The mission of the bachelor’s degree in Behavioral Sciences with an interest concentration in Social Work is to prepare professionals in the area of social work.
Social work is a field that is devoted to help individuals improve the quality of their lives. Such persons might otherwise be experiencing a broad range of social and personal concerns. The many and varied problems might involve social and economic issues, such as poverty and homelessness, or involve family issues such as parental and substance abuse, as well as caring for the elderly. Social workers can provide a variety of primary and secondary supportive services directly to clients or helping extend administrative responsibilities which might involve planning, implementing, and evaluating 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.
As part of the department of Behavioral and Social Sciences within the division of Liberal Arts and Sciences, social work shares the overall mission, purpose and objectives of that department. This mission includes guiding student through a set of courses grouped around a strong general education core, an area concentration focused on social work, and area-complementary electives reflecting student-specific educational goals. Based upon these factors, the purposes of the social work area concentration are to
- prepare beginning level practitioners who are responsible to providing professional services in the area of social work in a variety of settings
- provide a foundation of post-baccalaureate and/or graduate professional education and continuing life-long professional development
- foster commitment toward a local, regional, and global humane service-oriented perspective and dedication to professional values in the area of social work
- 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
Why an area concentration in Social Work at East-West University?
Usually the academic, professional requirements for entry level positions in this field are a bachelor’s degree in social work or area concentration in social work. A substantial number of interdisciplinary courses such as the BHS degree includes usually strengthen the professional preparation for social work or social work 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 Social Work area concentration curriculum
- Includes both liberal and professional instruction to prepare graduates for life in general and a career in high demand.
- Its geographic and demographic location is situated 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.
- Demographically, there is hardly a place with a greater and more balanced multicultural mix, with greater 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 with which all aspects of social work is concerned at the present time
- Offers education in a career that is 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.
- 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.
- Agencies and organizations of social work will assume increased responsibilities. The need for highly educated social work professionals continues to grow. 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:
- Apply theoretical and empirical knowledge from the liberal arts, the sciences, and social work to provide professional services in the area of social work.
- enroll into a graduate or (specialized) professional program in social work or a closely related field
- find methods and apply relevant best practices to protect the growth and wellbeing of contemporary society
- identify and apply policies to promote equity and equality as they relate to social work
- structure programs to improve services to disadvantaged communities in the area of social work
- base social work best practices on personal and professional values which incorporate a humane, service-oriented perspective
- 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 EN 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); and
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