Social Work

Bachelor Of Arts In Behavioral Sciences – Social Work Concentration


From job-ending injuries to life-altering addictions, the sad truth is people all over the world need help. Social work is a field devoted to helping individuals improve the quality of their lives. Such persons might otherwise be experiencing a broad range of social, economic or personal concerns, including poverty, homelessness, substance abuse, elder care or even domestic violence.

This is why social work courses in Chicago and, indeed, everywhere are so important. By earning a bachelor’s degree with a focus on social work, you’re gaining the skills you need to pursue a career in social work and help people.

You’ll have the ability to provide a variety of primary and secondary supportive services directly to clients … or help plan, implement and evaluate those services, managing programs and developing intervention strategies for individuals, groups, and organizations. Many social workers work within child and family service agencies, mental health facilities, and extend social and educational services within correctional and related facilities. Bottom line: The right social work education in Chicago can make a world of difference.

We are on a mission to prepare professionals for social work. We’re focused on guiding students through courses grouped around a strong general education core, an area concentration focused on social work, and area-complementary electives reflecting their specific educational goals. We help:

  1. Prepare beginning level practitioners who are responsible to providing professional services in the area of social work in a variety of settings.
  2. Provide a foundation of post-baccalaureate and/or graduate professional education and continuing life-long professional development.
  3. Foster commitment toward a local, regional, and global humane service-oriented perspective and dedication to professional values in the area of social work.
  4. Prepare program participants to be able to participate after they graduate in the development of the social work profession and in its responses to the changing needs of society.


Usually the academic, professional requirements for entry level positions in this field are a bachelor’s degree in Behavioral Sciences with an area concentration in social work. A substantial number of the interdisciplinary courses in this program can prepare you for social work or related vocations.

The Social Work area concentration complements the philosophy and supports the mission of the University in that it “is dedicated to pursuit of excellence by all through relevant, effective and convenient education, and service to humankind with a global, multi-cultural and future-oriented perspective. It is both comprehensive and pluralistic in terms of clientele, academic programs, educational delivery systems, research and publication projects, and sources of financial support.”

The concentration curriculum for this social work degree:

  • Includes both liberal and professional instruction to prepare graduates for life in general and a career in high demand.
  • Offers a geographic and demographic location in the center of an urban area with a population of over 8 million people; it has the opportunity to make use of the urban and suburban infrastructure and resources. Other resources include nursing related industries, the entire range of criminal justice services, agencies, and organizations, and a job market within convenient commuting distance, health and health-related facilities, as well as the entire range of “rest and recreation” opportunities.
  • Is demographically blended, providing ethnic and socio-economic diversity, and with a broader range of exceptionalities. It is situated in one of the major diverse and multicultural urban areas in the world which presents an ideal “laboratory” for first-hand experience/observation of an extended variety of social work and social service issues.
  • Provides education in a career geared to the service economy. Few professions touch the lives of so many, individuals, families, communities, the society at large, in so many different ways and are proactive, preventative, and reactive, restorative.
  • Offers practical experience in agencies and organizations directly or substantively related to aspects of social work within the metropolitan Chicago area that are state of the art and enjoy educational opportunities that include the most modern advances.
  • Fulfills requirements for career growth – the number of potential professionals in areas of social work is projected to increase.
  • Substantial opportunities for personal contact and interaction with multi-cultural populations will be an ongoing part of the student’s practical experiences.
  • Contact with the area agencies and organizations of social work that will assume increased responsibilities in the future. Students have the option to pursue specialized professional programs in the areas, for instance, of law, criminal justice, aspects of environmental and urban planning, and governmental agencies.

At the completion of the Bachelor of Arts degree in Behavioral Science with emphasis on social work, graduates are prepared to:

  1. Apply theoretical and empirical knowledge from the liberal arts, the sciences, and social work to provide professional services in the area of social work.
  2. Enroll into a graduate or (specialized) professional program in social work or a closely related field.
  3. Find methods and apply relevant best practices to protect the growth and wellbeing of contemporary society.
  4. Identify and apply policies to promote equity and equality as they relate to social work.
  5. Structure programs to improve services to disadvantaged communities in the area of social work.
  6. Base social work best practices on personal and professional values which incorporate a humane, service-oriented perspective.
  7. Accept responsibility and accountability for professional and personal development.


Curricular requirements must comply with all general academic requirements for a bachelor’s degree, including:

  • Completion of 180 quarter hours,
  • Residency requirement of 48 quarter hours
  • Completion of HM 279 (East-West University Signature course)
  • Completion of HM 491 (Senior Seminar),
  • An overall GPA of 2.0 and a 2.5 GPA in the major,
  • Compliance with Satisfactory Academic Progress policy pertaining to both Grade Maintenance and Timely Completion,
  • All outcome measures required by the assessment program must be passed successfully,
  • All financial obligations must be cleared

The program embodies three broad blocks of curricular requirements or components:

I: General Education Core (64 quarter hours);
II: BHS core and concentration courses 60 quarter hours
III: Elective courses (56 quarter hours), for a total of 180 quarter hours

I: General Education Core courses:

  • 5 specified courses in English and Communications for a total of 20 quarter hours;
  • 1 specified mathematics course, one biology course, and 12 additional hours from biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics for a total of 20 hours;
  • 1 specified humanities course and 16 additional quarter hours selected from behavioral and social sciences and humanities for a total of 20 hours;
  • 1 specified course from computer and information science for a total of 4 hours.

II: BHS Core and selected Social Work concentration area courses

  • 11 specified BHS core courses, and an additional 16 hours BHS elective courses for a total of 60 hours

III: Elective courses:

  • 56 quarter hours from freely selected courses

Alumni & Students

Jiaxin Li

Jiaxin Li

Before attending East-West University, I attended college in China. I heard about EWU from my uncle and knew it would be a good opportunity to expand my knowledge and prepare for my career.

I am studying Management in the business program and ultimately would like to use these skills to pursue my dream of becoming a designer. I have learned a lot in my classes and courses like Accounting teach skills that I will continue to use.

In China, my parents and teachers always told me that through studying, one gains success and fortunes will follow. Reading brings us everything. At East-West University, I am studying hard to prepare for my future.

Justyna Bronska

Justyna Bronska

I came to East-West after studying in the ESL program at Triton College. I received a scholarship for international students and was also hired as an international student advisor. I’ve always wanted to be successful regardless of the obstacles in place and exceed expectations. My experience at East-West University has changed my approach toward life and my responsibilities.

I’m studying in the Business program to obtain a management position. An important lesson I’ve learned at EWU is that I am responsible for my own future. I am committed to finishing my degree and have obtained the self-discipline to do so as I’ve made progress in my program. When I graduate, I would like to travel, have a family, and buy a house. Studying business at EWU will give me the tools to succeed.

Greg Williams

Greg Williams

I could not pass up the opportunity to return to school at East-West. I chose EWU because of its academics, location, and affordability.

East-West has helped me be successful by making it possible for me to both work and go to school. The instructors are experienced have encouraged me to pursue a career in Accounting. I have really enjoyed my experience here and would like to go to graduate school after I finish. My professor always said to ‘be the captain of your own ship.’ At East-West University, I am afforded the opportunity to do so.