MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK MSW PRACTICUM MANUAL

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1 FACULTY OF SOCIAL WORK MASTER OF SOCIAL WORK MSW PRACTICUM MANUAL SEPTEMBER 2011

2 TABLE OF CONTENTS Where to find required forms... 3 Where to find completed practicum reports... 3 INTRODUCTION... 4 THE MSW FIELD PRACTICUM 1. What is Field Practicum? Steps to Setting up the Field Practicum Student Responsibilities: Field Practicum Proposal Ethical Considerations The Practicum: Supervision and Evaluation Who is Involved: Roles and Responsibilities Field Practicum Report and Presentation Elements to be Included in Practicum Report Writing Standards Evaluation and Distribution of the Field Practicum Report THE MSW RESEARCH PRACTICUM 1. What is a Research Practicum? Steps to Setting up the Research Practicum Student Responsibilities: Research Practicum Proposal Ethics and Other Forms of Approval The Practicum: Supervision and Evaluation Who is Involved: Roles and Responsibilities Research Practicum Report/Journal Article and Presentation Evaluation and Distribution of Research Practicum Report

3 WHERE TO FIND THE REQUIRED FORMS Required forms related to the Field Practicum and the Research Practicum can be found on line at the Faculty of Social Work website at Field Practicum Field Practicum Evaluation Certification of Field Practicum Work License for Thesis, Dissertation, Research Practicum, and Field Practicum Research Practicum Research Practicum Evaluation Certification of Research Practicum Work License for Thesis, Dissertation, Research Practicum, and Field Practicum WHERE TO FIND COPIES OF COMPLETED PRACTICUM REPORTS Beginning in 2010 all Practicum Reports are stored online at the University of Regina Library at: 1. Go to Ourspace at 2. Click on Communities & Collections 3. Click on Faculty of Social Work 4. Click MSW Research Practicum Reports or MSW Field Practicum Reports Copies of Practicum Reports prior to 2010 are stored in the MSW Student Lounge on campus at the University of Regina. 3

4 INTRODUCTION The purpose of the MSW practicum is to provide students with the experience of developing graduate level social work skills in a social work practice setting under the supervision and mentorship of an experienced practitioner. The MSW Practicum has two options: a Field Practicum and a Research Practicum. This manual provides information about the practicum options and outlines the following: 1. Steps involved in setting up the practicum placement, including required proposal and documentation 2. Requirements for completing the practicum including supervision and evaluation 3. The roles and responsibilities of Academic Supervisor, Academic Committee Member, Professional Associate, and student 4. Guidelines for completing the practicum report 5. Setting up and completing the practicum presentation 6. Completion of the required forms as part of the process to graduate 7. Deadlines for submission of completed practicum report for Spring or Fall convocation 4

5 THE MSW FIELD PRACTICUM 1. What is a Field Practicum? The field practicum component is completed in the latter stage of a student s program when all the course work is complete. The nature and scope of the field-based work must be approved by the student s Academic Supervisor and Field Supervisor (Professional Associate). The field-based portion of the program is carried out under the supervision of the on-site Professional Associate. It should have a specific social work practice purpose and direction. The practicum should enhance the student s knowledge and skills in direct social work practice in such areas as social work with individuals, families, groups, communities or organizations. Generally, the practicum will be undertaken in a social work context that differs from the student s usual workplace context. Supervision of the practicum will be done by an individual who does not normally hold a supervisory position with the student. The practicum will be unpaid. The practicum may be done over one or two semesters. A full-time practicum will be a total of 450 hours over 12 weeks, with four days per week at the practicum site and one day to be used for activities such as reading, meeting with academic supervisor, or working on the integrative Practicum Report. A practicum which takes place over two semesters (or a parttime practicum), requires 450 hours devoted over approximately 24 weeks. There are three required components in the field practicum: 1) Completion of the field practicum work as outlined in the practicum proposal 2) Completion of the final integrative Field Practicum Report 3) A presentation based on the field practicum experience 2. Steps to Setting up the Field Practicum a) The student will select a field practicum location/agency and prepare the first draft of the practicum proposal (see Section 3) b) Select an Academic Supervisor Initial review of the practicum proposal is the task of the Academic Supervisor c) Select a second member of the committee from the Faculty of Social Work 5

