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Social Work

MSW Program: Introduction

The initial goal of SWEEP was to work in partnership with Addis Ababa University in Ethiopia to establish a Masters in Social Work. In 2004, Addis Ababa University started a new School of Social Work, followed by a PhD program in Social Work and Social Development in 2006. The Vision, Mission, Objectives and Goals, and Core Values of the School of Social Work were revised in 2007. The Rationale and Process for MSW Curriculum Revision was completed in 2007, and a new curriculum is in place to prepare students to work with disenfranchised populations within the Ethiopian society.

The graduate program in social work at AAU uses the Global Standards for the Education and Training of the Social Work Profession to guide the MSW curriculum. These guidelines were adopted at the General Assembly of IASSW and IFSW in Adelaide, Australia in 2004. They are available for download in PDF format (~382 KB).


Vision and Mission Statements of the School

VISION: Social justice is realized in Ethiopia with the Graduate School of Social Work, Addis Ababa University as a leading institution of social work education in Africa, excelling in teaching, research, consultancy and public service.

MISSION: The Graduate School of Social Work, Addis Ababa University exists to contribute to equity and social justice in Ethiopia by undertaking quality research, promoting excellence in teaching, developing a professional knowledge base, producing capable social workers and empowering people and communities.


Social Work Education Underlying Assumptions

The purpose of the MSW program is to prepare competent social work professionals who are prepared to alleviate poverty, oppression, and to promote social justice. To this end, the MSW is based on a body of knowledge, values, behaviors and professional skills that meet international standards in order to address the current and future needs of Ethiopia. The ultimate objective of the MSW program is to produce leaders of organizations charged with the responsibilities of developing and delivering social services; and preparing students to pursue doctoral studies. Finally, the program will maintain close, reciprocal and ongoing relationships with social work practitioners and organizations that promote or influence Social Work and social policies both at national and international levels.


Graduate Profile

The Graduate School of Social Work is expected to produce graduates who:

  1. Draw on their knowledge, values, and skills to help people in need and to address social problems;
  2. Pursue social change particularly with and on behalf of vulnerable individuals and group of people;
  3. Focus their social change efforts primarily on issues of poverty, unemployment, discrimination, and other forms of social injustice;
  4. Seek to promote sensitivity to and knowledge about cultural and/or ethnic diversity;
  5. Strive to ensure access to needed information services and resources, equality of opportunity, and meaningful participation in decision making for all people;
  6. Strengthen relationships among people in purposeful effort to promote, restore and maintain and enhance the well being of individuals, families, social groups, organizations and communities;
  7. Endeavor to enhance peoples capacity and opportunity to change and address their own needs;
  8. Engage in social work practice from a sound empirical base to understand, critique, interpret and apply theory to practical situations and conduct social work research;
  9. Understand individual and social functions and dysfunctions and utilize this knowledge in designing, implementing, managing, monitoring and evaluations social services;
  10. Promote the responsiveness of organizations communities and other institutions to individual's needs and social problems;
  11. Uphold the mission, values and ethical principles and ethical standards and practices of the Social Work Profession;
  12. Demonstration of the abilities of analytical and critical thinking skills with in the context of professional Social Work practice, essential to effectiveness of current social work methods.


Admission Requirements:

  1. Candidates will be eligible to apply for admission if they have obtained a Bachelor's Degree in Social Sciences and Health Sciences such as Social Work, Sociology, Psychology, Public Health, Economics, Law and Political Science.
  2. The applicants are also expected to meet the requirements set by the GSSW.
  3. Admission into the Master of Social Work (MSW) Program requires the approval of the Council of Graduate Studies and Research of the University and is effected according to the rules and regulations set forth by the School of Graduate Studies.


Degree Nomenclature and Award Requirements

Successful graduates of this program will earn a "Master of Social Work (MSW)". The Amharic translation of this shall read as: Te}` =] ufhM ` The MSW degree consists of 34 credits taken over a two year period including the MSW thesis. Thirty (30) credits are delivered in a seminar format in the classroom. Global standards for the MSW degree in Social Work require the practical application of theory, knowledge, and skills through field placements in agencies and community organizations.

The award is given upon fulfillment of the following three requirements, subject to approval by the University Senate:

  1. Passes with grades of "B" or better in each course taken in the Post Graduate Program and a cumulative grade point average (CGPA) of 3.00;
  2. Complete 712 clock hours of Field Placement Education; and
  3. Timely submission and successful defense of a thesis.


MSW Curriculum (Revised 2007)

SSWA 601 Integrated Social Work Methods I - Small Groups and Communities (3 credits)
SSWA 602-Integrated Social Work Methods II - Individuals and Families (3 Credits)
SSWA 661 Culture, Human Behavior, and Counseling (3 credits)
SSWA 642 Research Methods I (3 credits)
SSWA 611 Community Health & Social Work in the Health Field (3 credits)
SSWA 621- SSWA 621 Management and Leadership (3 credits)
SSWA 631 Social Policy Analysis (3 credits)
SSWA 682 Research Methods II (3 credits)
SSWA 671 Community Development, Capacity Building, and Planned Change (3 credits)
SSWA 681- MSW Thesis Project (4 credits)
SSWA 690/691/692 - Fieldwork Practice (no credits)


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