Jun 22, 2024  
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog 
2022-2023 Undergraduate Catalog Archived Catalog

Social Work, B.S.W.

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Associate Professor Cathy Scott, Program Director


The mission of the Baccalaureate Social Work (BSW) degree program at the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga (UTC) is to prepare students for competent, generalist evidence-based practice. As generalists, graduates will have a common body of social work knowledge, values, and skills informed by the principles outlined in the NASW Code of Ethics and globally transferable among diverse human service settings and population groups.

Social work faculty and students are committed to working together to engage in scholarship, continued learning, and community service partnerships with individuals, groups, and organizations from diverse cultural, social, and economic backgrounds reflecting the UTC mission as an engaged metropolitan university.

Pre-Social Work

Students must meet the same admission requirements as all other applicants to the University. Academic advising for students declaring pre-social work as a major may be done by a member of the social work faculty. Admission to the University does not ensure acceptance into the social work major.

Admission to the Social Work Major

Eligible pre-social work majors seeking admission to the Social Work program must complete the following admission process by the priority deadline set by the program. Typically students apply in the spring of their sophomore year or when they have completed their general education and pre-Social Work requirements.

  • Complete the Application to the UTC Social Work Program available on the program website.
  • Have a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.5 or higher on a 4.0 point scale.
  • Have a social work major Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.50 or higher on a 4.0 point scale in all pre-Social Work courses (SOCW 1100  and SOCW 2070  or THSP 1090  ).
  • Complete the following cognate courses with a passing grade:  PSPS 1010 , PSY 1010 , and ANTH 1200  or ECON 1010  or ECON 1020  .

After faculty have reviewed applications, students are notified in writing of their acceptance status in the Social Work program. There are two levels of acceptance:

  1. Full Acceptance: student has met the above requirements and is accepted into the Social Work program in good standing.
  2. Conditional Acceptance: student has not met at least one of the admission requirements stated above and is accepted into the program on conditional status. The student and faculty develop a plan of describing how to address the unmet areas and the student has the semester immediately following the admission interview to address the unmet admission requirement(s). If, at the end of the semester, the admission requirements are not satisfied, the student will be advised to withdraw from the program. If the student is still interested in pursuing the BSW degree, he or she may reapply the next year or discuss another degree option that allows students to take Social Work courses.
Admission to Field Education

Students wishing to enter field education must meet the following requirements:

  1. Complete all prerequisites for Field Education I (SOCW 4120 ) as listed in the university catalog.
  2. Achieve a 2.00 overall grade point average.
  3. Students transferring to UTC’s Social Work program are required to have an advisement meeting with the Director of Field Education to develop a plan for Field Readiness.
  4. Satisfactorily complete all incomplete grades.
  5. Students entering Field Education should not have any current or ongoing professional fitness issues at the time of the Field Education application.
  6. Submit a completed Field Education Application to the field education coordinator which includes a completion of an essay as outlined in the Field Education manual, recent transcript, current résumé, and peer evaluation form.
  7. Participate in the annual Field Fair.
  8. Complete a criminal background check process.

NOTE: Field agencies usually have a separate application and background check process required. Students must complete these agency processes in addition to the UTC Admission to Field Education requirements.

Expenses and Transportation

In addition to regular education costs, social work students must meet the following expenses: liability and insurance for field education, background check expenses and others specific to their placement site. Since field experiences in social work are obtained in a variety of health care and social service settings in local and remote areas, students are individually responsible for transportation to these sites.

Continuation Standards

The nature of the social work profession requires the following program continuation standards:

  1. To progress in the social work program, students are required to:
    (a)  Achieve grade of C or higher in all Social Work courses;
    (b)  Maintain a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00;
    (c)  Maintain a Social Work major grade point average of 2.50 or higher on a 4.0 scale in all Social Work courses.
  2. To enroll in 3000-level and 4000-level Social Work courses, a student must be a Social Work major formally accepted into the program and in good standing.

General Education

(see General Education  for list of approved courses)

Rhetoric and Writing: (6 hours)

  • Two approved courses in rhetoric and writing

Fine Arts and Humanities: (12 hours)

  • Complete one approved course in each subcategory

Historical Understanding (3 hours)

Literature (3 hours)

Thought, Values and Beliefs (3 hours)

Visual and Performing Arts (3 hours)

Natural Sciences: (7-8 hours)

  • Two approved natural science courses, at least one including a laboratory component

Behavioral and Social Sciences: (6 hours)

Mathematics: (3 hours)

  • One approved mathematics course

Statistics: (3 hours)

  • One approved statistics course *

Non-Western Culture: (3 hours)

  •  One approved non-western culture course

Additional Information and Notes


  • For Social Work majors who participate in the Tennessee Child Welfare Stipend and Certification Program, SOCW 3230  and SOCW 4230  are required courses as part of that program’s certification process.
  • SOCW 4350  is a required course for Social Work majors interested in the School Social Work License.

2.5 GPA in all required major and related courses (including specified General Education courses) with no grade lower than C.

Minimum of 39 hours of 3000 and 4000 level courses.

Electives to complete 120 hours.

See Degree and Graduation Requirements  for additional requirements.

*Also satisfies requirement in the major.

#Also satisfies general education requirement.

ClearPath for Advising

The ClearPath for Advising provides students with an opportunity to see program requirements defined in a semester-by-semester format. The ClearPath for Advising guides also provide students with important tips, pointers, and suggestions for staying on track with progress toward the degree.  Your ClearPath is available through the Advisement website.

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