6 d) Select a Field Supervisor (Professional Associate) e) Obtain a copy of the curriculum vitae of the Professional Associate f) Receive approval of the practicum proposal from the Academic Supervisor, the second Academic Committee Member and the Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) g) The Academic Supervisor will forward the approved practicum proposal and curriculum vitae of the Professional Associate to the MSW Program Coordinator who then forwards these documents to the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research for final approval. The Practicum must receive approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research prior to commencement. A copy of the proposal will be placed in the student s file along with the Dean of Graduate Studies approval 3. Student Responsibilities: Field Practicum Proposal By the end of the first semester for those in full-time studies and after completion of three courses for those in part-time studies, students should have some ideas formulated for a possible practicum and a choice of Academic Supervisor. The first step is to develop the practicum proposal in which students clarify their ideas about the scope and nature of the field-based work they wish to do, the setting of the practicum and the learning goals and objectives. It is the student s responsibility to develop the 1-2 page practicum proposal in which they identify: a) The name and address of the practicum agency they have identified b) Their learning goals and objectives c) Their Academic Supervisor s name d) The name of the second Academic Committee Member from the Faculty of Social Work e) Period of practicum or the time period within which the practicum will be completed (indicate whether full-time or part-time placement) f) The name of the Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) g) Scope and activities of the field practicum h) Learning goals and objectives of practicum and how these will be met. These should be specific enough so that it will be possible to determine the extent to which these goals 6

7 were met for evaluation purposes on completion of the practicum (see Field Practicum Evaluation form) Students liaise with their Academic Supervisors in the development of this proposal. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that copies of the proposal are submitted directly to the MSW Practicum Coordinator or to the MSW Administrative Support Staff Member who will forward it to the MSW Practicum Coordinator for review. Students should assume that permission from the institutions or institutional settings where the Practicum work is located will be needed. Permission should be sought in close consultation with the Academic Supervisor and Professional Associate. The Academic Supervisor, in conjunction with the Professional Associate, should ensure that there is institutional approval for the Practicum. The practicum proposal must be approved and submitted to the MSW Program Coordinator at least two months prior to the start date of the practicum. 4. Ethical Considerations Practicum placements which may situate a student in a position in which questions of conflict of interest may arise will not be permitted. Thus, students may not be placed in a practicum situation in which any financial or close personal relationship may give rise to a reasonable apprehension of bias. This includes but is not limited to: a) Placement in an agency which is controlled by, or employs, anyone in a close personal relationship with the student b) Placement in an agency in which the student is otherwise normally employed. It is conceivable that a student could be placed in a practicum in a large agency in a different section or division than the section or division in which the student is normally employed, if: The duties related to the placement are demonstrably outside of the normal duties performed by the student in his or her regular employment The practicum takes place outside the student s normal hours of employment with the agency The student is not paid, in salary or in kind, for performing the duties associated with the practicum placement The Professional Associate is not in the normal reporting structure associated with the student s paid employment in the agency 7

