Field Placement Questions and Answers 
 
Field education is an integral component of social work education and a degree requirement for all Social Work students. A primary responsibility of the Field Education Team at our School is to ensure that students are provided with agency-based experiences that maximize opportunities for learning and applying social work values, knowledge and skills. The goal is to provide learning opportunities that engage students in diverse direct and indirect practice activities that reflect principles of social justice, equality and respect for diversity. 

What is a field placement? 

 When will the field placement take place?

How do I register for the field placement?

Can I select the agency where I will be placed?

Can I interview at several agencies before being placed?

 How many hours are required to complete the field placement?

Can I complete the field placement part time?

Can I take classes during the field placement?

Are there any weekend/evening placements available?

Will I be paid for the field placement?

Can I complete the field placement at my work site?

What is the difference between third and fourth year field placements?

Will there be assignments to complete?

How will I be evaluated?

Do I have to complete the field placement to graduate?

Can I challenge the field placement?


What is the purpose of the field placement?



 

Field placement, also called a practicum, is an opportunity for the student to begin the process of integrating social work theory with social work practice. The primary purpose of field placement is to provide the student with an opportunity to gain practical experience in a social work setting while being supervised. The student should become fully aware of the agency's structure and programs, and develop positive working relationships with colleagues and clients in addition to gaining valuable social work skills and knowledge. 
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When will the field placement take place?

Field placements at UFV are block placements that take place during a period of 15 weeks over one term. For most students, the field placement will take place in the second term of their program which is the winter term (January - April). A fall field placement (September - December) is available for part-time students who meet the fall placement criteria.
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How do I register for the field placement?

The field placement planning process takes place the semester prior to the actual field placement. Students are required to complete and submit a separate Practicum Request Application form in each of their third and fourth years. Forms. Prior to submitting the practicum application form, students must ensure they have completed all the required pre-requisite coursework, have a GPA of 2.5 or above, and are eligible for a criminal record check. Each student must also submit an electronic resume in the UFV format provided

Students will then participate in a required individual interview with the Field Education Coordinator to continue with the field placement planning process. Students registered for field placement are required to attend a mandatory field placement orientation prior to beginning the placement.

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Can I select the agency where I will be placed?

The field education office is responsible for assigning each student to a field placement agency. We have long standing relationships with social work agencies and are responsible for developing all placement sites.

The field education office is committed to exploring and developing new placement opportunities and welcomes students to identify potential field placement sites. The final decision regarding the suitability of a particular placement site for each student rests with the Field Education Coordinator.

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Can I interview at several agencies before being placed?

No, the Field Education Coordinator will work with you to arrange an interview at an agency that meets your learning needs. If the interview goes well and the agency agrees that the placement is an appropriate fit, it will be confirmed. If either party has reservations, an interview with another agency will be arranged.

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How many hours are required to complete the field placement?

The third year BSW field placement is 315 hours to be completed three days (21 hours) per week for 15 weeks. Generally, the days of the placement are Tuesday to Thursday. In addition all third year BSW students are required to attend bi-weekly on campus seminar classes that run concurrent to the practicum.

The fourth year BSW field placement is 420 hours to be completed 4 days (28 hours) per week for 15 weeks and participation in an online seminar class is required. Generally, the days of the field placement are Monday to Thursday.

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Can the field placement be completed part time?

No, although students can enroll in the BSW program on a part time basis, the field placement is to be completed in one term over a 15 week period. In special circumstances, the field placement may be extended for a period of a few weeks.

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Can I take classes during the field placement?

Yes, many students take classes during their field placement.The Field Placement involves a steep learning curve for most students and we recommend students be aware of their limitations when scheduling courses. The BSW Program Advisor is available by appointment to meet with students. BSW Program Advisor
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Are there any weekend or evening placements?

Weekend and evening placements are limited as many agencies are either closed or do not have the required supervision on weekends or evenings. Some field placement sites do require students to be available one evening per week, but typical placement days are Monday through Friday during standard business hours. Students are encouraged to inform the Field Education Coordinator if they are interested in this type of placement.

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Will I be paid for the field placement?

No, paid field placements are not an option for our students at this time.

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Can I complete the field placement at my work site?


No, UFV does not support this type of field placement at this time.

Field placement is an opportunity for students to learn about new organizations and agency structures, build new relationships and identify themselves in the role of a social work student.

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What is the difference between a 3rd and 4th year field placement?

The third and fourth year field placements both offer students the opportunity to develop generalist social work practice skills.

The third year field placement is designed to provide exposure to generalist practice including various micro, mezzo, and macro levels of practice.

The fourth year field placement further provides exposure to generalist practice but may focus on an area of student interest and provides further development of the skills required for direct practice with individuals, families, and groups.

The two field placements are intended to build on each other to provide students with comprehensive skills and to develop a generalist social work practice framework.

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Will there be assignments to complete?

Yes, there are required assignments that students are expected to complete both in their seminar course and their field placement. The assignments are designed to be reflective and to assist students to integrate social work theory and practice.

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How will I be evaluated?


Students will be evaluated based on how they perform in their field placement and completion of required assignments. The evaluation is completed jointly by the Field Instructor, the Student, and the Faculty Liaison. The faculty liaison is responsible for providing a final grade of Credit/No Credit for the course based on feedback from the agency field instructor.

More details about the evaluation procedures can be found in the BSW Field Education manual. Field Education Manual

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Do I have to complete the Field placement to graduate?

Yes, all BSW students must complete two field placements in order to graduate. Students must complete the 3rd year field placement in order to proceed into the 4th year of the BSW program.

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Can I challenge the field placement?

The 3rd year field placement may be challenged by a small number of students who have worked in a Social Service capacity and have been supervised by a qualified Social Worker. Students who meet these criteria may wish to review the policies and procedures for applying to challenge the third year field placement, available upon request from the Field Education Coordinator.

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