Degrees & Curriculum

The following degrees and certificates are offered as part of the Behavioral and Social Services program at Lake Washington Institute of Technology (LWTech).

See Class Schedule

LWTech's Behavioral and Social Services program offers a Bachelor’s of Applied Science in Behavioral Healthcare, an Associate of Arts (AAS) degree, and a Certificate of Proficiency in Behavioral and Social Services.

The AAS degree consists of 90 credits, and typically takes about two years to complete. The certificate program consists of 60 credits and can be completed in four quarters of study. The BAS consists of 90 credits and requires an additional two years to complete after AAS requirements are met. The exact length of any one student’s program will depend on whether they require preparatory courses in English or Math, whether they pass all classes, how many classes they complete per quarter, and whether they enter with transferable credits from another college.

Students who are not yet qualified for English 099 or Math 087 are advised to begin work towards those requirements as soon as possible, as they will need to add additional courses to complete the course sequence and thus the degree.

Applied Bachelor's Degrees

  • Total credits required: 90 credits
  • Full-time enrollment recommended.
  • Modalities: On-campus, online, and hybrid courses.
  • Schedule: Monday to Thursday evenings, and some Saturday mornings.

Course Plan

Pre-admit / “bridge term” summer, if necessary

  • Communication Skills
  • Math
  • Social Sciences
  • Humanities

Junior Fall

  • BIOL& 175 Human Biology with Lab
  • Humanities
  • Behavioral and Social Services 311 Treatment of mental health disorders

Junior Winter

  • BIOL 270 Basic Neurology
  • PUBH 330 Healthcare Structure and Leadership
  • Behavioral and Social Services 321 Assessment & goal planning

Junior Spring

  • Social science
  • Technical elective
  • Behavioral and Social Services 331 Professional Development


Supplemental course work / desired technical electives

Senior Fall

  • Behavioral and Social Services 411 Field Practicum 1
  • Behavioral and Social Services 412 Human service ethics
  • SUDC 111 Substance use, abuse and dependency

Senior Winter

  • Behavioral and Social Services 421 Field Practicum 2
  • Social science or technical elective
  • SUDC 121 Treatment of substance use issues

Senior Spring

  • Behavioral and Social Services 431 Field Practicum 3
  • Behavioral and Social Services 432 Mental health systems & care
  • Social science or technical elective


BASBH students will complete three consecutive quarters of field practicum during their senior year. Field practicum is an integral part of the behavioral healthcare curriculum. Most students consider their practicum fieldwork to be the most valuable and significant part of their social work education. Students will remain at the same behavioral healthcare organization for the duration of their practicum whenever possible. Each quarter, students will complete 20 hours of classroom seminar and 90 hours of fieldwork. 

Community mental health center administrators have been extremely supportive, recognizing the BASBH program as focused explicitly on their needs. LWTech’s faculty intend to work directly with leaders of local (King and Snohomish county) Behavioral Healthcare organizations to place students in these organizations for field practicums. 

Possibilities: Asian Counseling and Referral Service, Atlantic Street Center, Catholic Community Services, Center for Human Services, Community House Mental Health, Consejo Counseling & Referral Service, Cowlitz Tribal Treatment, Downtown Emergency Service Center, Evergreen Health, Evergreen Manor, Evergreen Treatment Services, Friends of Youth, Harborview Mental Health Services, Integrative Counseling Services, Intercept Associates, Island Crossing Counseling Center, Lakeside Milam Recovery Centers, Muckleshoot Indian Tribe, Multicare Health System, Navos, New Traditions, Pioneer Counseling Services, Ryther, Seadrunar, Seamar Community Health Centers, Seattle Counseling Service, Seattle Indian Health Board, Snoqualmie Tribe, Sound Mental Health, Spectrum Health Services, Stillaguamish Tribe, Therapeutic Health Services, Transitional Resources, Valley Cities Counseling & Consultation, WAPI Community Services, YMCA of Greater Seattle, and Youth Eastside Services.

Preparation for Graduate Studies/School

What if I want to go on for a Master’s degree? The BASBH provides a strong preparation for graduate work in degree programs such as

  • Master of Social Work
  • Master of Arts in Counseling Psychology
  • Master of Arts in International Community Development
  • Doctor of Psychology in Counseling Psychology

LWTech is collaborating with Washington state universities to establish articulation agreements to ensure our graduates a breadth of options to continue their professional education.

Associate Degree

Cohort Model

Behavioral and Social Services degree students will work through their courses together with the same group of students, known as a cohort. Students will enter the degree program either in the fall or the spring quarters only. They develop supportive relationships with a small group of students who will progress together, quarter by quarter, through a standard sequence of courses.

This model allows us to ensure that students have access to the courses they need in a predictable fashion. We can avoid scheduling conflicts with their other courses, ensure they have access to their pre-requisites, and plan for their work and personal lives. Cohort models have been shown to provide students with a shared support system and increase their likelihood of graduation.

Students still have individual options for their technical electives within the program, their academic core classes, and their general electives.

LWTech does not offer every course each quarter. It is the student's responsibility to consult the Class Schedule and work out an individual schedule with an advisor.

Students who are first enrolling at the college in winter or summer quarters should contact the program faculty for advising on what courses they can take in preparation. Those starting in winter or summer will be encouraged to complete their academic core courses: Math, Communication, and Humanities.

Example BHAV AAS Schedule

The following is an example of how a student's course plan might look. Each student's plan is personalized, according to their prior coursework, college readiness, transfer credits, preferred electives, choice whether to take courses in the summer,and desire to study full-time or part-time. Students can start any season of the year, as well. Department faculty will work with you to develop your plan.

Fall Quarter 1

  • HLSC 100, College and Career Success for Health Sciences, 3cr
  • IFAD 162, 1st aid/CPR for Health care professionals, 1cr
  • BHAV 110, Introduction to Behavioral & Social Service, 5cr
  • MATH& 107, Math in Society, 5cr

Winter Quarter 1

  • HUM 215, Diversity & Social Justice, 5cr
  • ENGL& 101, English Composition 1, 5cr
  • PSYC& 100, General Psychology, 5cr

Spring Quarter 1

  • BHAV 120, Case Management & Systems, 5cr
  • BHAV 222, Multicultural Counseling, 5cr
  • Technical elective #1

Fall Quarter 2

  • SOC& 101, Introduction to Sociology, 5cr
  • BHAV 130, Therapeutic Approaches & Techniques, 5cr
  • Technical elective #2

Winter Quarter 2

  • BHAV 210, Group Process & Dynamics, 5cr
  • PSYC& 200, Lifespan Psychology, 5cr
  • Technical elective #3

Spring Quarter 2

  • PSYC& 220, Abnormal Psychology, 5cr
  • CMST& 210, Interpersonal Communication, 5cr
  • Technical elective #4

Transferring to a 4-year Program

Many Behavioral and Social Services students choose to pursue a four-year degree in order to expand their job opportunities. LWTech offers its own applied bachelor's degree and develops articulation agreements with several colleges and universities to ensure our graduates can transfer easily into these other schools. Upon completion of the Behavioral and Social Services AAS at LWTech, students may transfer to the following baccalaureate programs at junior status:

Students should contact an advisor at the transfer college to determine specific transfer requirements.

Other 4-year programs which might interest our graduates include