20 Advanced Standing Master of Social Work (MSW) Programs Online

If you have a job in social work, you likely already have a bachelor’s degree. But if you want to progress in your career, you might find that you need an advanced degree. Whether you’re trying to advance your career or want to consider a specialty in this field, getting a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree should be a consideration.

Of course, finding two or more years to get your master’s degree can sound daunting if you’re already working full-time. That’s why you should look into MSW advanced standing programs online so you can get this degree a little sooner. So, what does advanced standing mean? This is a slightly quicker educational track that lets you get your MSW within one to two years. After all, you can skip most or all of the introductory courses you would have to take with a traditional MSW program simply because you have a BSW from an accredited college.  

This will put you a little closer to getting that promotion or going after a job in social work that requires a master’s degree. Plus, you’ll find that most MSW advanced standing programs take place online, allowing you to work weekdays at your job and then study during nights and weekends. So, if you like the idea of taking Master of Social Work courses from the comfort of your own home — and getting a graduate degree in one to two years — check out 20 of the advanced standing MSW programs online that are available to you.

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Baylor University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 32

Tuition: $45,280

Program length: 12 to 20 months

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.0 GPA; essay; letters of recommendation

Examples of courses:

  • Clinical practice in social work
  • Community organizing
  • Field placement

Boise State University – Master of Social Work Online

Credits: 37

Tuition: $19,850

Program length: 2 years

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last seven years; 3.0 GPA; personal essay; background check; letters of recommendation

Examples of courses:

  • Statistics of social work
  • Leadership in social work
  • Practicum in this field

Campbellsville University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 30

Tuition: $17,550

Program length: 9 months

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; no Ds, Fs, or Us; three letters of recommendation

Examples of courses:

  •  Change theory
  • Psychopathology
  • Theories for social work practice
  • World problems and advocacy

Capella University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 52

Tuition: $23,000

Program length: 2 years

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; resume; three-page essay; two letters of recommendation

Examples of courses:

  •  Human behavior and social environment
  • Mental health and interventions
  • Technology in social work

Columbia University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 33

Tuition: $64,000

Program length: 1 year

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.0 GPA; field evaluation; resume; three letters of recommendation; three essay questions

Examples of courses:

  •  Advanced clinical practice
  • Social welfare policy
  • Human behavior and the social environment
  • Field education

Delaware State University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 30

Tuition: $13,140

Program length: 1 year

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.0 GPA; personal statement; letters of recommendation; completion of summer seminar with at least a B

Examples of courses:

  • Advanced generalist practice with groups
  • Advanced generalist practice with families
  • Advanced generalist practice trauma

Florida State University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 39

Tuition: $22,000

Program length: 2 years

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; resume; statement of purpose; three letters of recommendation; at least 400 hours of field education in generalist practice of social work

Examples of courses:

  • Social work profession
  • Human behavior and the social environment
  • Social work practice
  •  Social work within communities and groups

Indiana University – Master of Social Work

Credits: 41

Tuition: $30,000

Program length: 1.5 to 2 years

Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; three letters of recommendation; writing sample and statement; resume

Examples of courses:

  • Assessment for addictions and mental health
  • Social policy analysis and practice
  • Social work practices
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    Jackson State University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 30

    Tuition: $13,860

    Program length: 1 year

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; three letters of recommendation; personal statement; work or volunteer experience in social work

    Examples of courses:

    • Family intervention
    • Psychopathology
    • Advanced research methods in social work
    • Ethics and social work practice

    Keuka College – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 33

    Tuition: $25,080

    Program length: 1.7 years

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; field evaluation; essay; resume; two letters of recommendation; personal statement

    Examples of courses:

    • Assessment and treatment of trauma
    • Advanced clinical social work practice
    • Advanced theory of social work practice

    Loyola University Chicago – Advanced Standing Master of Social Work

    Credits: 23

    Tuition: $23,575

    Program length: 10 to 24 months

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.0 GPA; two references; resume; statement of purpose

    Examples of courses:

    • Organizational leadership
    • Social work and intervention
    • School social work policy
    • Clinical practice in addictions
    • Migration, human rights, and social justice

    Morgan State University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 30

    Tuition: $29,000

    Program length: 1 to 2 years

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.0 GPA; three letters of recommendation; resume; personal statement; interview

