The Regular MSW program consists of 60 credit hours, divided into foundation level (12 hours) and concentration level (48) hours. Foundation courses are compressed into a single semester, allowing students three semesters to build advanced clinical skills. The concentration sequence is three semesters of coursework focused on developing specific practice competencies with the vulnerable populations who are most often the recipients of behavioral health and health interventions. Courses are sequenced so that full-time students will graduate in two academic years with four semesters of coursework (fall & spring courses only). For part-time students, the Regular program consists of 61 total credit hours taken over an extended period of four years (classes in fall, spring & summer).

The Advanced Standing MSW program consists of 42 total credit hours. The concentration sequence is three semesters of coursework focused on developing specific practice competencies with vulnerable populations who are typically in need of behavioral health and health interventions. Advanced Standing students enrolled full-time will graduate in three semesters with coursework completed during the fall and spring semesters. For part-time students, the Advanced Standing program’s 42 total credit hours are completed over an extended period of 2.5 years (classes in fall, spring & summer).

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Field Practicum

In the Field Practicum, students are prepared for post-graduate employment through a series of supervised clinical experiences in community agencies. Students are paired with Field Supervisors who are social work professionals with at least two years of post-graduate practice experience.

Students in a classroomRegular Program students enrolled full-time will have field experiences all four semesters, consisting of 900 total contact hours. Students completing the Regular Program on a part-time basis will complete these 900 hours over five semesters. Advanced Standing students enrolled full-time will complete 600 field practicum hours over three semesters (Fall/Spring/Fall). Students completing the Advanced Standing program on a part-time basis will also complete their 600 field hours in three semesters but will do so during the second half of the program (semesters 5-7).

Activities in the field are sequenced to lead to independent practice, beginning in the initial setting with practice simulations and service-learning in community agencies, then continuing on with shadowing and supervised direct clinical practice. The field experience is integrated across the curriculum, including conducting a research project as part of field practicum experience and assignments paired with practice courses.

The field experience uses closely monitored experiences in carefully selected community settings to allow students more direct experience. This approach is designed to increase student readiness for the more specialized upper-level practice associated with clinical social work in health and medical settings.

Courses

A full list of courses and course descriptions is available in the UAB Graduate Catalog. You may also download the curriculum-by-semester guides for all four program options in PDF form.


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