Practicum Education

LEAD 2024

Practicum Education has been designated the signature pedagogy of Social Work Education. Signature pedagogy represents the central form of instruction and learning in which a profession socializes its students to perform the role of practitioner. Professionals have pedagogical norms with which they connect and integrate theory and practice. The intent of practicum education is to connect the theoretical and conceptual contribution of the classroom with the practical world of the social work practice setting. It is a basic precept of social work education that the two interrelated components of curriculum (classroom learning and practicum instruction) are of equal importance within the curriculum, with each contributing to the development of the requisite competencies of professional practice. Practicum education is systematically designed, supervised, coordinated, and evaluated based on criteria by which students demonstrate mastery of the program’s core competencies as operationalized by the practice behaviors outlined by the School and the Council on Social Work Education Educational and Policy Accreditation Standards (EPAS, 2022) for each level. Practicum Education is consistently evaluated by students as one of the high points of the student’s education. Click to view the CSWE Competencies

Students participate in experiential and integrative learning opportunities in affiliated community organizations. This experience additionally prepares students for the professional positions they will assume in the marketplace after graduation. Students learn under the supervision of a qualified practicum instructor and with the support of a practicum advisor and liaison from the School of Social Work. 

The practicum education experience is supported through an online software. All practicum-related documents are both created and housed in this HIPAA-compliant software program. The system is managed by the students, assigned faculty, and the practicum education office. Requests for practicum placements, practicum learning plans, evaluations, and timesheets are a few examples of documents managed through the online software.

Please visit the program pages below for a full list of FAQs.

BASW Practicum Education

BASW Students participate in experiential and integrative learning in affiliated community organizations. 

MSW Practicum Education

The Practicum Education Office has partnerships with over 500 agencies to maximize the practicum opportunities for our MSW students.

Agencies and Practicum Instructors

The practicum instructor plays an integral role in the student's education. They function as a teacher, a guide, and a role model for the student's development as a social worker. 

An Overview of the Practicum Placement Process

Explore the process of practicum placement.

Resources for Students

Resources for student-related clearances, public transportation, DRS, county agencies, and social work professional organizations.

Contact Us/Practicum Calendar

The Pitt School of Social Work Practicum Education office is here to help!