About The Master of Social Work Program

Mission statement

The Master of Social Work Program's mission is to develop advanced generalist practitioners who are committed to advancing Missouri State University's public affairs mission. These self-reflective leaders will improve communities on local and global levels through ethical advocacy, while utilizing culturally-informed frameworks, multidimensional problem solving approaches, research-informed methods, and evidence-based theories in order to improve policy and service delivery, to eliminate oppressive structural barriers, and to utilize social work-based strategies in advancing social, economic, and environmental justice.

Program goals

The Master of Social Work (MSW) degree program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The MSW program has adopted goals that are consistent with the purpose and values of social work profession, structure of graduate-level social work education, and derived from the MSW Program mission.

Foundation goals

The following are the program objective for the MSW foundation curriculum:

  1. Demonstrate knowledge of the history, mission, and philosophy of the social work profession and how it relates to the formulation of a professional identity.
  2. Recognize value and ethical dilemmas in practice within the parameters of the NASW Code of Ethics.
  3. Demonstrate professional demeanor and self-awareness regarding personal values and professionalism impacting their professional judgment.
  4. Understand, apply, and communicate the importance of diversity and differences in shaping life experiences in practice at all system levels.
  5. Address the needs of populations-at-risk with an understanding of discrimination and oppression, and their impact on all system levels.
  6. Understand and identify local and global social, economic, environmental injustice in practice settings, and recognize strategies and professional role in social justice advocacy.
  7. Recognize and value role of research with ability to interpret and apply collected data from multiple perspectives from clients and multi-disciplinary sources for practice improvement.
  8. Identify and assess impact of social policy at the local, state, and federal levels and demonstrate knowledge of pathways to change policies to advance human rights.
  9. Demonstrate critical thinking skills, including ability to apply person-in-environment and multidisciplinary theoretical frameworks to engage, assess, intervene, and evaluate generalist social work practice on all system levels.

Specialist goals

The following are the program objective for the MSW concentration curriculum:

  1. Demonstrate ethical leadership and decisions by applying the standards of the NASW Code of Ethics, implementing an ethical decision making model, recognizing relevant family health laws and regulations, utilize consultation, and reflection and self-regulation.
  2. Demonstrate culturally-informed and ethical approaches as an advanced generalist social worker to utilize knowledge and provide leadership on all system levels.
  3. Analyze the multidimensional factors that shape human experience and formation of identity and integrate research informed practice theories that empower the unique diverse factors of families and systems in the helping process.
  4. Engage in social work value-based strategies designed to eliminate oppressive structural barriers and advance social, economic, and environmental justice at the local and global levels.
  5. Utilize multidimensional approach of research informed theory, and analysis of quantitative and qualitative research methods findings to inform and improve policy and service delivery in areas of children & families, physical health, behavioral health and community.
  6. Critically evaluate and engage in ethical social work practices that advocate and develop policies for local, state, federal, and global human rights; and promote delivery of and access to services in communities.
  7. Offer wellness-oriented and other multidisciplinary frameworks on all system levels that maximize the physical, mental, emotional, social, economic, cultural, and spiritual health within individual and families.
  8. Utilize critical thinking of evidence based practice theories to engage, assess, intervene and evaluate services with and on behalf of clients and interrelated systems.
  9. Demonstrate ethical leadership and advanced generalist social work knowledge base in interprofessional collaboration.