8 5. The Practicum: Supervision and Evaluation Professional Associates are responsible for evaluating the student s field-based performances and submitting the completed evaluation form (see Field Practicum Evaluation) to the Academic Supervisor or the Chair of the MSW program. Evaluations are graded on a credit/no-credit basis. Performances deemed unsatisfactory in part or in whole may have to be repeated, with the agreement of all relevant parties. Criteria for evaluation consists of a review of the student s progress with respect to the learning objectives identified in the practicum proposal as well as the student s overall performance with respect to professional development as a social worker at an advanced level of social work practice. Any concerns of the Professional Associate about the quality of a student s ongoing field-based performance should be discussed promptly with the student and Academic Supervisor with a view to the performance being improved. a) Prior to the start of the practicum or very early in the practicum, the Academic Supervisor, Professional Associate, and the student meet to review the learning goals and objectives, supervision, and evaluation requirements (including setting up evaluation meeting(s). The second Academic Committee Member may attend this meeting b) The Professional Associate provides on-site supervision of the student c) Students are advised to maintain communication with their Academic Supervisor to discuss the practicum experience and to begin to discuss the integrative Practicum Report. The Academic Supervisor, the Professional Associate, or the student may request a meeting at any time during the practicum d) Upon completion of the practicum, the Professional Associate, the Academic Supervisor, and student meet to discuss the student s progress. The second Academic Committee Member may attend the meeting e) The Professional Associate submits the Field Practicum Evaluation form f) The Professional Associate and Academic Supervisor sign the Certification of Field Practicum Work form which is required by Faculty of Graduate Studies 8

9 6. Who is Involved: Roles and Responsibilities a) Academic Supervisor The Academic Supervisor should be knowledgeable about the proposed area of the practicum work and be accredited by Graduate Studies and Research to supervise Master s level work. Students may approach members of the Faculty of Social Work directly and/or consult with the MSW Program Coordinator for advice about supervisors. The Academic Supervisor is the student s primary contact and initial source of guidance concerning the nature and scope of the field component and potential candidates for the Professional Associate (Field Supervisor). Preliminary approval of a practicum proposal is given by the committee which consists of the Academic Supervisor and the Academic Committee Member. The Professional Associate may be involved in the early stages of developing the proposal (prior to official appointment). The Academic Supervisor will ensure that the practicum receives approval from the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research prior to the practicum commencing. The Academic Supervisor in conjunction with the MSW Program Coordinator shall ensure that there is appropriate field supervision of the practicum. The Academic Supervisor shall determine whether the recommended Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) has the necessary qualifications (see Appointment of Professional Associate). The Academic Supervisor is responsible for ensuring that the MSW Program Coordinator receives all relevant paperwork. Paperwork may be submitted to the Administrative Support Staff Person who will forward to the MSW Program Coordinator for signature prior to forwarding to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. The MSW Administrative Support Staff Person forwards the necessary paperwork to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research The Academic Supervisor should ensure that institutional agreement is obtained for the practicum The Academic Supervisor will meet with the student and the Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) at the commencement of the practicum (before or early in practicum) to review the learning goals and the practicum activities and on subsequent occasions as necessary. A final meeting will occur at the end of the practicum to discuss the student s progress The Academic Supervisor and the Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) will sign the Certification of Field Practicum Work form required by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research 9

10 The Academic Supervisor is responsible for assisting the student to prepare the Practicum Report. The Academic Supervisor is responsible for ensuring that the Practicum Report meets required standards (content and writing style) b) Professional Associate (Field Supervisor) This person is the student s on-site supervisor for the field-based component of the practicum and is a member of the institutional (or related) setting where the practicum work is done. The Professional Associate shall have a professional degree from a recognized university, have at least a Master s degree (or equivalent) in any area of study related to the student s program, hold a current career position relevant to the student s program, and have at least five years of successful professional experience in the area of the student s proposed practicum work. A graduate degree in social work is highly recommended. In the event that the proposed Professional Associate does not have a graduate degree in social work, it is expected that the committee members will provide specific support to strengthen the practicum. Appointment of Professional Associate: Nominees for Professional Associate may be submitted by the Academic Supervisor or the student to the MSW Program Coordinator. Nominees are contacted either by the Academic Supervisor or student and, if interested, are required to submit a curriculum vitae as part of the proposal package that is forwarded to the MSW Program Coordinator. The Coordinator reviews the curriculum vitae and makes recommendations to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. The Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research is responsible for approving the appointment of Professional Associates. The appointment may take several weeks to complete so students should allow for this in their planning. In addition to supervising and evaluating the student s field-based work the Professional Associate shall: Work co-operatively with the Academic Supervisor and ensure the practicum is appropriate for the needs of the student and the job-related circumstances of the Professional Associate Work closely with the student and ensure all activities and requirements related to the practicum are carried out and offer advice or suggestions as needed or requested by the student Provide guidance with respect to relevant literature (relevant theories and models of practice) and practice or skills development needs 10

