MSW Field Education Frequently Asked Questions

There are Manuals in the SSW office that describe agencies and learning opportunities for students.  In addition, please contact the Director of Field Education to discuss your areas of interest and agencies you may have an interest in a placement.

The UNC Charlotte Social Work Field Education Office seeks placements within a sixty (60) mile radius of the campus.  Any agency placement further than that must be approved by the Field Education Committee in advance.  Most agencies are located in Mecklenburg County, but there are opportunities offered in Cabarrus, Rowan, Gaston, Union, and Lincoln, Davidson, Stanly and Catawba counties.  If an agency has the capacity to do virtual visits, then placements at sites that are further than sixty (60) miles may be considered.

Students submit an MSW Field Application, Resume and may have to complete additional forms for a specific agency.  The Director of Field Education sends the application electronically to the agency contact and then the student is notified electronically that they will need to schedule an interview.  Based on the interview, the Agency may decide to offer you a placement or not accept you.  It is strongly encouraged that you also do research on the agency before you interview.

Yes.  Students should submit their MSW placement application and Resume as early as possible and contact the Director of Field Education to discuss agencies where the student may potentially be considered for placement.

Once Accepted in a Field Placement by the Agency, students must do the following:

  1. Complete a Field Placement Agreement, obtain the signature of their field instructor, and return it to the Field Education Office to be placed in your file.
  2. Review the College of Health and Human Services Drug Screen and Criminal Background Check Policy, sign it and return to the field education office to be placed in your file.
  3. Complete the online Blood Bourne Pathogens Tutorial/Test.  This is required on an annual basis.
  4. Submit a copy of your current immunization records  and the CHHS Clinical Agency Requirements form to the College of Health and Human Services Advising Center (Room 103) with all immunizations up to date.
  5. Submit any additional testing that may be required by your agency.  Please check with the Field Education Department about your specific agency.

Advanced Standing Students will begin their field placement on the first day of the fall and spring semesters.

First year and second year full time MSW students are placed in their field agency for two (2) days a week for sixteen (16) hours during the fall and spring semesters of the academic year.  Placement days are Monday and Tuesday.

Advanced Standing MSW students are placed in their field agency for two (2) days a week for sixteen (16) hours during the academic year.  Placement days are Monday and Tuesday.

Students generally complete field requirements on the days noted, but if the agency can provide the learning opportunities at different times and there is clinical supervision available during the non traditional hours, the change may be discussed with the field office.

Students do not have to be in field education during school holidays, days the university is closed for “inclement weather” or school breaks with the following exceptions

  • School placements will not be in field education during the spring break of the school district, but must be there during UNC Charlotte spring break

UNC Charlotte School of Social Work has an Employment Field Placement Policy and Procedure which may be accessed on the website.  Placements must be approved by the Field Education Committee and must be in a different area at the agency than where you currently work, thus meeting your learning needs.  In addition, a student must have been employed at the agency for a minimum of ninety (90) days to be eligible for an employment based field placement.

The VA offers stipends and this is a very competitive process.  Due dates for the following academic year are generally in October students should attend an information session on this placement option. 

UNC Charlotte has secured insurance and this is covered by your fees.  It is important to note that the insurance only covers you in your SOWK Practicum coursework.  If you decide to take an elective in the Counseling Department, students must secure  their own malpractice insurance.

The North Carolina Child Welfare Education Collaborative (CWEC) includes specialized, in-depth training in child welfare knowledge, values, and best practices. The program was established in 1999 to improve public child welfare services in North Carolina and is administered by the Jordan Institute for Families at UNC Chapel Hill.  CWEC ensures that graduates meet the state's pre-service training (PST) competency requirements. CWEC seeks to increase the number of professionally educated social workers in public child welfare in North Carolina. The University of North Carolina at Charlotte School of Social Work began participating in the Collaborative in 2002.   

More information about the NC Child Welfare Collaborative can be found here.

For additional information about participating in the NC Child Welfare Education Collaborative at UNC Charlotte, please contact the site coordinator.

Dr. Ticola C. Ross
(704) 687-7932 

Most importantly, the agency must be willing to provide positive learning opportunities for social work students.  They must also have an MSW who is a graduate of a CSWE accredited institution and has had two (2) years practice experience.  Each agency has a site visit from the field education office, must sign and affiliation agreement with UNC Charlotte and any new field instructor attend new field instructor orientation

It is strongly recommended to make this a priority when you are accepted for admission since we compete for placements with other universities and the earlier in the process you submit, the more choices the student may have for placements.