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School of Social Work

University of Washington
Seattle, WA

About

Details at a Glance

  • School Type

    grad Public
  • Acceptance Rate

    rate 59%
  • Application Fee

    dollar-circle $85
  • Financial Aid Available

    checkbox-alt Yes

Degrees Offered

Master of Social Work, full-time (2 year MSW Day Program; all majors welcome)
Master of Social Work, part-time (3 year MSW Extended Degree Program; all majors welcome)
*Advanced Standing* Master of Social Work (11 month full-time or 17 month part-time; requires a BASW degree)
Master of Social Work Concurrent Degree Programs (MSW+MPH, MSW+MPA)
PhD in Social Welfare

Our Program

An internationally recognized leader in advancing science-driven social change. Committed to economic and social justice.

#3 best graduate school of social work in the nation (U.S. News & World Report, 2020)

#1 Social Work program in the world (Center for World University Rankings, 2017)

The University of Washington School of Social Work turns powerful ideas into lasting social change. Our graduates thrive as mental health counselors, nonprofit leaders, policy advocates, research scholars, child welfare specialists, hospital social workers, school social workers, and more.  We invite you to join a prospective student information session (online or on-campus in Seattle), explore socialwork.uw.edu, and learn what makes UW special.  

Live your passion for social change! UW is home to innovative research centers including the Latino Center for Health, Indigenous Wellness Research Institute, Center for Integrative Oncology and Palliative Care Social Work, Forefront Suicide Prevention Center, and the Center for Women's Welfare.  

Students find community in affinity groups including the Native Circle Alliance, Association of Black Social Work Students, Colectiva de Latin American Social Workers, Transracial Adoptee Group, and the Anti-Racism & White Allyship Group. In 2019, 48% of UW School of Social Work students identified as students of color. We have a student retention rate of over 98%, and an average class size of just 25 students. The UW School of Social Work is proud to work with and for undocumented students, and our university is home to many first-generation college scholars -- including our Director of Admission (Jenn) and Recruitment Coordinator (Dave). Prospective graduate students of color are encouraged to explore resources offered by UW's Graduate Opportunities & Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP)

Learning that values diversity, teaching recognized for excellence, and data-driven research that sparks real change: these are the hallmarks of our School and the mainstays of an advanced scientific social work practice that is critical to solving the pressing social issues of our day.  We are committed to promoting social and economic justice for poor and oppressed populations and enhancing the quality of life for all. Join us!

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Master of Social Work (MSW) 

2021 MSW applications are available now, with a January 4, 2021 deadline. Visit our Apply to MSW page for details. The GRE is not required. All majors are eligible to apply (for MSW Day & Extended Degree Programs); Advanced Standing applicants must hold a CSWE-accredited BASW degree plus satisfy additional requirements.

MSW Day Program | Starts September 2021

- 2 years, full-time

- Weekday, daytime classes + field education (practicum) 

Concentration areas:

  • Administration & Policy Practice
  • Community Centered Integrative Practice
  • Clinical Social Work

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*MSW Advanced Standing Program | Starts July 2021

*Requires a BASW degree, and other eligibility requirements.

Full-time, 11 months

Weekday, daytime classes + field education (practicum) 

Concentration areas:

  • Administration & Policy Practice
  • Community Centered Integrative Practice
  • Clinical Social Work

Part-time, 17 months

- Evening track: weeknight evening classes + field education (practicum)

- Friday/Saturday track: Fri/Sat classes approximately four times per quarter + field education (practicum)

Concentration areas:

  • Integrative Health-Mental Health Advanced Practice
  • Multigenerational Practice With Children, Families, and Elders

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MSW Extended Degree Program | Starts September 2021

- 3 years, part-time, 9 to 11 consecutive quarters (including summer)

- Evening track: weeknight evening classes + field education (practicum)

- Friday/Saturday track: Fri/Sat classes approximately four times per quarter + field education (practicum)

Concentration areas:

  • Integrative Health-Mental Health Advanced Practice 
  • Multigenerational Practice With Children, Families, and Elders 

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Latinx Fellowship

All MSW students can also participate in an additional Latinx focus. This focus offers seminars and advanced skills for specialization students committed to the health and well-being of Latinx communities. The program equips students to be effective practitioners by deepening their understanding of practice models and interventions that resonate with Latino/a individuals, families and communities. (Note: "concentrations" are now being called "specializations", and the Latinx "specialization" will be called "Latinx Fellowship" in the future; it is not a specialization area, but instead, a supplemental opportunity open to all students in any MSW specialization).

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Concurrent Degree Opportunities

Earning a dual degree may be possible, in approximately 3 years + 1 quarter. At UW, the most common concurrent degrees that align with an MSW are the Master of Public Health or Master of Public Administration degrees.

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PhD in Social Welfare

The UW School of Social Work doctoral program stands out among advanced social welfare programs by offering an array of academic resources available at one of the nation’s premier research universities. Transdisciplinary opportunities and faculty mentorship enrich the learning experience and help to shape a viable career path in social justice teaching, research or public service. It’s one of the key reasons our graduates find work in highly regarded social work programs throughout the country. Is a doctoral education in your future? Find answers to some of your questions: FAQ About the PhD Program

Admissions

  • Acceptance Rate

    rate 59%
  • Application Fee

    dollar-circle $85

Requirements

  • checkbox-alt TOEFL
  • checkbox-alt Personal Statement
  • checkbox-alt Unofficial Transcripts
  • checkbox-alt Three references (Identify three names/e-mail addresses of three people who must each submit a special electronic reference form by the deadline)
  • checkbox-alt Résumé
  • checkbox-alt Social Work and Human Services Experience form
  • checkbox-alt (Optional) Funding Consideration form, for departmental MSW funding

Additional Requirements

Holistic Review: we are interested in understanding your academic preparation and potential for graduate school, your fit for social work, and your commitment to serving underserved and underrepresented populations. The admission committee strongly values and expects relevant social work & human service experience.