11 Consult with the Academic Supervisor on the student s progress, on the extent to which learning goals are being achieved and/or the extent to which specific assignments may need modification Provide the student, Academic Supervisor and the Faculty of Social Work with a written final assessment (Field Practicum Evaluation form) of the student s performance and progress in light of expectations and requirements of the field practicum. The evaluation of the field practicum should be undertaken in conjunction with the student and the Academic Supervisor Sign the Certification of Field Practicum Work at the completion of the practicum c) Field Practicum Committee The practicum committee consists of the Academic Supervisor and a second Academic Committee Member from the Faculty of Social Work. The second faculty member must be accredited by Graduate Studies and Research to serve on graduate student committees. The second Academic Committee Member will be brought on to the committee prior to the practicum proposal being approved and will have the opportunity to give feedback and suggestions to the student at the beginning of the practicum. The Professional Associate may be involved in the early stages of the development of the proposal (that is, prior to official appointment). The practicum committee approves a student s proposal, advises the student on matters related to the study and writing phase, and decides when a Practicum Report may proceed for evaluation. Committee meetings will likely be held to officially approve the proposal. A second meeting may be held to approve the final draft. Other meetings may be called as required by the Academic Supervisor, at the request of the other member, the student or the MSW Program Coordinator. As noted earlier, the Academic Supervisor is responsible for assisting the student in preparing the Practicum Report. The Academic Committee Member will be the second reader and will provide further feedback to strengthen the student s report. These two committee members will determine when the report is ready for submission to the MSW Program Coordinator. Committee members are expected to review and comment constructively on drafts of the Practicum Report. If unsatisfied with any aspect of the work at either the interim or final stage the members are obliged to discuss their assessment to ensure that the student receives feedback to guide further reasonable revisions. The Certification of Field Practicum Work form is signed by the Academic Supervisor and Academic Committee Member only when they are satisfied that the Practicum Report is completed and ready for submission to the MSW Program Coordinator. 11

12 7. Field Practicum Report and Presentation All practicum students are required to submit a comprehensive written integrative Practicum Report and complete a Presentation based upon their field experience. The integrative Practicum Report should address the elements of the direct practice report framework outlined below. The student will take into account both the individual and structural dimensions interacting in their field. The report must be of high academic merit and include an integration of the practice experience of the practicum with the relevant social work literature. a) The student writes the Practicum Report based upon the practicum experience (see following discussion of Direct Practice Report Framework). Students are encouraged to consult with their Academic Supervisor regarding content, writing style, and formatting prior to beginning to write the Practicum Report. b) The Academic Supervisor will provide primary support and guidance to the student during the writing stage. The Academic Supervisor is responsible for ensuring that the Practicum Report meets required standards (content and writing style). The Academic Committee Member will be the second reader and will provide further feedback to strengthen the student s report. These two committee members will determine when the report is completed and ready for submission to the MSW Program Coordinator. c) The MSW Program Coordinator will review the final report to ensure that the Practicum Report meets graduate program standards. d) The Academic Supervisor and second Academic Committee Member sign the Certification of Field Practicum Work form which is then submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies. The title page and table of contents of the Practicum Report is attached to this form when it is submitted to the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research. e) The student will send both the final Practicum Report (in Word or PDF format) and the signed License for Thesis, Dissertation, Research Practicum, and Field Practicum form to the MSW Administrative Program Staff member who will forward these to the University of Regina library. Presentation: Once the student is ready to make the formal presentation of their field practicum work, the MSW Administrative Support Staff will post a notice of the presentation and will circulate the notice to faculty and students. 12

