Field education gives students insight into the range of social work settings where graduates may become employed.
By working in the field with social work professionals who are qualified UConn field instructors, BSW students will get hands-on experience and gain valuable practice experience that prepares them for generalist social work practice. Students in the BSW program are required to complete one field placement that spans their senior year.
BSW Field Education Requirements
As a student in the UConn School of Social Work (BSW) you must complete all required field experiences. If you are unable to complete all required experiences, you will not graduate from the BSW Program.
All external experiences must be completed through placements at a Program-approved field facility. Each facility has its own requirements that must be met before a student can be accepted for a field placement. You are responsible for meeting the assigned facility’s requirements. The Program is not responsible for securing placements for students who are unable to meet a facility’s placement requirements.
The University and the Program have a set of requirements and each facility may have additional requirements for student placements. The financial cost to meet all requirements is your responsibility; these costs are not included in your tuition and fees and are generally not covered by financial aid.
Requirements include, but are not limited to the following:
- Successfully completing a background screening. Background screenings verify social security numbers and include checking state and federal criminal records and sex offender registries. Background screenings may occur at one or more times during the program. If your background screening shows that you have a criminal record or are listed as a sex offender, you may not be able to secure a placement. If you have any questions regarding background checks, you can contact the UConn’s Clinical Case Manager at email@example.com.
- Minimally, you will need to demonstrate immunity through titers for childhood disease such as measles, mumps and varicella. A record of previous immunizations is not sufficient to fulfill these requirements. Titers are required. Without them, you may not be able to secure a placement. It has been UConn’s experience that facilities will not accept a religious exemption form in lieu of proof of immunity and will deny placements to any student who fails to provide such proof. Evidence of immunity and costs associated with testing are your responsibility. Titers may be done through either your personal provider or the University’s student health and wellness service.
- An annual tuberculosis screening is required. More details on the specific type will be provided in your onboarding session.
- Annual documentation of receipt of the seasonal influenza vaccine is not required by the SSW but is strongly encouraged. It has been UConn’s experience that many facilities will not accept a religious exemption form in lieu of proof of vaccination and will deny placements to any student who fails to provide such proof. Evidence of vaccinations and costs associated with testing are your responsibility.
If you are not able to meet the above requirements, you will most likely not be able to complete the program’s field placement experience requirements.
Contact the Office of Clinical Placement Coordination (OCPC) with any questions related to University background check and immunization requirements.
Students may not begin the field placement process or begin/continue an assigned field placement without fully meeting all compliance requirements through ADB/Complio. Please refer to materials from the Office of Clinical Placement Coordination (OCPC) for details about your requirements and deadlines and email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions about your compliance status.
Additional Field Placement Experience Requirements:
In addition to the above requirements, some facilities require the successful completion of other types of requirements such as those listed below. Students will be informed of any additional facility requirements at the time they are assigned a field placement and will have time to complete these requirements before beginning the field placement. The costs associated with meeting these additional requirements are your responsibility.
- Successfully passing drug screenings. Drug screenings may occur at one or more times during the field placement. If you test positive for drug use, you may not be able to secure a placement at a facility or may be removed from a placement. This includes, but is not limited to, testing positive for prescribed medical marijuana or opiates. If you have any questions regarding drug screenings, you can contact the UConn’s Clinical Case Manager at email@example.com. Disclosure of drug use does not indicate a passed drug screen.
- CPR: Basic Life Support, including Adult, Child and AED, through the American Heart Association OR a current EMT license.
- Other: Other types of screenings include fingerprinting, debarment list screenings, and Motor Vehicle Records checks.
If you are not able to meet a facility’s additional requirements in a timely manner, you will not be able to complete the scheduled field placement experience, which in turn will delay your ability to complete the program.
If you have any questions regarding background checks and drug screens, you can contact the UConn’s Clinical Case Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org. For all other inquires please contact email@example.com.
Do I have to complete a field placement?
Yes, a requirement of the BSW major is the completion of a two-semester field placement in your senior year.
It is important that all students understand that the field placement is a required component of the curriculum of the UConn School of Social Work (SSW) Program.
All required field placement experiences must be completed at a UConn School of Social Work-approved facility. The School will assist you with securing a field placement. Each facility has its own requirements that must be met before accepting a student for a field placement. You are responsible for meeting a facility’s requirements.
You can learn more about the field experience in our BSW Field Education Manual.
How many hours are required for a field placement?
In your senior year you will be given a field placement where you will spend approximately 14 hours per week for a total of 203 hours each semester.
Is a background check required for a field placement?
Yes, every student who is accepted into the program will need to have a background check in order to be placed in the field. Visit the Office of Clinical Placement Coordination website for details.
What should I expect to do during my field placement?
• meet with a member of the professional field education staff to arrange a field placement assignment.
•be immersed in an agency or organization for approximately 14 hours per week for two semesters.
• meet with a faculty member on-site to review your progress, discuss any concerns, and receive continued support.
• participate in a concurrent seminar class that provides an opportunity for you to deepen your understanding of social work practice and how to advance social work values and ethics in your work.
• graduate with valuable experience that prepares you for generalist social work practice and graduate education in social work and related fields.
Where will I complete my field placement?
You will work closely with the School of Social Work’s field education staff to secure a placement. There are a variety of agencies across the state which partner with the School to support student learning. The agencies we work with serve a multitude of diverse populations, cultural backgrounds, and socioeconomic classes in areas including healthcare, child welfare, extended care facilities, and community advocacy agencies. BSW students may be placed in settings such as schools, healthcare organizations, mental health centers, homeless shelters, mentoring agencies, and probation departments.
What can I expect to do at my field placement?
During your last year of undergraduate studies, you will gain rich learning experiences while immersed in a placement within a local social services agency.
Through the field placement, you will gain hands-on experience, which may include:
• Assessing client and community needs
• Obtaining social histories
• Empowering clients, communities, and systems of all sizes
• Contacting and using community resources
• Offering individual, group, and family counseling under the supervision of a clinician
• Conducting interviews with individuals, families, and stakeholders
• Implementing intervention plans
• Evaluating the effectiveness of a policy or program
• Keeping concise and accurate records
• Collaborating with colleagues
• Managing client caseloads
• Advocating on behalf of clients
• Participating in a community needs assessment
• Testifying before the legislature or local government
• Planning and facilitating a community meeting or event
For Agencies & Field Instructors
The Field Education Department welcomes the opportunity to meet and discuss field education and supporting the work of area agencies and field instructors.
All Agencies looking to have field education students at their agency must have a signed Affiliation agreement and an agency application in place with the school.
Agency/Field Instructor link
The placement process begins in January and continues throughout the summer. Should your agency have any changes or additions during this time please let us know so that we have the correct information. All updates can be emailed to Field Education at firstname.lastname@example.org
Seminar In Field Instruction:
New Field Instructors are required to take the seminar in field instruction during the fall semester of the first year in which they have a student. A schedule and registration is sent with the student confirmation.
Current Field Instructors:
The Department has created a landing page to support you in your role as a field instructor for a UConn student. We will add information and announcements as needed. This page was created with the intent to have all resources in one place to support you.
Monday through Friday, 8:30am-4:30pm
Any student wishing to request an appointment can email email@example.com. We will send you a meeting link via Nexus. For students that need assistance after 4:00 pm, we will make special arrangements to accommodate you.