MSW Programs

Clinical Electives

The following is a list of approved electives offered by the School of Social Work. 

Advanced Clinical Social Work Practice in Integrated Healthcare SOW 6931(Web-based)

The course will introduce students to the essential clinical practice skills needed to effectively address the challenges of integrated services, care, and support for persons with health, mental health, and substance use problems. Students will become fluent in the language and culture of health and will develop a working knowledge of a wide variety of chronic health conditions. Students will examine the challenges of multidisciplinary team practice and current best evidence-based practices for effective interventions. Throughout the course, students will critique behavior change theories, practice models, and evidence-based interventions for their utility in an integrated healthcare system. Building on the student’s foundational knowledge of general practice skills (engagement, screening, comprehensive assessment, treatment planning, documentation, and evaluation) this course will emphasize practice skills and implementation approaches designed to enhance effective communication, consumer engagement, motivation, and client empowerment. Through the use of case vignettes, assignments, role plays and small group activities, students will gain experience and skills necessary to be effective in a variety of behavioral health roles (e.g. care manager, behavioral health consultant, health coach, patient advocate, counselor, team leader). Finally, students will increase their knowledge of complementary and alternative therapies and the importance of self-care and disease management.

Alternative Approaches in Clinical Practice: Integrative Body-Mind-Spirit Social Work SOW 6931 (campus-based)

This course will provide an overview of integrative body-mind-spirit (I-BMS) interventions used in clinical practice with individuals, families, and groups. The philosophical and historical basis for these interventions will be addressed within the context of the person-in-environment framework. This course will familiarize students with the some of the most widely used evidence-informed practices such as yoga, EMDR, somatic experiencing, mindfulness among others. The course will examine current research supporting the efficacy of integrative interventions with diverse populations, and the significant role these emerging treatments have in the evolution of holistic social work practice. Emphasis will be placed on the development of clinical practice skills such as assessment, treatment planning, and direct intervention from a whole person perspective which engages each domain of human functioning – body, mind, and spirit.

Clinical Supervision SOW 6931 (campus-based)

This course is designed for social workers in various fields of clinical practice. It will promote understanding of clinical supervision and its critical role in continuing professional growth. Supervisory theory and practice in clinical settings will be a primary focus. Students will develop knowledge and skills in balancing the complexities of supervisory roles, relationships, and process. Major supervisory functions will be emphasized as important concepts in grappling with today’s practice realities--such as supervisory models, ethical issues in supervision, becoming a multicultural competent supervisor and legal issues in supervision. This course will introduce students to the functions and contextual dimensions of social work supervision. Administrative and clinical perspectives will be examined within the contextual framework of social work supervision as managers and leaders in human service organizations. The class is taught as a seminar, with student responsible for active class participation. Students will learn through a variety of teaching methods, including lectures and discussions, quest experts, class exercises and student presentations, and out-of-class assignments.

Cognitive Behavior Therapy SOW 6931 (web-based)

This three credit graduate course reviews the terminology and concepts of Cognitive-Behavioral Treatment (CBT) within a multi-cultural context. CBT is a combination of two kinds of treatment: Cognitive and Behavioral. Cognitive treatment focuses on thoughts, assumptions, and beliefs. Within cognitive treatment, people learn to recognize and change faulty or maladaptive thinking patterns. In behavioral treatment, simply, people learn how to change behavior. This course exams how the two treatment modalities complement each other and in what contexts it is most/least effective. The course will explore methods of focusing on participants’ problem-solving abilities, building on participants’ strengths, targeting specific thought patterns that impede participants’ from reaching goals, and assessing outcomes in terms of changes in thinking and behavior. Theory is applied to individuals, dyads, families, and groups. The course examines relevant quantitative and qualitative research suggesting both indication and counter-indications of approaches. The course is taught from a systemic and strengths perspective.

Dementia Care in Home and Community-Based Service from a Social Work Perspective SOW 6931 (web-based)

This course will advance students to the knowledge base and clinical skills needed to address the challenges faced by formal and informal caregivers caring for persons with Alzheimer’s disease and related dementias (ADRD). Building on the student’s foundational knowledge of general social work practice skills, this course will promote their practice skills and competency to enhance effective communication, intervention implementation, and client empowerment/advocacy from a clinical social work perspective.

