Graduate Program Objectives

Foundation objectives

  1. Conduct reflective practice, develop and articulate reasons for practice decisions, and generate alternative intervention strategies as needed.
  2. Practice within the values and ethics of the social work profession and with an understanding of and respect for the positive value of diversity.
  3. Demonstrate an awareness of how personal feelings, thoughts, attitudes, values and experiences influence your practice.
  4. Maintain the mutuality of worker-client system and demonstrate a willingness to explore, learn and grow through interactions with client systems.
  5. Assess the psychosocial impact of oppression and discrimination, and empower clients by mobilizing and enhancing their strengths and resources to resolve problems and reduce oppression.
  6. Understand the histories of social welfare and the profession of social work, and appreciate the profession's unique commitment to social justice.
  7. Apply the principles and techniques of generalist social work practice in intervening with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities.
  8. Use a theoretical framework to understand the interactions among individuals and between individuals and social systems (i.e., families, groups, organizations and communities).
  9. Apply knowledge of bio-psycho-social variables to interpret human growth, development and behavior relative to the broader environmental context. The broader environmental context is understood to encompass social, cultural, historical, political and economic forces.
  10. Analyze the impact of social policies on client systems, workers, and agencies, and engage in intervention strategies that facilitate socially just policies and practices within human service systems and the larger community.
  11. Seek out, critically consider, integrate and apply relevant professional literature to practice.
  12. Evaluate the effectiveness of your own professional practice through reflection, consultation, supervision and application of formal models of practice evaluation.
  13. Recognize and appropriately respond to the unique characteristics, strengths and dynamics of diverse populations and client systems.
  14. Communicate effectively with colleagues and members of the community to build networks and engage in collaborative processes for decision making.
  15. Demonstrate a commitment to professional development by seeking out and using consultation and supervision, through participating in professional associations, and by keeping abreast of the professional literature.
  16. Assess organizational structure (formal and informal) and function effectively within the parameters, strengths and constraints of the agency.
  17. Evaluate organizational and/or program effectiveness and advocate for improvements in order to enhance service delivery and client functioning.

Interpersonal practice concentration objectives

  1. Demonstrate advanced knowledge and skill in assessments, evaluations and interventions with individuals, families, and small groups.
  2. Demonstrate knowledge and skill of the impact of coping and adaptive capacities on the psycho-social-biological functioning of clients.
  3. Demonstrate advanced social work practice knowledge and skill in the application of social work values and ethics with individuals, families and small groups.
  4. Demonstrate knowledge and skill in applying a bio-psycho-social-cultural perspective, in a life-span context, in social work practice with individuals, families and small groups.
  5. Demonstrate the ability to apply individual, family and small group practice skills within a variety of organizational settings and under a variety of auspices.
  6. Demonstrate knowledge and skill in conducting social work with special populations such as the developmentally disabled, frail elderly, incest survivors, abused or neglected children, and persons with AIDS or other chronic illness.
  7. Demonstrate knowledge of human diversity, including variations in culture, ethnicity, mores, values, religion, sexual orientation, social or economic status and lifestyle, in interpersonal practice skills.
  8. Demonstrate the ability to apply research- and empirically-grounded processes to assess and evaluate practice frameworks, strategies and outcomes in social work practice with individuals, families, and small groups.
  9. Assess and evaluate the impact of social, agency and family policy on social work practice with individuals, families, and small groups.
  10. Demonstrate a commitment to and an integration of the principles of empowerment, a strengths perspective, and advocacy, with an emphasis on social work with clients of every ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, religion and class, and especially those in the grips of poverty and various forms of racial, economic, and social oppression and inequality.
  11. Demonstrate a critical understanding of supervisory functions and roles in social work.

Policy, planning and administration concentration objectives

  1. Demonstrate effective leadership skills in human service organizations, including application of leadership theories, interpersonal skills, problem-solving skills and decision-making techniques.
  2. Facilitate effective group processes and critically think about how to best work with project teams, committees, boards, volunteers, professional interdisciplinary teams and funding entities.
  3. Demonstrate the ability to conduct multidimensional assessments of policies, organizations and communities.
  4. Demonstrate the ability to analyze, formulate and design policies impacting organizations and communities.
  5. Demonstrate effective assessment, advocacy and political skills in legislative, judicial and administrative policy processes.
  6. Demonstrate the ability to understand global issues influencing social and economic processes and to advocate effectively and promote social and economic justice in local communities and organizations.
  7. Engage in organizational change, manage conflict and demonstrate critical thinking and creativity in problem solving related to organizations, special interest groups and funding entities.
  8. Demonstrate the ability to apply social work values and ethics in policy, planning and administration practice and demonstrate attitudes and behaviors that are consistent with the National Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics.
  9. Demonstrate understanding of personnel, supervision and program staffing issues and human resources management.
  10. Demonstrate the ability to conduct public testimony and presentations related to policy, planning and administrative processes as it impacts consumers, agencies and communities.
  11. Demonstrate ability to develop and manage budgets as well as understand financial reports and audits in human service organizations.
  12. Demonstrate program planning processes that includes an assessment of problem and needs, formulation of goals and objectives, design of service programs and integration and coordination with other community efforts resulting in a fully developed and detailed funding proposal.
  13. Develop an understanding of organizational collaborations, joint ventures, mergers and affiliations and the resulting impact on communities.
  14. Develop an understanding of strategic planning, including: mission, values, organizational goals and their interrelationship with other community-based programs.
  15. Demonstrate an understanding of fund development techniques such as: annual campaigns, capital campaigns, endowments, grants and special events.
  16. Develop an understanding of major governmental and private funding and regulatory systems, including federal, state, local, foundations and third-party reimbursement (including contracts).
  17. Demonstrate an understanding of different organizational structures, rules, regulations and governance for non-profit organizations, for-profit organizations, public agencies and faith-based organizations.
  18. Demonstrate the ability to assess and critically think about outcomes and evaluate programs.
  19. Demonstrate understanding and sensitivity with diverse populations, including women, minorities, consumers of service and other groups in policy, planning and administration practice.
  20. Demonstrate understanding, sensitivity and cultural awareness to the social and economic impact of poverty and other social injustices.
  21. Demonstrate an understanding and sensitivity to how organizational change should embrace staff and consumers of all cultures.
  22. Demonstrate understanding and skill in use of print and electronic media to influence or persuade public attitudes, policy and programs.