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Skidmore College
Social Work Department
Seminar 2016


Consistent with the missions of Skidmore College and the CSWE's Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards, the Social Work Department’s mission is to prepare students for entry-level professional generalist practice. It envisions that its graduates will become leaders through the provision of social work services that promote human rights and social and economic justice. It further holds the expectation that its graduates will contribute to the empowerment of people/groups that experience oppression and discrimination.

student learning GOALS

Below are the departmental learning goals mapped to College-wide goals for student learning.

With the liberal arts as its foundation, BSW graduates are prepared for entry-level social work practice and to continue their formal education in social work or another graduate discipline. As such, program goals for students include:

  • Engage in evidence-based entry-level social work practice with individuals, families groups, communities and organizations within a multicultural society. (Ia, Ib, Ic, IIb, IIc, IId, IIIc, IIId, Iva, IVb)
  • Practice according to the principles, values, and ethics that guide the social work profession. (Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IId, IIe, IIIa, IIIb, IIIc, IIId, IVb, IVc, IVd)
  • Influence social policies with the goal of alleviating poverty, oppression, and social injustice as well as advocating for human rights. (Ia, Ib, Ic, IIa, IIc, IId, IIIc, IIId, IVa, IVb)
  • Identify and affect the bio-psycho-social, spiritual, and cultural functioning of people. (Ia, Ib, IIa, IIb, IIc, IId, IIIb, IIId, Iva)
  • Engage in practice from a culturally-sensitive perspective which recognizes and appreciates the intersectionality of diverse human identities. (Ia, Ib, IIc, IId, IIe, IIIb, IIIc, IIId, IVa, IVb, IVc, IVd)
  • Provide leadership in practice settings appropriate to one’s practice role, skill set, and educational level. (Ic, IIa, IIc, IId, IIe, IIIc, IIId, IVb, IVd)

Information Literacy

  • Define the information required for the assignment (e.g. empirical data, primary or secondary data, government agency report, etc.). (IIa, IIe)
  • Develop a plan for locating information (e.g., key terms, databases, sources, etc.). (IIa, IIb, IIe)
  • Critically analyze sources and available information (e.g., variations in peer-review, public agencies, research foundations, and advocacy groups). (Ic, IIa, IIb)
  • Organize and properly cite sources (e.g., use Refworks, APA style). (IIc, IIe, IVb)
  • Summarize and document information retrieved (e.g., annotated bibliography). (Ia, Ic, IIb, IIc, IIe)

Visual Literacy

  • Create, summarize, and interpret genograms and ecomaps. (Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IId, IIId)
  • Create, summarize, and interpret timelines (e.g., historical, personal/familial, policy). (Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc)
  • Create, summarize, and interpret tables and graphs (e.g., research, clinical information). (Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IVa)
  • Create, summarize, and interpret visual representations of information (e.g., conceptual frameworks).  (Ia, Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IIe, IVa)

Technological Literacy

  • Utilize a range of technology tools to locate and/or share information. (IIb, IIc, IId, IIIc)
  • Critically analyze the role of technology in the design and delivery of social work services. (IIa, IIe, IIId)
  • Incorporate technology in a manner consistent with professional ethical responsibilities and standards. (Ic, IIIa)

Effective Oral Communication

  • Demonstrate professional ethics and standards in oral communication (e.g., including confidentiality, professional demeanor and use of language). (Ic, IIc, IId, IIIc, IVc)
  • Organize and present material as appropriate to the audience (e.g., agencies, policymakers, clients). (Ib, IIa, IIc, IId, IIIc, IIId, IVb)
  • Participate actively and appropriately in group discussions (e.g., active listening, contributions). (IIa, IIc, IId, IIe, IIIc, IVb, IVc, IVd)
  • Communicate effectively across potential barriers resulting from differences. (Ib, IIc, IId, IIIb, IVb, IVc)

Effective Written Communication

  • Develop a feasible research proposal that includes a well-integrated literature review, a thorough description of the selected research methodology, a discussion of the practice/policy implications of the proposed work, and an appropriate data collection instrument. (Ia, Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IIe, IIId, IVa)
  • Conduct a policy study that includes defining and describing a social problem and public narrative; summarizing and comparing perceptions of those who benefit from and/or work in a relevant field of practice; describing a related policy/program, its political context and history, and the logic or theory informing its design/implementation; critically analyzing the relevant social justice claim(s); and providing either a policy/program evaluation or advocacy brief highlighting key elements of the policy study. (Ia, Ib, Ic, IIa, IIb, IIc, IIe, IIId, IVa)