School of Social Work
Dean Scott Ryan
Social Work Complex Building A | 211 S Cooper St | Box 19129, Arlington, Texas 76019, USA
Mission and Philosophy
The mission of the UT Arlington School of Social Work is to advance knowledge, pursue excellence, provide leadership and service for enhancing well being, and to promote social and economic justice and cultural competence with diverse cultures.
History and Overview
The School of Social Work was established as the Graduate School of Social Work in 1967 by an act of the Texas Legislature. It became the School of Social Work in 1991 when the University's undergraduate social work program in the College of Liberal Arts merged with the school's graduate program.
More than 4,000 students have earned degrees at the school and many hold key management positions in public agencies and nonprofit organizations nationwide. Currently, the school has a diverse student body of approximately 600 M.S.S.W. graduate students and 60 Ph.D. students. Many of these students also hold full- or part-time positions in public agencies and nonprofit organizations.
One distinguishing feature of the school is its location in the heart of the Dallas-Fort Worth Metroplex, a rich urban laboratory of more than 150 cities with a population over 4.5 million. This complex social arena offers a wide array of opportunities for student projects, field placements and employment. Social work faculty, staff and students work on "real-life" social problems in cooperation with city governments, public agencies and nonprofit organizations.
The Council on Social Work Education has fully accredited the M.S.S.W. program. Accreditation is an important consideration for students because many professional social work positions require a degree from a CSWE accredited program. Academic credit for life experience and previous work experience is not given.
Scholastic Activity and Research Interests of the Faculty
School of Social Work faculty engage in research and community-service projects that enhance the effectiveness of the programs of public and nonprofit social-service organizations, that promote social justice and equality, and that extend the body of knowledge about social issues. Research topics span the broad range of social-work issues, including feminist theory, minority rights, child abuse, mental illness, ethics, aging, sexual abuse, community development, lesbian and gay persons, marital and family therapy, family violence, clinical assessment, stalking, constructivism, cognitive-behavioral treatment efficacy, adoption, siblings, foster care, African American fathers, substance abuse, social policy, and evaluations of state and federal child-welfare and community-service programs.
The School of Social Work currently offers two graduate programs of study: the Master of Science in Social Work (M.S.S.W.) and the Ph.D. The Ph.D. program offers two options: the Ph.D. in Social Work or a specialty in comparative social policy, in collaboration with La Universidad Autonoma de Nuevo Leon, that is taught in Texas and Mexico and requires fluency in English and Spanish. Degrees are awarded from both universities.
The school offers distance education M.S.S.W. programs in cooperation with other universities across the state. More than 400 students have graduated from such programs. Courses are also offered via the Internet and telecommunication for local students and those in distance education programs.
The school also offers training, research and service opportunities to faculty and students through its centers and other programs. The Judith Granger Birmingham Center for Child Welfare provides support and graduate training to current and potential child-welfare workers and supports faculty and student research on child-welfare issues. The Community Services Center is an instructional facility that provides a university-community partnership addressing community issues. The partnership enables university students, faculty and neighborhood organizations to work together to tackle complex socioeconomic issues facing the neighborhoods that surround them, such as poverty, domestic violence, homelessness and community revitalization. The purpose of the center is twofold: to provide professional training for graduate students and to provide professional services to the community. Community development interns conduct needs assessments, write grant proposals, design new programs, conduct evaluations, perform research and organize action groups. Community clinic interns provide affordable counseling for children, adolescents and families. Counseling services include individual counseling, marriage counseling, premarital counseling, family therapy, group counseling, anger control therapy, and social skills training. The community clinic also provides graduate interns an opportunity to conduct research programs in the area of counseling. The Center for Research, Evaluation and Technology involves students and faculty in program evaluations for local social service agencies and in the development of new and innovative ways to support human services practice. The Professional Development Program provides continuing education seminars for social work practitioners and other human services professionals. The seminars provide the continuing education units necessary for license renewals.
The school hosts an annual conference for students, alumni and community professionals.