13 8. Elements to be included in Practicum Report The following list of areas to address is to illustrate the possibilities, not to limit the potential development of your framework. The report will include: a) An Introduction: The introduction will include a description of the name of the placement agency, the period in which the practicum was completed, and a description and discussion of the goals and objectives of the practicum. b) The Body of the Report: The body of the report will include: Description of the agency; Description and discussion about the primary activities during the practicum; Details about how the goals and objectives were achieved; Discussion about the challenges; Discussion about ethical considerations and challenges. c) Conclusions: Some elements to be considered in the body of the report are identified below. This does not mean that the reports will necessarily use these as headings but that the elements are to be included in the report: Ideology beliefs about determinants of problems; beliefs about client/worker status and implications for relationships and other relevant issues. The discussions about ideology will include the writer s ideas about ideology, what appears to be the agency s perspective, and how these relate to societal perspectives and contexts. Theory - the student will be expected to engage in critical reflection of the theoretical frameworks which they used and studied during the practicum. It is anticipated that these would have been identified in the proposal or early in the practicum placement. These may include those relevant to work at the micro, mezzo, and macro levels (working with individuals, families, functioning, group process, community, socio-economic, political realities): integrative theories including ecological, Marxist, feminist, structural. Values your value base given your social location; value base of client constituencies; potential and actual values clashes between self and clients, client and society, client and agency, agency and worker, impacts of values on contracting/goal-setting and understanding of success of interventions. 13

14 Ethics discussions about the extent to which the student was able to practice in an ethical manner; any ethical dilemmas faced, how resolved, including selfdetermination, confidentiality, etc. Relationships what are the particular agency practices that build social work relationships/create obstacles between worker-client; worker-agency; workerworker; worker-profession; worker-community; client-community, client-society; client-agency; worker-self. Strategies what are the agency practices with respect to individual counseling, small group, family counseling, consciousness-raising, collective action, community development, advocacy, strategies specific for working with particular groups. What are the strengths of the agency strategies? Which are not appropriate or effective? Skills What are the skills that you used, witnessed, or learned during your practicum: analytic, planning, individual intervention, group intervention, community intervention. Conclusions What conclusions do you make following your practicum? What are your visions for future work as a social worker; for the social work profession; for social change? 9. Writing Standards The Report must satisfy the same general standards of scholarly writing that apply to a thesis or project as set by the Faculty of Graduate Studies & Research and the Faculty of Social Work. These standards include: a) clarity of purpose and rationale; b) coherence and logic of organization; c) clarity, cogency and suitability of expression; d) soundness of sentence and paragraph construction; e) accuracy and completeness of sections; f) accuracy and completeness of references, reference list, and appendices. For general guidelines on report-writing and format, students should consult the current edition of the APA manual. The Faculty of Social Work advises that The University of Regina, Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research Guide for the Writing and Typing of Graduate Theses must be adhered to with respect to: title page, abstract, acknowledgments, table of contents, list of 14

15 tables, list of illustrations and figures, text, list of references, literature cited or bibliography and appendices. This latter document is available on the University of Regina website, under Graduate Studies. The length of a Practicum Report should be approximately 50 pages. 10. Evaluation and Distribution of Field Practicum Report Students are responsible for completing their Report in a timely manner and submitting copies to the Academic Supervisor and Academic Committee Member. A copy may be submitted to the Professional Associate as well. Once the academic members of the committee have evaluated the Report and any changes or revisions have been made the Certification of Field Practicum Work form is signed by both faculty members. A final unbound copy of the Report with the signed statement of certification is submitted to the MSW Program Coordinator who reviews the copy and forwards the relevant forms to the Faculty of Graduate Studies signifying that the Field Practicum has been satisfactorily completed. Upon approval and acceptance by the Faculty of Graduate Studies the student will send the final Report electronically to Bev Apostle along with the signed License for Thesis, Dissertation, Research Practicum, and Field Practicum form so that the report can be forwarded to the U of R Library for online storage and access. Please note the following deadlines for submission of the final Field Practicum Report to the MSW Program Coordinator For Spring convocation March 31 For Fall convocation July 31 15