    Examples of courses:

    • Psychopathology and clinical intervention
    • Evaluation research of urban social problems and interventions
    • Organizational policy and leadership in social work

    Northcentral University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 36

    Tuition: $28,000

    Program length: 2 years

    Prerequisites: Bachelor of Science in Social Work from CSWE-accredited program in the last 10 years

    Examples of courses:

    • Diversity and social justice
    • Ethics in social work
    • Research methods in social work
    • Practicum courses

    Northern Arizona University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 39

    Tuition: $26,550

    Program length: 1 year

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program within the last five years; 3.3 GPA; field evaluation

    Examples of courses:

    • Diversity and justice in social work
    • Mental and behavioral health of aging populations
    • Mental and behavioral health of children and adolescents
    • Research methods for social work

    Our Lady of the Lake University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 30

    Tuition: $27,750

    Program length: 12 to 20 months

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; resume; three letters of recommendation; personal statement

    Examples of courses:

    • Psychopathology
    • Children and families in the social work field
    • Advanced standing social work field education

    Rutgers University – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 39

    Tuition: $36,000

    Program length: 1 to 2 years

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; completion of introductory statistics class

    Examples of courses:

    • Clinical social work
    • Methods of social work research
    • Field practicum

Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota – Master of Social Work

Credits: 30

Tuition: $26,000

Program length: 1-2 years

Prerequisites: Bachelor’s in social work from CSWE-accredited program in the last 10 years; 3.0 GPA

Examples of courses:

  • Psychopathology
  • History and philosophy of social work
  • Supervision and management
  • Tulane University – Online Advanced Standing Master of Social Work

    Credits: 48

    Tuition: $57,000

    Program length: 1 to 2 years

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last five years; 3.3 GPA; personal essay, resume; two letters of recommendation field evaluation; B+ average in field practicum

    Examples of courses:

    • Theories of human behavior across the lifespan
    • Social work within individuals, groups, and families
    • Data analysis and interpretation
    • Field practicum

    University of Kentucky – Online Master of Social Work

    Credits: 30

    Tuition: $21,015

    Program length: 1 year

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program; 3.0 GPA; 3.5 GPA for social work courses; two letters of recommendation; four-page personal statement; 250-word writing sample on an ethical problem

    Examples of courses:

    • Psychopathology for social work
    • Social welfare policy
    • Treatment planning in social work
    • Social work within communities

    University of New England – Master of Social Work

    Credits: 32

    Tuition: $32,500

    Program length: 1 to 2 years

    Prerequisites: BSW from CSWE-accredited program in the last seven years; 3.0 GPA; computer skills; resume; two letters of recommendation; supervised experience in human services

    Examples of courses:

    • Substance abuse from the social work perspective
    • Advanced social work with families
    • Theory of social work practice with individuals and families

    All of the MSW advanced standing programs listed above take place online, so you can take courses from anywhere. Considering that fact, it can feel overwhelming to choose from all the MSW advanced standing programs online that are available to you — even if you live across the country from the school. As a result, instead of considering the location of the college, you should look at other details, such as the program length and cost.

    Of course, you should also consider whether you can meet all the prerequisites of these advanced standing MSW programs online. In general, you’ll need to have a BSW that you earned within the last five to 10 years from a school that’s accredited by the CSWE. You’ll also need at least a 3.0 GPA from your undergraduate courses if you want the chance to be accepted to any of these MSW advanced standing programs. Plus, be prepared to write at least one personal statement or essay, gather a few letters of recommendation, and write a resume before you apply to any of these MSW advanced standing programs online.

    While it will take some time and effort to apply to these MSW advanced standing programs, the results will likely be worth it for you. Most of these programs take only one to two years to complete, so you could end up with a master’s in social work by next year. And that will make you more competitive than average in the social work field, which the BLS says has a projected growth of 12% between 2020 and 2030. This is faster than average compared to all jobs.

    Plus, considering that the median annual wage for social workers was $50,390 in May 2021 — and 10% even earned over $82,000 — you could earn a wage that’s higher than average when you work in this field. So it makes sense to consider the MSW advanced standing programs available to you if you want the best chance of success in social work.

    Fortunately, there are dozens of MSW advanced standing programs online for you to apply to so you can become more competitive in the job market for this field.

    Sources:

    U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Social Workers

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