Spring 2024 Update 
    Mar 04, 2024  
Spring 2024 Update [ARCHIVED CATALOG]

Social Work, B.S.W.

NY State Program Code: 04171
HEGIS Code: 2104.00
CIP Code: 44.0701

The undergraduate social work program leads to a Bachelor of Social Work degree (B.S.W.), preparing students for generalist social work practice in the complex and varied social welfare and human services fields. Grounded in a rich and vigorous education in the liberal arts and sciences, the curriculum provides graduates with the professional knowledge, values, and skills needed to begin careers in social work. The curriculum emphasizes a generalist orientation, enabling graduates to practice their profession in a variety of areas. It also serves as preparation for master’s degree education for those graduates who wish to specialize further.

Though freshmen and sophomores may declare social work as their major, the social work program actually begins in the junior year, building on General Education and additional distribution requirements in the arts and sciences. Freshmen and sophomores considering the social work major are invited to discuss their career objectives with the director of the undergraduate program. All students considering the major are welcome to participate in the ongoing activities of the Undergraduate Social Welfare Council. In addition to special projects, speakers, and social events, a peer support program is conducted by students and faculty. In the spring semester of the sophomore year, with the advice of the program director and faculty adviser, students apply to and are considered for admission to the social work major.

General Education

All students must satisfy the University’s General Education requirements , in addition to the requirements for the major. Students completing the B.A. degree in the College of Arts and Sciences must also satisfy the University’s foreign language requirement. There is no University requirement for a foreign language for the B.A. degree awarded by other schools of the University or for other bachelor’s degrees such as the B.S. or B.F.A. 


Courses are 3 credits unless notes otherwise.

Requirements for the Bachelor of Social Work (B.S.W.)

Required Overall GPA: 2.5
Required GPA in Social Work: 2.75
Credits Required for Major: 68
Credits Required to Graduate: 120

Students may declare social work as their major as freshmen or when transferring from another college. A formal application process for admission to the major is required of all students and must be processed by the undergraduate social work program located in the School of Social Work. Students enrolled in the University must apply in their sophomore year. Transfer students must first apply for admission to the University. Courses in the social work curriculum are generally taken beginning in the junior year and are one part of a cluster of required courses leading to the Bachelor of Social Work degree.

To earn a B.S.W., students are required to complete 120 credits. Thirty-five credits are in the University’s General Education requirements; 47 in social welfare; 21 in liberal arts distribution requirements; and 17 in electives, which may be earned from liberal arts or social work courses. No social work course or liberal arts prerequisite credit is granted for life experience or previous work experience. Students with an Associate of Arts (A.A.) or Associate of Science (A.S.) degree from an accredited U.S. institution are exempt from the University’s General Education requirements. Other students, including those with an A.A.S. degree, must meet General Education requirements, transfer credits and courses taken at Adelphi. Admissions counselors can provide prospective students with additional details.

There is also a Field Instruction component to all Adelphi Social Work programs. Please read the section Field Instruction or go to socialwork.adelphi.edu/field for more information.

ANSWER Program Leading to a Bachelor of Social Work, B.S.W.

Evening program for part-time and full-time students

Adelphi’s New Social Welfare Education Routes (ANSWER) is an evening program for part-time and full-time students leading to the Bachelor of Social Work degree. This program is available at Adelphi’s Manhattan and Hauppauge Centers. The program represents a model of undergraduate social work education pioneered by Adelphi’s School of Social Work as a way to create opportunities for upward professional mobility for paraprofessionals in the human services field. This program’s flexible model also accommodates students who are changing fields and pursuing a career in social work. The requirements for admission to the ANSWER program are generally the same as for those who apply to the Bachelor of Social Work Program on the Garden City campus.

Course of Study

ANSWER students must complete the same sequence of social work courses and field instruction required of all students in the traditional program. The General Education requirement is waived for ANSWER students who generally begin to take social work courses with an associate’s degree in liberal arts or its equivalent. ANSWER students who need additional liberal arts credits to meet requirements for graduation may be taken concurrently with social work courses during the academic year or summer, if available, at the Garden City campus. Typically, full-time ANSWER students take their 45 social welfare credits in four consecutive semesters, attending classes two or three evenings a week.

Practicum Education

Field instruction provides ANSWER students with the opportunity to work directly with people in a social agency under professional M.S.W. supervision. Some ANSWER students apply for work/study internships within their human service employment settings. Students who are not employed in social service agencies or cannot meet the School’s work/study criteria are assigned to one of the School’s affiliated field agencies. Students are assigned to different field instruction settings in their junior and senior years. ANSWER students can apply to the Practicum Education office to have their workplace setting serve as a practicum site complete the Junior and Senior Practicum experiences. ANSWER students complete a minimum of 600 hours in practicum. In the junior year, a minimum of 250 hours are completed. In the senior year 350 hours are completed. Please read the Bulletin section on Field Instruction or go to socialwork.adelphi.edu/field/ for more information.

Credit for Prior Learning Experience

ANSWER students may be eligible to apply for up to a maximum of 10 prior learning credits which can be applied to electives. Credits so awarded cannot be used to waive any of the required social work or liberal arts courses. Students requesting such credit must apply to the director of the social work undergraduate program and prepare a series of written essays. These essays are graded by faculty according to prescribed criteria. The grade and the number of essays submitted determine how many credits are awarded.

Students must submit a full description of activities and required documentation as needed including a résumé, agency job description, letters from employers, personal references, certificates of completed courses, C.E.U.s (Continuing Education Units), and others as determined by the social work undergraduate committee.