16 THE MSW RESEARCH PRACTICUM 1. What is a Research Practicum? A research practicum is undertaken when all coursework is complete. The practicum is undertaken in a field setting with a focus on practical or applied projects that do not require the same degree of theoretical underpinning that is typically found in a thesis. A research practicum may include such activities as community-based research (including evaluations and needs assessments), program development, policy analysis, or development of training manuals. Ideas for project topics may arise from any of several sources including the courses one takes, interests relating to one s professional experiences, reading, and discussion with faculty and other colleagues. The more critical considerations in selecting a topic are its significance or usefulness for the field of social work practice, the degree of interest or commitment by the student, whether it fits the scope of project work and whether it can be completed within the allotted time. A research practicum is conducted in a field setting under the supervision of a Professional Associate (Research Practicum Supervisor) and a committee comprised of an Academic Supervisor and one other academic member. The research practicum can be completed during one semester (full-time) or over two semesters (part-time). There are three required components in the research practicum: 1) Completion of the research practicum work as outlined in the practicum proposal 2) Completion of the final Research Practicum Report 3) A presentation based on the research practicum experience 2. Steps to Setting up the Research Practicum a) Select an Academic Supervisor b) Select a research practicum topic and possible field location c) Select a second Academic Committee Member from the Faculty of Social Work d) Select a Research Practicum Supervisor (Professional Associate) and obtain a copy of their curriculum vitae e) Establish learning goals and objectives of the research practicum 16

17 f) Formalize the research practicum through a meeting of Academic Supervisor, second Academic Committee Member, Research Practicum Supervisor and student to obtain approval of practicum goals and objectives g) Prepare the research practicum proposal (1-2 pages) which outlines the specific activities to be undertaken (see Section 3) h) Receive approval of the practicum proposal from the Academic Supervisor, the second Academic Committee Member and the Professional Associate (Research Practicum Supervisor) i) The Academic Supervisor will forward the approved practicum proposal and curriculum vitae of the Professional Associate to the MSW Program Coordinator who then forwards these documents to the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research for final approval. The Practicum must receive approval of the Dean of Graduate Studies and Research prior to commencement. A copy of the proposal will be placed in the student s file along with the Dean of Graduate Studies approval. 3. Student Responsibilities: Research Practicum Proposal By the end of the first semester for those in full-time studies and after completion of three courses for those in part-time studies, students should have some ideas formulated for a possible practicum and a choice of Academic Supervisor. The first step is to develop the practicum proposal in which students clarify their ideas about the scope and nature of field-based work they wish to do including the setting of the practicum and the student s learning goals. The purposes of the proposal are: a) to help the student clarify and organize their thinking about a topic and ways of proceeding with it and b) to provide a comprehensive outline of the intended work and the associated methodology. The student will develop a 1-2 page practicum proposal in which they identify: a) Location of research practicum (not to be in your normal place of employment) Agency name, address and telephone number b) Name of Research Practicum Supervisor (must have masters level degree and submit a curriculum vitae for approval by the Faculty of Graduate Studies as a Professional Associate) c) Names of the Academic Supervisor and second Academic Committee Member d) Information about the research practicum timelines Date of commencement and of completion of project (full-time or part-time). 17

