Mental Health and Pre-Social Work (MHS.AAS)

Mental Health and Pre-Social Work (MHS.ONL.AAS) - 100% Online

Associate in Applied Science

Human Services

The Associate of Applied Science Degree in Mental Health & Pre-Social Work (MHS) is designed to prepare students for a future career in the Behavioral and Mental Health fields. Upon completion of the MHA program students are prepared for entry-level employment at variety of human service agencies including casework specialist, mental health technician, outreach specialist, substance abuse technician, youth specialist, and foster care specialist.

Students interested in pursuing an entry level career in social services or a bachelor’s degree in Social Work (BSW) will complete the Pre-Social Work plan of study. The required coursework is designed to help students develop an understanding of human and social systems, and the ethics and values that guide human services practitioners, with an emphasis on social work.  Students learn through a combination of classroom work and fieldwork, spending 135 hours in human services agencies such as mental health centers, social service agencies, substance abuse counseling sites, and other facilities.

Students interested in behavioral health are also eligible and encouraged to take courses within the MHS program as electives. These electives are designed to introduce students to interviewing, assessment, and relevant theoretical frameworks used in behavioral health professions. 

MHS classes are designed to be taken in a certain sequence and as such students are encouraged to meet with an OCC counselor to create a personal plan of study. It is highly recommended that students intending to transfer into a bachelor degree program meet with an OCC counselor to develop a plan aligned with the transfer and articulation agreements of the respective bachelor degree program of interest.

A “C” (2.0) or better grade is required in MHS major courses for graduation.  In addition, a criminal background check will be required to participate in MHS 2600 Internship in Mental Health and Social Work. While the program understands some students’ history of criminal convictions may have inspired their interest in social work, some convictions may prevent individuals from completing internships at the associate, bachelor’s and master’s level, as well as from getting licensed in the State of Michigan. If any student has any questions or concerns, they may make an appointment with the Program Coordinator to discuss further. Here is a list of some reasons students may be denied registration in MHS 2600: 

  1. A conviction of a felony or conviction of an attempt to commit a felony within fifteen years preceding the start of the course.
  2. A conviction of a misdemeanor involving abuse, neglect, assault, battery, or criminal sexual conduct, or involving fraud or theft, within fifteen years preceding the start of the course.
  3. A conviction of a misdemeanor within five years preceding the start of the course.

In order to obtain Social Work Technician licensing students must also meet all state requirements at State of Michigan Licensing and Regulations

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Program Outcomes and Full Time Plan Example - Click Here

Program Outcomes and Part Time Plan Example - Click Here

Major Requirements
MHS 2000Introduction to Social Work and Human Service Practice3
MHS 2010Ethics and Values in Mental Health3
MHS 2100Interviewing, Assessment, and Case Work Skills3
MHS 2300Interpersonal Theory and Practice3
MHS 2400Group Dynamics in Social Work and Mental Health Practice3
MHS 2500Family Systems Theory and Practice3
MHS 2600Mental Health and Social Work Internship4
Required Supportive Courses
BIO 1511Life Science4
ENG 15101Composition I 3-6
or ENG 1510E Composition I Enhanced4
or ENG 1510S Composition I with Support6
ENG 1520Composition II3
POL 1510American Government3
PSY 2510Introduction to Psychology3
PSY 2740Human Development Across the Lifespan3
SOC 2510Sociology3
SOC 2530Racial and Ethnic Group Relations3
SOC 2620Sociology of Diversity3
Total Credit Hours for Program-Related Courses50-51
General Education Requirements
Communication / English (3-credits)
Fine Arts / Humanities (3-credits)3
Mathematics / Science (3-credits)3
Social Science (3-credits)
Written Communication (3-credits)3
Recommended Electives
Introduction to Addictions3
Assessment, Intervention and Treatment Planning in Addiction3
Co-Occurring Disorders3
Diversity in Addiction3
Psychology of Adjustment3
Sociology of the Aging3
Marriage and Family in Modern Society3
Additional elective credits needed to meet requirements for an Associate in Applied Science degree7
Total Credit Hours60

A minimum cumulative 2.00 grade point average (GPA) overall is required for graduation.

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