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Phylis Lan Lin Department of Social Work

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Social Work Program Admission

Students must complete the following requirements and apply to the social work program in order to take upper-level courses and complete their degree in social work. Students typically apply to the program during the first semester of their sophomore year, but can apply at any time once they meet the requirements. Students interested in the social work program should have a social work faculty member advise them.

Admission requirements & process

  • Application must be submitted at least eight (8) weeks prior to the time the student plans to enroll in the first SOWK practice course (310).
  • Student must have completed or are about to complete no less than 45 semester hours (about 3 semesters) of coursework. This can include any education core classes and any other courses. This will show you have had some time and experience in college.
  • Satisfactory completion, with a minimum grade of 2.50 or better, of the two introductory courses, SOWK 110 (Fields) and SOWK 230 (Foundations).
  • Need to have a minimum grade point average of 2.25 in all coursework. Classes for social work majors needs to be a “C” or better to be accepted in the BSW Program (see curriculum guide for social work major’s sheet).
  • Completion of “critical mass” of pre-social work requirements, this is completing 5 of 7 courses (see application for details).
  • Complete the online BSW ​Program Application​, which includes submitting the following information: 
    • 1. Basic identifying information. This will be used to contact you and will be placed in the program’s student database. 
    • 2. Employment/Volunteer history in the social/human sciences if applicable, and/or involvement with the student group, the Social Work Association. This information will better help identify your interests in the field, as well as field placement options. Previous experience is desirable; however, it is not mandatory for the program’s requirements. 
    • 3. A three to five page essay that addresses the questions below:  
      • Why do you want to become a social worker? 
      • What life experiences have contributed to your interest in social work?  
      • What personal qualities do you have that will contribute to your success as a social worker? 
    • 4. A paper, written at the university level, that the student feels is well-written. This will evaluate writing competency. 
  • The application will include links to the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers and Curriculum Policy Statement of the Council of Social Work Education. When you sign the application this indicates you have read and agree with these two documents.
  • Sign a written statement indicating that you have read and will comply with the rules, regulations, policies and standards set forth in the in the social work program handbook.
  • Submit a copy of all transcripts from institutions of higher learning attended. It is not necessary to submit transcripts from the University of Indianapolis, as the program can access an unofficial copy.

Upon receipt of the completed application and all appropriate forms, the director will review contents, and unless further information is required, initiate faculty review. Some students may be interviewed by the director of her/his counterpart. This includes transfer students. The interview will be approximately one hour and will review the information provided in the application. Admission will then be fully considered at the next meeting of the program faculty. All BSW faculty meet and deliberate on the application. All information provided is kept confidential. Applicants will be notified in writing of the decision.

Possible admission outcomes

  1. Unconditional Admission
    The student is granted full admission into the program.
  2. Provisional Admission
    The student may be provisionally admitted into the program with specific recommendations or conditions. For example, preparatory coursework may need to be completed satisfactorily. All transfer students are generally granted provisional admittance until they have completed one semester of program coursework. If the applicant is granted provisional admittance, the student may be required to be involved in a written contractual agreement between herself/himself and the program. The contract will specify conditions and times for resolution of any concerns, and is binding. Upon successful resolution, the student will then gain unconditional admission status to the program.
  3. Deferred Decision
    The program faculty may have concerns or doubts about the student’s commitment or present suitability, and may decide to not accept the applicant at the present time. Specific recommendations and/or conditions may have to be met within a specified time frame before reconsideration. If the recommendations and/or concerns are not addressed within the specified time frame, the applicant will be declined admittance into the program.
  4. Denial of Admission
    The program faculty may deny the application. Specific reasons will be provided for denial. An applicant may be denied due to failure to comply with the mandatory minimum grade point average, serious problems encountered by the student while attending another social work program, and/or problems or conditions that question the student’s ability to engage in professional practice (i.e. allegations of cheating or plagiarism).