Jun 13, 2024  
2019-20 NSU Undergraduate Catalog 
2019-20 NSU Undergraduate Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Social Work B.S.W. *

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OSRHE Program Code: 102
CIP Code: 440701

Major Code: 9815


  • 9816 - General Social Work
  • 9817 - Child Welfare Specialization

Mission Statement

The mission of Northeastern State University’s (NSU) Department of Social Work is to academically prepare competent and effective professionals; particularly first generation college students who desire to enter generalist social work practice.  Along with our academic program’s accessibility, our curriculum is designed to integrate and apply the knowledge, skills, and values of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) competencies and behavioral indicators with the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics.  These key foundations prepare our graduates to practice social work in a wide range of agencies and allied settings with diverse client systems and people.  Our academic program has a unique focus in its integration of addressing social work practice with Native American populations, and the option to specialize in child welfare leadership.

Specialty Accreditation

The Bachelor of Social Work (Social Work, B.S.W.) program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (1701 Duke Street, Suite 200, Alexandria, VA 22314-3457, 703-683-8080).  www.cswe.org

Credential Requirements

There are five levels of social work licensure in Oklahoma. Four licenses require a master’s degree, while the LSWA credential requires only a bachelor’s degree. All candidates for licensure must pass an exam from the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB). Certain licenses also require supervised experience, and all candidates for licensure must submit an application and pay fees. Licensed social workers often find positions in healthcare, education, and the legal system.

Social workers in Oklahoma do not need a clinical license to work independently. While professionals must attain clinical licensure for private practice, a licensed social worker (LSC) and the licensed social worker administration (LSW-Adm) credentials also qualify holders for independent social work practice.

The Oklahoma State Board of Licensed Social Workers (OSBLSW) issues provisional licensure after candidates submit their application and fee. Provisionally licensed professionals must pass the exam within a year. Oklahoma does not have a reciprocity agreement with other states, but there is a system in place for out-of-state social workers to gain licensure. Students are encouraged to talk with their faculty mentor about licensure requirements and to consult the Oklahoma State Board of Licensed Social Workers for more information.


In keeping with our mission, the goals of the social work program are:

  1. To educate diverse social workers for beginning generalist social work practice.
  2. To provide an accessible social work academic program.
  3. To prepare social workers to practice with diverse populations and systems, including Native American populations.
  4. To develop social work leaders in child welfare social delivery systems.

Curriculum Policy Statement and Curriculum Design

The NSU Bachelor of Social Work Program curriculum is based upon the accreditation standards set forth by our accrediting professional body, the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).  These standards, along with their accompanying behavioral indicators, are integrated throughout our core and elective course offerings; conclude with all components being demonstrated in the student field education experience:  the program’s signature pedagogy.

Program Outcome Evaluation

Program outcomes are assessed on a bi-annual basis per a formally designed assessment plan.  The plan is comprised of student course evaluations addressing the competency standards and behavioral indicators, faculty committee evaluations, qualitative/quantitative exit interviews of graduating seniors, and the Baccalaureate Education Assessment Project (BEAP). 

General Education Requirements

A minimum of 46 hours of academic work in general education is required during the freshman and sophomore years.  For students transferring with the Associate of Arts degree or Associate of Science degree from a public institution in Oklahoma, all general education requirements will be satisfied with respect to degree requirements.  However, some majors may require other specific general education courses as program prerequisites or program requirements.  Students should consult advisors and the program’s plan of study for further information.  Students are required to complete general education requirements by the time they have completed 90 semester hours of college work.  See General Education Requirements  for more information.

Admission to Social Work

For admission to the Social Work program, a student must complete the following:

  • Written and Oral Communication - 9 hours
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences - 9 hours
  • Specific Social Work General Education Requirements listed below
  • Admission Prerequisite Courses listed below


Admission to the Social Work Program is a prerequisite for enrollment in SOWK 3953, Practice I and SOWK 4873, Human Behavior in the Social Environment II, and other courses restricted to Social Work majors.

Social Work General Education Requirements

The following are course prerequisites that may be completed as part of the General Education requirements.

Select General SOWK or Child Welfare Specialization

General Social Work - 11 hours (9816)

  • SOWK Electives (3000/4000 level) - 6 hours
  • Advanced Electives (3000/4000 level) - 5 hours
    (Select from American Indian Studies, Psychology, Social Science, and/or Social Work)


Child Welfare Specialization - 11 hours (9817)

Major Total - 57 hours

Admission to Practicum

  • 88 semester hours
  • 2.5 Graduation/Retention GPA
  • 2.5 GPA in all Social Work courses
  • Proof of Field Practicum Liability Insurance
  • Approval of the Social Work Faculty 
  • Obtain an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation (OSBI) Criminal History background check – this must also include the Sex Offender check and Violent Offender check (No more than 3 months old). Go to: www.ok.gov/osbi/Criminal_History/

Graduation Requirements

  • 2.5 Graduation/Retention GPA
  • 2.5 GPA in all Social Work courses
  • A total of 124 credit hours must be completed for a BSW degree.  This includes a minimum of 40 hours general education and 57 hours in the major.  A maximum of 3 credit hours of independent studies and 6 credit hours of 1-hour workshops will count toward the 57 hour Social Work major.  The remaining hours to complete the 124 credit hours for graduation may be taken as free electives campus-wide. 
  • At least 29 hours of advanced (3000/4000) courses are required on a Social Work major; 29 hours of this major must be earned at NSU.
  • At least 40 semester credit hours are required in the Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Additional Degree Information - College of Liberal Arts

In addition to general education and program requirements stated above, additional hours may be needed to satisfy all minimum degree requirements listed below.

  • English Proficiency: Components I and II of English proficiency should be met with grades of “C” or better prior to the completion of 60 credit hours.
  • ​A minimum of 124 hours is required. PE activity is limited to four hours. Prior learning credit (CLEP, Advanced Standing, Military Credit, etc) is limited to 30 hours.
  • ​A minimum of 30 hours in residence (from NSU) is required for graduation. PE activity is limited to four hours. Hours in residence exclude zero-level courses and prior learning credit such as CLEP, Advanced Placement, Advanced Standing, Military Credit, etc.​
  • A minimum of 40 hours of 3000/4000 level courses is required for graduation.  ​
  • A minimum of 60 hours from a 4-year school is required for graduation excluding zero level and PE activity courses.
  • At least fifty percent of the major requirements must be upper division courses (3000 and 4000 level).
  • At least 18 hours or fifty percent of the major, whichever is greater, must be satisfactorily completed at NSU.
  • The minimum number of credit hours required in the Liberal Arts and Sciences varies based on the type of degree.  B.A., B.A.Ed., B.F.A. and B.M.E. degrees require at least 80 hours.  B.S. and B.S.Ed. degrees require at least 55 hours.  B.G.S. and B.S.W. degrees require at least 40 hours.  Liberal Arts and Science courses are designated with a “#” after the course title.

For more information, see Bachelor’s Degree Requirements .



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