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Through education and research, the University of Utah College of Social Work contributes to shaping policies, services, and interventions; to preventing and alleviating human suffering; to enhancing individual, family, community, and global well-being; and to promoting social and economic justice. Utilizing an advanced generalist perspective, the Master of Social Work program is structured to support collaborative work in social work education, research, and public service. Partnerships with more than 300 off-campus social service agencies offer students opportunities to apply their knowledge and skills.

The Advanced Generalist perspective equips social workers with skills for micro, mezzo, and macro practice with diverse client systems and populations. Thus, the context of the MSW program is consistent with the purpose of the social work profession to alleviate human suffering, enhance well-being, and promote social justice. In the online MSW program, students are provided an opportunity to build advanced generalist knowledge and skills in the Mental Health area of focus.

At the University of Utah, our courses combine the flexibility of online learning with the advantages and direct engagement of traditional teaching. Enjoy the benefit of studying online while still engaging with classmates and instructors.

While courses in the MSW Online Program are largely asynchronous, some courses may require a limited number of synchronous sessions that are facilitated via Zoom. This flexible way of teaching improves your overall experience and your ability to retain what you learn.

Interactive learning comes in a variety of ways:

  • Collaboration via email, Zoom, or a discussion forum to complete group assignments.
  • Contributions to a discussion forum, where you discuss important topics, learn to think critically, and respond directly to other class members' posts and receive feedback from your instructor.
  • Peer reviews, where you review and comment on assignments from other students.

Our classes also offer multiple routes to stay connected and get help:

  • Communicate directly with the instructor via email.
  • Participate in and guide online discussions.
  • Attend online office hours in discussion threads or on the phone.
  • Instructors are available in “real” office hours for students on or near campus; for some courses we offer Q&A sessions in a classroom.

Master of Social Work

Two-Year, Full-Time MSW Online

  • Starts fall semester each year
  • Complete 60 graduate credits
  • Four full-time semesters, 15 credits each
  • Minimum C+ or higher in each course and maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA
  • Complete two practicums – 400 hours in the first year, 500 hours in the second year

Required Courses

  • SW 6001 Practice I (3)
  • SW 6030 Human Behavior in the Social Environment (3)
  • SW 6040 DSM and Psychopathology (3)
  • SW 6240 Social Policies and Programs: Advocacy and Analysis for Justice (3)
  • SW 6511 Generalist Field Practicum I (3)
  • SW 6002 Practice II (3)
  • SW 6110 Research for Social Work Practice (3)
  • SW 6120 Diversity & Social Justice: Reflexive & Ethical Social Work Practice I (3)
  • SW 6140 Community-Based Strategies for Social Change (3)
  • SW 6512 Generalist Field Practicum II (3)
  • SW 6220 Diversity & Social Justice: Reflexive and Ethical Social Work Practice II (3)
  • SW 6401 Mental Health Practice I (3)
  • SW 6521 Specialized Field Practicum I (4)
  • SW 6740 Substance Use Practice I (3) (fulfills requirement for Advanced Practice course outside Mental Health area of focus)
  • SW 6402 Mental Health Practice II (3)
  • SW 6522 Specialist Field Practicum II (4)
  • Electives (10)

Advanced Standing MSW Online

  • Requires a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) in the last seven years (by the application deadline). Applicants who have earned a BSW more than seven years ago are required to apply to the two-year, full-time MSW online program.
  • Starts summer semester each year. One year program.
  • Complete 45 graduate credits - 3 full-time semesters, 15 credits each.
  • Minimum C+ or higher in each course and maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA.
  • Complete one practicum – 500 hours over fall and spring semesters.

Required Courses

  • SW 6040 DSM and Psychopathology (3)
  • SW 6200 Bridge Practice (3)
  • SW 6121 Bridge Reflexive Practice (1)
  • SW 6220 Diversity & Social Justice: Reflexive and Ethical Social Work Practice II (3)
  • SW 6401 Mental Health Practice I (3)
  • SW 6521 Specialist Field Practicum I (4)
  • SW 6740 Substance Use Practice I (3) (fulfills requirement for Advanced Practice course outside Mental Health area of focus)
  • SW 6402 Mental Health Practice II (3)
  • SW 6522 Specialist Field Practicum II (4)
  • Electives (18)

The College of Social Work assesses a per-credit-hour differential tuition charge for graduate programs. This differential tuition charge is IN ADDITION to the regular graduate tuition charge. Differential tuition offsets the costs of professional education and is used by all professional programs on campus. The University increases tuition rates beginning each summer semester, as determined by the Utah legislature and the Board of Regents.

Tuition is calculated per credit hour per semester based on your state residency status. The tuition schedulesshow the cost of one semester of courses, so to get an estimate of the total tuition cost for the program, multiply the average credit hours per semester by the number of semesters of the program.

If you have questions about your state residency status, visit the University of Utah Office of Admissions Residency FAQsor contact them directly at 801-581-8761 option #5.

According to the Utah Department of Workforce Services 2018-2028 projections, Utah's healthcare social workers can expect 150 annual openings in the state, earning a median wage of $62,000. Utah social workers working in the areas of mental health, behavioral health, and/or substance use disorder treatment can expect 600 annual openings, earning a median wage of $59,000.

For detailed information on how to apply to our program visit MSW Apply. Please visit our Academic Advising page for links to a recorded Information Session and a recorded Application Workshop. If you still have questions after viewing these, you can register to attend a Q+A session.

Admission Requirements

  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited university. Only the Advanced Standing MSW Program requires a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree (earned within seven years of applying to the program).
  • A 3.0 cumulative GPA is required, though lower GPAs may be considered on a case-by-case basis. Any applicant with a GPA below 3.0 is advised to meet with an academic advisor prior to applying.
  • Students must complete the following prerequisite classes before beginning the MSW Program:
    • Human Development Across the Lifespan (birth through end of life) or Human Behavior in the Social Environment (HBSE)
    • Research Methods – must be of a quantitative research/evaluation and methods/design course.
    • Courses must be earned for credit. No grade lower than a C+ in either course will be accepted.
    • A list of commonly accepted courses can be found here.
  • Meeting admission requirements does not guarantee admissions into our competitive program.

Application Criteria

  • Official transcripts
  • Three professional recommendations
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Social Work Practice Timed Case Study
  • Resume
  • It is strongly encouraged that applicants have related human service experience (paid or volunteer) prior to applying.
  • No standardized test scores are required to apply.


Application Deadlines

  • Applications may be submitted through the Slate system starting August 1st.
  • Advanced Standing Online MSW deadline – September 1st
  • 2 Year Full-Time Online MSW deadline – October 15th
 
Last Updated: 6/15/22