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Course Syllabus Title :SWSS 7 Quantitative Methods in Social Work Research Credits: 3 credits Instructor:Gary Widrick, Ph.D.

, MSW Meeting dates and timesTues.,Thurs. 5:00 -8:45 p.m. starting on May 22 for six weeks Location: Room to be announced

Course Description: The course is an introduction to statistics commonly in use in social work research. The course covers descriptive and inferential statistics. It also introduces students to the use of the software Statistical Package of the Social Sciences (SPSS). The course is filled with examples of how statistics can be useful for social workers and helps students understand the use and misuse of data. Examples of how statistics inform social work practice is an emphasis of the class as well as helping students be comfortable with using data in applied ways. The instructor uses lecture, demonstrations, small group discussion and lab exercises as learning approaches. The instructor will use examples from his own research as well as humor to help students adopt a curious attitude in a relaxed classroom atmosphere. Course content fulfills the statistics prerequisite required by many graduate programs in social work. Goals: The main goal of the course is to assist students to be literate in statistics to be able to read and comprehend research studies and competently apply statistics in their own work as social workers. Learning Outcomes: Several course objectives are emphasized including mastering quantitative reasoning, understanding the uses and limitations of quantitative methods, being able to comprehend and ask critical questions of statistics found in research studies and reports, being able to create statistics to describe a social problem/issue, understanding how to use SPSS to produce statistical tests, charts, tables, etc., ability to present and interpret data in clear and understandable ways to audiences, and learning how statistics can help our clients in agency-based social services.

General Course Information


Course Policies: Course policies mainly relate to the UVM Code of Academic Honesty and adhering to its guidelines. Attendance Expectations: Students are expected to attend all classes with exception only for excused absences. Contributions in Class: Students are expected to actively participate in class by asking questions, participating in small group exercises, reading assigned materials before each class and generally staying current with the assignments.

Academic Honesty & Professionalism: Students must adhere to UVM Code of Academic Honesty.

-2Required and/or recommended readings: There is one course text Statistics and Data Interpretation in Social Work (Rosenthal, 2012). Course readings will also be posted on Blackboard.

Electronic Submissions/Internet Use: Students may send in assignments via e mail to the instructor. Students will also do two lab assignments using SPSS which is free on computers in the UVM Bailey Howe library.

Student Evaluation/Assessment
Grading: The UVM grading system (see UVM undergraduate manual or CATs Tale) will be used. Format for Expected Work: Specific guidelines for assignments will be given and discussed in class. All papers must be word processed. Scoring Rubrics: Guidelines will be discussed in class for how the four main assignments will be scored. Percentage Contribution of Each Assignment: There will be three quizzes worth 25 % of the grade, two lab assignments worth 20% of the grade, a research article review presentation and short paper worth 25 points and a small group final presentation worth 25 points. Class participation counts for 5% of the grade. Instructional Sequence: Classes (except for lab exercises) will be a mixture of lecture, small group discussion , and student led exercises