San Diego State University

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BASW Curriculum

In addition to the coursework specific to the BASW program listed below, students must meet the full SDSU graduation requirements in order to earn the degree.  See the SDSU General Catalog for the full SDSU undergraduate graduation requirements, which include: time limitations, transfer credit, etc.

Preparation for the Major

Social Work 110, 120; Biology 100, 204, or 261; Economics 101 or 102; Psychology 101; Sociology 101; Psychology 280 or Sociology 201 or Statistics 250. (21-23 units) These prerequisite courses may not be taken Cr/NC. The minimum grade in each class is C or higher. Complete all courses in preparation for the major with a minimum GPA of 2.50.

Language Requirement

Competency (successfully completing the third college semester or fifth college quarter) is required in one foreign language to fulfill the graduation requirement. Refer to section of SDSU general catalog on “Graduation Requirements.”

Graduation Writing Assessment Requirement

Passing the Writing Placement Assessment with a score of 10 or completing one of the approved upper division writing courses (W) with a grade of C (2.0) or better. See “Graduation Requirements” section for a complete listing of requirements.

International Experience

All social work majors are required to participate in an international experience to increase awareness of cross-cultural issues, global health, economic, political, cultural, social services, and health challenges experienced by local populations in international environments. Students participate in residence for two or more weeks (exceptions must be approved by the dean of the college for students who, because of serious and compelling life events or physical limitations, cannot meet this requirement).

Specific details can be found at CHHS Undergraduate International Experience web site.


A minimum of 44 upper division units, in a prescribed course sequence, to include Social Work 350, 360, 361, 370, 381, 382, 391, 483A-483B, 489A (4 units), 489B (4 units), and nine units of upper division electives in social work (3 units may be taken from another department).

Field Practicum

All BASW students enroll in field practicum.

The field practicum engages the student in supervised social work practice and provides opportunities to apply classroom learning in the field setting.  See the SSW Field site for details.


Course Guide

Pre-major courses:

Social Work Fields of Service
Introduction to Social Work and Social Welfare
PSY 101
Introductory Psychology
SOC 101
Introductory Sociology: The Study of Society
BIO 100
General Biology (or any three units in human biology)
ECON 100
Contemporary Economic Problems
Statistics (One of the following:)
PSY 270
Statistical Methods in Psychology
SOC 201
Elementary Social Statistics
STAT 250
Statistical Principles and Practices

Many of these course have equivalent courses at the Community college. Check with a Community college advisor for more information and for a list of equivalent courses. Equivalent courses for SWORK 110 and SWORK 120 are offered at San Diego Community College.

300-level Courses

A student may be admitted to the Major once all premajor requirements have been met.

Six 300 level social work courses (18 units) are required for the major. Students are advised to be aware that all of these courses are not offered every semester.

Students must complete all 300-level social work courses (21 units) before they will be allowed to enroll in Social Work 483A and 489A. There is no required order of the 300-level courses with the exception that Social Work 382 must be taken prior to Social Work 381.

300-level courses:

When offered?
SWORK 350 Cultural Pluralism. (3)
SWORK 360 Perspectives on Human Behavior and the Social Environment. (3) No
SWORK 361 Human Behavior across the Life Span (3)
SWORK 370 Social Policies and Social Issues (3)
SWORK 381 Practice Skills – Micro (3)
SWORK 382 Practice Skills – Macro (3)
SWORK 391 Methods of Social Work Research (3)


  • SWORK 381 and SWORK 382 must have grades of C or better in order to continue on to the Field Experience in Social Work (SWORK 489A).
  • The cumulative GPA for SWORK 350, SWORK 360, SWORK 361, SWORK 370, SWORK 381, and SWORK 382 must be 2.5 or better to continue on to the Field Experience in Social Work (SWORK 489A).

400, 500-level Courses

Several 400, 500-level social work courses (23 units) are required for the major. Students are advised to be aware that all of the courses are not offered every semester. In addition, SW 489A and SW 489B is considered a year-long field experience. Students that do not complete the year-long field experience in the same academic year will need to repeat the full year-long field experience.

