BASW Exit Survey
Students who graduated from the BASW program in 2009 were surveyed by mail and were asked to respond to questions pertaining to the general knowledge and practice skills that they have obtained from the program. Questionnaires were distributed to 56 BASW graduates in May 2009; 44 surveys were returned for a response rate of 79%. Ninety one percent of the respondents were female. Fifty seven percent studied in New Brunswick. Quality of the BASW curriculum
The respondents were asked to rate the quality of the BASW curriculum from poor (1) to excellent (5), in terms of building their knowledge and skills in the following areas. Overall, students rated the quality of the program as being very good (means were close to 4 or above on 5 point scale). The highest rated areas were:
Strengths of the BASW curriculum
- Use empathy and other interpersonal skills (mean=4.48)
- Make ethical decision using ethical reasoning by applying the standards of NASW Code of Ethics (mean=4.43)
- Gain self-awareness to eliminate the influence of personal biases and values in working with diverse groups (mean=4.43)
- Practice personal reflection and self correction (mean=4.41)
- Attend to professional roles and boundaries (mean=4.41)
Twenty two students provided comments regarding the strengths of the BASW Curriculum. 40.9% of twenty two students reported that the curriculum was solid and comprehensive and majority of the classes were informative and well taught. Just over eighteen percent (18.2%) said that the professors were knowledgeable, experienced and well prepared.
Recent Alumni Survey (BASW 2007)
Each year since 1978, the Rutgers University School of Social Work has conducted a survey of its alumni within two years of their graduation to collect information regarding the initial professional and job market experiences of BASW recipients. The following report describes the employment experiences of the 2007 graduates of the BASW program.
Questionnaires were mailed in 2009 to individuals who had completed the BASW program in 2007. Closed and open-ended questions solicited information on their employment search, current employment, salary levels, the BASW curriculum and their demographic characteristics. Responses were obtained from 26 graduates from a list of 43 addresses for a response rate of 60.5%.
Most respondents are female, with an average age of 29 years. About eighty percent identified their ethnic background as white. Areas of Study
All of the respondents were full-time students. Sixty two percent attended the New Brunswick campus, and a high 81 percent worked at a paid job while in the BASW program. Those who were employed worked an average of 20.7 hours per week. More than half students already graduated from MSW program. Twenty three percent plan on entering a MSW program. Current employment
About ninety percent of the respondents were employed, and majority of those (87%) were employed in social work. Average work hours at their primary place of employment were 37.2. Twenty seven percent reported they worked a second job, with average additional work hours of 7.9 per week. About seventy percent of the respondents reported they were working in the method that they studied. The median yearly salary of the respondents who worked 30 hours or more per week was $40,000. Job Search
The respondents found jobs 0.5 months after graduation, and they averaged 2 job offers. Their means for finding the job included: field placement (43%), online employment website (26%), and referral from a friend or acquaintance (17%). Employment Auspice
Most respondents were employed in the private, non-profit sector (52.4%), followed by public sector (23.9%) and for-profit sector (23.8%). Job Duty
Respondents were asked to choose from a list their one primary job duty. The most frequently reported were casework (65%) and individual counseling (20%). Respondents were also asked to indicate from a list all job duties performed in their employed. Most frequently reported were casework (95%), individual counseling (65%) and group work (60%). Employment Setting
Respondents were asked to indicate the one primary setting for their employment. The most common primary settings were child welfare (24%), aged (14%), family agency (10%), and health (11%) (Table 9). The respondents also indicated all setting descriptions that were relevant to their employment. Those most frequently reported were child welfare (33%) and drug abuse/treatment (19%). Computer Use at Primary Job
The respondents were asked about their use of computers and technology in their primary work places. Most of the respondents reported that they used MS Word (100%) or internet (95%). Further Education
At the time of the survey, majority of the respondents had already completed some form of continuing education (82%). Most of those took MSW program (94%). Social Work License
Thirty five percent of the respondents reported that they had obtained a social work license. Of the students who did not have a license, about two thirds reported they intended to obtain one.
Respondents were asked which courses and skills had proven most useful in employment after completion of the BASW program. Students reported that direct practice (31%), program development (27%) and policy course offered (23%), and the understanding of diversity (19%) was most useful.