Master of Social Work
Get ready to advance your social work career with an online Master of Social Work (MSW) from Walden University. This online master’s degree program helps you develop the skills needed to become a social worker. Designed to meet the needs of working students, Walden’s online degree program allows you to choose from three different degree tracks: a two-year full-time option; a part-time track; or an Advanced Standing track for students who have a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)–accredited institution with a minimum GPA of 3.0. The program can prepare you to pursue a career in a variety of settings, such as clinics and hospitals, or in private practice.
Concentrations (besides General Program)
• Children, Families, and Couples
• Crisis and Trauma
• Forensic Populations and Settings
• Medical Social Work
The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) is the accrediting body for academic social work programs in the United States. Graduation from a CSWE-accredited program is required for licensure as a social worker in most states.
New Master of Social Work (MSW) programs applying for CSWE accreditation must undergo an application development process consisting of “pre-candidacy,” and “candidacy,” before achieving accreditation. Normally, it takes approximately three years to receive accreditation.
The Walden MSW program has applied for CSWE accreditation and is currently considered to be in pre-candidacy. The Walden MSW program expects to complete its candidacy requirements and achieve candidacy status during the 2013–2014 academic year.
CSWE supports the acceptance of students into new MSW programs at any time during the academic year (September through June) that a program receives candidacy. The 2008 EPAS (Educational Policies and Accreditation Standards) Handbook, p. 44, states that once a program is granted accreditation, “…students admitted during or after the academic year in which the program is granted candidacy will be recognized as having graduated from an accredited program.” Should the Walden MSW program achieve CSWE candidacy status during the 2013-2014 academic year as anticipated and go on to achieve accreditation according to the CSWE timeline, then students admitted into the MSW program in September 2013 or later would graduate from a CSW accredited program.
Note on Licensure:
Licensure for MSW prepared social workers varies greatly from state to state. Each state board responsible for regulating the practice of social work has its own academic, licensure, and certification requirements and issues its own license to practice as a social worker.
In most states, the academic credential required for licensure to practice as a social worker is an MSW degree from a social work program which has been accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The Walden MSW program is not CSWE accredited but has applied for accreditation and is currently considered to be in pre-candidacy.
Because no program can guarantee licensure upon graduation, we encourage students to consult the appropriate social work licensing agency in the state in which they plan to practice to determine the specific academic requirements for licensure. Walden enrollment advisors can provide information relating to the state-by-state MSW degree requirements for MSW licensure. However, it remains the individual’s responsibility to understand, evaluate, and comply with all licensing requirements for the state in which he or she intends to practice. Walden makes no representations or guarantee that completion of its coursework or programs will permit an individual to achieve state licensure, authorization, endorsement, or other state credential as a social worker.