Bachelor of Social Work (BSW)

Bachelor of Social Work - BSW Degree

Become a Social Worker

Congratulations! In October 2020, Social Work Program Director Wade Luquet, PhD received the prestigious Educator of the Year Award from the Pennsylvania chapter of the NASW. Learn more here. 

The GMercyU Difference

GMercyU’s planned BSW degree will be a practical, hands-on program for those who want to dedicate their lives to helping others. As a student in GMercyU’s social work degree program, you will gain the knowledge and skills needed for generalist social work focused on economic and social justice concerns, ranging from homelessness to community violence, substance abuse, organizational diversity, and child welfare, to name a few.

Offered through the School of Arts and Sciences, the Bachelor's in Social Work degree will provide a holistic approach to addressing the social and economic needs of individuals and communities in urban, suburban and rural areas.  

Once you complete your BSW degree at GMercyU and pass your Pennsylvania social work exam, you'll be eligible to apply for licensure through the State Board of Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapists and Licensed Professional Counselors.

Other benefits of choosing our social work program at GMercyU include:

  • A BSW program that addresses social problems and social and economic justice issues in keeping with our Catholic identity and the critical concerns of the University’s founders, the Sisters of Mercy of the Americas
  • Co-curricular organizations, such as Best Buddies, Mercy Works, and Sigma Phi Sigma that provide experiential service learning opportunities to BSW students
  • Alternative Spring Break and other service learning programs where you can gain practical hands-on experience before you graduate
  • More than 60 years of experience preparing  Distinctive Mercy Graduates to become leaders in their chosen professions
  • Fulfilling and exciting real-world learning opportunities in both suburban and urban locations
  • Courses taught by experienced faculty who take the time to mentor and engage their students
  • Eligibility for advanced standing in CSWE master’s degree programs, which means you can complete your MSW in just one year

*Gwynedd Mercy University’s Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Educations’ Commission on Accreditation.

Accreditation of a baccalaureate or master’s social work program by the Council on Social Work Education’ Commission on Accreditation indicates that it meets or exceeds criteria for the assessment of program quality evaluated through a peer review process. An accredited program has sufficient resources to meet its mission and goals and the Commission on Accreditation has verified that it demonstrates compliance with all sections of the Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards.

Accreditation applies to all program sites and program delivery methods of an accredited program. Accreditation provides reasonable assurance about the quality of the program and the competence of students graduating from the program.

For more information about social work accreditation, you may contact Accreditation.
For more information on Gwynedd Mercy University's Bachelor of Social Work Program 2020 Assessment Outcomes, click this link. 

*Licensure: This program was designed to meet the licensure requirements of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania. If you reside in a different state, you should carefully review your home state’s licensure requirements prior to enrolling in this program. For more information, please visit our Program Licensure Requirement page.

In addition to required general education courses, BSW students must complete the following courses in order to earn their bachelors in social work.

SWK201 Introduction to Social Work
SWK202 Human Behavior in the Social Environment
SWK203 Difference and Diversity
SWK204 Marriage and Family Systems
SWK205 Human Behavior and the Social Environment II
SWK301 Generalist Social Work Practice
SWK302 Counseling and Communication Skills
SWK303 Group Processes
SWK304 Social Work Policy and Administration
SWK401 Mental Health Practice
SWK402 Social Work Research Methods
SWK403 Field Placement I (5 credits)
SWK404 Field Seminar I (1 credit)
SWK405 Field Placement II (5 credits)
SWK406 Field Seminar II (1 credit)
SWK407 Capstone

Social Work Electives (Choose 2)

SWK305 Case Management
SWK306 Death and Dying
SWK307 Issues in Gerontology
SWK308 Addictions, Dynamics and Interventions
SWK309 Dementia
SWK408 Advanced Research Methods
SWK409 Child Welfare

Social Work Prerequisites

PSY100 Introduction to Psychology
SOC100 Introduction to Sociology
PSY111 Statistics

Credit Requirement

A minimum of 120 credits is required for the bachelors in social work (BSW) degree.

This social work program requires a criminal background check and may require certain immunizations and other clearances in order to participate in field experiences. 

See the undergraduate catalog for more information and course descriptions.


Undergraduate Minors

Increase the value of your social work degree by adding an undergraduate minor. GMercyU offers a wide variety of minors so you can choose the one that best meets your personal and professional goals.

Graduate Studies

As the program has received CSWE accreditation, graduates of GMercyU’s BSW program will now have the eligibility for advanced standing in CSWE masters programs, which will take a full year off the time to complete your masters of social work (MSW).  You may also choose to pursue a graduate degree in pastoral counseling, school counseling, clinical counseling, and applied behavioral sciences. GMercyU offers an accelerated master of school counseling.

Our Outstanding Faculty

Case Worker
Family Support Worker
Child Abuse Worker
Youth Worker
Social Service liaison
Residential Counselo0r
Intake Interviewer
Eligibility Counselor
Social Work Assistant
Alcohol Counselor
Adult Day Care Worker
Drug Abuse Counselor
Life Skills Instructor
Care Manager
Client Advocate

To register a complaint, please contact: Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) at

Neighborhood Worker
Residential Manager
Social Service Aide
Crisis Intervention Counselor
Social Service Tech
Probation Officer
Community Outreach Worker
Parole Officer
Rehabilitation Case Worker
Child Advocate
Community Action Worker
Juvenile Court Liaison
Halfway House Counselor
Group Home Worker
Community Organizer

This is not a complete list and is not meant to limit you. Some careers require advanced education.