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Field Placement

Field placement is an important component of all social work degree programs. In fact, the Council on Social Work Education refers to field placement as the “signature pedagogy” of the profession.  As such field placement is essential to both the Bachelor’s and Master’s degree programs of the Department of Social Work at the University of Memphis. Field placement is designed to help students who are seeking to integrate their academic learning so as to understand and develop good social work skills for entering the profession.  An internship placement provides opportunities for the student to apply concepts and skills learned in the classroom in a real-world work setting and to build a work history of relevant experience that will assist students in beginning their social work careers.

The purpose of the internship is to provide students with the opportunity to test the knowledge and skills they have acquired in academic courses and to identify areas in which they need additional education and experience.  The placement also exposes students to the skills, knowledge, and value systems of educated professional social workers who are engaged in serving the community. Students learn role behaviors and techniques necessary to function effectively as social workers.  The experience provides further value by helping students to decide what kind of position they wish to pursue after graduation. 

Internships, primarily, are to provide a learning experience for the student, but students engaged in placement provide a valuable community service, as well, by contributing to the organizations where they engage as interns.

Specific aspects of the BA and MSW field placement processes are addressed in the respective sections of the undergraduate and graduate programs of study.

Field Agency Directory

Field Agency Directory Disclaimer:

This document is to serve as a reference tool for current and future students in understanding the types of clinical placements available to them through the community agency collaborations with University of Memphis Department of Social Work.

This is not an exhaustive list and affiliations with community agencies and internships availabilities change frequently.

If you have suggestions about agencies not referenced on the directory, please feel free to contact

Dr. Susan E. Elswick (Director of MSW Field Placement) or

Laura C. Taylor (Director of BA Field Placement)

for further assistance.

As stated in the Student Field Manual, assignment to field placement remains solely the province of the program's field director.

BASW Field Placement
BASW Field Manual


MSW Field Placement
MSW Field Manual

Attention: Field Instructors, MSW students, and BA students, please click the link below to view and download necessary field forms and guides.

Field Forms and Guides


FI Training Module


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Last Updated: 2/24/15