Independent Study (SW 597)

An independent study is a learning experience that allows a student an opportunity for self-directed learning related to an area of academic and/or professional interest. The independent study will involve, in a broad sense, critical analysis and application or development of theories and concepts relating to the area of inquiry chosen by the student. Although the student may engage in creative projects or field research, such endeavors must be accompanied by the previously described academic approaches and written assignments. An independent study cannot be undertaken if a course is available or offered in the intended areas of study. For more information, please review the Department of Social Work Graduate Student Handbook in the Department Policies and Procedures section of our website.

To qualify for an independent study, a student must meet all of the following criteria:

  • be matriculated in the Master of Social Work (MSW) program
  • have a minimum GPA of 3.5 at the time of the request
  • select an independent study related to the educational goals of the student, who should have sufficient background to undertake the independent study and learn from the experience

To apply for an independent study, a student must:

  • submit a completed Independent Study Cover Sheet (.pdf, 94kb) and an acceptable proposal to a faculty member who has experience related to the area in which the independent study will be undertaken
  • begin planning well before the registration period for the semester in which the independent study will be undertaken because preparation of a proposal requires a great deal of thought and consideration

Last Updated: 10/28/14