BSW Program


Social Work is a profession that provides moral, practical, and compassionate leadership in helping people confront and resolve their personal dilemmas. Social Work focuses on the person in their environment and the BSW education provides training to work effectively with individuals, families, small groups, agencies, and communities. The curriculum includes a two-semester internship in a social service agency which provides the student with an actual working knowledge of the theories and skills learned in the classroom setting. BSW graduates are prepared for immediate entry into direct human service professional positions ready to excel in careers in social work and ready for graduate work at the master's degree level. The BSW program at Middle Tennessee State University is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

Mission Statement
(adopted 2002)

The Social Work Program will provide a learning environment where students are taught to think critically, be creative, participate actively in their education, and grow as individuals while respecting the rapidly changing and diverse world in which they will live and practice social work. Class work and special student work experiences must demonstrate how to relate effectively to all types of people and to appreciate how emotional, social, economic, political, and spiritual forces influence the behavior of those we are helping. We strive to develop competent, ethical professionals with the knowledge, values and skills for effective practice with individuals, families, groups and communities, and who can provide outstanding leadership in the field of social services.

Program Goals
(Adopted 11/14/07)

  1. To prepare a diverse student population for generalist social work practice to serve client systems of various sizes and types. This includes value based direct services to diverse populations at risk to facilitate the reduction of poverty, oppression and discrimination that will promote social and economic justice.
  2. To provide a flexible educational program that increases the students understanding of the bio-psycho-social-spiritual variables that affect the person within the environment and the community, which will include the history of social welfare and the social work profession, its policies, structures, and issues.
  3. To develop analytical skills and critical thinking that will encourage active participation in the development, evaluation, and improvement of evidence-based social work knowledge and skills through research aimed at disseminating knowledge and advancing social work practice.
  4. To prepare graduates to foster their commitment to lifelong learning and development of social work knowledge, values, and skills, with effective supervision, which will empower them and their clients.
  5. To experientially assist students in developing self-awareness and their ability to deal effectively with the stressors of social work practice.

Social Work Core Competencies

  1. Identify as a professional social worker and conduct oneself accordingly.
  2. Apply social work ethical principles to guide professional practice.
  3. Apply critical thinking to inform and communicate professional judgments.
  4. Engage diversity and difference in practice.
  5. Advance human rights and social and economic justice.
  6. Engage in research-informed practice and practice-informed research.
  7. Apply knowledge of human behavior and the social environment.
  8. Engage in policy practice to advance social and economic well-being and to deliver effective social work services.
  9. Respond to contexts that shape practice.
  10. Engage, assess, intervene, and evaluate with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities.