Social Work


Why study social work?

The major focus of the School of Social Work is to educate students and prepare them for social work practice in a variety of settings. The types of settings include child and family services, health care, addictions and corrections. Areas in which students will be educated include:

  • assessment
  • interviewing
  • counselling
  • advocacy
  • program/policy analysis
  • case management
  • community development.

Students who study social work receive an education which prepares them to work in urban centres and rural settings. A special emphasis is placed on the importance of identifying local needs and developing the means of meeting these needs in the context of available resources.

The objectives of the Bachelor of Social Work program include:

  • development of general knowledge of people and nature, analytical and critical thinking, communication skills and knowledge of social, political and economic impacts on society
  • promotion of social justice and social well-being to creatively challenge oppression
  • application of knowledge, skills, values and professional ethics and critical thinking abilities
  • creative practice with diverse individuals and groups
  • assumption of leadership in interdisciplinary practice

The following course is required to meet the admission requirements for the Bachelor of Social Work degree:

Social Work 1710

Social Work Philosophy and Practice provides an overview of the historical development, philosophical orientation, basic values, principles and knowledge base and fields of practice of the profession. The course will examine critical social problems that impact societies with an emphasis on the quest for social justice at local, national and global levels.

Lectures: Three hours per week

Prerequisite: None


  1. This is a prerequisite for ALL social work courses and is required for admission.
  2. Social Work 1710 is offered in the Fall and Winter semesters and is available online by distance.

Sample program

Fall SemesterWinter Semester
Psychology 1000Psychology 1001
English 1080*English 1101, 1102, 1103, or 1110
Sociology 1000 
Social Work 1710**nine credit hours in non-social work electives***
three credit hours in non-social work electives 









* Students attending Grenfell Campus for the first year of the program will normally complete English 1000/1001.

**A minimum grade of 65 per cent is required. This course will be offered online in the Fall and Winter semesters. Courses may be completed in the Winter semester in the year in which admission is being sought.

*** Students must complete 12 credit hours in non-social work elective courses. No more than six of these credit hours can be taken from areas other than Arts and Science.

Note: Please refer to the University Calendar, for an outline of courses for the BSW program of study.


Contact information

For additional information please contact:

School of Social Work


Guide to First Year

230 Elizabeth Ave, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1B 3X9

Postal Address: P.O. Box 4200, St. John's, NL, CANADA, A1C 5S7

Tel: (709) 864-8000