The LIU Post Department of Social Work offers the Advanced Standing Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) program at LIU Brentwood with a concentration in in child and family welfare.  The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), signifying that it meets the highest standards of academic excellence.

Students who have successfully completed foundation coursework achieved under the auspices of an accredited baccalaureate program may be eligible for Advanced Standing status. The Advanced Standing program is 33 credits including SWK 614 (3 credits) and all second year courses (30 credits). This policy complies with the Council on Social Work Education's guidelines regarding advanced standing. Students are not expected to repeat coursework already covered in an accredited social work program; however, only those courses in which the student has received a "B" or better will be accepted for credit. Up to one full year of credit may be accepted.

The advanced standing curriculum builds upon the baccalaureate curriculum by deepening the student’s understanding and demonstrated mastery of psychosocial assessment, administrative theory and practice, and diversity sensitive practice.

  • The research curriculum in the advanced standing program supports the concentrated study by demonstrating application of research methodology to the student’s specialized area of concentration.
  • Required field experience provides an opportunity for the student to apply generalist and specialized knowledge in the concentration area.

Admissions Requirements

Students who are interested in the Advanced Standing MSW program should apply for Regular Admissions by August 15. 

Advanced Standing Eligibility

Advanced Standing status is only awarded to graduates of baccalaureate social work programs accredited by CSWE.  Students must hold a BSW/BASW, or equivalent to be considered for advance standing status.  Each student must apply for advanced standing and each case is reviewed individually.  Please note that holding a BSW/BASW degree does not automatically grant an applicant advance standing status and you must apply to be considered and accepted. Additionally, only foundation level social work courses where the student has received a "B" or better will be accepted for credit towards the MSW in the advanced standing program. 

Applicants to the MSW Advanced Standing must submit:

 1. Application

2. Three (3) letters of recommendation (2 if apply directly to campus). One letter must be from undergraduate field director speaking to ones’ competence as a generalist social worker.

3. All official transcripts

4. A copy of applicants’ undergraduate field evaluation completed by student’s field instructor.

5. Personal Statement:

The general purpose of your Personal Statement is to demonstrate your writing skills, which are necessary for graduate level work. You should be certain that your answers are a fair sample of your ability to express yourself logically and in a grammatically correct format.

Your statement should be 2 -4 pages and include the questions below.

  1. Briefly describe your reasons for selecting social work as a career path and identify the ways in which your values correspond with those of the profession.
  2. Describe the reasons for your choice of the LIU Collaborative MSW for graduate study. 

Applicants will be evaluated:

1. Have a minimum overall grade point average of 3.0 (on a scale of 4.0), and 3.0 in the major. Exceptions for extenuating circumstances will be made on an individual basis, and may require supportive materials.

2. Demonstrate a mastery of the foundation year content while in a BSW/BASW program.

3. Three (or two) professional letters of recommendation, one letter must be from your undergraduate field director speaking to ones’ competence as a generalist social worker.

4. Copy of your undergraduate field evaluation completed by your field instructor.

5. Must have completed your BSW/BASW within the last 5 years.

Degree Requirements

Required Social Work Major Courses

SWK/HPA 18 Research Methods
SWK/HPA 19 Statistics for the Administrators
HPA 20 Computer-Based Management Systems
SWK 1* Introduction to Social Work and Social Welfare
SWK 50, 51 Social Welfare Programs & Policies I & II
SWK 60, 61 Human Behavior in the Social Environment I & II
SWK 70, 71 Social Work Practice I & II
SWK 75 Diversity-Sensitive Social Work Practice
SWK 79 Introduction to Field Instruction
SWK 80, 90 & 91 Field Instruction I, II, & III

Completion of the prerequisites (if not transferred) PSY 1, 2; SOC 1; BIO 1; ECO 10 or 11; PHL 13

*course may transfer from SCCC
Transfer students from community colleges will be given credit for courses that are judged equivalent to CW Post courses and may need to take additional prerequisite courses concurrent with foundation Social Work courses. Transfer of students from Suffolk Community College is facilitated by an articulation agreement with the program.

Students must maintain a cumulative GPA of 2.5 or higher and a cumulative GPA of 2.75 in the foundation and related social work courses to retain standing in the program. The Program makes every attempt to assist and address students’ difficulties in both the classroom and the field, before a problem affects performance. One semester of probation is granted to students to bring up grades to the designated standards. Students who do not meet the GPA requirements by the last semester of the Senior year are not allowed to graduate unless courses are repeated and the GPA requirements are met. There is one exception to this allowance for probationary students. Those who fail any course in field experience are dismissed from the program with no opportunity for probation. 

