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Field Education

The signature pedagogy of social work education - the field experience - brings academic knowledge to life, offering students the critical opportunity for application, integration, and socialization into social work roles. 

The field education process is pivotal to launching effective and prepared social workers and is a partnership involving the Social Work Program, the Field Education Department, Social Work Faculty, Field Placement Sites, Field Instructors, and social work students.  Field practicum experiences occur in a variety of human service settings across New England. These include child welfare, health, educational, criminal justice, mental health and a wide range of other settings where generalist and advanced clinical practice can be learned and applied. Students may work with individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities and governmental and non-governmental entities. Students have the opportunity to work with many diverse ethnic and cultural groups.

The Social Work Program at Westfield State University partners with organizations and programs that are in alignment with the NASW Code of Ethics, provide a range of learning opportunities, and demonstrate their commitment to student education by offering the skills, time, and knowledge of their staff to social work students.

The materials below provide useful resources for students applying for field placement, students currently in the field, and for our Field Instructors.  You may also contact the Field Department at any time  - we welcome your questions as well as your ideas and suggestions to continue to strengthen our field education process.

Terri J. Haven, MSW, LICSW
Field Education Director
413-572-8405 or

Maria D. Mead, MSW, LCSW
Assistant Field Education Director
413-572-8332 or

Jamie L. Walsh, MSW, LICSW
Assistant Field Education Director
413-572-8446 or

Linda Silk
Assistant to the Field Education Program
413-572-5480 or

  • Application for MSW Field Practicum (download application then fill out)
  • Application for BSW Field Practicum (download application then fill out)
  • Application for Employment-Based Field Practicum (download application then fill out)
  • Application for IBHC Project Fellowship (download application then fill out)
  • Reference Form for IBHC Project Fellowship (download application then fill out)
  • FAQ IBHC Project Fellowship
  • DCF Guidelines for Employment-Based Field Practicum
  • BSW Field Education Manual
  • FAQ BSW Field Education
  • MSW Field Education Manual
  • FAQ MSW Field Education
  • Tips for the Field Placement Interview Process

SOCW Field Docs (IPT) – our web-based system for students, field instructors, and faculty liaisons – easy access and completion of all field-related documentation:

  • SOCW Field Docs (IPT) site
  • Introduction to IPT (video)
  • Introduction to Supervision and Field Timesheet (video)
  • Introduction to Field Practicum Learning Agreement (video)