Social Work (SW), BA

Major Requirements (SF State Bulletin: Degree Requirements)

Roadmap (SF State Bulletin: Roadmap)

GE Requirements (SF State Bulletin: General Education)

Major Department Website


Your major advisor answered a few questions to assist you with your first semester courses — see below.

General Information

What are some of the highlights and features to know about this major?

The School of Social Work responds to the needs and aspirations of various at-risk populations in the San Francisco Bay Area and similar urban communities. The Bachelor of Arts in Social Work (BASW) program seeks to educate undergraduate students for generalist social work practice in a variety of social-service settings, and teach students to serve as change agents with urban, oppressed populations, while enabling members of these populations to act on their own behalf. Our graduates provide direct services to people in need and, as administrators and organizers of social service agencies, make services more accessible and responsive to the communities they serve. The Bachelor of Arts in Social Work (BASW) program is impacted. One must apply to the program to be admitted. Upon admission, students can then petition to change their major to Social Work. There are specific prerequisites for the program and application into the program usually opens in October of each fall.

When should I first meet with my major department?

Once admitted to the program, students should connect with the BASW coordinator and attend the mandatory orientation for incoming Juniors. The orientation is usually scheduled in late May.

How will I be assigned to a major advisor and how do I contact them?

The BASW coordinator assigns students BASW students to their respective major advisors. The list of major advisors and advisees are sent out to through the cohort’s listserv and also posted on the bulletin board outside of the SSW office in HSS 227. Contact information and office hours are posted on the SSW website.

Where can I find information about major advising? The list of advisors and advisees are sent out to the cohort’s listserv and posted on the bulletin board outside of the SSW office.  Contact information and office hours are posted on the SSW website.
Does your department have a major planning sheet for me to use as a guide? Yes, our department has a major planning sheet.
Does this major require any pre-work from me before I attend orientation or register for classes?

Upon admission to the BASW program, students are required to send copies of their transcripts (official or unofficial) to the BASW Coordinator showing completion of the program prerequisites or plans to complete the prerequisites by the end of the Summer term prior to starting the program in the Fall.

What should I do if my major core and/or prerequisite courses are full?

Students admitted to the BASW program will be assured of spots in all the major classes. Students interested in applying to the BASW program must meet all prerequisite courses before starting the BASW program. Students have until the Summer semester prior to joining the program in the Fall semester to complete prerequisites. if prerequisite courses are full, students must communicate with the BASW Coordinator to work out a completion plan.

Is there anything else I need to know about starting in this major?

Complimentary Studies requirement for BASW majors: Students completing a Bachelor of Arts in Social Work (BASW) degree must complete 12-units of Complementary Studies (CS) in courses bearing a prefix other than SW, and not cross-listed with SW.

The prerequisite courses that all students have to take to be admitted to the BASW program will satisfy the CS requirement of the program.

The prerequisite courses are:

(1) Introductory Sociology (SOC 105 or equivalent);

(2) Introductory Psychology (PSY 200 or equivalent);

(3) Macroeconomics (ECON 102 or equivalent) or Economics Analysis for Non-Majors (ECON 305 or equivalent);

(4) introductory-level course in Human Biology (BIOL 100 or equivalent, Lab not required); and

5) First Year English Composition (ENG 114 or equivalent).

Transfer Student Info

What upper division courses should I take in my first semester as a transfer student for this major?

Note: Transfer students admitted into the BASW program will be part of the junior cohort that will be taking the same upper-division major courses in fall semester of their junior year

(First semester at SF State for Transfer students).

SW 300: U.S. Social Welfare I: Past, Present, & Future SW 302: Introduction to Social Services Organizations

SW 352: Gender, Sexism, & Social Welfare

SW 410: Human Development & the Social Services

In addition, students can take one Upper Division GE course (UD-B, UD-C, or U-DD); a U.S. and California Government course; or University Elective if already met.

Are there any prerequisites to these upper division courses for the major?

PSY 200 or equivalent: Introductory Psychology

SOC 105 or equivalent: Introductory Sociology

BIO 100 or equivalent--Note, lab is not required for BASW program: Human Biology

ECON 102, 305 or equivalent: Macroeconomics

ENG 114 or equivalent: First Year Written English Composition

Are there any registration blocks or holds in the system for this major, and if so, what do I do/who do I contact to clear them? None.
Does this major have an approved Associate Degree for Transfer (ADT) roadmap? Yes, the AS-T in Social Work/Human Services

Freshmen Student Info

Are there any courses I should take first as a Freshman to get started in this major and/or are there any lower division GE course requirements that I can take that will also count toward this major?

First year students can take the following BASW prerequisite courses to get started in the major:

(1) ENG 114 or equivalent, meets GE Area A2/Written English Communication I;

(2) SOC 105 or equivalent, meets GE Area D1;

(3) BIOL 100 or equivalent, meets GE Area B2; 

(3) ECON 102 or equivalent, meets GE Area D1; and/or 

(4) PSY 200 or equivalent, meets GE Area D1.

Are there entry or prerequisite requirements for these Freshmen courses?


Can any of my AP or IB tests count toward requirements in this major?

AP Macroeconomics with a score of 3 or higher will satisfy ECON 102. 
AP Psychology with a score of 3 or higher will satisfy PSY 200. 



College of Health & Social Sciences Student Resource Center

Services provided for: Undergraduate students with College of Health and Social Sciences majors, pre-majors and minors.

Services offered: Academic planning (GE, DARs, DPR and major), freshman transitioning support, impacted major consultation, academic probation advising, general life/support counseling, petition consultation, career prep and planning, major career exploration, graduation check (GE and graduation requirements), resume and cover letter help

Phone: (415) 405-3740