Instructor(s): Danielle Szandtner

Note: Three credits over two years.

Note: This section of the course is for students studying remotely, via audio-visual conference. One meeting last Tuesday of every month excluding December 2020 and April 2021. To enrol in this course all students must meet or exceed the tech requirements for enrolment in University of Toronto courses, which can be found here []

This seminar is a required course for students in each of the final two years of the J.D./M.S.W. combined degree program (in other words students are required to attend the seminar over a two year period) and open to students enrolled in the Faculty of Social Work who have completed a J.D. degree and to students enrolled in the Faculty of Law who have completed either a B.S.W. or M.S.W. degree. The seminar will meet once a month for two hours and as noted above, the 3 credits are earned after two years of participation and completion of the course requirements.

The primary purpose of the seminar is to explore the multiple intersections between law and social work. This exploration will be situated within a broader set of ideas and debates about "disciplines", "multi-disciplinarity" and "inter-disciplinarity". The manner in which theories, practices and interventions have been developed in relation to particular disciplines or professions will be explored, and the strengths and limitations of such approaches exposed in different substantive areas. So too, the potential for multi- or inter-disciplinary approaches will be explored in particular areas. The particular substantive topics to be pursued will vary from year to year, in part depending upon the field practical experiences of students enrolled in the course at any given time, but could include such issues as the intersections of law and social work in the areas of child protection, woman abuse, child custody, mental health, housing, etc.

The course will also examine the often divergent ethical norms governing the practices of law and social work and the implications of this for inter-disciplinary professionals.

Students are required to read all of the assigned readings. In addition, there will be two principal forms of evaluation: 1. Class Preparation: For each class, the students will each be responsible for preparing a 250-500 word comment on one or more of the readings. The written comment can touch on any aspect of the reading. Where possible, students should try to relate the readings to their own experiences working and studying in law and social work. Students will make their comments available to the other group of students and the instructor by no later than 5:00 p.m. on the Friday immediately before the Monday class. Comments should be distributed by email. Where email is not an option alternate arrangements shall be made. The Class preparation mark will constitute 50% of your mark. The written comments will constitute 30% and class participation 20% of the class preparation mark. 2. Final Paper Topics to be decided: This year, the second year of the course, students are required to write a paper of 5,000 words. The two final paper marks (one from each year of the course) will comprise 50% of your overall mark. The first year paper will constitute 1/3 of your writing grade, the second year paper will constitute 2/3 of your writing grade.
Academic year
2020 - 2021

At a Glance

Both Terms



15 JD


T: 6:30 - 8:30 pm (AV Conference)