Certificate in Child Welfare

Children in our society are everyones responsibility. Trained professionals provide children additional direction, support, and environment they may lack.

General Information

Marygrove College offers a multidisciplinary certificate program in child welfare. This certificate is intended to provide education and career opportunities for individuals who have completed at least two years of undergraduate coursework and are employed in direct service jobs focusing on the well-being of children and their families. It is also designed for professional practitioners with a baccalaureate or higher degree, who want to deepen their understanding of childhood development and are interested in developing specific leadership skills to work on behalf of children within the systems of child and family welfare.

To receive a certificate in child welfare, you must complete a minimum of 17 credit hours at Marygrove College. This includes 15 credit hours of required courses and two credit hours of electives.

The three-credit hour field experience in child welfare may be waived if you are presently participating in a supervised work experience with children, or if the field practicum experience for your major is in a child welfare setting. In such cases, you would take another three credit elective course in the program.


The number of children whose developmental and/or welfare needs must be provided by persons other than their birth parents/nuclear family, is rapidly increasing and will continue to expand. As family demographics in the U.S. change, the number of children being raised in single parent, two working parents, blended, foster, and/or adoptive families is growing. These diverse types of family structure greatly increase the need for care of children by persons other than the biological parent.

Individuals who have knowledge and understanding of children and their unique needs are in high demand both in public and private child welfare agencies and programs. If you are currently working in or interested in gaining employment with one of the many programs serving children that receive federal funding, you are/will be required to have at least some professional training in children’s development and their well-being.

In addition to professional preparation, Marygrove’s child welfare program will provide you with skills to better understand the developmental needs of your own children, and it will help you to prepare for additional roles, such as those of a grandparent or relative caregiver.

If your major is child development, early childhood education, special education, social work, sociology, or psychology, you can enhance and combine your career preparation with a certificate in child welfare.


The total credit hour requirement for the certificate is 17 hours, including:

A. Required Courses

PSY 205       Introductory to Psychology 4 hours
CD/SW 268  Child Welfare Policies and Services 2 hours
BIO 141        Nutrition through the Life Cycle 3 hours
SW 200A     Special Topics: Substance Abuse 2 hours
SW 200B     Special Topics: Working with Children and Families 2 hours
SW 299*      Pre-professional Practicum 3-4 hours

*To be arranged with approval of the director of the child welfare certificate program.

B. Elective Courses

CD 213         Infant/Toddler: Care/Education 3 hours
CD 223        Young Child Guidance 3 hours
CD 226        Administration of Developmental Centers 3 hours
PSY 240      Developmental Psychology 3 hours
SED 250      Education of the Exceptional Learner 3 hours
SOC 306      Ethnic and Racial Diversity 3 hours
SOC 307      Introduction to Ethnic and Cultural Studies 3 hours
SOC 311       Deviant Behavior 3 hours
SOC 345      Sociology of the Family 3 hours
SW 200C     Special Topics: Working with Mental Illness 2 hours

Social Work Overview

Social Work Overview

Social work isn't a job—it's a calling. Marygrove prepares you for this calling with team-based teaching and student-driven courses.

Student Organizations

Student Organizations

Marygrove's Social Work student organizations offer more than just the opportunity to learn and make friends. They empower you to create change—to better the world through action.

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