Total Degree Credit Requirements: 128 for transfer students

Course Descriptions


SWK 614: Advanced Principles of Administrative and Clinical Practice within an Interdisciplinary Context:  The course is designed to orient advanced standing students to advanced practice knowledge introduced in the first year of the two year MSW program to close a knowledge gap between advanced standing students and regularly matriculated students. As such, the course provides a theoretical orientation to the interdisciplinary context of social work practice; identifies the components of role conflict resolution; and, explores strategies for promoting interdisciplinary collaboration. Building upon the generalist model, this course demonstrates the linkages between a generalist perspective and an integrated theoretical perspective for advanced clinical practice with individuals and groups. The course also explores commonalities and differences between a generalist perspective for working with families and more specialized approaches.   Special emphasis is placed on psychodynamic systems and cognitive/behavioral theories and techniques of intervention with individuals, groups and families.

SWK 623: Administrative Behavior: A Context for Social Work: This course provides students with a conceptual framework for understanding human service organizations with a special emphasis on the social work field.  It explores the role and function of the agency-based social work practitioner and manager through the study of organizational behavior and structure. Students also consider the function of human service organizations within the context of economic, political, social and technological factors and the ways in which these factors influence administration and service delivery. The course provides an overview of important management functions and tasks that are necessary to provide quality services to clients including how to manage information, finances, and people.

SWK 650: Psychopathology: This course provides a bio-psycho-social perspective to a range of Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, 4th Ed Text Revised (DSM-IV-TR) classified maladaptive behaviors that are exhibited by many social work clients.  It provides an in-depth study of the etiology, course, prognosis, and treatment of major psychological and psychiatric conditions.  The DSM-V TR multiaxial system will serve as a backdrop and context in which these conditions will be presented and studied.  The Competency Based Assessment Model, which follows a “process of reviewing and understanding an individual’s past in order to distinguish and interpret present concerns,” (Zide & Grey 2001) is the theoretical and philosophical framework through which the course’s information will flow.  Student will become familiar with DSM-V-TR diagnostic criteria and the empirical and epidemiological data that supports each diagnosis.  The course will also look at the behaviors that are evaluated in the process of arriving at a differential diagnosis.  The cultural context will play a major role in understanding these conditions. Finally, the course will examine evidence –based treatment modalities for various DSM-V TR diagnoses and will provide the students with an opportunity to practice major treatment techniques via class activities such as role play.

SWK 790:  Capstone:  In the final semester of study, all LIU-MSW students must complete a Capstone Project. “The Capstone” represents the culminating assignment for the Social Work Program. It requires students to complete an individual paper with an emphasis on interdisciplinary collaboration and/or role conflict. The Capstone is a scholarly paper written in American Psychological Association (APA) style. An exceptional paper will show an integrated and complete understanding of the topic selected by the student.   The best papers are well structured and carefully focused.

Students have discretion over their choice of topic with an emphasis on interdisciplinary practice and role conflicts, within the context of students’ second year field placement setting. Students may select a topic that focuses on identifying the factors associated with a perceived role conflict and generate a “theory” regarding the incidence of the problem. Alternatively, students may select to explore a mezzo or macro level conflict within an organizational or legislative policy context that may result in a role conflict for social workers.  The conflict may also involve fragmentation or duplication in service delivery resulting in confusion or disagreement with regard to interdisciplinary role expectations.

The methodology will vary according to type of project which may range from policy analysis in theoretical context (e.g. conflict theory); organizational analysis/ needs assessment and development of strategic plan; analysis of survey data regarding conflicts in perceptions of role and/or or content analysis of interview data regarding some aspect of interdisciplinary role conflict. Valid options for capstone include document research, strategic planning projects as well as quantitative and/or qualitative research projects.

SWK 799: Research II: Advanced Research Methods for Practice: Research II, the second course in this sequence is taught during the fall semester of the advanced curriculum year. It builds upon the knowledge-base that was established in Research I. Research II provides the specialist graduate student with knowledge and skills necessary to appreciate “the application of scientific, analytical approach to building knowledge for practice and for evaluating service delivery in all areas of practice" (C.S.W.E., 2000). Research II focuses on application and expansion of basic research skills that were taught in Research I. Ethical principles of research are reinforced throughout the course. Guided by ethical principles, and building on skills that they have acquired in Research I, students have the opportunity to propose a research project, focusing on investigating role conflict in an interdisciplinary context of social work practice, which they may then choose to expand on as the Capstone assignment during the spring semester. Students choose a topic that is unique and specific to their respective areas of concentration.  Students learn how to apply research methods and how to collect and analyze data in order to generate knowledge about, and to systematically evaluate, the practice of social work in their respective areas of concentration.  Students also learn to consider ethical and multicultural issues as they design evaluation instruments for practice and policy of social work and as they learn how to derive conclusions from empirical data.


