Overview of Practicum for MSW Students

Two-year (Foundation) MSW students who have an undergraduate degree in a discipline other than social work are required to complete a minimum of 450 practice hours (SOWK 5606 Practicum I) plus an additional 450 practice hours (SOWK 5607 Practicum II) or a thesis as part of their degree requirements.

One-year (Advanced) MSW students with an undergraduate degree in social work are required to complete a minimum of 450 practice hours (SOWK 5607 Practicum II) or a thesis as part of their degree requirements.

Practicum I and Practicum II each consist of a minimum of 450 hours in the field, in addition to the mandatory participation in concurrent Practicum Seminars, Faculty Liaison consultations, and completion of all written requirements. Each Practicum course is worth two credits and is graded on a satisfactory/unsatisfactory basis. The satisfactory/unsatisfactory grade given for Practicum courses is not calculated into the student’s CGPA.

Practicum students normally complete each field placement in one agency/organization only. This is based on the principle that students need the time to observe and practice in order to gain competence and a sense of confidence. Practicum Coordinators may approve split placements (2 agencies) on a case-by-case basis.

Students admitted to the the MSW program with full-time status will complete their practicum(s) on a full-time basis. 

Students admitted to the MSW program with part-time status will typically complete their practicum(s) on a part-time basis (spanning two full academic terms).

Should an MSW student be registered with the Paul Menton Centre (PMC) and require accommodations for their practicum, a part-time practicum will be arranged. 

To apply for Practicum I or Practicum II, students must have completed all of the prerequisite course work, be in good academic standing, and seek permission from the School of Social Work by submitting a Practicum Application Form by the established deadlines.

Preparing for Field Placement?  Be sure to review  the Preparing for Field Placement – Resume, Cover Letter and Interview Guides file as well as Field Placement Sample Cover Letter – SOWK 4601-4602 – Summer-Fall.

Course Pre-Requisites

SOWK 5606 Practicum I: Registration in MSW Foundation Year (Year I); completion of SOWK 5000SOWK 5001SOWK 5003, and SOWK 5608; and completion of or concurrent registration in SOWK 5004.

SOWK 5607 Practicum II: BSW or completion of MSW Foundation Year (Year l); completion of SOWK 5011SOWK 5012.

Types of Placements

Students will either be matched by the School, their place of employment or a distance placement. Additionally, placements can be both paid and unpaid, however, the majority are unpaid placements.

Practicum Application Information

This section details the steps for applying to a practicum as well as other possible requirements such as Police Records Checks or Health Requirements. We have also included a step by step process on the practicum process to give you an understanding of the all the steps that the students, Practicum Coordinator, Practicum Administrator and Placement are responsible for.