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 438 hours in the field, in addition to the mandatory participation in concurrent Practicum Seminars (12-13 hours) , 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 through mySuccess by the established deadlines.

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

Course Pre-Requisites

SOWK 5606 Practicum 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, and elective course requirements.

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.