Academic Counselling for MSW Students
The administrative staff are crucial supports in the academic life of the Faculty. They are accessible to you and provide information on procedures and resources. Contact the appropriate office if you have questions related to your educational program or practicum.
Program Planning and Faculty Advisor Role
Your faculty advisor is your personal contact on faculty and is available to encourage, support and advocate on your behalf. We try to group students with similar interests so you may benefit from joint discussions. Your faculty advisor is available to you throughout the program for discussion, brain storming, advice, etc.. Every faculty member has a number of student advisees. We try to balance the number of students in each advisor’s group.
The following items illustrate in some detail the range of activities involved in the advisor role:
- Your faculty advisor is expected to let you know how to contact him/her and how to make appointments;
- In September, advisors take part in welcoming and orienting students to the program, and when necessary, to the campus and the city;
- Your advisor will discuss social work education with you and help you to focus your studies given your background and career goals and the MSW program objectives and resources;
- Help you get connected to other departments of the university for courses and other opportunities;
- Be available by appointment as a resource to discuss educational and related issues, problems and solutions;
- Refer students for information and service;
- Write official Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social Work reference letters on behalf of students. You may want to discuss this as you begin your job search.
Consultation with your faculty advisor as an educational resource is particularly useful when decisions and choices are expected such as selection of practicum options and placement, selection of courses and discussion of outside department courses. You also are free to consult with any faculty member. Please note that for specific practicum information you may wish to inquire with our Practicum Office and the Faculty Registrar concerning course availability.
When planning your academic program, consider the kinds of social work settings and positions you would want to work in for the first few years of your practice. What are the knowledge, skill sets and experience required to work in these positions? This may assist you in selecting courses and practicum settings. In the Spring before you enter Year Two, you are given an opportunity to meet your faculty advisor to discuss your plans.
Your program should be based on several criteria:
- Its relevance to social work purpose;
- Its achievability within the resources of the Faculty and the University;
- Its relationship to a full range of social work concerns, including contextual, substantive and interventive considerations.