Social Work (B.S.W.)


Dr. Portia Cole, Director of Social Work

Faculty representing diverse disciplines in the School of Nursing and Health Professions, College of Arts & Sciences and School of Professional Studies collaborate with and contribute to the Social Work program.


Trinity’s Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) students are provided a range of opportunities to develop a broad knowledge and skills base to advocate for positive change and social justice as you help people navigate difficult circumstances. Students are expected to practice core social work values while practicing ethical decision-making. Field experiences, along with classroom instruction and activities, will prepare students to be competent in developing culturally sensitive, generalist social work practice.

Social Work majors will gain invaluable hands-on experience through fieldwork placement and will gain the skills needed to serve diverse clients and communities in a variety of human service agencies, providing direct services and advocating for human rights and social and economic justice.

All pre-social work program students MUST earn a minimum of 120 credits to graduate with a BSW degree.

Social Work Pre-requisites/General Education Requirements

Pre-Social Work students enter through the College of Arts and Sciences where they complete their general education and social work prerequisite courses. The required courses are listed in sequence below:

 Freshman Year, First Semester (16 credits)

  • CRS 101 Critical Reading and Writing Seminar I
  • PSYC 101 Introductory Psychology
  • HPNU 120 Medical Terminology
  • MATH 108 Finite Mathematics
  • BIOL 101 Introduction to Biology

 Freshman Year, Second Semester (16 credits)

  • CRS 102 Critical Reading and Writing Seminar II
  • ENGL 107 College Composition
  • SOCY 100 Introduction to Sociology
  • BIOL 121 Human Anatomy and Physiology I
  • General Education Course:

Sophomore Year, First Semester (16 credits)

  • MATH 110 Introduction to Statistics
  • COM 150 Critical Reasoning and Oral Argumentation or PHIL 150 Critical Reasoning and Oral Argumentation
  • BIOL 122 Human Anatomy and Physiology II
  • Choose a Foreign Language I
  • General Education Courses:

Sophomore Year, Second Semester (12 credits)

  • PHIL 251 Bioethics
  • CHEM 113 Chemistry for the Health Sciences
  • POLS 244 Law, Justice and Human Rights or any RST prefix
  • Choose a Foreign Language II
  • General Education Courses:

Social Work Major Courses

Post formal acceptance into the Bachelor in Social Work program, the major requirements are outlined below in recommended sequence:

Junior Year, First Semester (15 credits)

  • SOWK XXX- Introduction to Social Work
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Ethics
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Policy
  • SOWK XXX- Human Behavior and the Social Environment I
  • Elective Course

Junior Year, Second Semester (15 credits)

  • SOWK XXX- Human Behavior and the Social Environment II
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Research Methods I
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Practices with Organizations I
  • Elective Course
  • Elective Course

Senior Year, First Semester (15 credits)

  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Research Methods II
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Practices with Organizations II
  • SOWK XXX- Social Work Generalist Practice with Individuals and Families
  • Elective Course
  • Elective Course

Senior Year, Second Semester (15 credits)

  • SOWK XXX- Social Work with Groups
  • SOWK XXX- Integrative Seminar
  • Elective Course
  • Elective Course
  • Elective Course

Program Policies

I. Application Process

Applying to the BSW Program is a 2-step process:

  • Step One: Apply to Trinity.
    • Upon admission to Trinity, pre-social work students complete their pre-requisite coursework before applying for acceptance into the social work program.
  • Step Two: Apply to the Social Work program. Pre-social work students apply for formal acceptance into the Social Work program when completing their last semester of pre-requisite coursework.
    • Social Work program application deadlines:
      • Spring admission – October 1
      • Fall admission – February 1
    • To apply to the social work program contact your advisor or program director

A student’s application should contain the following:

  • Social Work Program Application (completed online by the student)
  • Pre-Social Work Curriculum Plan (from applicant’s academic advisor)
  • Transcripts (from all institutions where pre-requisite and general education/core curriculum courses have been taken)
  • Essay (students will be contacted via email with instruction on completing the essay after applications have been received)

II. Acceptance Criteria

Formal acceptance into the BSW involves consideration of the following criteria:

  • Overall GPA of at least 2.75
  • Personal Essay reflection on why this degree will further your personal and professional goals.

Pre-social work program students should direct any questions about the process for formal acceptance into the Social Work program to their undergraduate advisor in the College of Arts and Sciences (CAS) or program director.

Students will be notified by the Director of the Social Work Program of the results of their application after all criteria for considering the application have been received and evaluated.

III. Transfer Policy

Students transferring to Trinity in or after Fall 2002 from another appropriately accredited institution of higher learning for a bachelor’s degree must earn a minimum of 45 of their final 60 credits through course work at Trinity, excluding credits for experiential learning. (See Transfer Policies)

IV. Grades in Major Courses

BSW students must earn a minimum of “C+” as a final course grade in all social work courses. A final grade below a C+ will require the student to repeat the course to successfully complete all requirements of the social work curriculum plan. A final grade below a “C+” may impact a student’s academic progression in the social work program. Any grade involving a numerical fraction is NOT rounded up at the end of the semester in the final course grade.

V. Pass/No Pass

The pass/no pass grading option is not accepted in courses to be applied for the major.

VI. TELL Policy:

Students applying for credit in experiential learning should consult with the program faculty.


  • Pre-Candidacy for a baccalaureate or master’s social work program by the Council on Social Work Education’s Commission on Accreditation indicates that it has submitted an application to be reviewed for Candidacy and had its Benchmark I approved in draft form to move forward with Candidacy review within one year. A program that has attained Pre-Candidacy has not yet been reviewed by the Commission on Accreditation or been verified to be in compliance with the Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards.

  • Students who enter programs in Pre-Candidacy that attain Candidacy in the academic year in which they begin their program of study will be retroactively recognized as having graduated from a CSWE-accredited program once the program attains Initial Accreditation. The Candidacy process is typically a three-year process and there is no guarantee that a program in Pre-Candidacy will eventually attain Candidacy or Initial Accreditation.

  • Candidacy by the Council on Social Work Education’s Commission on Accreditation applies to all locations and delivery methods of an accredited program. Accreditation provides reasonable assurance about the quality of the program and the competence of students graduating from the program.

  • For more information about social work accreditation, you may contact Accreditation –