Child Welfare Curriculum

The Child Welfare curriculum provides a comprehensive overview of child welfare policy and practice in the U.S. As federal, state and local policies change, the curriculum evolves. For example, the child welfare practice course provides a general overview of child welfare services and best practices as outlined and informed by the U.S. Children's Bureau and mandated by legislation. To see a full list of course descriptions, view the GSSW bulletin.

The minimum credits required for the MSW degree are 81 for two-year students and 54 for advanced standing students. The concentration curriculum is made up of 45 credits, and the rest is comprised of the foundation curriculum. The table below shows a list of required and elective class offerings for the Child Welfare concentration.

Area Requirements Course Offerings
Theory for Practice (3 credits required) Causes & Consequences of Child Maltreatment
Methods/Skills (9 credits required) Assessment of Mental Health in Children and Adolescents
Leadership and Supervision Skills
Practice Elements in Interventions With Children & Youth
Substance Use Interventions
Child and Adolescent Trauma
Mental Health Interventions With Children
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy
Forensic Orientation and Social Work
Domestic Violence
Interdisciplinary Approaches to School, Family & Community
Cognitive Behavioral Therapies
Grief and Loss Across the Life Span
Trauma-Informed Assessment and Intervention
Policy & Program Advocacy (3 credits required)

Child Welfare Policies & Services

Research (3 credits required) Methods for Evaluating Practice & Programs
Values for Practice (3 credits required) Critical Race Praxis
Disproportionality & Disparity Across Systems
Intergenerational Justice
Restorative Approaches in Social Work
Social Work Practice With LGBTQIA Communities
Spirituality & Social Work Practice
Disrupting Privilege and Anti-Oppressive Practice
Disability Studies
Social Work Interventions With Latinos/as
Global Relations & Poverty in Mexico
Social Development in Latin America
Conservation SW in Kenya: Context, Empowerment, Sustainability
Global Cultural Perspectives: Consensus & Conundrums
Bosnia in Transition: The Social Work Response
Historical Trauma
Feminisms in Social Work Practice
Human Trafficking: Prevention, Intervention, and Support of Its Victims
Human Sexuality
Contemporary Global Issues
Cultural Connectedness: A Journey Into Native American Country
Electives (12 credits required)

Building Resilience: Healthy Development in Childhood & Adolescence
Family Systems Theories for Social Work Practice
Intersections of Mental Health, Substance Use & Trauma
Policies and Programs for Children and Youth
Immigration Policy and Services
Mental Health & Substance Use Policies
Health Care Policy
Law of Family and Child
Assessment of Mental Health in Adults
Positive and Community Youth Development
Advanced Skills for Working With Military Families
Solution-Focused Brief Therapy
School Social Work Interventions
Existential Social Work
Experiential Therapy
Interpersonal Approaches to Counseling
Suicide Assessment & Interventions

Students may take elective courses in any of the concentrations. Students may take up to 10 elective credits from other DU graduate programs with approval of advisor & Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. Certificate students will use elective slots to fulfill certificate requirements.   

Internship (12-15 credits)

Community internship at an organization that specializes in Child Welfare. Learn more about field education.

Capstone (0 credits)  Capstone Project
University of Denver Campus

Are you interested in a career helping children and families to thrive?