CANDIDATE SERVICES - Social Work Candidacy Process

Social Work Candidacy

Candidacy is the application process which all undergraduate Social Work students must complete in order to progress academically in their major and be admitted to a field course and site placement.  Prior to applying to Candidacy, students progress academically through Pre-Candidacy; generally the first two years of general education and pre-candidacy coursework.



  • Complete Social Work Pre-Candidacy classes: SWO 200, SWO 220, SWO 225, SWO 300, SWO 320, SWO 332, and SWO 350 OR SWO 351.
  • Made satisfactory progress in completion of general education coursework
  • WRT 120, WRT 200, Science Course, SOC XXX, PSY 100, PSC XXX, PHI XXX, and HIS XXX (or complete/attain an Academic Passport).
  • Earned a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5
      **Please make an appointment with your faculty advisor to determine specific classes you'll take for any given semester.

Your Candidacy Application Must Include:

  • Personal Data form
  • Unofficial WCU transcript
  • Candidacy application checklist (pg 2 of packet)
  • Proof of Coursework Progress for Candidacy (pg 3 of packet)
  • Copy of your child abuse training certificate
  • Signed Professional Behavior Agreement form
  • Signed & Completed Verification Form confirming completion of the 20 hour Volunteer Service Requirement
  • Letter of Recommendation (from a non-family member) who can vouch for and recommend the student as possessing the qualities and characteristics of a good social worker.

Other Requirements for Candidacy:


Application Process:

 Any undergraduate student should follow this process in navigating the Pre-Candidacy period and applying for Candidacy:

  • Download the Candidacy application packet from the website.
  • Confirm completion, concurrent enrollment of required coursework or possess an Academic Passport via unofficial WCU transcript
  • The application packet can be filled out entirely on your computer.  One option to do so is to use Adobe Reader.
  • If using Adobe Reader, see instructions here for how to fill out your application packet or here to watch a video.
  • Once you  have complete your application and have all attachments, you must combine them into a single pdf.  For instructions on how to merge files into one pdf using Adobe Reader, click here. Or watch a video here.
  • If you are a student at the West Chester Campus, please upload a single pdf of your combined application here.
    If you are a student at the Philadelphia Campus, please upload a single pdf of your combined application here.
    WC Campus: | Philadelphia Campus:
    **Click on the links above to access sharepoint page to submit your application!
    Questions or concerns about navigating this process just be addressed to or call 610-436-2999.


Your Candidacy Application Must Include:


  • Please read this section for more information about the field education & placement process for Social Work majors (at both West Chester Main Campus and Philadelphia Campus).

  • For more information visit the BSW Field Education site: 

    West Chester Students: 
    Contact Janet Bradley, Field Director, if you are in West Chester.

    Philadelphia Students:

    Contact Keisha Kelley, Field Director, if you are in Philadelphia.

  • Keep in mind that to be considered for junior field, students must do the following:
    • Successful complete SWO 200, 220, 225, 300, 320, 332, and 350 by the end of this semester
    • Have a GPA of 2.5 or better
    • Be accepted into candidacy (students can begin to interact with the placement process if they have completed and submitted their candidacy application and are just awaiting acceptance of their application)

  • The field placement process, and to successfully enroll in SWO 375, includes:
    • Submitting candidacy application by October 1st and being accepted to candidacy.
    • Schedule an individual meeting to discuss junior field with the Field Director. (Junior year students expecting to register for SWO 375 should expect a link to be emailed to them.
    • Complete a field application on TK20, directions listed here.
    • Upload an up-to-date resume into TK20.  Your resume will be shared with potential field sites so please make sure it is formatted and free of grammar and spelling errors.
    • Attend an interview with potential field placement site.
    • Be accepted to field placement site (process clearances and other items as requested by site).
    • Start SWO 375 in Spring of that next semester.
    • Students are not to find their own field placement.  They will work with the Field Director to secure a field placement.

  • Prior to your interview at the potential field site:
    • Research the mission of the site and population served by checking their website as well as articles about the organization.

Candidate Services

Suite 107, Wayne Hall
125 W. Rosedale Avenue
West Chester, PA, 19383 
Fax: 610-436-2874

Judith MacDonald, M.A. 
Associate Director, Candidate Services

Department of Social Work
Social Work Website
Dr. Pablo Arriaza
Department Chair

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