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School of Social Work
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CHAPTER TWELVE CONTENTS
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Admission and Registration
Requirements for Admission to the University
Admission and readmission of all students to the University is the responsibility of the director of admissions. Information about admission to the University is given in General Information.
Requirements for Admission to the School of Social Work
The School of Social Work maintains two classifications of undergraduate students: pre-social work majors and social work majors. Pre-social work majors are usually freshmen and sophomores. After completing the requirements below, a student may apply for admission to the professional curriculum as a social work major. Students who are admitted into the major complete at least three semesters of social work coursework and any other remaining degree requirements. Students who fulfill all degree requirements receive a Bachelor of Social Work degree.
The professional practice of social work requires people who are above average in academic ability and performance, sufficiently emotionally mature to assume a helping role with people under stress, and committed to the ethical standards and performance demands of social work practice. Students are encouraged to use the advising services in the School of Social Work early in their college careers in anticipation of meeting requirements for admission to the major. A student who is interested in seeking a social work degree must discuss his or her intentions with a social work adviser before applying for admission to the program.
Admission to the School of Social Work as a Pre-Social Work Major
Any student newly admitted to the University may enter the School of Social Work as a pre-social work major. A student who is enrolled in another college or school of the University may transfer to the School of Social Work as a pre-social work major in accordance with the University's rules on transfer from one division to another. These rules require a student who has completed more than forty-five semester hours of coursework to have a University grade point average of at least 2.00 in order to transfer.
Admission to the Major in Social Work
No student may enter the professional curriculum (the required upper-division social work courses) unless he or she has been admitted to the University as described in General Information and has been admitted to the major in social work by the dean, following recommendation by the Undergraduate Committee, according to the procedures below. All students are considered according to the policies given in the editions of General Information and The Undergraduate Catalog that are in effect at the time of the application.
The School of Social Work considers students for admission to the major twice a year, during the fall and spring semesters. A student who enters the University as a freshman in a fall semester will usually apply for admission to the professional curriculum in the spring semester of the sophomore year or the fall semester of the junior year. Admission applications are available from the Academic Programs and Student Services Office. The application allows the student to outline his or her background and motivation to enter the social work profession as well as any special experiences that enhance his or her application.
The School of Social Work limits admission to the major to the number of students to whom a professional education of high quality can be provided. Because of enrollment restrictions dictated by the availability of faculty members and facilities, some applicants may be denied admission even though they meet the following minimum requirements.
The applicant is considered on the basis of academic performance and his or her commitment to and suitability for generalist social work practice. The committee also assesses the applicant's emotional and professional readiness to work with clients on the basis of such factors as his or her work in courses already taken, previous meetings with social work advisers, personal statement, and the interview, if any, that is part of the application process. As a general guide, the committee also uses the Student Standards for Social Work Education, which delineates expectations for social work students in four areas: basic abilities to acquire professional skills, mental and emotional abilities, professional performance skills, and scholastic performance.
A student who is unable to attend in the semester for which he or she is admitted must reapply for admission in order to enroll at a later time. A student who has been admitted to and enrolls in the professional curriculum, withdraws, and then wishes to return must apply for readmission on the basis of the curriculum in effect at the time of the return. A student who has been out of the University for a semester or more must also submit an application for readmission to the University.
As part of the application for admission to the University, students must submit transcripts from all other colleges and universities they have attended to the Office of Admissions. Students seeking readmission must submit transcripts from all schools they have attended since leaving the University. The Office of Admissions evaluates all transcripts and grants the student transfer credit when possible for coursework completed at the other schools.
Although the Office of Admissions may grant the student a certain number of semester hours of transfer credit for work completed in another social work program, the BSW program director in the School of Social Work determines whether this coursework may be counted toward fulfillment of the Bachelor of Social Work degree requirements. Students who wish to use transfer credit to meet degree requirements should submit a course syllabus, assignments, and the titles and names of authors of textbooks to the BSW program director for evaluation.
Students may also seek transfer credit for coursework they complete at another institution after enrolling at the University. In this case also the student should submit a transcript from the other institution to the Office of Admissions and a syllabus, course assignments, and information about textbooks to the School of Social Work BSW program coordinator.
General Information gives information about registration, adding and dropping courses, transfer from one division of the University to another, and auditing a course. The Course Schedule, published before registration each semester and summer session, includes registration instructions, advising locations, and the times, places, and instructors of classes. The Course Schedule and General Information are sold at campus-area bookstores. They are also published on the World Wide Web and are accessible through the registrar's Web site, http://www.utexas.edu/student/registrar/.
