Social Work 424

SOWK 424: Interventive Methods IV: Organizing Skills

Prerequisites: Admission to SOWK Major

Integrates the student’s knowledge base in human behavior in the social environment with specific skills needed in working with neighborhoods, communities, agencies, and institutions. Both conceptual frameworks and experience in working with large groups are included.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

I. Community organization including concepts of structure, function, and frameworks of communities and skill development in problem solving and organization.
II. Facilitating purposive change - concepts of census and difference.
III. Development of practice skills in systems, function, and analysis of community organizing.


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

I. Students integrate knowledge base in working with large communities through small group experiential exercises, written and oral presentations, and group discussions.
II. Format - This course will use a combination of the following:

Lectures, discussions, in-class exercises, experiential learning projects, and examinations.


Goals and Objectives of the Course

Students learn:

  • To acquire an understanding of the principles, concepts, and scope of generalist practice with community and institutional systems.
  • To comprehend the historical development of community organization and social work practice with large groups in the United States, especially from the post-Civil War period to the present.
  • To develop analytic skills that will enable the student to assess the potentials and limitations of a given community in relation to a variety of community organization problems, goals, and strategies.
  • To comprehend how the organizational characteristics of human and social service agencies influence professional practice with communities, institutions, and agencies.
  • To describe methods of intra- and interorganizational change and the constraints on change efforts within various organizational environments.
  • To comprehend methods of exercising influence to achieve social change.
  • To identify those interpersonal and small group skills that are essential in working with communities and institutions.
  • To identify issues that are essential in generalist macro practice in diverse communities.


Assessment Measures

Student progress in achieving course goals and objectives may be measured in a variety of ways, including participation in small groups, written and oral presentations.


Other Course Information



Review and Approval

Revised, April 23, 2013

February 2005 Updated Steven Culver