Practicum III

Curriculum Guideline

Effective Date:
Course Code
SOWK 4140
Practicum III
Social Work
Applied Community Studies
Start Date
End Term
Semester Length
15 weeks
Max Class Size
35 Ratio 9:1
Contact Hours
Practicum Site: 175 hours Seminar: 10 hours
Method(s) Of Instruction
Learning Activities

Field practice

Course Description
In this course students will undertake assigned social work roles and tasks within a social service organization under professional supervision. In these field activities students will practice and demonstrate their ability to integrate social work skills, ethics, values, theory, and research in their work with clients, colleagues and the broader community. Students will report and reflect on their field experiences with faculty and peers throughout the semester in small group seminars and within individual assignments. Students learn about a range of social work field settings through their participation in seminar.
This course is linked to SOWK 4240 (Practicum IV) and students will maintain their placement and seminar group throughout both courses.
Course Content

Course content will be guided by research, empirical knowledge and best practice. The following values and principles, consistent with professional standards, inform course content.

  • Field experience is fundamental to social work education and the development of a professional identity.
  • Social work values and ethics are integral to good practice.
  • Social work skill, theory, and knowledge are integrated through practice, experimentation, critical reflection, and feedback from others.
  • The ability to form a strong working alliance with a wide variety of clients is an essential element of social work practice.
  • Collaboration with colleagues is an essential element of professional growth.
  • Professional practice requires the ability to reflect and critically evaluate one’s work and relationships with clients and colleagues.
Learning Outcomes

Following the successful completion of this course, the student will be able to demonstrate the following skills in a manner consistent with the ethics and values of social work. Students are expected to demonstrate increasingly advanced skills throughout the progression of all practicum courses.

  1. Engage client(s) in an effective working alliance
  2. Apply social work theory and knowledge, as well as personal experience, to assess situations
  3. Make accurate assessments of observed/experienced situations and systems
  4. Develop plans for intervention and be able to modify one’s perspective and actions based on critical reflection, feedback, and new information
  5. Consider multiple perspectives as a method of learning and self-evaluation
  6. Communicate ideas and describe actions for the purpose of learning, supervision of practice, and building ethical relationships
  7. Adapt and demonstrate the effective use of a variety of communication, documentation, and reporting methods as needed
  8. Apply administrative policies to diverse areas of work; meet administrative requirements
  9. Develop networks of professional relationships and resources to serve the clients of the agency
  10. Assess and discuss the effectiveness of program services including the extent to which a program addresses client needs and goals; identify limitations
  11. Assess and discuss the extent to which system processes and outcomes are consistent with social work values and ethics
  12. Identify the main administrative and program delivery roles within the organizational structure and describe key organizational processes
  13. Accurately self-assess the level of competence in performing the skills described above
  14. Identify practical learning goals for professional development
Means of Assessment

This course will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations. Typical means of assessment may include some or all of the following:

Practice report
Seminar discussion
Research paper
Field assessment
Reflective journal
Presentation (individual or group).

Textbook Materials

Text(s) such as the following, the list to be updated periodically:

Baird, B. (2014). The internship, practicum and field placement handbook: A guide for the helping professions. Toronto: Pearson.
Clark, N., Drolet, J. & Allen, H. (2011). Shifting sites of practice. Toronto: Pearson Press.
Heinonen, T., & Spearman, L. (2010). Social work practice: Problem-solving and beyond (3rd ed.). Toronto: Nelson.
Maclean, S. (2010).  The social work pocket guide to reflective practice. London: Kirwin Maclean.





Which Prerequisite