Academic Policies and Procedures
The Academic Programs and Student Services Office of the School of Social Work seeks to assist the student in exploring social work as a career choice, in planning an academic program suited to the student's interests and talents, in seeking help with academic or personal problems, and in postgraduation planning, whether for employment or for further study. The Academic Programs and Student Services Office also provides administrative support and student services, including maintenance of academic records, provision of official degree audits, and graduation certification for social work majors. Faculty and staff members are also available to assist students with questions about scholarship programs, degree requirements, rules and regulations, and other available campus services. Students who declare an interest in completing the social work program are required to meet with a social work adviser at least once each semester for academic advising. To arrange an appointment with an adviser, students should contact the Academic Programs and Student Services Office.
During the student's first and second academic years, the student and the adviser discuss the student's career choice, the selection of a major, degree requirements, and requirements for admission to the major and to upper-division courses in social work; during the third year, the work required for the major and the student's preparation for entry into the field practicum; and during the fourth year, the field practicum and the student's postgraduation plans.
Career Choice Information
Students interested in social work as a career are encouraged to discuss this interest at any time with a social work adviser. Advisers are available in the school's Academic Programs and Student Services Office to help students explore social work practice and settings and the development of interest in social work through academic and volunteer experiences. Students may also seek the assistance of the school's Office of Career Services.
Members of the social work faculty are also available to assist the student in choosing a career, as are the staff and resources of the University's Career Center and Volunteer Center. Since the social work program requires admission to the major and completion of 125 semester hours, students are encouraged to discuss their interest in social work as a career early in their studies.
The designation University Honors, awarded at the end of each long-session semester, gives official recognition and commendation to students whose grades for the semester indicate distinguished academic accomplishment. Both the quality and the quantity of work done are considered. Criteria for University Honors are given in chapter 1.
Graduation with University Honors
Students who, upon graduation, have demonstrated outstanding academic achievement are eligible to graduate with University Honors. Criteria for graduation with University Honors are given in chapter 1.
Review and Grievance Procedures
The School of Social Work document Student Standards for Social Work Education delineates standards for professional education that apply to students enrolled in the School of Social Work. Because of the nature of professional social work practice, the School of Social Work has different expectations of students than do nonprofessional programs. All social work students are expected to abide by the Standards and by the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) Code of Ethics. When a student's performance does not meet expectations according to these established guidelines, a review may be called to bring the problem to the student's attention and to develop a plan to address the problem. Usually, the issue is resolved and the student is continued in the program with additional support provided to the student and/or conditions established for the student's continuance in the program. In some instances, depending on the nature of the problem, the student may be referred to the University's Office of the Dean of Students or the student may be counseled to change majors/degree programs and/or discontinued from the program.
Students enrolled in the social work program have the right to appeal decisions made by the social work program, including scholastic dismissal. Students are assured freedom from reprisals for filing appeals. Students who wish to appeal a decision made during a school review process should consult the Standards for information on grievance procedures. Students who wish to appeal other decisions made by the social work program may do so, first to the BSW program director and then to an appeal panel convened by the dean of the School of Social Work. The panel will consist of three faculty members who have no direct knowledge of or experience with the student. Students must appeal in writing to the appropriate person or committee within ten calendar days of receiving the letter of notification on the decision being appealed. Advisers are available in the Academic Programs and Student Services Office to assist students with the appeal process.
Special Requirements of the School of Social Work
All students must fulfill the general requirements for graduation given in chapter 1. Students in the School of Social Work must also fulfill the following requirements.
Applying for a Degree
The Academic Programs and Student Services Office provides each student with a computer-generated degree audit during each long-session semester. The degree audit notifies the student of the courses he or she must take and the requirements he or she must fulfill to receive the degree. The degree audit normally provides an accurate statement of requirements, but the student is responsible for knowing the exact requirements for the degree as stated in a catalog under which he or she is entitled to graduate and for registering so as to fulfill those requirements. The student should seek an official ruling in the Academic Programs and Student Services Office before registering if in doubt about any requirement.
In the semester or summer session in which the degree is to be conferred, the candidate must be registered at the University and must apply for the degree in the Academic Programs and Student Services Office. This should be done at the time of registration for the last semester, if possible, but in no event later than the deadline given in the official academic calendar. No degree will be conferred unless the graduation application form has been filed on time.
Advanced Standing in Master's Degree Programs
A number of graduate schools of social work grant advanced standing to students who have completed all the requirements of an accredited undergraduate social work program. Many programs allow up to one year of credit toward the master's degree in social work. Information about programs offering advanced standing is available in the Academic Programs and Student Services Office.
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University of Texas at Austin
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