Course Descriptions

SW 201 Introduction to Social Work (4) (S)

Acquaints the beginning student with the history, philosophy, values, concepts, language, directions, problems, and broad scope of health and human services. Offers exposure to various agencies and agency policies. Prerequisite: sophomore/junior/senior status. Offered each fall.

SW 251 Diversity and Social Problems in Social Work (4)

An overview of how diversity influences social work practice and the social problems practitioners try to address. Topics include history, philosophy, values, ethics, concepts, language, directions, problems and broad scope of diversity and social problems, and how they impact social work practice. Offered each fall.

SW 302 Legislation, Policy and Administration (4)

Builds skills in community organization, administrative and legislative process as intervention techniques. Each student is expected to design, develop and present a project using the method taught. Prerequisite: Junior status or consent. Offered each spring.

SW 307 Death, Dying, Loss, and Grief (4) (V,W)

Explores contemporary and historical societal influences, cultural practices, and spiritual beliefs surrounding the experience of death. Students examine religious rituals related to the preparation of the body, the burial and the mourning process and examine the ethics surrounding end of life decisions and how death is determined from a medical and legal perspective. Other topics include current legal issues and instruments such as advance directives, wills, and powers of attorney; current ethical controversies around life sustaining measures, physician-assisted death, and organ transplantation; the impact of loss throughout the life cycle as a result of normal developmental transitions and as a result of suicide, violence, and disaster; and the needs of those identified as disenfranchised grievers such as partners of AIDS patients, families of suicide victims, women who have miscarried, and young widows/widowers. Prerequisites: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher and junior/senior status or consent. Offered fall of odd-numbered years.

SW 318 Aging in the Media (4)

Explores aging through the context of popular media. The study begins with an overview of the major psychosocial theories on aging and explores how aging and older people are portrayed in a myriad of media. Students focus on film and view television programs, comics, and children's literature. This is a fun and innovative way to study the etic construct of aging through the Western (American and British) emic lens. Prerequisite: sophomore status or higher. Offered in selected Winter Sessions.

SW 336 Lifespan Development and Behavior (4)

Designed for students who want to develop a strong foundation in human growth and development. biological, social, and psychological theories of growth and development are examined from a multi-disciplinary perspective. Students learn about normal development from conception to aged death, as well as certain pathological processes. Students who have previously have taken a developmental course, or will as part of their intended major, may not take this class for additional credit. Prerequisite: junior status or consent. Offered each spring.

SW 361 Human Sexuality (4) (V)

An exploration of the issues surrounding human sexuality. Historical perspectives from Western cultures provide a basis for understanding the construction of gender in modern society. A review of other cultures shows diverse approaches to gender and sexual issues worldwide. Legal, moral and ethical issues related to sexual behavior and gender are studied along with the physical aspects of human sexuality and procreation. The disciplines of history, anthropology, sociology, psychology, health education, medicine, religious studies, women's studies, and law inform the exploration. Students are challenged to explore their own values, their genesis and the function those values. Prerequisite: junior/senior status or consent. Offered fall of even-numbered years.

SW 384 Drugs of Abuse (4)

An introduction to the complex issues surrounding both licit and illicit drugs. The most widely used/abused drugs are studied in some depth to include an overview of their pharmacology and the neurophysiology of the brain. The major classifications of drugs of abuse, their addictive potential and the continuum of use, misuse, abuse and addiction are addressed. The short and long term consequences of drug use are studied in addition to the dangers of drug interactions. Offered most fall semesters.

SW 385 Substance Abuse and Chemical Dependency (4)

Examines the effects of drugs of abuse on our society. Topics include defining the drug problem and its effects on the abuser, family, economy, legal system, and health care, and the issues and impact of treatment and 12-step support groups. Offered most spring semesters.

SW 400 Social Work Methods with Groups and Communities (4)

Builds skills in group and community intervention techniques in social work. Prerequisites: junior status and consent. Offered each spring.

SW 401 Social Work with Individuals and Families (4) (W)

The focus of this course will be on learning appropriate intervention skills for helping individuals, couples and families. Understanding the theory on which these interventions are based is prerequisite to devloping skills. The course provides opportunities to practice beginning level methods through role playing, observation and feedback, written and oral assignments, and in an experiential learning situation. Fee for insurance. Prerequisites: ENG 105 with a grade of C or higher, senior status, and consent. Offered each fall.

SW 402 Women on the Brink (4)

Challenges the student to explore the interaction of complex societal and psychological factors as they relate to America's most vulnerable women. Students examine the history of women's role in American society and evaluate how current policies and institutions often keep women vulnerable and disenfranchised. Conducted in a seminar format on campus, with a one-week residential component in a homeless shelter in a major urban area. Prerequisites: consent and one faculty/staff recommendation. Offered in selected Winter Sessions.

SW 410 Homeless in America (4) (I)

Reviews the history of poverty and homelessness in America and society's response. Emphasizes the economic, cultural, social, and political factors that converge to create a climate of poverty. Current societal responses to poverty are studied with immersion experiences in the Hampton Roads area. Prerequisite: senior status. Offered in selected Winter Sessions.

SW 450 Research Methods in Social Work (4)

Offers an overview of data collection methods and analysis procedures within the context of health and human services. Both positivistic and naturalistic paradigms are examined. Students learn how to pose research questions, design studies, collect data, and analyze, interpret and report their data. Prerequisites: junior/senior status and MATH placement B or successful completion of math requirement, and consent. Offered fall of even-numbered years, or as needed.

SW 472 Social Work Internship (12)

A capstone experience in which students are placed in an agency, organization, company, or legislative setting that offers them an opportunity to assume a preprofessional role where they can build skills and expand their expertise. Psychology majors must complete the core and the major requirements for the specific major. Prerequisites: senior status; C or higher in all required social work courses; completion of application and consent of all full-time social work faculty. Corequisite: SW 475. Offered each spring.

SW 475 Social Work Seminar (4) (I)

Offered concurrently with the internship. Assists students in relating theory and values to experience and in offering support, interpretation, evaluation, and guidance. Students are evaluated on their performance of work assignments, use of supervision, and coursework. Prerequisites: senior status; same as SW/HHSSW 472. Corequisite: SW/HHSSW 472. Offered each spring.