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Field Education Office Professional Development Workshop

BSW Cording & MSW Hooding

Become a Field Organization

The University of South Carolina College of Social Work has partnerships with several hundred organizations that provide services to vulnerable populations across South Carolina, North Carolina, and Georgia. These organizations make crucial, invaluable contributions to our students’ professional development.

Organizations hosting field students are responsible for the following:

  • Negotiating with the Director of Field Education regarding the number of students to be accepted and the type of placement offered.
  • Designating qualified BSW/MSW staff as field instructors
  • Providing an educationally sound field placement within the structure of the organization
  • Assuring each field instructor adequate time within his/her work schedule to ensure provision of high-quality field education and supervision to social work students
  • Incorporating students into the overall organization operation, including various organization programs and activities, in a manner deemed appropriate by the College of Social Work
  • Providing opportunities for student contact with and exposure to other organization personnel who might be able to provide additional learning opportunities and experiences consistent with College expectations
  • Providing assigned students access to clients and community partners and permitting students’ use of organization facilities and records

If your organization is interested in becoming a field organization, contact Melissa Reitmeier, Director of Field Education, at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Become a Field Instructor

The College of Social Work invites qualified individuals to become BSW/MSW field instructors. In this rewarding role, social workers can give back to the profession by supervising students and assisting them in integrating what they learn in the curriculum with what they learn in the field placement community.

BSW/MSW field instructors are designated by their organization of employment and must meet criteria mandated by CSWE for persons serving accredited schools of social work in this capacity. They are their organization's representatives to the University. They provide on-site supervision, advisement, and instruction to students in the field practicum and promote the development of social work skills, abilities, values, and ethics.

Although they do not receive monetary reimbursement for their services in this capacity, the College of Social Work provides other benefits to field instruction, such as CEU opportunities, library privileges, and reduced tuition for qualifying non-degree programs. Most professional social work practitioners consider field education a service to the profession, as they ensure the continuance of skilled and knowledgeable social work professionals.

Persons serving as an MSW field instructor must meet the following criteria:

1. Be a graduate of an accredited school of social work and hold a master's degree in social work
2. Have two years post-master's professional experience

Although it is preferred that a person serving as a BSW field instructor in an organization meet the same criteria as outlined above, the BSW program provides an integrative seminar that offers BSW students the necessary and required supervision by a qualified individual with an MSW. In instances in which a service organization that provides services to vulnerable populations does not employ a qualified field instructor, they may qualify as a placement under our BSW program and are encouraged to contact Melissa Reitmeier, Director of Field Education at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

In addition, the USC College of Social Work requires that individuals serving as BSW/MSW field instructors must:

1. Complete a mandatory orientation for first-time field instructors
2. Have paid experience on a full-time basis in an organization that provides services, protects, or advocates for vulnerable populations
3. Be prepared to offer adequate time within the normal duty periods for providing instruction for social work students
4. Be available for attendance at scheduled meetings conducted by the College for those persons participating in the field education program

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