Field practicum is undoubtedly a keystone in graduate social work education. It is in field education where theory, practice concepts and skills, values, and social policy and research information are applied and internalized. Field education provides the guided practice needed to prepare MSW students to become advanced social work professionals.
The MSW Program places students in agencies in the San Fernando Valley region and other areas in Southern California. A selected group of highly qualified field faculty supervise students in those agencies. The Director of Field Education, is responsible to the students and agencies for successful coordination of the field practicum.
The CSUN Field Education Program is consistent with the CSWE goals and objectives, which:
- Provides for the required number of hours for the master's programs.
- Admits only those students who have met the program's specified criteria for field education.
- Specifies policies, criteria, and procedures for selecting agencies and field instructors; placing and monitoring students; maintaining field liaison contacts with agencies; and evaluating student learning and agency effectiveness in providing field instruction.
- Specifies that field instructors for MSW students hold a CSWE-accredited MSW degree, and that the program assumes responsibility for reinforcing a social work perspective.
- Provides orientation, field instruction training, and ongoing dialog with agencies and field instructors.
- Develops policies regarding field placements in an agency in which the student is also employed. Student assignments and field education supervision differ from those associated with the student employment.