Social Work

Social Work

Providing students with the foundation to become social work practitioners

The Tennessee Wesleyan University Social Work program provides the foundation for students to become empathic, competent generalist social work practitioners who adhere to the values and ethics promoted by the profession of Social Work. Students will cultivate a sense of responsibility to improve the lives of their fellow person, respecting their dignity, diversity, and right to self-determination, while advancing social and economic justice on a local and global level.
Learn more about TWU and see why students have chosen us for over 100 years.

Program Description

The Social Work major is intended for students who will seek employment in a social work-related profession upon completion of the undergraduate degree and/or continue as a graduate student in social work or a related field. As a licensure program, the TWU Social Work Program will prepare students to take the BSW State Licensure exam in the state where they plan to practice.

Social Work Program Reaffirmed by the Council on Social Work Education’s Board of Accreditation

cswe graphicThe Tennessee Wesleyan University Social Work program has been reaffirmed by the Council on Social Work Education’s Board of Accreditation for a period of eight years without conditions or progress reports, the maximum period available from CSWE. The program officially began at TWU in 2015 under the leadership of now retired Professor Linda Garza.“

“Accreditation by the CSWE Board of Accreditation demonstrates that a social work education or fellowship program holds to the highest standards of quality education and preparation of social workers to create and sustain healthy communities,” said Halaevalu F. O. Vakalahi PhD, MSW, MEd, President and CEO of CSWE.

Student Handbook

The TWU Social Work Program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education’s (CSWE) Board of Accreditation, 333 John Carlyle Street, Suite 400, Alexandria, VA 22314-3457. Phone: 703-683-8080.

Student Learning Outcomes

Career Opportunities
  • Child Welfare – Department of Children’s Services; Child Advocacy Programs; School-based Services
  • Case Management – Shelter Programs; School-based; Child and Family
  • School Social Work (licensure available)
  • Mental Health Care & Medical Social Work
    Community Practice with non-profit and for-profit agencies
  • Criminal Justice – Court-Appointed Special Advocates (CASA); Juvenile Justice; Domestic Violence Court Advocates; Victim’s Advocates

Upon graduation, students are eligible to apply for the state exam through each state’s regulatory board and accrediting agencies. Upon the successful completion of the exam, students will become Licensed Bachelor Social Workers (LBSW). BSW graduates have the potential to complete in one year a master’s in social work in programs offering advanced standing.

The Tennessee Wesleyan University Social Work Program offers the opportunity for State of Tennessee School Social Work Licensure to currently enrolled social work students as well as persons who currently hold a bachelor’s degree in Social Work from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

Licensure in school social work offers classroom knowledge as well as specific field experience to equip students with the knowledge and skills to practice in school settings throughout the state of Tennessee. In collaboration with the Tennessee Wesleyan University’s Education Department, the Social Work Program will certify applicants for the State of Tennessee School Social Work License. (See student handbook for full requirements)

For more information on the licensure programs contact The TWU Social Work Program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education’s (CSWE) Commission on Accreditation, 333 John Carlyle Street, Suite 400, Alexandria, VA 22314-3457.  Phone: 703-683-8080  

Field Education

The Field Education program is designed to provide students the opportunity to put their skills and knowledge to practice in a real world setting through 400 hours of Field Placement in a practice setting. All students will work with the Field Education Director to secure their required field practicum placements. Students are advised that several field placement agencies require a criminal background check.  The outcome of this background check can impact a student’s field placement opportunities. 


Application Process

All students interested in social work as their major must make formal application to the Social Work Program. Students should submit their application during their sophomore year by the appropriate deadline.

2023-2024 Academic Year BSW Application Deadlines

  • Current Student Application Deadline is February 23, 2024
  • Transfer Student Application Deadline is July 1, 2024

Applications received after the above deadlines will be reviewed and considered on a space available basis.

Social work major course work, not including prerequisite courses, requires a minimum of four (4) semesters.  Students must consider this prior to (1) changing majors and/or (2) transferring from another institution. 

 Admission Criteria and Application Process

Every student must meet the following minimum criteria prior to applying for official admission to the Social Work Program.

  1. Have an overall GPA of at least 2.5.
  2. Complete of the following pre-requisite courses:  PSY 101, SOC 101, and SWRK 231 with a minimum of a “C” in each.
  3. Complete a written program application, including the following:
    1. Two recommendations (one academic, one professional/volunteer related)
    2. A copy of your professional resume
    3. A copy of your unofficial transcript for all coursework completed
    4. Personal Narrative
  4. Complete an interview with BSW Program faculty.

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