Social Work Practice in Mental Health

Full-Time MSW Program Advanced Practice Field Unit

Each year there are 2-3 field units in mental health and they are for advanced practice students only. Students will register for 001-Sem and be assigned into specific units later. These units provide an integrative seminar and supervised practice of clinical social work, including assessment, diagnosis, treatment including psychotherapy and counseling, client-centered advocacy, consultation and evaluation. Students are placed in community-based settings where the primary focus is to provide treatment to children, adolescents and adults who experience a wide range of DSM-IV-TR-recognized mental health problems.


All of the mental health field units share the same course description and objectives in terms of demonstrating competencies and practice behaviors. Assignment to a particular field unit is made by the School and is based in large part upon where the student is placed. As of this writing, there are two field units and both meet on Wednesday morning.


Agency placements include community hospitals, VA and Mendota Mental Health Institute, community support programs, residential treatment centers for children and adolescents, University Health Services, and non-profit and for-profit outpatient practice settings inside and outside Dane County. There may be some travel support for students who choose placements outside Dane County.


The seminar perspective for mental health treatment is interpersonal, interactional and problem-and-action oriented.

Participating Agencies: 
Agencies that have participated in the past include Access Community Health Center, Family Services, Lutheran Social Services, Children’s Service Society, Waukesha County Behavioral Health, Orion Family Services, Lad Lake Residential Treatment Center (Dousman), Mendota Mental Health Institute, Madison Mental Health Services, Journey Mental Health Center (formerly the Mental Health Center of Dane County), Ho-Chunk Wellness Center, Mercy Options CCI (Janesville), Meriter Hospital, Rainbow Project, Sauk County Outpatient Mental Health (Baraboo), University Counseling and Consultation Services, University Hospital, VA Hospital and other settings. Availability of particular agencies varies from year to year.

Last edited by portier on Friday, January 04, 2013 | Printer Friendly Version