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Aug 6 2017

BSW Online #bsw #online #degree #programs


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BSW Online

The BSW online also known as BSW Virtual Learning Circle (VLC), is a nationally accredited program that provides opportunities for undergraduate social work education for professionals who wish to remain in their home communities while completing their BSW degree. The program endeavors to provide a curriculum with cultural and geographic relevance that is sensitive to First Nations and Métis peoples.

The program is delivered through a blended learning approach, integrating web-based instructions with some face-to-face class time in Calgary. It also offers assistance arranging a practicum placement in the student’s locality.

This program accepts social work diploma graduates from Alberta colleges, university transfer students and previous degree holders.

Important considerations and requirements for those interested in the BSW online program:

    • You will require reliable and regular access to a computer and the Internet
    • You must attend a week-long campus event each year at the University of Calgary campus
    • In average you will need to dedicate 12-15 hours per week for each course
    • All University of Calgary courses (including those delivered online) follow the regular UofC semester schedule (Fall, Winter, Spring, Summer) with set start and end dates and specific assignment deadlines
    • Students need to be comfortable communicating online in a group environment, via both written discussions and real-time web conference sessions

BSW Admission Routes

The Faculty of Social Work offers a University Transfer route to students who will have completed:

  • A minimum of 19 half-course equivalents (57 units) non-social work university transferable courses plus SOWK 201 Introduction to Social Work or its equivalent
  • An undergraduate degree in another discipline from a recognized institution and SOWK 201 Introduction to Social Work or its equivalent.

All courses must have been completed by the end of the Winter Term preceding the Fall Term for which entry is sought.

To learn more, please explore the Admission Requirements for the University Transfer route.

In order to prepare for successful completion of a BSW, the Faculty of Social Work recommends that, as part of the 19 university transferable half-course equivalents required for admission, prospective University Transfer applicants complete non-social work courses in the following areas:

  • English/Effective Writing
  • Sociology
  • Political Science
  • Psychology
  • Indigenous Awareness in the Canadian Context
  • Human Development Across the Lifespan
  • Social Welfare and Social Policy
  • Research Methods
  • Statistics
  • Ethics
  • Communications
  • Public Administration or Public Policy
  • Women’s Studies
  • Anthropolgy
  • Community Rehabilitation and Disability Studies

Prospective students should note that these topic areas are recommended and NOT required. No admission preference will be given to applicants who take courses within these areas.

Note. Students with a previous undergraduate degree enter our University Transfer route to complete the BSW. The Calgary-based MSW program also offers a route of admission (Foundation program ) for students with a degree in a discipline other than Social work.

The Faculty of Social Work offers an Alberta Social Work Diploma route to students who will have completed a social work diploma from an Alberta post-secondary institution with which the Faculty of Social Work has a transfer agreement. In order to be considered for admission, applicants must have completed a minimum of 8 half-course equivalent (24 units) university transferable non-social work courses (normally as part of their social work diploma program).

All courses must have been completed by the end of the Winter Term preceding the Fall Term for which entry is sought.

The Faculty of Social Work currently has transfer agreements with the following institutions:

  • Blue Quills First Nations College
  • Keyano College
  • MacEwan University
  • Maskwacis Cultural College
  • Medicine Hat College
  • Mount Royal University
  • Northern Lakes College
  • NorQuest College
  • Portage College
  • Red Deer College.

To learn more, please explore the Admission Requirements for the Alberta Social Work Diploma route.

Students admitted into the BSW Virtual Learning Circles (VLC) University Transfer route (including previous degree holders)
complete 20 half-course equivalents for their degree. Of these, 18 half-course equivalents are core social work courses and 2
half-course equivalents are social work option courses. Through option courses, students may study topics such as loss and
grief, social work in health care and child welfare settings, children’s mental health, social work with Indigenous peoples, age friendly communities, social work with immigrants and refugees, etc.

University Transfer students complete two practica during the spring and summer following completion of the core social work
curriculum, the first of 300 hours and the second of 400 hours. Students are expected to be available on those days during
daytime working hours, or as required by the placement. Local practicum placements enhance students’ abilities to stay in
home communities and develop context-sensitive social work practice. In practica, students integrate theory and practice
under the supervision of registered social workers. Through seminars that accompany practica, students discuss learning
experiences and challenges.

All required 300-level Social Work courses must be completed prior to registering for the practicum courses: Social Work 410. 411. 412. and 413 .

Students admitted into the BSW Virtual Learning Circle (VLC) Alberta Social Work Diploma route complete 20 half-course equivalents. Of these, 15 half-course equivalents are core social work courses and 5 half-course equivalents are junior or senior general education (non-social work) courses taken outside the faculty. The five non-social work (general arts and science) courses can be taken before, during or after the completion of the 300 level social work courses but must be completed before the start of Practicum.

An important objective of our post-diploma route is to build on the social work knowledge and skills students have gained
through their diploma programs. The series of courses is designed to enhance existing professional knowledge and skills while
also developing the breadth and diversity of knowledge through courses in, for example, psychology, anthropology, history,
women’s studies, or sociology.

Post-diploma students complete one practicum of 400 hours during the summer following completion of the core social work
curriculum. Local practicum placements enhance students’ abilities to stay in home communities and develop context-sensitive
social work practice. In practicum, students integrate theory and practice under the supervision of registered social
workers. Through seminars that accompany the practicum, students discuss learning experiences and challenges.

All required 300-level Social Work courses and non-Social Work courses must be completed prior to registering in Social Work 412 and 413. All required non-Social Work courses will normally be completed prior to registering in Social Work 412 and 413 .

NOTES: SOWK 500 level electives are NOT REQUIRED for post-diploma students, and if taken, are not counted toward degree requirements.

Our nationally-accredited undergraduate program prepares students with the knowledge and skills necessary for entry-level
professional social work practice. This includes, but is not limited to, jobs within:

  • community-based services
  • community development
  • child welfare services
  • institutional health care
  • long term care centres
  • corrections
  • settlement support, and
  • hospital services.

All social work graduates from the University of Calgary meet the academic requirements for professional registration with
the Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW). Students can use practicum hours against the supervised hours required for
registration with the ACSW but may need to complete additional supervised hours.


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