Msw Learning Agreement Example


MSW Learning Agreement Example: A Guide to Creating Your Own

The Master of Social Work (MSW) program is an intensive and rewarding educational opportunity that can open doors to a wide range of career paths within the field of social work. As part of the program, students are required to create a learning agreement that outlines their individualized learning objectives, goals, and activities. This article will provide a comprehensive guide to creating an MSW learning agreement example that highlights the major components and points of consideration.

What is an MSW Learning Agreement?

A learning agreement is a formal document that outlines the learning objectives, expected outcomes, and activities that a student will engage in during their academic program. This agreement acts as a roadmap for both the student and their mentor or advisor, creating a shared understanding of the student’s academic and professional goals and how they plan to achieve them. In the case of an MSW program, the learning agreement typically consists of three parts – foundation courses, concentration courses, and field placement.

Foundation Courses

The foundation courses of an MSW program are designed to provide students with the fundamental knowledge and skills necessary for social work practice. These courses cover topics such as social welfare policy, human behavior, research methods, and social work practice. When creating a learning agreement, students should identify which foundation courses they plan to take and outline their objectives and expected outcomes for each course. For example, a student might set a goal of obtaining a deep understanding of social welfare policy and its impact on marginalized communities.

Concentration Courses

The concentration courses in an MSW program are more specialized and allow students to focus on a particular area of social work practice. Some common concentrations include clinical social work, community organizing, and policy advocacy. When creating a learning agreement, students should outline their objectives and expected outcomes for each concentration course they plan to take. For instance, a student interested in clinical social work might set a goal of mastering various therapeutic techniques and gaining experience in providing mental health services.

Field Placement

The field placement component of the MSW program is an essential part of learning and practicing social work. During field placement, students are placed in social work agencies, organizations, or institutions, where they can apply their knowledge and skills in real-world situations. When creating a learning agreement, students should identify their field placement goals, objectives, and activities. For example, a student might set a goal of developing cultural competency in their field placement and engaging in direct practice with clients from diverse cultural backgrounds.

Considerations for Creating an MSW Learning Agreement

There are several important considerations to keep in mind when creating an MSW learning agreement. First, it’s essential to align your learning objectives and outcomes with the requirements of your MSW program and accreditation standards. Second, focus on creating realistic objectives and outcomes that are attainable within the timeframe of your academic program. Finally, be sure to communicate your learning agreement effectively to your mentor or advisor and seek their feedback and input throughout the process.


An MSW learning agreement is an essential component of the MSW program, providing a roadmap for student learning and professional growth. By following the guidelines outlined in this article and considering the important points of consideration, students can create a comprehensive and effective learning agreement that will help them achieve their academic and professional goals in social work.

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