BA School Social Work Licensure Program Requirements

View a slideshow detailing the UofM School Social Work Licensure Program.

Admissions Requirements

In addition to the admissions requirements for the University of Memphis, students seeking the school social work license must meet admissions requirements of the social work major and the school social work licensure program. The criteria for admission into the BA program in social work are:

  1. Completion of an application for admission to the social work major
  2. Personal goal statement
  3. A critical thinking essay
  4. Completion of an application for the licensure program: Click here to open the application form

Additional criteria for admission into the school social work licensure are:

  1. Current undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.
  2. A copy of passing scores for all portions of the PRAXIS CORE examination
  • The PRAXIS CORE test can be waived IF the student has an ACT score of 22 or above or a combined score of 1020 or above on the SAT
  • Complete the Teacher Education Program (TEP) application: https://www.memphis.edu/tep/

    3. Background check via College of Education, Health, & Human Sciences
    4. Interview at the University of Memphis College of Education


Many educational programs offered by the University of Memphis lead to professional licensure within the State of Tennessee and in other states. Students should be aware that licensure and certification requirements vary from state to state and are subject to change. Licensing agencies or boards also may have requirements in addition to an earned degree.

The University of Memphis has not made a determination whether University of Memphis’s programs will meet all of the licensure and certification requirements in each US state or territory.  The University of Memphis recommends that students who are not Tennessee residents or who plan to seek licensure or certification outside the state of Tennessee contact the appropriate licensing agency or board prior to enrollment in an academic program designed to lead to licensure or certification and discuss their plans with an advisor.


BA students will meet all requirements for Tennessee School Social Work Licensure through the completion of three courses (SWRK 4937: School Social Work, SPED 2000: Foundation/Exceptional Learn, and SPED 3803: Classroom/Behavior Management) and field placement (SWRK 4830-31). Descriptions of the three courses are provided below.

Click here to view the typical four year sequence of courses leading to both the BA in social work and the school social work license.

SWRK 4937: School Social Work

Overview of school social work including public education system from the national, state, and local levels; examination of range of practice and policy issues related to delivery of social work services in school settings. Special emphasis on understanding current federal and state laws as they relate to practice with school-age children and their families. PREREQUISITE: SWRK 2010, 3010, and 3920.

SPED 2000: Foundation/Exceptional Learn (Offered each semester)

Current research and practices concerning physical, cognitive, emotional, and social characteristics of individuals with exceptionalities; special education laws, educational needs, cultural diversity, inclusion in general education classroom. Field Hours: 4

SPED 3803: Classroom/Behavior Management (Now only offered in Fall)

Advanced strategies for managing social behaviors of learners with mild to severe disabilities; techniques for eliminating maladaptive behaviors, managing aggressive and antisocial students, and teaching appropriate social skills. Field Hours: 8. PREREQUISITE: SPED 2000.

SWRK 4830/4831: Field Placement

BA students are required to complete a minimum of 400 clock hours of field placement in an assigned agency (150 hours in SWRK 4830 and 250 hours in SWRK 4831). Students complete these hours by enrolling in SWRK 4830-4831: Field Instruction Social Work I-II and SWRK 4840-4841: Integrative Field Seminar I-II. BA students must apply and be accepted into the Teacher Education Program. In addition, they must obtain a background check and at least 1 million/3 million dollars professional liability insurance via a reputable organization or company that provides coverage for social workers prior to placement in the field. Students should also review the student field manual and handbook for information regarding the requirements for liability insurance coverage prior to placement in the field. Students completing the Tennessee School Social Work License will complete their field agency in a school district or in an appropriate agency setting to get school experience. Table 2 outlines the link between Tennessee School Social Work licensure standards, field placement course requirements, and field placement assessments.