Our job is to match you to an agency where you will gain the skills and knowledge you need to apply your classroom learning to your professional role. Basically, the Office of Field Education is charged with turning students into social workers. This is not a magical process, though; it is fully rooted in reality.
Each semester, more than 400 students work alongside veteran social workers to learn how theory translates into practice and how practice impacts the lives of real people with real strengths and real concerns. Field education is the most exciting, most challenging learning experience you will encounter as you pursue your degree.
We are affiliated with more than 300 agencies in the DFW area. In addition, we are affiliating agencies across the state to accommodate our growing distance education enrollment. With this number of placement options, we are able to match students to a variety of practice situations with diverse populations. We facilitate matches that will promote ethical and evidence-based social work practice while instilling competence and confidence in new professionals.
Our students enjoy the support of their on-site Field Instructors as well as the support of the SSW faculty and the Office of Field Education. Together, we strive to create an environment for positive change and growth.
Welcome to our program. We look forward to working with you!
Preparing for Field
We recommend that you start planning for field when you apply to the program.
Field presents a hurdle that other courses do not. Although you create a degree plan for all of your courses, your field placement demands a different time commitment.
Remember: this is a practicum. You will be in a professional setting developing the essential skills of social workers. Depending on the type of placement you need (undergraduate, graduate, for example), you must be prepared to spend somewhere between 16 and 40 hours per week in your assigned agency or working with your Field Instructor.
Once you decide to enter the social work program, please begin to strategize how you will add the necessary field hours to your already-busy life. Typically, agencies do not offer internship hours exclusively in the evenings or on weekends. A few agencies offer flexible times, but most require availability during the work week. All of them require that you be present during the work week for your formal supervision.
We understand that accommodating your field experience requires commitment and sometimes sacrifice. However, field is the “signature pedagogy” of social work education (Council on Social Work Education) because it transforms you into a professional.
- It is essential to your education.
- It is the springboard for your career.
- It is the pathway to your life's work.
"Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world."—Nelson Mandela