School of Social Work

Practicum Placement Process

  • Step 1 - Attend Practicum Introduction Meeting
    BSW and MSW Foundation year students will attend a Practicum Introduction meeting early in the spring semester prior to starting a placement. Students will be notified of the date, time, and location of the meeting via email. This is a mandatory meeting for all students and will provide an opportunity to learn about the Practicum Education Program and outline the placement process, requirements, and expectations.
  • Step 2 - Research Placement Agencies

    An email notification from the Practicum Coordinator will be sent to students to get set up in our online practicum placement system CalState S4(opens in new window). Students will use this system to begin to research placement sites and learn about the different areas of social work practice, populations, and learning opportunities available.

  • Step 3 - Attend the Practicum Fair
    Current BSW juniors and MSW students, including MSW program applicants, are invited to and strongly encouraged to attend the Practicum Fair that takes place mid-February. The Practicum Fair provides an opportunity for students to interact with community agencies on an informal basis and inquire information about the population(s) served, services offered, and learning opportunities available to a student intern.
  • Step 4 - Sign up for a placement meeting

    BSW students will receive a Google link to sign up for a small group placement meeting (5-6 students per group). 

    MSW students will also receive a link to sign up for individual placement meetings with the Practicum Education Director/Practicum Coordinator.

  • Step 5 - Complete Practicum Application

    Students will complete the practicum application form in CalState S4. The practicum application is designed to assist the practicum team in guiding students to appropriate community agencies to interview with based on the student's volunteer/work experience, previous practicum placement, areas of interest, and special needs or requests. 

    The practicum application must be completely filled out prior to your scheduled placement meeting with the Practicum Education Director or Practicum Coordinator.

  • Step 6 - Attend Placement Meeting

    Students will attend their scheduled placement meeting, making sure that they have submitted their practicum application and attached a draft of their resume prior to the meeting. 

    At the placement meeting we will review the placement process moving forward and go into detail about interviewing, professionalism, and next steps. Each student will meet one-on-one with the Practicum Education Director/Practicum Coordinator to review their application and collaboratively determine 2 agencies to interview with. Students will also receive feedback on their resume with tips and suggestions for improvement. 

  • Step 7 - Prepare for your practicum placement interview

    After attending the placement meeting, students should immediately begin preparing for their practicum placement interviews(opens in new window). Preparation includes:

  • Step 8 - Contact placement agencies to schedule your interview

    Once you have received contact information for the agencies you have been referred to for an interview, you should send an email or place a phone call asap, introducing yourself and requesting to schedule a placement interview. 

    Set a reminder in your phone or make a note in your planner when you have scheduled the interviews so you don't forget!

  • Step 9 - Attend placement interviews

    Students will attend both placement interviews, making sure to arrive at least 5 minutes early and be dressed appropriately for the interview, prepared with questions, have copies of resume, and knowledge of the agency, the population they serve, and the services they offer. 

    Students should make every effort to attend their placement interviews on the scheduled day/time. If a personal or family emergency or illness arises students should communicate with the agency contact as soon as possible to reschedule. 

  • Step 10 - Submit agency preference list

    Once a student has completed both of their interviews, they will fill out the Agency Preference List and email it to the Practicum Education Director/Practicum Coordinator. 

    The Practicum Education Team will begin the matching process that will continue into the summer.

    Please note that no placement is considered final until both the student and the agency have communicated their preferences to the practicum staff.

    Students will receive confirmation of their placement by the first week of August so they can begin the onboarding process, which could include a background check, drug screening, agency paperwork, etc. Students should work with their agency to complete these requirements early enough so they will be cleared to begin practicum hours by the date listed on the practicum calendar(opens in new window)