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Master of Social Work Program
College of Social Work, Room 331
Two-Year Full-Time Master of Social Work (MSW)
Minimum Master Hours: 60
The two-year Master of Social Work (MSW) degree program prepares students for service and leadership in the profession of social work at the micro, mezzo and macro levels of practice. Students who graduate from this Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited M.S.W. program are prepared to pass the national ASWB licensure examination to qualify for state professional licensure. The first-year generalist curriculum develops basic knowledge and skills necessary to serve individuals, couples, families, small groups, organizations, and communities. The second-year curriculum consists of seven concentration areas of advanced practice, which are Aging in Social Work, Child Welfare, Forensics in Social Work, Global Social Work, Health in Social Work, Mental Health in Social Work, and Substance Use in Social Work. In some instances, students can complete dual concentrations or add a graduate certificate in Women’s Health to their program of study. These curricular concentrations, which include concurrent on-site field work in community organizations, provide students opportunities to apply social work practice in areas related to their career goals. The M.S.W. program is a day-time program, which can be completed in two years of full-time study.
Three-Year Part-Time Master of Social Work (M.S.W.)
Minimum Master Hours: 60
The three-year Master of Social Work degree program provides the opportunity for students to complete the M.S.W. over the course of three years. Academic policies and requirements match those in the full-time program; however, courses are held in the evening.
Applications are currently accepted once every three years. The next application window will be fall 2019 to begin the program in fall 2020.
Advanced Standing in Master of Social Work (MSW)
Minimum Master Hours: 45
Students who have a Bachelor of Social Work (B.S.W.) degree are eligible to apply for the Advanced Standing Program, which reduces the number of credits required to earn an M.S.W. degree to 45 credit hours.
Only students admitted during or after the academic year in which a program is granted candidacy will be recognized as having graduated from an accredited program. Students admitted prior to the academic year in which the program was granted candidacy will not be recognized as having graduated from a CSWE-accredited social work education program.
The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accreditation standards requires that B.S.W. programs include academic content comparable to what is taught in the first-year of M.S.W. programs. Thus, the University of Utah’s M.S.W. Program has developed an option for students who have earned a bachelor degree in social work from a CSWE accredited program. Students who have earned a B.S.W. degree may apply to the M.S.W. program as Advanced Standing students. (Click here for a directory of CSW accredited social work programs.) Students with B.S.W. degrees are encouraged to apply to the Advanced Standing program. They may also apply to the two-year M.S.W. Program if they wish, giving them additional learning opportunities. If choosing to apply to the two-year program, they cannot also apply to the Advanced Standing Program in the same year and need to know that no first year M.S.W. coursework will be waived.
Only students with a B.S.W. earned in the last 7 years by the application deadline may apply for the M.S.W. Advanced Standing Program. Applicants who have earned a B.S.W. degree more than 7 years ago are required to apply for the full-time, two-year M.S.W. program.
Requirements for admission to any MSW Program option include:
- A bachelor’s degree from a regionally-accredited university or college
- Academic credentials attesting to strong scholarship - generally a grade point average of 3.0 or above
- Completion of five required prerequisite courses
In addition to the above mentioned requirements, we favor applicants who show:
- Adherence to the highest standards of conduct and ethics
- Emotional maturity
- Leadership and problem solving ability
- An aptitude for understanding and relating to people
- A demonstrated history of social service experience through volunteer or paid work experience in human service settings
Applications for admission must be received no later than November 1 for full-time or part-time M.S.W. program applicants, and September 30 for Advanced Standing (open only to B.S.W. graduates). Generally, applicants are notified of Admission Committee decisions throughout the Spring semester prior to enrollment the following Fall semester. Advanced Standing students are notified no later than January 15 with their program beginning summer semester.
Important Admission Notice: Applicants who are admitted to the M.S.W. program must complete certain prerequisites before beginning classes. Applicants should email their transcripts to the M.S.W. Admissions Coordinator as early in their admission process as possible to assess for prerequisites or approved substitutions.
The following five courses must be completed with a grade of C or better, with at least a 3.0 (B) average across all five classes. These courses do not need to be complete at time of the application deadline, but must be complete with proof of grade submitted no later than 14 calendar days before beginning the MSW program, if admitted.
- Introduction to Sociology
- Introduction to Psychology
- Introduction to Political Science (U.S. National Government), or U.S. History
- Human Development Across the Lifespan (birth to end of life)
- Research or Statistics - must be a Social and Behavioral Science class
Prerequisite classes must be taken at a post-secondary, regionally-accredited educational institution on a for-credit basis, with a letter grade assigned. AP credit or CLEP waivers will not be accepted. Prerequisite classes must have been taken within the last 10 years.
These skills and qualities are assessed through recommendations, an autobiographical essay, a case study essay utilizing the NASW Code of Ethics, a timed social issues essay, and applicants’ transcripts. For international students a score of 600 or above on the TOEFL is required. This is a higher score than the general U of U minimum requirement, as proficiency in all types of communication is necessary for Social Work practice.
All applicants to the College of Social Work MSW program must complete a background check as a condition of admission.
- Maintain at least a 3.0 GPA; no class with a grade below C+ can count towards graduation.
- Minimum grade requirements for joint degrees differ between each program. Please visit the College of Social Work Joint Degrees page for more information.
This degree has the option to be a dual program with Master of Public Administration , Master of Public Health , or Juris Doctor. Click on name to view more information.
Master Requirements for Social Work
Candidates for the M.S.W. degree must:
- Complete at least one academic year in full-time residence
- Complete all required courses
- Complete a minimum of 60 credit hours of graduate course work and field work (45 for Advanced Standing program)
- Maintain at least a 3.0 GPA; no class with a grade below C+ can count towards graduation. Minimum grade requirements for joint degrees differ between each program. Please visit the College of Social Work Joint Degrees page for more information.
For detailed information on program options, admissions and opportunities available to M.S.W. students, as well as most recent information on program requirements, including classes, credit hours, course descriptions, etc., please go to the University of Utah College of Social Work website. Information contained in this catalog may have changed since annual publication.