Taught by USC professors, seminar-style classes are kept small — with a 12:1 student-to-faculty ratio — to encourage conversation and collaboration. In the MSW@USC classroom, there is no back row: all students actively participate in the discussion.
INTIMATE: No more than 12 students in each class.
ACCESSIBLE: Recorded lectures available 24/7.
DYNAMIC: Familiar social networking tools.
Immersive Course Content
Between live class sessions, students complete coursework online. Coursework —which includes video case studies, readings and research — is designed to support class discussion and to facilitate real-world application of social work practice. Students can access coursework from anywhere they have an Internet connection, or they can download content to view offline. Students can also access coursework on the go through apps for mobile phones and tablets.
Bidirectional Learning Tool™ Through this completely revolutionary learning tool, professors can engage with students through assignments — in real time, online. Students are able to comment on the content they watch and even receive feedback from professors and classmates. In this example, the professor shows a clip from a video and then prompts students to answer a question that promotes discussion.
Field education is an important aspect of any social work program, and students in the MSW@USC spend 50 percent of their program working in the field. Students begin with Virtual Field Practicum (VFP), a small-group, faculty-supervised online course in which students work with an actor playing the role of a client to simulate real-world situations. After students complete 210 hours of VFP, they are placed by the MSW@USC field team in agencies in or near their communities.
The MSW@USC fosters an environment of collaboration, where students and faculty build real connections that go beyond the classroom. On the online platform, students are able to meet outside of live class sessions for group discussion, team projects and even happy hours. Much like familiar social networking sites, the MSW@USC virtual campus features a discussion wall so students can keep in touch about classwork and personal interests. Students are also able to form groups in the virtual campus, which means they can find classmates with similar interests or students who live in their local area.
It’s an amazing, innovative program that allows a student to get so much more than they would from a larger, bricks-and-mortar-style classroom. Small class sizes means you really get to know your professors and classmates, and the program itself is one of the best in the country.
Support services begin the moment candidates inquire about the MSW@USC program. From the start of the application process to graduation, students are supported with technical assistance, academic advising and field placement.
What I enjoy most about supporting students is helping them realize that they’re no more than three years away from finally doing the work they felt like they were born to do. It’s an honor to be a part of a student’s first step toward entering a field they are passionate about.