Program Description

The School of Social Work at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley offers a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree which is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. The BSW is a professional degree built on a liberal arts foundation with supporting course content in the social and behavioral sciences. Departmental courses provide basic knowledge of social welfare systems, the social work profession, theories relating to social work practice, skills, value, and knowledge necessary for generalist social work practice, and the evaluation of social work practice, as well as preparation of student to pursue graduate studies in social work and related professions. The School graduates approximately sixty BSW students yearly.

The mission of social work is to 1) provide effective and efficient social work services to people in need; 2) alleviate poverty; oppression and discrimination; and 3) promote social and economic justice. This is accomplished through the application of ethical and responsible standards of practice, advocacy, activism and leadership in agency settings.

Social workers are employed in diverse settings including but not limited to:

  • Public and private social service agencies
  • Hospitals
  • Mental health centers
  • Rehabilitation facilities
  • Geriatric services
  • Child welfare organizations
  • Substance abuse treatment centers
  • Business and employee assistance programs
  • Housing authorities
  • Criminal justice settings
  • Policy making agencies
  • Schools

Beginning salaries range from $35,000 to $44, 000 depending upon the setting and geographic area. Upon graduation, a BSW student may become a Licensed Social Worker under the provisions of the Texas Professional Social Work Act.

Graduates with a BSW degree from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited social work program may apply for advanced standing in our Master of Science in Social Work (MSSW) program. This is a 33-credit hour program that consists of a 3- hour bridge course and 30 hours of advanced MSSW courses.

Students wishing to apply for admission into the BSW program must complete

  • University Core Requirement of 30 hours, including 6 hours of freshman English and Math 1340 or higher with a “C” or better
  • SOCW 1313 – Introduction to the Social Work Profession with a “C” or better
  • And have earned a 2.7 cumulative grade point average or better
  • Work field internship, the student must
  • Have an official degree plan on file
  • Have a 2.7 minimum cumulative GPA
  • Have successfully completed the SOCW Core courses
  • Have completed all University Core courses , and
  • Have an application for the field internship on file in the Department office