The Diploma in Social Work program is designed for professionals engaged in social welfare and social development work who wish to pursue graduate studies to gain a higher level of competence in their field of practice. This program is open to those with a bachelor’s degree in social work and those who do not, with a different track for each. An above-average performance or the successful completion of the degree qualifies students without a bachelor’s degree in social work to enter the Master in Social Work program should they wish to take this course of study.
The Diploma in Social Work aims to provide higher level competence in direct practice and supervisory tasks among social work practitioners.
- A bachelor’s degree from a recognized academic institution;
- A high level of intellectual capacity and integrity; and
- A high English proficiency level (as evidenced by a TOEFL certification) for foreign applicants.
These will be determined through (1) an examination of an applicant’s undergraduate credentials and (2) a review of references from former professors and professional supervisors.
A Program Admission Committee, headed by the Program Chair of the Diploma in Women and Development Program, will convene to deliberate on the documents submitted by the applicants. The OUR then informs the students of the results of the admission.
If all documents and requirements have been fulfilled by the student, he/she will be admitted as a regular student. A student will be given provisional status if he/she failed to submit the needed requirements for admission to the program. One year will be given to the student to complete the said requirements.
Mode of Instruction
All courses, except for the field instruction courses, will be delivered mainly by distance education mode. Field instruction courses, an integral part in social work education, requires face-to-face supervision and this will be accomplished with the support of agency field work supervisor working under the overall direction of the faculty-in-charge of the course.
Prospective applicants are advised that the program requires at least one field instruction course for those with BSSW while those without a BSSW will need two field instruction courses. Each course requires working 320 hours in an assigned agency during their regular working hours.
Those without a bachelor’s degree in social work and intend to pursue a Master of Social Work and complete the 1,000-hour requirement for professional social work training will be required to enrol in a total of five field instruction courses.
Students whose employment will not allow for an adjustment of their work schedule for field instruction with another agency may apply for a work-study scheme. In this scheme, they could conduct their field instruction in the agencies where they are working provided that they satisfy the guidelines to become fieldwork agencies.
The Diploma consists of 27 units of core and major courses for holders of a bachelor’s degree in social work and 33 units for those without said bachelor’s degree. This can be completed between five to six semesters on a part time basis, at six units per semester. Upon completion of all courses, students must take and pass a comprehensive examination to earn the degree.
Field Instruction (FI), which is offered in collaboration with social agencies, forms an integral part of the preparation of students for professional responsibilities in social work. It provides forum for the critical integration of theoretical and experiential learning in social work education.
The Social Work profession was established by the passing of Republic Act 4373, otherwise known as the Social Work Law in 1965 which further requires a minimum period of 1,000 hours of practical training in any established social work agency under the supervision of a qualified and trained Social Worker.
The Program Chair acts as the FI Coordinator who serves as the administrator of the FI program specifically on developing FI manual/guide which stipulates the policies in FI, looks for and approves FI agencies, oversees the supervision of students, facilitates the understanding of UPOU and agency for FI and address other concerns related to FI.
A school fieldwork supervisor will also be needed to do weekly supervision of students to ensure that the field placement achieves the FI objectives. He/she will serve as a faculty-in-charge (FIC) for the particular FI subject. An agency fieldwork supervisor, who comes from the fieldwork agency of the student, will be the one to supervise the day-to-day activities in the field. The agency fieldwork supervisor should have at least a master’s degree in any development discipline but with social work degree at any level.
The FI Coordinator selects and approves agencies which can become FI agencies of students. Below are the minimum considerations in selecting and approving agencies/organizations to become FI agencies:
- The interest of the agency in providing field instruction to students;
- The agency’s affiliation preferably with a licensed and accredited institution/ agency or other organizations and with accredited programs;
- The agency’s existing programs and services that can meet the expectations/objectives of fieldwork enrolled in; and
- The agency has qualified and willing (at least one) licensed social workers who will provide instruction/supervision to students.
Only students who completed their core and specialization/survey courses are allowed to take their FI subjects (except for SW 280.1 where students have to finish their core courses only). Different tracks and areas of specialization also differ in the number of required FI subjects, required number of hours and the focus of FI.
For admission related details, please visit UPOU website.