Introduction to Psychopharmacology in Social Work Practice SOW 6931 (web-based)

This course is designed to familiarize students with the basics of drug treatment in psychiatry, i.e., psychopharmacology, and the role of the social worker in dealing with issues related to psychopharmacological treatment. The historical development of psychotropic medications will be addressed in the broader social and sociological context, and a general overview of neurochemistry and neurobiology will be provided. The major classes of psychiatric medications will be reviewed with special attention payed to drugs of particular importance in the history of psychiatry and in modern treatment. Emphasis will be placed on the development of a range of knowledge, practice techniques, and intervention strategies in collaboration with patients, families, psychiatrists, and other providers in order for social workers to fully participate as members of the multidisciplinary treatment team and be responsive to the needs of their patients.

Living Latinx: Social Work Practice SOW 6931 (Maymester web-based)

This course provides content that informs social work practice with Latinx individuals, families, groups, and communities. Special attention will be given to Latinx physical and mental health issues. It is framed within systemic–ecological theory and the strength and empowerment perspectives. The course explores similarities and differences among Latinx groups; analyzes the impacts of the migration, immigration, and acculturation of these groups; and discusses the social, political, cultural, and economic forces that affect Latinxs in the United States. Through the course, students will learn about interventions, programs, and methods used to work with these populations. There will be a focus on specific subgroups, such as the elderly, LGBTQ individuals, women, children, and adolescents.

Substance Use Disorders SOW 6931 (Web-Based)

The aims of this three-hour web-based graduate course are twofold. First, this course will introduce students to theories of substance use disorders, and to cultural, societal and policy aspects of these phenomena. Second, the course will introduce students to the principles of working with various drug using populations and to multidimensional assessment methods, treatment settings, modalities and clinical practices.

Trauma and Intervention SOW 6931 (web-based)

This three hour graduate course will explore the biopsychosocial aspects of traumatic stress. How people respond to traumatic stress is an individual matter based on a number of factors including psychological, emotional, social, cultural, biological, familial, and environmental influences. Attention will be given to how to evaluate, select, and implement appropriate multidimensional assessment, diagnostic, intervention, and practice evaluation tools for working with individuals affected by trauma. In addition to assessment, a main focus of the course will be on empirically-based interventions for individuals and communities affected by trauma. This course will provide the framework for understanding, preventing and treating traumatic stress by drawing upon research and theory. In addition, a trauma-informed care framework that recognizes the strengths and resilience of those affected as well as the self-care needed for those who provide trauma work will be explored. 

 

Women's Mental Health SOW 6931 (web-based)

This 3-credit graduate course is intended for social work public health, nursing and other students interested in women’s behavioral health issues, including mental health substance abuse and trauma. The course incorporates a detailed examination of the interaction of physical and mental health concerns and how they affect the lives of women across the life span. The curriculum reviews current research on women’s mental health, and criteria for valid and useful evaluation of women’s mental health services. The class will discuss how to evaluate, select, and implement gender and age appropriate Bio-psycho-social-spiritual assessments, evidence-based interventions and trauma informed models of practice for working with women who have a history of interpersonal violence and trauma. Additionally, the course provides for discussion of important service delivery issues including, ethical and cultural issues, experienced in interdisciplinary service settings. A goal of the curriculum is to train students to critique current healthcare practices as they relate to the delivery of women’s mental health services. In addition, the course is designed to help students develop and improve critical thinking as well as oral and written communication skills.

 

Study Abroad

Northeast Himalayas in India: Socio-Cultural Context of Indigenous People’s Health I SOW 6931


This is the first of two clinical summer study abroad elective courses. The primary focus of the Northeast Himalayas in India: Socio-cultural Context of Indigenous People’s Health I course is to introduce undergraduate and graduate students to a variety of global social issues related to Social Work practice in India.  This course is designed to provide students with theory, practice skills and techniques for social workers with Indigenous populations as well as health and social issues related to social welfare from a global perspective in Northeast India.  Engaging in critical thinking and analysis of health and social welfare issues, students will explore how political, economic, cultural, religious, historical and environmental factors impact clinical social work practice and the delivery of human services in the richly diverse region of northeast India, particularly the state of Arunachal Pradesh.  Students will examine and witness alternative health and mental health practices while comparing and contrasting the observations with practices in the United States. Students will also engage in learning how social work practice is delivered in Northeast India within a matriarchal society and among 26 major tribes, each with its own unique customs, traditions and languages. The geographical context for this course will primarily be Northeast India along with cultural influences from Tibet and China, Bhutan, and Myanmar which surround the region. Special emphasis will be given to the conceptualization of international social work practice, the analysis of theories and models of practice from a global perspective. The course will be valuable for those who are interested in international clinical social work practice.  By examining international models of social work practice, this course is also relevant to students working with diverse populations in the United States and specifically, in Florida. 

