Online Bachelor Degree of Social Work

Start a rewarding career in Social Work and make a difference in your community.

About the Program

The Thompson School of Social Work and Public Health has partnered with Outreach College to offer an online degree completion program. If you are interested in pursuing a career in Social Work, have completed the General Education Core Requirements and the Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) Program Knowledge Base the BSW Program Distance Education Option may be right for you.

The BSW Program prepares students to work with the most vulnerable populations in society. Graduates of the BSW Program make a difference in their communities by developing solutions to critical social issues. The curriculum provides an educational foundation of social work knowledge, values, and skills needed to alleviate human suffering, promote social justice, and realize collective well-being.

Distance Education Benefits

Distance education allows students from various communities to study and work together on a flexible schedule. In addition to the skills required to become effective practitioners, students will gain valuable skills in the application and benefits of technology to social work practice.

• Increased access for students who would otherwise be unable to pursue their BSW degree due to scheduling or geographic barriers
• Students stay with their classmates throughout the program
• All courses required for the program are available online

Career Outcomes

Earning your bachelor’s in social work from the University of Hawai‘i at Mānoa will prepare you to become a licensed social worker and prepare you for pursuing a Masters of Social Work (MSW) degree. Upon completion of your BSW you will be able to become a problem solver in settings such as:

Developmental disabilities services
• Substance abuse programs
• Domestic violence centers
• Hospitals and nursing homes
• Elementary and secondary schools
• Criminal justice agencies
• Community organization and policy development
• Child welfare


• Education fit to your life and your schedule
• Courses are condensed and more intensive
• Courses are sequential so you focus on one at a time
• Learn from professional social workers with a wealth of experience

Field Education

•  Field Education (internship) begins after the first semester in the BSW Program
•  Students are placed in community agencies with certified MSW-level supervisors
•  Provides hands-on learning experiences to integrate and apply classroom learning

Program Overview

The BSW Program curriculum is comprised of 38 credits in five (5) sequence areas including Social Work Practice, Social Welfare Policy, Human Behavior and the Social Environment, Research, and Field Education.

Social Work Practice: (SW 302, SW 303, SW 402, SW 403)

Courses in this sequence teach the necessary skills for helping individuals, groups, families, organizations and communities engage in the planned change process creating opportunities for social justice and well-being.

Social Welfare Policy: (SW 325, SW 326)

Courses in this sequence outline the historical roots of society’s response to human need as well as the varied ways social workers function as macro practitioners and attempt to alleviate, prevent, and correct social problems.

Human Behavior and the Social Environment: (SW 360,
SW 361)

Courses in this sequence explore the mutually informing nature of the person and the environment providing a contextual framework for understanding human behavior especially as it relates to privilege, oppression, marginalization.

Research: (SW 440)

The research course is methods-based and provides a basic framework for understanding, critiquing, implementing, and ultimately utilizing research to guide and inform social work practice.

Field Education: (SW 391, SW 490, SW 491)

The field experience is the signature pedagogy of social work education and provides the needed context to apply theory to real world practice situations. Students practice the skills needed to be an effective social worker in the community under the supervision of a program-vetted social work professional.