Students entering the program this fall only will not be required to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) before admission. Students who take at least three hours during the fall and complete those hours with at least a 3.0 grade point average will automatically receive clear admission. The moratorium on the graduate admissions tests is expected to be for the fall semester only and is related to the changeover of the GRE from paper to computer formats.
The new master's degree program is the only one of its kind in the Rio Grande Valley. It requires the completion of 60 semester credit hours of work and has a 900-hour field education component. The full-time program, which will take four semesters of study to complete, has the approval of the Council of Social Work Education and is in the formal process of obtaining full accreditation.
"Social workers are broad-based professional helpers," said Dr. James P. Mace, chair of the Department of Social Work. "Students will prepare to help people resolve their problems in social functioning and social relationships. They also will promote the personal and social welfare and well-being of individuals, families, groups and communities and advance social services and social policies that are equitable, efficient and effective in aiding people in need.
"In addition, the program will prepare professional social workers who are competent to serve minority, bicultural, binational and bilingual citizens in Texas and elsewhere in the United States," he said.
Those interested in the program should call the UTPA Department of Social Work at 956/381-3575 for an application packet. Prospective students also must submit a separate application for graduate admission to the Office of Admissions and Records. This application form is included in the application packet. The application deadline for graduate admission to the university is Aug. 17.