FAQs

Here are some of the most Frequently Asked Questions in relation to Advising.  If your question is not listed here, please contact sswadvising@ssw.umaryland.edu.

How Does Academic Advising Work at UM SSW?

Students are encouraged to speak with the school’s Academic Advisor to develop an educational plan needed to meet their academic requirements within the prescribed time frame. In addition, the Academic Advisor is available to talk about curriculum matters, the structure of the academic program, academic rules and degree requirements.

Although the Academic Advisor will assist students in developing a Plan of Study, each student must assume responsibility for knowing curriculum requirements and ensuring that these requirements are met by reviewing the materials on the school’s website.

Who is my Academic Advisor?

The Academic Advisor is Nakiya Schurman, MSW, an alumni of the UMSSW.  She can be reached at sswadvising@ssw.umaryland.edu or 410-706-7707. 

Do I have a Faculty Advisor?

Students are encouraged to meet with faculty members for professional advising. This will encompass providing advice to students about the plausible outcomes of different concentrations and specializations, how these courses of study are different in nature and different in their future implications, and other matters related to increasing a student’s understanding of the social work profession.

Faculty members are available for professional advising during office hours and by appointment. Students will find faculty members’ bios located on the school’s website.  The bios can help students determine faculty research interests, subject areas of expertise, courses taught and designation of concentration/specialization chairpersons.

What are the Concentrations?

The concentrations available are Clinical and Macro.  A student's advanced curriculum requirements are determined by their concentration and specialization selection.

To learn more about the concentrations, select: http://www.ssw.umaryland.edu/academics/concentrations/

What are the Specializations?

The specializations offiered are:

  • Aging (for Clinical and Macro students)
  • Behavioral Health (for Clinical and Macro students)
  • Community Action and Social Policy (for Macro students only)
  • Families and Children (for Clinical and Macro students)
  • Health (for Clinical and Macro students)
  • Organizational Leadership (for Macro students only)

Students may select a sub-specialization in Child, Adolescent and Family Health under the Health specialization or Social Work in the Workplace and Employee Assistance (formerly Employee Assistance Programs) sub-specialization under either the Behavioral Health or Organizational Leadership specialization.  Selecting a sub-specialization does not require additional credits past the required 60. 

A student's advanced curriculum requirements are determined by their concentration and specialization selection.  To learn more about the Specializations, visit: http://ssw.umaryland.edu/academics/specializations/  

What is Field Education?

Field Education is an important component of graduate social work education. Included in a student's Plan of Study will be two different field placements in social services agencies, departments or other service delivery systems located throughout the State of Maryland and surrounding areas.  Field Placements are determined based on concentration/specialization for advanced students and geographic location for foundation students. 

Students can learn more about Field Education here: http://www.ssw.umaryland.edu/field_education/index.htm and by contacting the Field Education Office at 410-706-7187 or fieldeducation@ssw.umaryland.edu

Can I study abroad?

The University and the School have a strong and growing international focus offering a variety of global educational experiences. The School offers courses which include international travel and an international field placement program for interested students.

Find out more here: http://ssw.umaryland.edu/academics/international-learning/ and here: http://www.umaryland.edu/global/

How do I register for classes?

Students register for classes in SURFS (Student User Friendly System).  

  1. Log on to SURFS with your myUM ID and password   
  2. Select STUDENT SERVICES AND FINANCIAL AID
  3. Select REGISTRATION
  4. Select SELECT TERM and choose the desired term
  5. Select ADD/DROP CLASSES and then scroll down to the ADD CLASS section
  6. Enter the CRN number(s) for desired courses and sections (find courses and CRN codes here: https://www.ssw.umaryland.edu/academics/calendar/
  7. Select SUBMIT CHANGES and courses will appear in the CURRENT SCHEDULE area.                

Once you login, you will also be able to view your bill, change your address and check your grades.  

If you need assistance logging in to SURFS, please contact the Help Desk at help@umaryland.edu. 

Potential Registration Errors:

  • Holds – The student will not be permitted to register until the hold is resolved with the appropriate office. 
  • Time Conflict – Classes that meet concurrently have been selected
  • Closed Section – Course is full and closed for further registration
  • Class Restriction – The student is not eligible to register for the course
  • Course Prerequisites – The student has not met the requirements to register for this course

 If you need assistance registering, please email sswregistration@ssw.umaryland.edu 

I’m ready to plan my schedule – now what?

  1. View Samples Plan of Study.
  2. Review the Curriculum & Specialization Overviews to learn more about your graduation requirements.
  3. Download/view Class Schedules.  Print a copy of the schedule for use when registering.
  4. Not sure what to take?  Email sswadvising@ssw.umaryland.edu to talk about your plan of study.