Field Directors

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  • 1.  Field internship hours

    Posted Apr 17, 2024 12:40

    I am wondering if any programs have reduced their required hours for practicums. For example, for our BSW and first-year MSW interns, we are considering reducing the 480 hours requirement to 400 hours. Subsequently, we would reduce the second-year or advanced standing practicum from 600 hours down to 500 hours. We would remain compliant with CSWE regulations but believe this reduction will reduce the burden on our students who are working full-time. One thing I'm curious about for programs who currently require 900 hours total, do your students run into any issues getting employment after graduation based on only having 900 internship hours? 

    Thanks in advance :)

    Joyce Kraus
    Director of Field Education
    University of St. Francis
    Joliet IL

  • 2.  RE: Field internship hours

    Posted Apr 18, 2024 09:53

    Hi Joyce:

    I don't believe agencies worry about the amount of field, as long as the student has been conferred the MSW degree.  This seems to be the most important aspect of employer's academic concerns regarding candidates.  We still require 1000 hours, but our students have rarely been asked how many hours did they complete. Not sure if others have differing experience, but this has been mine for the last 20+ years.


    Sibyl R. Beaulieu, DSW, MSW, LMSW
    Associate Professor
    and Director of Field Education
    The Social Work Department @ UMass Global
    T 951.413.2914 
    Pronouns:  She/Her/Hers
    Preferred address by students: 
    Dr. Beaulieu, Prof. Sibyl, Prof. Beaulieu

  • 3.  RE: Field internship hours

    Posted Apr 18, 2024 16:02

    Hi Joyce,

    Yes, this year we reduced the total hours for our BSW program to the 400 minimum. We couldn't justify the additional hours we used to require against the stress caused to many of our students. I agree with Sibyl, I don't think agencies know or care about the number of internship hours as long as students have their degree - we haven't had any backlash about that after our change.

    Feel free to reach out if you'd like to discuss further.


    Natalie Beck Aguilera, DSW, LCSW-S
    Assistant Professor of Social Work and Field Director
    School of Behavioral and Social Sciences
    St. Edward's University
    Equity Hall 221
    Pronouns: she/her

    Natalie Beck Aguilera
    Asst. Professor of Social and Field Director
    St. Edward's University
    Austin TX

  • 4.  RE: Field internship hours

    Posted Apr 18, 2024 16:11

    Hi Joyce. We reduced our hours from 480 to 400 (BSSW and MSW Foundation years) and 600 to 500 (MSW Concentration year) in 2020-21 during the pandemic in order to reduce barriers to completing field work and then made the decision to maintain this number as our standard expectations for all subsequent years. While we have had some agencies require that students complete additional hours above the 400 or 500 hour level, those are the exception, and the vast majority of agencies have been supportive of this change. Our students have been very appreciative of this reduced number of hours, and we have not heard of any issues when seeking employment.



    Amanda Campbell
    Assistant Director of Field Education
    MSU Denver
    Denver CO

  • 5.  RE: Field internship hours

    Posted Apr 19, 2024 13:15

    Hi There,

    In my years of field education, I was unaware of BSW programs having more than 400 hours. I encourage you to talk with your accreditation specialist at CSWE as part of your research efforts. Doing so is an extra step, but it helps to have as much information as possible concerning this issue. My experiences have been a bit different in that I have had agencies/organizations request proof of hour attainment and sometimes additional requirements for their evaluations and writing samples over the years. We know the world of work is ever-changing, and so will proof of educational training, but it never hurts to be aware of some of the old guards who may make an unusual request occasionally.

    Kiana Webb-Robinson
    Savannah State University