3.4b Specialized Practice Curriculum

Specialized Practice Curriculum Requirements

Social Welfare MSW students complete the required curriculum in specialized practice in one of three chosen areas, known as “specializations:”

  • Advancing Health and Wellbeing across the Adult Lifespan (“AWELL)
  • Strengthening Children, Youth and Families (SCYF)
  • Strengthening Organizations and Communities (SOC).

The required curriculum in specialized social work typically begins in the second semester of the first year of the program for most students, and is completed in the second year. Requirements consist of:

  1. Two to three specialized practice and advanced social policy courses, depending on your chosen area of specialization.
  2. An advanced seminar in social research methods, where you complete your Berkeley master's capstone requirement.
  3. A year-long (fall and spring semesters) specialized field practicum placement with required concurrent enrollment in field integrative seminars each semester.

Click on any of the specialization name links below to expand the curriculum requirements for each specialization area:

Advancing Health and Well-being Across the Adult Lifespan (AWELL)

CourseUnitsWhen CompletedPrerequisites & Enrollment Requirements

SOC WEL 205: Psychopathology and Psychosocial Problems

or SOC WEL 210C: Aging Processes

2

2

First or Second Semester Credit for or concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 241
SOC WEL 238C: Health Policy - A Social Welfare Perspective 2 Second Semester Credit for SOC WEL 220

SOC WEL 244: Direct Practice in Community Behavioral Health and Recovery Services across the Adult Life Span

or SOC WEL 245: Direct Practice in Health Settings across the Adult Life Span

2


2

Second Semester Credit for SOC WEL 241
SOC WEL 292A: Advanced Field Integration Seminar 1 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412A
SOC WEL 412A: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292A
SOC WEL 282B: Seminar in Social Research Methods 2 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 282A
SOC WEL 292B: Advanced Field Integration Seminar II 1 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 292A & SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412B
SOC WEL 412B: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292B

For a sample plan of study, please see the Advancing Health and Well-being across the Adult Lifespan specialization page.

Strengthening Children, Youth & Families (SCYF)

CourseUnitsWhen CompletedPrerequisites & Enrollment Requirements

SOC WEL 210B: Infant Development

 or SOC WEL 212: Child Development from Infancy to Adolescence in Its Social Context

2

2

First or Second Semester Credit for or concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 241

SOC WEL 230: Social Policy - Children and Families

or SOC WEL 232: Social Work and Education Policy

2

2

Second Semester Credit for SOC WEL 220
SOC WEL 243: Direct Practice in Child and Family Settings 2 Second Semester Credit for SOC WEL 241
SOC WEL 292A: Advanced Field Integration Seminar 1 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412A
SOC WEL 412A: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292A
SOC WEL 282B: Seminar in Social Research Methods 2 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 282A
SOC WEL 292B: Advanced Field Integration Seminar II 1 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 292A & SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412B
SOC WEL 412B: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292B

For a sample plan of study, please see the Strengthening Children, Youth and Families specialization page.

Strengthening Organizations and Communities (SOC)

CourseUnitsWhen CompletedPrerequisites & Enrollment Requirements
SOC WEL 210I: Group, Organizational, and Community Dynamics 2 First or Second Semester Credit for or concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 241

SOC WEL 230: Social Policy - Children and Families

or SOC WEL 238C: Health Policy - A Social Welfare Perspective

2

2

Second Semester Credit for SOC WEL 220
SOC WEL 251: Program Development 2 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 210i & SOC WEL 241
SOC WEL 292A: Advanced Field Integration Seminar 1 Third Semester Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412A
SOC WEL 412A: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Third Semester

Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292A

SOC WEL 252: Program Implementation 2 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 251
SOC WEL 282B: Seminar in Social Research 2 Fourth Semester

Credit for SOC WEL 410A & 410B; 290A & 290B
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292A

SOC WEL 292B: Advanced Field Integration Seminar II 1 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 292A & SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 412B
SOC WEL 412B: Advanced Field Practicum 6 Fourth Semester Credit for SOC WEL 412A
Concurrent enrollment in SOC WEL 292B

For a sample plan of study, please see the Strengthening Organizations and Communities specialization page.

Changing Specialization Areas

Because Berkeley Social Welfare admits students to an MSW degree program by specialization area, changing specializations is generally not allowed. First-year students wishing to petition for a change of specialization area should first discuss the potential change with their faculty adviser and field consultant.

To petition for a change in specialization, students must submit a written statement to the Graduate Student Affairs Officer (GSAO) requesting the change and explaining why the change would be appropriate. The deadline to submit a request to change specialization areas is the end of the third week of class in the Fall Semester. Requests are evaluated on the rationale provided and the current availability of both class and field placement opportunities.The ability to grant a change is not guaranteed.