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Social Work

The Faculty of Social Work offers the Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree. Students are officially admitted to the BSW degree program in year three of a four-year degree program. Once admitted, students are required to complete 20 half-course equivalents (60 credits) to earn the BSW degree. The BSW program is unique in that it is offered face-to-face at three urban locations (Calgary, Edmonton, and Lethbridge); through blended learning in various rural, remote, and aboriginal communities known as BSW Learning Circles (LC); and online through the Virtual Learning Circles (VLC).

The Faculty of Social Work has been an innovator in social work education for more than 30 years. The University of Calgary is the only Alberta institution to offer degrees in Social Work and attempt to meet the diverse needs of undergraduate students by offering two routes to the BSW. The University Transfer route is designed for students who already have either 20 transferable half-course equivalents (60 credits) or a degree in another discipline. The Alberta Social Work Post-Diploma route is designed for students who hold a Social Work Diploma from an approved college or university in Alberta. Please refer to the following table, which summarizes the program:

BSW program sites

Alberta Social Work Diploma Route

University Transfer Route

Calgary

Edmonton

Lethbridge

√ (with faculty approval only)

Learning Circles at various Alberta locations (e.g. Red Deer, Grande Prairie, Medicine Hat)

Virtual Learning Circles (online)


Why study Social Work at the University of Calgary?

Our undergraduate program will prepare you with the knowledge and skills necessary for professional social work practice. You will gain in-depth theoretical knowledge, extensive practical experience and reflective understanding of various social issues. Our internationally-known educators and researchers will help you develop the qualities and skills necessary to become a social worker.


Admission Requirements

Admission to the Faculty of Social Work requires either:

  • Two years of study, which includes completion of 20 University Transfer half-courses (including SOWK 201); or
  • A social work diploma from an approved college or university in Alberta that is part of the Alberta Association of Social Work Diploma Programs Agreement.

Applications to all BSW routes and sites are considered on a competitive basis. Our programs have limited space and we regularly receive more applications than spaces available. The Faculty’s Admissions Committees take into consideration applicants’ academic potential, demonstrated commitment to and experience in social service work, and recommendations from professionals and teachers.

If you are interested in furthering your education after your undergraduate degree, you may consider our MSW, MSW/MBA, and PhD programs.

Alberta Social Work Post-Diploma Route

An applicant can be considered for admission into this route if she/he received a diploma from an Alberta college or university that has a transfer agreement with the Faculty of Social Work and has completed a minimum of 8 university transferable half- courses as part of the diploma. Applicants must meet the following requirements:

  • Admissibility to the University of Calgary
  • A completed Alberta Social Work Diploma
  • A grade point average (GPA) of 2.3 or higher on a 4.0 scale, based on the last 10 university transferable half-courses completed

University Transfer Route

An applicant can be considered for admission into this route if she/he has completed a minimum of twenty transferrable half-courses or equivalent (nineteen of which are non-Social Work courses) or who have completed a non-social work degree. Social Work 201 is a prerequisite to admission into the University Transfer Route and must be completed prior to admission. Applicants to the University Transfer Route of the BSW program must meet the following requirements:

  • Admissibility to the University of Calgary
  • Completed twenty transferrable half-courses or equivalent which must include Social Work 201 or equivalent
  • A grade point average (GPA) of 2.3 or higher on a 4.0 scale, based on the last 10 university transferable half courses completed

To make application to the BSW program, students must:

  • Complete the University of Calgary Application online and pay the application fee. The application form is available through the U of C web site: www.ucalgary.ca
  • Applicants to the BSW program at the Calgary campus, should go to http://fsw.ucalgary.ca/calgary-campus to obtain the application instructions. Follow the directions on the BSW Application Form regarding the submission of current resume, summary of social work related experience, application essay, reference letters, and one copy of all official transcripts
  • Applicants to the Virtual Learning Circles program should go to fsw.ucalgary.ca/calgary-campus to obtain the application instructions. Follow the directions on the BSW Application Form regarding the submission of current resume, summary of social work related experience, application essay, reference letters, and one copy of all official transcripts
  • Applicants to the BSW program in Lethbridge or the Medicine Hat Learning Circles program should visit the FSW Southern Alberta Region website at: ucalgary.ca/fswsouth to obtain the application instructions
  • Applicants to the Edmonton and area BSW or the Learning Circles program at Grande Prairie and Red Deer should visit the FSW Central and Northern Alberta Region website at ucalgary.ca/fswcentralandnorth to obtain the application instructions

Application/Document Deadlines

 

What can I do with a Social Work degree?

As a BSW graduate, you may work with vulnerable and at-risk people, including the frail elderly, abused women and children, urban Aboriginals, immigrants and refugees, at-risk children and youth, people with disabilities, mental illness and addictions. The great thing about studying in Social Work are the careers that open up in your life. You also gain skills that all employers are excited to see, such as:

  • Situational management
  • Mediation
  • Critical reading
  • Active listening
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Mediation
  • Ethical reasoning
  • Report writing

Graduates from the Social Work program have a number of career options available to them. Here is what some U of C grads have done with their Social Work degree:

  • Relief Counsellor
  • Labour Relations Specialist
  • Child Welfare Generalist
  • Addictions Counsellor
  • Correctional Services
  • Victim Services Worker
  • Family Court Advisor
  • Child and Family Counsellor

To see a full list of potential skills, careers and industries available to you, visit Social Work Career Connections.



Additional Information

Faculty of Social Work