PATHWAY (SCWK 6000) is a mandatory non-credit course designed to provide students an opportunity to pursue a specific, concentrated, specialized or expert area of practice, research, scholarly interests, or career related path. The student chooses the topic area. PATHWAY is completed under the guidance and supervision of an academic mentor, a faculty member of Memorial University School of Social Work chosen by the student. When possible, the student’s interests may be integrated into the curriculum-based assignments. The work culminates in a tangible, innovative and creative scholarly product designed to fulfil the credit course requirements for Pathway Scholarship (SCWK 6417). Practically speaking, Pathway consists of 60 hours of work; Pathway Scholarship comprises 90 hours of work.
PATHWAY involves a mentoring relationship in which a faculty member facilitates student learning in a specific area of interest. It is a collaborative partnership between a student and faculty member, and provides students an enriched educational experience.
PATHWAY is designed to be flexible and to encourage latitude with respect to area of interest, manner of learning, and learning objectives. When a student decides an area of interest, they should begin to speak with faculty members. Ideally, the student’s area of interest will coincide with the ongoing research of a faculty member. This is will often not be possible; therefore, the student should consider which faculty member would make the best match for mentoring. Students may wish to consider the faculty member’s ability to establish a comfortable working relationship; their knowledge of research; and their flexibility in hearing your interests and learning needs.
Ultimately, the student assumes the leadership role in choosing their mentor, in completing their learning goals and objectives, and in coming up with their Pathway Scholarship product. The mentor helps the student determine if a project is feasible. More globally, the mentor provides support, guidance, and encouragement to assist the student to realize their learning goals and objectives.
Students who have concerns or experience problems with a mentor, community advisor or the PATHWAY/Pathway Scholarship process should:
1. Discuss their concerns with the mentor or community advisor in an effort to resolve the matter.
2. If the discussion with the mentor or community advisor does not result in a resolution, consult with the Student Services Coordinator or the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies.
3. If there concerns are not resolved, the student may submit their concerns in writing to the Associate Dean for Graduate Studies who may:
A request for a change of mentor must be submitted to the PATHWAY/ Pathway Scholarship Coordinator in the form of an email outlining the reasons for change. If the student wishes to proceed following consultation with the Coordinator, the student should discuss with their mentor that they will be requesting a change. The students will work with the Coordinator to seek out an alternative mentor.
The student should expect that the new mentor may want to speak with the previous mentor regarding transfer of the learning contract. When a mentor has been found the student will re-negotiate the learning contract with the new mentor. The student must notify the Graduate Secretary of the change in mentor.
The student and the mentor shall discuss and finalize the learning goals for
PATHWAY and identify the activities/tasks involved. The activities should be:
It is expected that PATHWAY will permit the student to:
Students are required to submit a PATHWAY learning contract to their mentor by the end of the final week of the first semester in which they are enrolled in PATHWAY using the MSW Learning Contract and Progress Report (FORM: PW1). This includes both course route and thesis route students.
The learning contract includes:
The Learning Contract also has the mentor and the student state their expectations of one another. The completed Learning Contract is signed by the student and mentor and submitted to the Associate Dean, Graduate Studies and Research. The Learning Contract is a living document. There is space to record dates and times of PATHWAY activities each semester.
Full time and part time course route students are required to submit an end of semester progress report to the mentor on the last day of classes of each semester in which they are registered for SCWK 6000. The MSW Learning Contract and Progress Report is designed to be used to complete both the learning contract and the progress report at the end of each semester. As a progress report it should provide a summary of progress to date, and include new or revised goals. The faculty mentor will review the reports.
In the final progress report, the student must demonstrate that they have completed 150 hours of work, the sum of 60 hours for PATHWAY and 90 hours for Pathway Scholarship.
Thesis route students are required to complete the Graduate Student Annual
Progress and Supervisory Report found at:
Thesis route students should consult the university calendar for thesis guidelines at:
The student will not receive any credit hours for completion of PATHWAY (SCWK 6000). It is a mandatory non-credit course.
A grade of NC (No grade expected) will be awarded in all semesters of the course prior to the final semester. A final grade of Pass or Fail will be awarded in the final semester of the course reflecting the entire PATHWAY trajectory (1 year for full time students and 2 years for part-time students). A passing grade reflects depth of scholarship, integration of learning; critical thinking, and evidence of comprehension of the topic. A grade of Pass indicates that performance meets