All MSW applicants must meet these minimum requirements set by the UW Graduate School:

1. Hold the minimum equivalent of a four-year baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university in the United States or its equivalent from a foreign institution.

2. Have a minimum 3.0 GPA (petitions are possible for those with GPAs under 3.0; see this document for more information).

3. For non-native English speakers: you are required to meet the “recommended” score for the TOEFL iBT (92 or higher) or the TOEFL pBT (580 or higher) – for alternative ways to demonstrate proficiency, please visit this page.

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MSW Day (full-time, begins in September)

Fall 2019 acceptance rate: 59%

Details: MSW Day Program

Applicants from all undergraduate majors may apply. While there are no specific prerequisite classes required for admission, applicants are encouraged to complete one Statistics course in advance of starting the program.

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MSW Extended Degree Program (part-time, begins in September)

Fall 2019 acceptance rate: 81%

Details: MSW Extended Degree Program

Applicants from all undergraduate majors may apply. While there are no specific prerequisite classes required for admission, applicants are encouraged to complete one Statistics course in advance of starting the program.

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MSW Advanced Standing (part-time and full-time, begins in July)

Fall 2019 acceptance rate: 64%

Details: MSW Advanced Standing

Must hold a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work or Social Welfare, accredited by CSWE or CASWE. Must also have earned a 3.0 (”B”) grade or higher in every course required for the BASW, or a 3.5 cumulative GPA for all required BASW coursework. Students who have a BSW/BASW degree from a social work program outside of the U.S. may have their degree evaluated by the International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service, and may apply for Advanced Standing if the degree is determined to be consistent with CSWE requirements. Advanced Standing applicants who graduated more than five years ago should demonstrate continued professional growth through social work experience. Professional training, leadership, and advancement in the social work field are also considered. 

Application Deadline

Details: https://socialwork.uw.edu/admissions/apply-to-msw

MSW Day: Monday, January 4, 2021

MSW Advanced Standing (Part-time): Monday, January 4, 2021

MSW Advanced Standing (Full-time): Monday, January 4, 2021

MSW Extended Degree (EDP): Priority deadline is Monday, January 4, 2021. Final deadline is Monday, February 15, 2021.

Student Body

  • Total Students

    pound 630 Students
  • Female

    female 83% Female
  • Male

    male 17% Male

Inclusion

  • checkbox-alt Dedicated Diversity Office
  • checkbox-alt #1 ranked university in the nation for LGBTQ students (2019 Best Colleges, Campus Pride)
  • checkbox-alt 47% students of color (2019)
  • checkbox-alt 53% of PhD students identify as students of color (2019)
  • checkbox-alt 70% of undergraduate BASW students identify as first-generation college students (2019)
  • checkbox-alt UW Graduate Opportunities and Minority Achievement Program (GO-MAP): https://grad.uw.edu/equity-inclusion-and-diversity/go-map

Clubs & Associations

15+ Social Work Student Interest & Affinity Groups, including:

  • Anti-Racism & White Allyship Group (ARWAG)
  • Association of Black Social Work Students (ABSWS)
  • Colectiva de Latin American Social Workers
  • Native Circle Alliance (NCA)
  • PhD Social Justice Committee
  • Sizeism and Weightism Advocacy Group (SWAG)
  • Social Work Asian & Pacific Islanders (SWAPI)
  • Social Work Q's: Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, Queer, Two Spirit, & Intersex Students, Faculty and Staff, and their Allies
  • Social Work QT Group
  • Student Advisory Council
  • Student, Staff, and Faculty of Color Affinity Group
  • Transracial Adoptee Group (TAG)
  • UW SSW Diversability Collective
  • ...and more.

What Our Students Say

  • I met phenomenal professors and classmates who continue to inspire me to break down barriers to social justice.

    L'Oreal, Bachelor of Arts in Social Welfare ‘09
  • The UW School of Social Work was my first choice, because it gave me the opportunity to pursue a double degree in social work and public health. Both fields focus on our most vulnerable populations and share a common grounding in prevention and community involvement — which is where I plan to focus my future work.

    Ernesto, Master of Social Work ‘15
  • My field education with the Commercially Sexually Exploited Children program was a great fit, because I want to work with survivors of sexual- and gender-based violence.

    Christina, Master of Social Work ‘18

Tuition & Financial Aid

Additional Information

  • checkbox-alt Work-study Programs Available
  • checkbox-alt Financial Aid Available
  • checkbox-alt Application Fee Waivers Available
  • checkbox-alt Graduate Assistantships Available
  • checkbox-alt Application Fee Waiver Info: https://grad.uw.edu/admission/application-fee-waivers
  • checkbox-alt MSW Funding Info: https://socialwork.uw.edu/msw-funding-and-financial-aid
  • checkbox-alt UW Graduate Funding Information Service: https://www.lib.washington.edu/commons/services/gfis