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Join us at Laurier

Becoming a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


About the Bachelor of Social Work at Laurier

The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program at Laurier is a direct-entry program, which means you will begin your study of social work in first year.

In your senior years, you'll learn through experience during two different field placements. Through this immersive opportunity, you'll gain supervised pre-professional social work experience in social and community agency settings.

Upon graduation, you will have acquired the skills to communicate effectively and practice ethically.

Laurier’s BSW program has received its initial standing from the Canadian Association of Social Work Education (CASWE). Current and future students will be eligible to apply for membership in the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers upon graduation.

Studies in Indigenous Topics

A unique aspect of Laurier’s Social Work program is that it allows you to focus on Indigenous topics and includes an examination of the cultural exchanges between Canada’s colonial processes and First Nations people.

Interested in Graduate Studies?

By completing your four-year BSW program at Laurier, you will be eligible to apply for advanced standing in our Master of Social Work (MSW) program. In five years, you can complete both your Bachelor of Social Work and your Master of Social Work, which means a competitive edge when you begin your career.

Course Offerings

SK121: Introduction to Social Work: Values, Ethics and Practice (Required)

This course introduces the value orientations and ethics prevalent in the profession and in Canadian society and examines selected current practice issues, controversies or dilemmas of professional social work practice in Canada.

SK212: Social Work as Transformative Action (Required)

Concepts from critical social theory such as intersectionality, power and resistance, discourse ideology and critical self reflection will be introduced and related to social work practice. Students will examine the processes and effects of various structures of oppression as well as individual and collective practices that challenge and transform such structures.

SK223: Critical Issues in Social Work Practice (Required)

This course introduces the student to social work practice in pressing contemporary issues that may differ from year-to-year. Topics may include but are not limited to Addictions, Aging / Gerontology, Disability, Trauma and Resiliency, Child Welfare and Mental Health.

SK311: Reconciliation and Indigenous-Social Work Relations (Required)

This course provides knowledge for understanding the nature of First Nations historical/structural problems; the role and operation of social services in Indigenous contexts; alternative (culture based and healing focused) methods of intervention; and present day Indigenous concerns and issues including concepts of Indigenous title.

SK411: Human Sexuality and Gender Issues (Elective)

An examination of the gendered nature of societies and cultures as seen in Canadian law, culture, work, family, violence, health, and sexuality.

SK412: Creative Arts in Social Work Practice (Elective)

This course examines individual and community arts as expressions of the realities of social living. Issues such as marginalization will be explored for self-expression, public education and social commentary opportunities.

SK423: Child Welfare (Elective)

This course promotes a broad understanding of child maltreatment and contemporary child welfare intervention in the socially and culturally diverse Canadian context. Students critically examine and apply theory, policy, practice and legal frameworks supporting assessment and intervention competencies for child welfare practice.

SK430: Violence in Families (Elective)

Based on intersectional feminist principles, this course will integrate theory and practice, and incorporate analyses of policy and interdisciplinary responses to family violence, with an emphasis on woman abuse, children exposed to domestic violence, and perpetration of violence.

SK431: International Social Work (Elective)

This course provides students with an opportunity to explore the field of international social work with an emphasis on identifying major social problems, understanding the social forces that bear on those problems, and considering appropriate social work approaches to aid in their solution.

SK433: Working with Immigrant and Refugee Peoples (Elective)

This course will critically examine the context of the Canadian immigration system and its impact on the experiences of newcomers. Topics will include theories and discourses of migration, critical analysis of the Canadian immigration policy, leading settlement and adaptation services, and structural issues related to the wellbeing of immigrants, refugees, and diaspora.

"Wilfrid Laurier University’s BSW program sparked my passion for social work and love of social justice. My experiences throughout the four years were filled with engaging professors, and dedicated faculty who created a rich learning environment within the classroom and field placement setting."

– Dayna (BSW '17)


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