The LSU School of Social Work folds field practicum into the educational thrust of the MSW program, maintaining its centrality to the School mission and its relevance to course work. An integral part of social work education, field education is an experience, which not only employs community agencies and programs as learning laboratories for students but represents the central form of instruction and learning. The intent of field education is to connect the theoretical and conceptual contribution of the classroom with the practice setting (CSWE-EPAS, 2009).
Field placements expose students to the broad field of social work, as well as to a wide range of experiences. The internship experience is directly related to classroom learning and serves to synthesize theory and practice. Through this experience, students gather more information about their commitment to social work values and ethics and their professional identity. Becoming a professional social worker demands that a student embark on an exploration of challenging theories, complex analyses of policies and programs and self-examination as he or she uses new information to deal with the complex problems presented in professional social work field education.
Students’ complete twelve semester hours of field education courses, working a total of 960 clock hours of training in the field (a minimum of 900 hours must be agency clock hours). The field education program at LSU is divided into two equally important parts:
- Foundation Internship
SW7007 Foundation I Internship
SW7008 Foundation II Internship
- Advanced Internship
SW7502 Advanced I Internship
SW7503 Advanced II Internship