Specialization in Policy & Macro Practice

The LSU School of Social Work Graduate Specialization in Policy & Macro Practice provides specialized-year students with specialized training in Policy & Macro Practice. Professionals skilled in the fundamental areas of macro practice and connected to the concerns of people often excluded from decision-making are needed to support informed policy making and program administration across sectors, including child welfare, healthcare, gerontology, mental health, immigration and criminal justice. The Policy & Macro Practice Specialization in the LSU MSW Program supports students in the development of skills needed to uphold administrative leadership roles across sectors. Dr. Jennifer Scott serves as Coordinator of this specialization.


Participation in the Policy & Macro Practice Specialization is open to any LSU MSW specialized- year student in good standing

  • Credit hours - the specialization offers two options: non-thesis or thesis
    • The non-thesis option requires students to complete 9 credit hours of graduate coursework focused on policy and macro practice
    • For students electing to complete a thesis project, 6 elective credits will be directed toward a policy relevant thesis, and 3 elective credits will be in coursework focused on policy and macro practice
  • Special projects
    • Students also engage in required special projects and trainings outside of the requirements of course hours that support development of key skills in policy & macro practice
  • Field placements
    • Students participating in the Policy & Macro Practice Specialization will complete their advanced field placements in agencies where at least 50% of their internship activities are dedicated to policy and macro practice activities
    • Ex: Grant writing, policy analysis and research, advocacy, budget analysis, program development, coalition building, etc.
    • The LSU Field Education Office provides details and guidance on policy focused placement opportunities, including a list of eligible agencies

Additional Notes

  • Students should note that earning a specialization does not guarantee the availability or attainment of a job in that field.
  • Faculty may, but are not required to, excuse students to participate in specialization activities. Students who are not excused from class to participate in a specialization activity must be provided with an equitable alternative activity.