BASW Program Information


BASW Program

Beginning academic year 2017-2018, ALL BASW courses will be held on Wednesday and Thursday for the duration of the day and evening, so plan accordingly. 

Program Scope

The School of Social Work responds to the needs and aspirations of various at-risk populations in the San Francisco Bay Area and similar urban communities. The program aims to educate undergraduate students for generalist social work practice in a variety of social-service settings, and teach students to serve as change agents with urban, oppressed populations, while enabling members of these populations to act on their own behalf. Our graduates provide direct services to people in need and, as administrators and organizers of social service agencies, make services more accessible and responsive to the communities they serve.


The mission of the School of Social Work is to provide educational foundations that promote just and secure communities, societies and global networks. It serves to educate human service providers for versatile, creative, and culturally sensitive practice in multiple settings and involving diverse populations. The School of Social Work promotes leadership, scholarship, activism, and change to achieve equity and social justice.


Our teaching incorporates a comprehensive range of knowledge, values, skills and experiences for social work practice at all levels of intervention. The outcome is to provide learning experiences that will instill critical consciousness and inspire students to become advocates for economic and social justice. The BASW Program at San Francisco State University is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).


To enter the BASW program, which is currently impacted, applicants must submit an additional admissions application to the School of Social Work. In addition, students must have completed Lower Division General Education requirements or their equivalent at another college, and have junior standing at the university. Before enrolling in Social Work courses, students are also required to have completed, with a grade of C- or better, introductory courses in human biology, macro economics, psychology and sociology. Freshmen and sophomores should consult with the university’s Undergraduate Advising Center before enrolling in courses which fulfill General Education requirements.


The BASW curriculum emphasizes the integration of knowledge, values and skills. Commitment to professional values and ethics, to participate in constructive change, to support the right to self-determination, and to respect people’s capacity to learn and grow are integrated throughout the program. Students are expected to develop a spirit of inquiry and to achieve a critical posture toward the social situation, the functioning of the profession, and of social agencies and their own performance.

BASW Program Goals

Cognitive Domain:  Achieve foundation levels of knowledge, comprehension, application, analysis, synthesis, evaluation, and creation.

Affective Domain:  Reveal basic abilities to receive and respond to diverse phenomena; and value and organize phenomena.  Show beginning levels of internalization.  (Adapted and applied from Benjamin Bloom’s taxonomy of cognitive and affective domains)


1.    Education:  Learn from and apply the rigorous SFSU social work education that achieves the nine Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) curricular competencies at the baccalaureate (BASW) level.  Utilize education and research to inform and effectively engage in practice at micro (individuals, families, and groups), mezzo (organizations, institutions, and communities) and macro (societies and international arenas) levels.



2.    Application: Use knowledge and skills to affect all practice areas (direct and indirect).  Know and understand multiple forms of power, and their forms, uses, and implications.  Be skilled at giving, engaging and sharing power and instilling shared, delegated, and/or “other person” responsibilities in decision making and problem solving.


3.    Diverse Learners:  Expect, accept, and appreciate human differences in all areas, including diversity of ethnicities, cultures, values, backgrounds, learning styles, problem solving approaches, and more.  Promote diversity to enrich environments, thought processes, experiences, and more.


4.    Collaboration and Participation:  Respect, value and honor one another’s personal and professional experiences, knowledge, skills, and values.  Seek, receive, and utilize inputs from diverse persons, groups, and communities and make diversity-sensitive and appropriate decisions.  Engage and utilize the voices of many through participatory means.


5.    Ethical Foundations and Leadership:  Engage in professional practices that are ethically sound and appropriate, consistent with the National Association of Social Workers’ (NASW) Code of Ethics.  Create ideas and action plans from research and interdisciplinary knowledge; instill visions among team members; and enact innovative actions having substantial impact on individuals, groups, organizations, communities, and societies.  


6.    Progressive Development:  Expand and enhance cognitive and affective abilities through continuous development of knowledge, values, skills, and practices.  Utilize research to develop best practices to improve human conditions and generate research agendas through practice experiences.



7.    Advocacy and Activism for Progressive Change:  Know multiple forms and purposes of advocacy, and engage in change plans and efforts to achieve progressive change at micro, mezzo, and macro levels.  Utilize evidence to set agendas, establish goals, create action plans, and move forward with efforts to enhance human conditions, including political, economic, legal, social, cultural, and physical environments.


8.    Equity and Social Justice:  Identify, understand, and evaluate multiple forms of justice (e.g. social, economic, environmental, political, and legal justice) and rights (human and civil).  Promote and achieve fairness, equality, and human/civil rights. 



9.   Professional Versatility:  Be equipped to work in a variety of settings, in a range of fields and forms of practice, and with diverse persons from multiple backgrounds, cultures, ethnicities, nationalities, ages, genders, experiences, abilities, orientations, classes, religions, and more.  Be effective in systems processes through engagement, assessment, intervention, evaluation, and self-awareness.


10.   Cultural Humility:  Appreciate the fact that cultures and values evolve and change, and that one never “arrives” with respect to knowledge, skills, and practices related to diversity.  Identify and analyze the intersectionality of forces that impinge on lives.

Career Outlook

Students who complete the undergraduate social work major are prepared for graduate study in accredited schools of social work and social welfare; and other helping professions, and professional or graduate training in related fields such as law, public administration, public health, mental health, nursing, health education, and psychology; and for entry level professional positions in both public and private social welfare agencies. Examples of these agencies include local departments of social services, hospitals and community mental health facilities; child care programs, services for the aged, drug and alcohol treatment programs, family service agencies; and community, neighborhood and advocacy organizations. The major provides students with an opportunity to apply social science theories and social work knowledge and skills in a comprehensive field work placement during their senior year.