Mission of the BSW Program

The BSW program prepares generalist social work professionals who are capable of skillful assessment and interventions at the micro, mezzo, and macro-levels.

The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and is reviewed and monitored by the Professional Advisory Council. The School of Social Work is one of three academic schools in the Waldron College of Health and Human Services, which is located in a brand new building that provides internship opportunities for social work students. The School’s main campus is in Radford, and we also have a premajor BSW program in Roanoke at Virginia Western Community College.

Per Radford University's academic policy on completing a degree, no fewer than 45 semester hours must be earned at Radford University to be eligible for graduation from the Bachelor of Social Work program. Thirty of the last 39 hours of credit required for the degree must be completed in residency. In addition, 50 percent of the semester hours required for a major or minor (as defined by the department) must be taken at Radford University and no more than six (6) credit hours of Independent Study coursework can be used toward graduation requirements.

Students in the Virginia Western Community College partnership programs must complete 25 percent of the semester hours at Radford University.

The total number of grade points earned by students, both overall and in their major field, must be at least twice the total semester hours of credit attempted, both overall and in their major at Radford. Students in teaching, nursing and certain other fields must earn a higher grade point average. Specific requirements for each major are listed under the appropriate department sections of this catalog. As a minimum, 120 semester hours are required for graduation.

BSW course work focuses on developing knowledge and skills related to nine practice areas:

  • Human Behavior in the Social Environment
  • Social Welfare Policies and Services
  • Research
  • Social Work Practice
  • Field Instruction
  • Social Work Values and Issues
  • Social and Economic Justice
  • Populations-at-Risk
  • Diversity

The curriculum includes courses in human behavior and the social environment, research, social welfare policies and services, direct practice (individual, family and group work, among others), field instruction, child welfare, gerontology, and crisis intervention.

Our baccalaureate social work degree is accepted as the entry-level educational credential for beginning social work practice. In addition, our graduates are eligible to apply for advanced standing in graduate social work programs, including the Master of Social Work program.

Between 95 and 100% of students graduating with a baccalaureate degree from the Waldron College of Health and Human Services have found employment or gone on to graduate school within three months of graduation.