Illinois State University
Illinois State University
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Child Welfare Classes

Due to a special arrangement with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, the ISU School of Social Work is able to offer two courses that will provide you with the opportunity to be educated and trained in-depth on child welfare practice and prepare you to take the Illinois Child Welfare Licensing Exam and the exam on the Child Endangerment Risk Assessment Protocol. Successful completion of two semesters of coursework in SWK 323 and SWK 324 will make you eligible to take two exams that are required for the Child Welfare Employee License. Holding this license makes you eligible for consideration and hire as a caseworker with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services or with private sector child welfare agencies such as Center for Youth and Family Solutions, The Baby Fold, The Children's Home, Children's Home and Aid, Lutheran Social Services as well as other agencies in the state.

By choosing SWK 323 and 324 as your electives you will be enhancing both your social work practice knowledge and skill –you will also be making yourself highly marketable –and doing both while enrolled in our program.
You would be very attractive to agencies as a potential hire because you would have completed training that the agencies would normally have you complete after hire—which means they would need to invest much more time waiting for your completion of the training before beginning to take on cases. Through completing the course work and training here at ISU, you would be prepared to take cases as soon as the agency you are employed with deemed you ready. All agencies would have specific orientation and training expectations—but you would have completed the bulk of your professional preparation through your participation in SWK 323 and 324.
Your participation would deepen and enrich your knowledge and skill by allowing you to apply what you have already learned in the BSW/MSW program to child welfare content related to practice, policy, and human behavior in the social environment.

Specifically: Your general knowledge in social policy will be enriched through increased learning about policy and history in child welfare—including child welfare laws and initiatives that shape the context of practice for child welfare workers.
You will:

  • expand your knowledge of ethics and professionalism by exploring the legal and ethical roles and responsibilities a child welfare worker in Illinois must fulfill.
  • develop your knowledge of theories and how they inform child welfare practice through a closer look at human behavior and development theories –including attachment theory. You will also strengthen your ability to practice effectively with diverse groups.
  • learn how trauma impacts the children and families served.
  • sharpen your practice skills through opportunities to further develop your interviewing skills with individuals and with will get the opportunity to learn and apply assessment skills that will help you identify the signs and symptoms of child abuse and neglect as well as identify the influence of chemical dependency, domestic violence, sexual abuse, mental illness and developmental disabilities on children and families.
  • increase your documentation skills—with practice, practice, practice!
  • learn how to develop service plans with families.
  • learn how the juvenile court system works and how social workers function within it.

And you will be well prepared to pass required exams and be ready to go on the job market at a time when the child welfare workforce is in need of many new social workers.

2018-03-05T13:08:26.442-06:00 2018