18 e) Indicate choice of final report option Practicum Report or Journal Article f) Learning goals and objectives of the research practicum and how these will be met. Learning goals and objectives should be specific enough that it will be possible to indicate to what extent they were met during the practicum (see Research Practicum Evaluation form) If the practicum involves a research project the following information may also be a part of the proposal (to be discussed with the Academic Supervisor): a) Focus of the research practicum problem/issue that is being addressed; objectives of project b) Why it is significant or worth doing c) Central concepts/ideas/literature review d) Methods or approaches to be used e) Sources of information to be obtained (including description of sample if appropriate) Students liaise with their Academic Supervisors in the development of this proposal. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that copies of the proposal are submitted directly to the MSW Practicum Coordinator or to the MSW Administrative Support Staff member who will forward it to the MSW Practicum Coordinator for review. Any required permission from the institutions or institutional settings where the research practicum work is done should be sought in close consultation with the Academic Supervisor and Professional Associate. The Academic Supervisor in conjunction with the Professional Associate should ensure that there is institutional approval for the practicum. The practicum proposal must be approved and submitted to the MSW Program Coordinator at least two months prior to the start date of the practicum. 4. Ethics and Other Forms of Approval A proposal must be approved by the committee before actual work on a research practicum may begin. Any practicum requiring participation of human subjects must have research ethics approval in writing from the University of Regina Research Ethics Board. Students need to consult with their Academic Supervisor in completing the ethics approval forms. Practicum work may not proceed until ethics approval, if applicable, has been received. Ethics application forms are available online at U of R Office of Research Services 18

19 5. The Practicum: Supervision and Evaluation Professional Associates are responsible for evaluating the student s research practicum performance and for submitting the completed evaluation form (see Research Practicum Evaluation form) to the Academic Supervisor or the Chair of the MSW program. Evaluations are graded on a credit/no-credit basis. Performances deemed unsatisfactory in part or in whole may have to be repeated, with the agreement of all relevant parties. Criteria for evaluation consist of a review of the student s progress with respect to the learning objectives identified in the practicum proposal. Any concerns of the Professional Associate about the quality of a student s ongoing research practicum performance should be discussed promptly with the student and Academic Supervisor with a view to the performance being improved. a) Prior to the start of the practicum or very early in the practicum, the Academic Supervisor, Professional Associate, and the student meet to review the learning goals and objectives, supervision, and evaluation requirements (including setting up evaluation meeting(s). The second Academic Committee Member may attend this meeting. b) The Professional Associate provides on-site supervision of the student. c) Students are advised to maintain communication with their Academic Supervisor to discuss the practicum experience and to begin to discuss the integrative Practicum Report. The Academic supervisor, the Professional Associate, or the student may request a meeting at any time during the practicum. d) Upon completion of the practicum, the Professional Associate, the Academic Supervisor, and student meet to discuss the student s progress. The second Academic Committee Member may attend the meeting. e) The Professional Associate submits the Research Practicum Evaluation form. f) The Professional Associate and Academic Supervisor sign the Certification of Research Practicum Work form which is required by Faculty of Graduate Studies. 19

20 6. Who is Involved: Roles and Responsibilities a) Academic Supervisor Academic Supervisors are expected to have knowledge in the area of a research practicum topic and must be accredited by the Faculty of Graduate Studies to supervise a Master s project. Students may consult with the MSW Program Coordinator and other faculty members for advice in selecting a supervisor. The main responsibilities of an Academic Supervisor are to: a) Discuss and explore research practicum topics with students b) Assist students to set up the research practicum location and select a Professional Associate (Research Practicum Supervisor) c) Advise students on the necessary preparation to establish the research practicum, develop learning goals and write a research practicum proposal d) Arrange to meet with the student and the Professional Associate at the beginning and the end of the practicum and if necessary, on other occasions e) Ensure that the Research Practicum Supervisor meets the criteria for Professional Associate of Graduate Studies and Research (Professional Associates must have a Masters level degree in social work or a related human service area) f) Ensure that the Professional Associate s curriculum vitae is obtained and submitted to the MSW Program Coordinator along with the student s research practicum proposal g) Advise students on how to make application for research ethics approval and other types of approval that may be required h) Ensure that writing and scholarly standards are consistently upheld i) Consult with the committee, reach a joint agreement on a project s readiness for presentation and sign the Certification of Research Practicum Work form j) Contact committee members, student and MSW Program Coordinator regarding an agreed time for the presentation k) Brief the student on the nature, format and expectations of the practicum presentation l) Ensure that revisions to a Research Practicum Report are completed in a timely and satisfactory manner m) The Academic Supervisor will be responsible to advise the MSW Program Coordinator when all the revisions have been made and the student has complied with the 20

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