Professional social workers are guided by:
A person and environment construct, a global perspective, respect for human diversity, and knowledge based on scientific inquiry.
We also embrace several core values:
Service, social justice, the dignity and worth of people, the importance of human relationships, integrity, competence, human rights, and scientific inquiry (see the NASW Code of Ethics).
These values underpin our commitment to:
Respect of all people, social and economic justice, and human and community well-being.
These values underpin our MSUM Social Work program's
Consistent with the mission of this upper Midwest teaching university, and the Education Policy and Accreditation Standards (2008) of the Council on Social Work Education, the MSUM School of Social Work educates competent entry-level social work professionals with the core knowledge, values, and skills necessary to engage in ethical and empowerment-based generalist practice with all people in a dynamic and diverse society. Graduates are prepared to promote planned change and advance social and economic justice, and human rights, locally, nationally, and globally.
Further, with a liberal arts foundation, MSUM SSW graduates are prepared for entry-level professional social work practice, and continue their formal education in social work or other graduate discipline. Thus, MSUM SSW graduates will be prepared to:
1. Engage in evidence-based, entry-level social work practice with individual, families, groups, organizations, and communities within local, national, and global multicultural societies;
2. Practice within the principles, values, and ethics that guide the social work profession;
3. Influence social policies in order to alleviate poverty, oppression, and social and economic injustice as well as advocate for human rights;
4. Identify and affect the bio-psycho-social, spiritual, and cultural functioning of people; and
5. Practice from a culturally-sensitive perspective that recognizes and appreciates diverse cultures, particularly those that differ from one's own.
These values also underpin our program's formal
competency-based educational structure and curriculum:
Accredited by the Council on Social Work Education for almost 40 years, our program's curriculum is grounded in the liberal arts, and uses an intentional design to promote mastery of 10 core competencies required for licensed generalist practice throughout the United States.
Competency-based education is an outcome performance approach to curriculum design: Competencies are conceptual ideas that include measurable practice behaviors comprised of knowledge, values, and skills. Our goal in using this outcome approach is to assist students in learning, integrating, and applying the 10 competencies and their related 41 practice behaviors in practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities.
These competencies and nested behaviors include:
Identify as a professional social worker (PB 1-6):
PB 1: Advocate for client access to SW services
PB 2: Practice personal reflection/self-correction
PB 3: Attend to professional roles and boundaries
PB 4: Demonstrate professional demeanor
PB 5: Engage in career-long learning
PB 6: Use supervision and consultation;
Apply social work ethics to professional practice (PB 7-10):
PB 7: Recognize/manage personal values so professional values guide practice
PB 8: Make ethical decisions by applying profession's standards
PB 9: Tolerate ambiguity in resolving ethical conflicts
PB 10: Apply ethical reasoning strategies to arrive at principled decisions;
Apply critical thinking in practice (PB 11-13):
PB 11: Distinguish, appraise, integrate multiple sources of knowledge, including research knowledge, and practice wisdom
PB 12: Analyze models of assessment, prevention, intervention, and evaluation
PB 13: Demonstrate effective oral and written communication;
Engage diversity and difference in practice (PB 14-17):
PB 14: Recognize that culture's structures/values may oppress, marginalize, alienate, or create/enhance privilege/power
PB 15: Gain sufficient self-awareness to eliminate the influence of personal biases/values in working with diverse groups
PB 16: Recognize and communicate their understanding of the importance of difference in shaping life experiences
PB 17: View themselves as learners and engage those with whom they work as informants;
Advance human rights and social/economic justice (PB 18-20):
PB 18: Understand the forms and mechanisms of oppression and discrimination
PB 19: Advocate for human rights and social and economic justice
PB 20: Engage in practices that advance social and economic justice;
Use research in practice (PB 21-22):
PB 21: Use practice experience to inform scientific inquiry
PB 22: Use research evidence to inform practice;
Apply HBSE knowledge in practice (PB 23-24):
PB 23: Use conceptual frameworks to guide assessment, intervention, and evaluation
PB 24: Critique and apply knowledge to understand person and environment;
Engage in policy practice (PB 25-26):
PB 25: Analyze, formulate, and advocate for policies that advance social well-being
PB 26: Collaborate with colleagues and clients for effective policy action;
Respond to practice contexts (PB 27-28):
PB 27: Continuously discover, appraise, attend to changing practice tools and contexts
PB 28: Leadership promoting sustainable service delivery and practice changes to improve social service quality;
Apply generalist practice skills when working with individuals and various social systems (PB 29-41): PB 29: Substantively/effectively prepare for action with IFGOC
PB 30: Use empathy and other interpersonal skills
PB 31: Develop a mutually agreed-on focus of work and desired outcomes
PB 32: Collect, organize, and interpret client data
PB 33: Assess client strengths and limitations
PB 34: Develop mutually agreed-on intervention goals and objectives
PB 35: Select appropriate intervention strategies
PB 36: Initiate actions to achieve organizational goals
PB 37: Implement prevention interventions that enhance client capacities
PB 38: Help clients resolve problems
PB 39: Negotiate, mediate, and advocate for clients
PB 40: Facilitate transitions and endings
PB 41: Critically analyze, monitor, and evaluate interventions.
(Council on Social Work Education, 2008 EPAS)
(UPDATED: 5 January, 2011)
Flood Statement Addendum:
Spring flooding in the Red River Valley can be challenging. Often floods require sandbagging and levee building, even temporary evacuation. A spring flood emergency may require us to adjust our class schedule, alter our instructional delivery, work independently, and perhaps make special accommodations for students in extraordinary situations. To be notified of any emergency, I strongly encourage each of you to enroll in the E2Campus emergency notification system (http://web.mnstate.edu/security/ ) which will notify students about class cancellations and other emergency related information. Should a significant flood emergency occur that interrupts university processes, we will proceed with instruction to the extent possible. (UPDATED: 17 November, 2015)
The Minnesota State University Moorhead (MSUM) Social Work Program prepares competent and effective professionals for entry-level generalist social work practice. The MSUM Social Work Program also provides leadership in developing service delivery systems and advancing social and economic justice.