advanced level in both direct and administrative program development areas within the student's area of concentration, with an emphasis on cross-cultural practice. One hour weekly seminar and 16 hours in agency placement. CR/NC grading.

MSW 580        Seminar in Child Welfare Issues (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to candidacy.

Critical analysis of child maltreatment and neglect, focusing upon recent research and treatment innovations.

MSW 581        Seminar in Community Capacity Building (3).

Prerequisite: Advanced year status and declaration of Community Capacity Building as Specialization.

Co-requisites: MSW 550 and MSW 570.

For MSW students beginning their advanced study in the Community Capacity Building specialization.  Models for implementation of community capacity intervention are introduced that are compatible with the program's conceptual framework and theories taught in Advanced Social Work Practice in Communities.

MSW 582        Seminar in Mental Health Issues (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to candidacy.

Social work processes from intake to termination with an emphasis on clinical skills required for social work practice in a broad spectrum of mental health settings.

MSW 592        Diagnostic Assessment in Social Work Practice (3).

Prerequisite: Restricted to major.

This course teaches assessment for contextually and culturally-competent social work practice using the DSM-IV-TR.  A principal goal is to address from a social justice standpoint issues of social hierarchies and power in the use of diagnoses of mental health disorders.

MSW 595        Special Topics (3).

Advanced course of special interest for Social Work graduate students.  Topic and content will vary as announced.

MSW 598        Directed Research: Preparation for Culminating Experience (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to candidacy and consent of program coordinator.

Co-requisites: MSW 551 or MSW 551, MSW 553, MSW 560 or MSW 561, and MSW 570.

Extensive research on a subject related to the student's area of concentration under the guidance of a faculty member. Designed to prepare students for the Project, Thesis or their Comprehensive Examination. CR/NC grading.

MSW 599        Project or Thesis (3).

Prerequisite: Advancement to candidacy.

Students will complete a scholarly project or thesis under the supervision of an assigned faculty. To be repeated up to 6-units. This course may not be taken if the student has failed the Comprehensive Examination. CR/NC grading.

MSW 600        Project Continuation Course (0).

Students who have completed their course work but not their directed project may maintain continuous enrollment by registering for this course with permission of the program coordinator.