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Admission Requirements for the B.S. in Social Work

Purpose Statement

The purpose of the Social Work Program at Southeast Missouri State University is to improve society's well-being by creating a more humane and just society. The Social Work Program has a dedicated emphasis on providing services and professional social work practitioners for the underserved and vulnerable populations and communities of the Southeast Missouri region.

Declaration of Major

Students interested in pursuing a degree in social work may contact the Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work and Sociology to declare the major anytime after being admitted to the University.  Upon completion of the declaration of major form, the student is classified as a pre-social work major and assigned a faculty advisor from within the social work program.

Admission Criteria

Students wishing to be formally admitted into the Social Work major must meet the following requirements:
  1. Completion of 45 semester hours with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.25.
  2. Completion of the following basic knowledge and professional foundation course work with a minimum grade of "C":
    • PY 101   Psychological Perspectives on Human Behavior
    • SW 110   Introduction to Social Work*
    • SW 201   Social and Economic Justice*
    • SW 205 Introduction to Social Welfare Policy*
    • SW 207   Understanding Cultural & Social Diversity*
    • SW 221   Interviewing Skills for Generalist Practice*
    • SW 222   Case Management
    • SW 242   Statistics for Social Scientists
  3. Completion of all developmental courses (if applicable)
  4. Completion of constitution/civics requirement, natural sciences requirement (3 hrs) and written communication requirement.

*SW110, SW201, SW 205, SW207, SW221, SW222, and SW242 may NOT be repeated for admission to the Social Work major without written permission from the BSW program director.

Retention Criteria

Students will be retained as social work majors providing the following retention criteria are met:

  1. Completion of the following foundation courses with a minimum grade of "C".
    • SW 307   Human Behavior and the Social Environment I
    • SW 308   Human Behavior and the Social Environment II
    • SW 310   Social Welfare Policy
    • SW 321   Generalist Practice I
    • SW 322   Generalist Practice II
    • SW 323   Generalist Practice III
    • SW 342   Social Research
  2. Maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.25 each semester. (Once a student's cumulative GPA has fallen below 2.25 the student will not be allowed to enroll in any remaining social work course until the GPA requirement is met.)
  3. None of the foundation courses can be retaken more than once without written approval from the BSW program director. 

Core courses may be reapeated to raise grades below "C" with written approval from the student's faculty advisor and the BSW program director.  The student's faculty advisor will monitor compliance with all requirements listed above.

Degree Criteria

The Bachelor of Science degree in Social Work is awarded to students who satisfactorily meet the following requirements:

  1. Completion of all University graduation requirements listed in the Southeast Missouri State University Undergraduate Bulletin.
  2. A cumulative GPA of 2.25.
  3. Completion of integrated seminar and field education, i.e., SW449 with a minimum grade of 'C'.
  4. Completion of 448 hours of field education, i.e., SW 450 (Credit/ No Credit).

Social Work majors are not required to complete a minor.


The faculty of the Social Work Program have a duty to the social work profession to make reasonable efforts to ensure that its graduates are not only academically prepared but are also emotionally and ethically prepared for the demands of professional practice. Students are expected to demonstrate the following qualities:

  • Adherence to the NASW Code of Ethics
  • Self Awareness (knowledge of self - personally and professionally)
  • Professional Commitment and Behavior
  • Objectivity
  • Empathy
  • Acceptance of Diversity
  • Freedom from Chemical Dependency
  • Emotional and Mental Stability


Brandt 329
Department of Criminal Justice, Social Work and Sociology
One University Plaza, MS 7950
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701