At Delaware State University, the Department of Social Work takes your education into the community. We are excited to help students find the right field experience where they will spend their time putting theory into practice, engaging with other social workers, and developing their professional identity. An important part of Social Work education is the practicum experience. While classroom learning focuses upon knowledge and theory, it is the practicum which provides the student with “hands-on” experience, integrating social work theory with practice within a context of ethical principles and an ecological perspective. Field Practicum provides students with opportunities to employ the knowledge, values, skills and conceptual frameworks that undergird advanced practice in the generalist perspective in agency settings while under the supervision of an approved field instructor. Field practicum provides opportunities to intervene in serious complex problems where clients, families, and the community are the focus of intervention or where the client systems receive assistance. Students are expected to integrate the generalist perspective for social work practice, as well as the following department underpinnings – Empowerment, Strengths Perspective, a Black Perspective, Global Perspective and Rural Perspective – into their social work practice by combining what they have learned in class.
Field Education has been identified as the signature pedagogy of social work by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). A signature pedagogy is the method by which a student learns their profession; for social work, that is in field education.
Signature pedagogies also do more; they disclose important information about the personality of a professional field, its values, knowledge and manner of thinking, almost perhaps, its total worldview. Field Education makes a tremendous difference in the lives of students, and leaves a lasting impression.
We hope your field experience is one that helps set your path as a professional social worker. The Office of Field Education will guide and support you through your placement process and your experience.
Dr. Chavon Dottin
Director of Field Instruction
cdottin [at] desu.edu