Northeast Himalayas in India: Socio-Cultural Context of Indigenous People’s Health II SOW 6931

This is the second course of two clinical elective courses. The primary focus of the Northeast Himalayas in India: Socio-cultural Context of Indigenous People’s Health II course is to expose undergraduate and graduate students to a variety of social work practice interventions with individuals, families, groups as well as health and social issues related to social welfare from a global perspective in Northeast India.  Engaging in critical thinking and analysis of health and social welfare issues, students will examine how political, economic, cultural, religious, historical and environmental factors impact clinical social work practice and the delivery of human services in the richly diverse region of northeast India, particularly the state of Arunachal Pradesh.  Students will engage in assessments, interviews and observe alternative health and mental health practices along with clinical models of intervention. Students will also engage in learning how social work practice is delivered in Northeast India within a matriarchal society and among 26 major tribes, each with its own unique customs, traditions and languages. The geographical context for this course will primarily be Northeast India along with the cultural influences of Tibet and China, Bhutan, and Myanmar which surround the region. Special emphasis will be given to the conceptualization of international social work practice, the analysis of theories and models from a global perspective. Social Work professional ethics and values will be examined as they relate to international social work practice.  Lectures and experiential learning opportunities will be supplemented with skill development exercises when appropriate. The course will be valuable for those who are interested in international clinical social work practice and are looking for a forum in which such experiences and interests can be processed in a context of existing theoretical frameworks and models of social welfare service delivery.  By examining international models of social work practice, this course is also relevant to students working with diverse populations in the United States and specifically, in Florida.

A Comparative Study of Socio-cultural Context of People’s Health in Barcelona and Alicante, Spain I SOW 6931

This is the first of two clinical summer study abroad elective courses. The primary focus of the A Comparative Study of Socio-cultural Context of People's Health in Barcelona and Alicante, Spain I course is to introduce undergraduate and graduate students to a variety of global social issues related to Social Work practice in Spain. This course is designed to provide students with theory, practice skills and techniques for social workers with diverse populations as well as health and social issues related to social welfare from a global perspective in Spain. Engaging in critical thinking and analysis of health and social welfare issues, students will explore how political, economic, cultural, religious, historical and environmental factors impact clinical social work practice and the delivery of human services in the richly diverse region of Barcelona and Alicante. Students will examine and witness alternative health and mental health practices while comparing and contrasting the observations with practices in the United States. Students will also engage in learning how social work practice is delivered in Spain unique customs, traditions and languages. The geographical context for this course will primarily be Spain. Special emphasis will be given to the conceptualization of international social work practice, the analysis of theories and models of practice from a global perspective. The course will be valuable for those who are interested in international clinical social work practice. By examining international models of social work practice, this course is also relevant to students working with diverse populations in the United States and specifically, in Florida.

A Comparative Study of Socio-cultural Context of People’s Health in Barcelona and Alicante, Spain II SOW 6931

This is the second course of two clinical elective courses. The primary focus of the A Comparative Study of Socio-cultural Context of People's Health in Barcelona and Alicante, Spain II course is to expose undergraduate and graduate students to a variety of social work practice interventions with individuals, families, groups as well as health and social issues related to social welfare from a global perspective in Spain. Engaging in critical thinking and analysis of health and social welfare issues, students will examine how political, economic, cultural, religious, historical and environmental factors impact clinical social work practice and the delivery of human services in the richly diverse region of Barcelona and Alicante, Spain. Students will engage in assessments, interviews and observe alternative health and mental health practices along with clinical models of intervention. Students will also engage in learning how social work practice delivered in Spain with its own unique customs, traditions and languages. The geographical context for this course will primarily be Spain. Special emphasis will be given to the conceptualization of international social work practice, the analysis of theories and models from a global perspective. Social Work professional ethics and values will be examined as they relate to international social work practice. Lectures and experiential learning opportunities will be supplemented with skill development exercises when appropriate. The course will be valuable for those who are interested in international clinical social work practice and are looking for a forum in which such experiences and interests can be processed in a context of existing theoretical frameworks and models of social welfare service delivery. By examining international models of social work practice, this course is also relevant to students working with diverse populations in the United States and specifically, in Florida.