BSW, Social Work

We have been educating BSW students for more than 40 years. The BSW curriculum focuses on a generalist approach to social work, which prepares our students to practice in a multitude of environments. The program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. All students are expected to abide by the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers. Students are required to successfully complete 450 hours of supervised field practicum in agencies approved by the Department of Social Work. Undergraduate students also have the opportunity to work in our Social Work Integrated Research Lab (SWiRL), which provides them with the opportunity to engage in research projects and experience mentoring relationships with graduate students and faculty.

BSW Program Goals

  1. To prepare students for entry level, generalist social work practice with individuals, families, groups, communities, and organizations.
  2. To provide students with a foundation in liberal arts and social work knowledge, values, and skills that will enable them to pursue graduate work and lifelong learning.
  3. To provide opportunities for students to develop proficiency in collaborative practice, effective leadership, advocacy, innovation, research, and technology.
  4. To expose students to the complexities of human diversity and the range of intervention skills and strategies needed for effective practice.
  5. To sensitize students to the dynamics of oppression and discrimination and to involve them in change efforts aimed at achieving social justice.
  6. To encourage students to identify with the social work profession, to utilize supervision appropriately, and to appreciate the profession’s history and mission.
  7. To promote adherence to the ethical standards of the profession with client systems, agency personnel, and colleagues.

Program Requirements

Complete information on program requirements is available in the university catalog online. The Student Handbook for Bachelor of Social Work Majors (pdf) is also available online.

Declaring Major In Social Work

Students interested in the social work field usually declare social work as a major when applying to the university; however, declaring social work as a major does not automatically admit the student to the social work program. Students must be admitted to the major before being considered for senior field placement. The Admission to Major application is combined with the Senior Field Application and applications are due in January. The social work faculty evaluates the student's performance periodically and may require a student to withdraw from the program when, in their judgment, performance is not satisfactory. The decision is based on the quality of academic and field performance as well as on personal performance for the profession of social work. The faculty may require a personal interview before a final decision is made. There is no admission to the social work major during the summer.


For questions about the program and admissions process, contact:

Le Anne Wisnieski
Admin. Assistant for Student Affairs
10340 Democracy Lane #300
Fairfax, VA 22030
Phone: 703-993-4247
Fax: 703-934-2193

Emily Ihara


Dr. Emily Ihara
Director, BSW Program
10340 Democracy Lane #317
Fairfax, VA 22030

Phone: 703-993-2023
Fax: 703-934-2193