The M.S.W. concentration in Child and Family Welfare will provide educational curriculum to students interested in working in an interdisciplinary context with children and their families. This concentration was developed with input from the Nassau County Department of Social Services, Nassau County Coalition Against Domestic Violence, Family and Children’s Association and other community based organizations’ personnel. It incorporates knowledge, values, and skills that professionals need to effectively work with children and their families across a broad range of social issues and in multiple programs. After completing their first year MSW coursework, students in the second (concentration) year will then develop their understanding about policies and services specific to children and families, family violence across the lifespan, community based practice with children and families and childhood psychopathology.

SWK 660: Families & Children: Policies & Services:  This course enables students to build upon their knowledge of social welfare policy and services and apply this knowledge to the needs of children and their families. It presents students with knowledge of concepts, policies and practices, which characterize child welfare services in American society. It provides historical and legal information about various policies and programs within family and children’s services at the federal, state and local levels and examines the multiple systems that influence the life of children and their families. In addition, it explores current trends, controversial and topical issues in child welfare and family services and the social worker’s role in an interdisciplinary approach, and how to advocate for individuals and families.

SWK 661: Family Violence across the Lifespan:  This course examines the problem and consequences of family violence across the lifespan and its impact on children. It presents theoretical, research, policy and practice issues involving intra-familial child abuse and neglect, intimate partner violence, child witnessing of intimate partner violence, and elder abuse. It explores individual and group level interventions, structural influences on family violence, and policy implications in the field of social work. In addition, the course will emphasize rights to safety and safety planning for populations at-risk within the context of social justice with an emphasis of how interdisciplinary approach can assist in the empowerment of survivors of abuse.

SWK 662: Community Based Practice with Children and Families:  This course provides students with the opportunity to hear community based practitioners present actual case studies based on a “case of the week” model. These cases provide students with the opportunity to review family and children type cases presented by local practitioners.  Each case will present a client profile, history, bio-psycho-social assessment and Questions/Discussion to precede the practitioner’s discussion of the actual case outcome/current standing.  Cases will come from a variety of organizations including some that focus on prevention, child abuse and maltreatment, foster care and adoption, substance abuse, physical and emotional disabilities, health and mental health.    

SWK 630:  Forensic Social Work & the Criminal and Juvenile Justice Systems                  

The course provides an overview of the specialty of forensic social work and its interface with the criminal justice system, from arrest to sentencing and conviction. Legal and ethical aspects of professional practice, including issues associated with competency of the accused as well as the preparation of the presentence forensic evaluation. The debate regarding punishment versus rehabilitation is explored along with a multi-systemic perspective on the causes and prevention of crime and juvenile misconduct. Their interface with sexual, religious, racial and other sub-group involvement will also be discussed and realized.           

SWK 703: Field Instruction III: This is the third course in a four semester Field Instruction sequence in the Master of Social Work program. The first two semesters of Field Instruction provide the Foundation and the second two semesters provide the Specialization. The Specialization year prepares students 1) to gain expertise in gerontology, nonprofit management, alcohol and substance abuse counseling, child and family welfare or forensic social work; 2) to function at an advanced level of competence in a social service delivery system; 3) to continue to practice problem-solving and relationship-building skills; 4) and to continue to integrate and apply knowledge from Practice, Policy, HBSE and Research to work with client systems.

SWK 704: Field Instruction IV: This is the fourth course in a four semester Field Instruction sequence in the Master of Social Work program. The first two semesters of Field Instruction provide the Foundation and the second two semesters provide the Specialization. The Specialization year prepares students 1) to gain expertise in gerontology, nonprofit management alcohol and substance abuse counseling, child and family welfare or forensic social work; 2) to function at an advanced level of competence in a social service delivery system; 2) to continue to practice problem-solving and relationship-building skills; 3) and to further develop and integrate and apply knowledge from Practice, Policy, HBSE and Research to work with client systems.


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Phone: 631-287-8500