400, 500-level courses:

When offered?
SWORK 483A Generalist Social Work Practice I. (3)
SWORK 489A Field Experience in Social Work I (4)
SWORK 483B Generalist Social Work Practice II (3)
SWORK 489B Field Experience in Social Work II (4)
Select three Electives from the list below*. (Note, at least two electives must be in the Social Work department. The other elective may be selected from the list of courses from other departments presented below.)
SWORK 400 Social Work Practice: Child Welfare
SWORK 410 Social Work Practice: Family Issues
SWORK 430 Alcohol and Other Drug Prevention and Intervention
SWORK 497 Investigation and Report (Approval of instructor required)
GERO 520 Programs for the Aging
Acceptable courses from other departments in the University which may be selected to meet a part of this requirement. (Note: Courses with an * may also be used to meet a General Education requirement.)

Africana Studies

  • 321 Black Political Participation in America
  • 331 The Black Family
  • 332 Black Women: Myth and Reality
  • 341 Cultural Patterns and African American Identity
  • 360 Communications and Community Action
  • 380 Blacks in the American Justice System

American Indian Studies

  • 320 American Indians in Contemporary Society
  • 420 Indian Peoples of California

Asian Studies

  • 459 Modern Asian Cultures
  • 460 Contemporary Issues in Filipino-American Communities*


  • 307 Biology of Sex
  • 336 Principles of Human Physiology
  • 335 The Human Body

Chicana and Chicano Studies

  • 301 Political Economy of the Chicano People
  • 303 Mexican American Community Studies
  • 306 Mexican Immigration*
  • 320 Mexican American Lifestyles
  • 355 The United States-Mexico International Border
  • 375 US/Mexico Border History
  • 376 Mexican American Culture and Thought
  • 480 The Mexican American and the Schools

Child and Family Development

  • 335 Interaction in Families
  • 370 Research, Assessment, and Evaluation of Children & Families*
  • 437 Violence in Relationships
  • 536 Divorce and Remarriage*
  • 578 Parent-Child Relationships Across the Life Span*

Counseling and Social Change

  • 401 Quest for Identity

Criminal Justice Administration

  • 300 Crime, Law and Justice
  • 301 Law & Society
  • 310 Law Enforcement Administration*
  • 321 Juvenile Justice Administration*
  • 531 Probation and Parole*

General Studies

  • 340 Confronting AIDS
  • 420 Disability and Society


  • 350 Social Policy and Aging
  • 360 Minority and Ethnic Aging
  • 370 Images of Aging in Contemporary Society
  • 402 The Aging Network*
  • 520 Programs for the Aging*

Latin American Studies

  • 355 US-Mexico International Border

Lesbian, Gay, Bixexual, and Transgender Studies

  • 321 Lesbian & Gay Identities in the Modern World

Public Health

  • 331 Emergency Preparedness & Disaster Response


  • 321 Organizational Psychology
  • 331/332/333 Developmental Psychology
  • 340 Social Psychology
  • 350 Abnormal Psychology
  • 351 Psychology of Personality
  • 355 Psychology of Human Sexual Behavior
  • 365 Drugs and Behavior
  • 456 Psychology of Death and Bereavement


  • 320 Sex/Gender Roles in American Society
  • 355 Minority Group Relations*
  • 420 Sexuality in Modern Society
  • 421 The American Family and Its’ Alternatives
  • 433 Wealth, Status, and Power
  • 436 Sociology of Health and Illness
  • 443 Crime and Society
  • 444 Juvenile Delinquency
  • 445 Sociology of Deviance
  • 555 Immigrants and Refuges in Contemporary American Society

Women’s Studies

  • 310 Global Cultures and Women’s Lives
  • 320 Socialization of Women
  • 325 Psychology of Women
  • 360 Women’s Sexuality
  • 370 Women, Law and Policy
  • 522 Women: Madness and Sanity
  • 535 Lesbian Lives and Cultures
  • 572 Women and Violence*
  • 580 Women, Development, and the Global Economy*

* Students that have completed SW 130 as of spring 2005 may use this course to meet a 3-unit elective requirement.



last updated: 1/26/2015