MSW: Master of Social Work

West Chester University

West Chester Campus

Reynolds Hall
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
Phone: 610-436-2664

PASSHE Center City

701 Market Street, Concourse Level
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Phone: 267-386-3015

Curriculum: Standards for Professional Behavior

It is the expectation of West Chester University's Graduate Social Work Department that all MSW students consistently and routinely demonstrate professional behavior in accordance with the NASW Code of Ethics and the expectations listed below.


  • Meet attendance expectations of classes, field placement, and other meetings with regularity and reliability
  • Notify professors, field instructors, and colleagues prior to any absences or late arrivals
  • Arrive for class, field placement, and other meetings prepared to participate
  • Meet course expectations


  • Demonstrate integrity and honesty in all matters
  • Demonstrate willingness to work collaboratively with others
  • Show respect for others' opinions
  • Remain open to positive and constructive feedback from peers, faculty, staff, and field instructors
  • Demonstrate a willingness to understand and engage difference and diversity
  • Maintain attire and appearance in accord with the expectations and standards for the setting

Communication skills

  • Demonstrate effective and respectful verbal and non-verbal communication, such as eye contact and personal space
  • Demonstrate the ability to discuss and process information
  • Clearly articulate ideas, thoughts, and concepts

Self-awareness and self-control

  • Communicate effectively and respectfully
  • Demonstrate an awareness of personal strengths and challenges
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the appropriate use of self-disclosure
  • Demonstrate emotional regulation
  • Demonstrate unimpaired judgment and decision-making

Use of technology

  • Demonstrate basic competency in word processing, use of email, and use of Internet
  • Use public and private technology, including but not limited to social networking, texting or emailing, voicemail, and data storage, in a professional and respectful manner
  • Abide by specific classroom and field policies regarding use of all technologies
  • Follow the ethical and legal standards for privacy and confidentiality in accordance with state, federal, agency, and institutional standards