MSW - Master of Social Work

Regular and Advanced Standing

The School of Social Work offers a regular program of study for applicants not having a baccalaureate degree in social work. In addition to the regular program, the School of Social Work offers an advanced standing program. In order to qualify for advanced standing, applicants must have an undergraduate degree in social work from a social work program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. Advanced standing students must complete 37 credit hours. Regular program students must complete 63 credit hours.

Full- and Part-Time Enrollment Options

At the time of admission, applicants must designate their choice to be admitted into either the full-time or the part-time track. Given the highly structured nature of the MSW curriculum, applicants admitted to either the full-time or part-time track will be required to remain in that track throughout the course of their studies. Applicants should give careful consideration and make advanced preparation (work schedule, personal and family responsibilities) before choosing either the full- or part-time option. Applicants admitted into the full-time regular program enroll in a designated summer course and four full-time semesters, consisting of 12–14 credit hours a semester, not counting summer semester. All students, regular and advanced standing, are required to take SCWK 760 in the summer semester.

Applicants admitted into the part-time regular program must enroll in 6–10 credit hours a semester, and complete the degree within four years. Applicants admitted into the part-time advanced standing program must complete degree requirements in two years.

The MSW curriculum is highly structured. All courses in either the full-time or part-time regular or advanced standing program must be taken in exact sequence and in the semester in which they are offered as specified in the Master of Social Work course of study plan. Most MSW courses also have specified prerequisites and/or corequisites that must be adhered to before enrolling in subsequent coursework or before entering practicum placement. Most courses are only offered once a year. It is the student’s responsibility to follow precisely the course of study plan. Enrolling in courses outside of the sequence or failure to enroll in corequisite courses has an impact on practicum placements and will, at the very least, delay a student’s progress toward graduation and may be grounds for termination from the program. No course may be taken outside the student’s program plan of study.

Transfer of Academic Credit

Upon admission to the MSW program, requests for transfer of academic credits from another CSWE accredited MSW program will be considered on a case-by-case basis. Only courses taken in a CSWE accredited Master of Social Work program will be eligible for transfer of credits at the time of admission to the MSW program. No more than 12 total credit hours of graduate social work course credit will be accepted for transfer for either regular or advanced standing applicants. Only foundation level courses such as Micro and Macro Human Behavior in the Social Environment, Social Welfare Policy and Analysis, Fundamentals of Social Work Research and no more than six graduate social work electives, if applicable to WSU’s advanced generalist MSW program, will be considered for transfer credit. No transfer credit will be granted for hours completed as part of a practicum or internship placement. Applicants requesting transfers of credit upon admission to the MSW program must have received a grade of B or better in the course(s) being considered for transfer, and the course must have been successfully completed within the previous six years prior to the student’s enrollment in the MSW program. Pass/fail courses will not be accepted for transfer. See MSW Program Policy and Student Manual for specific guidelines related to transfer of elective credit after full admission to the MSW program.

Admission

Admission to the MSW program requires that the applicant:

  1. Have a baccalaureate degree from an accredited four-year institution(s) acceptable to the Graduate School;
  2. Have evidence of a liberal arts background from an accredited college or university prior to enrollment. Applicants should be knowledgeable about and committed to the advancement of diversity, humanistic values and ethics, resolving social problems, improving social conditions, and understanding factors shaping human behavior;
  3. Have a grade point average of at least 2.750 based on the last 60 hours of graded coursework; and
  4. Submit completed applications to both the MSW program and the Graduate School, no later than December 15, at 5 p.m.

Nonacademic Factors for Admission

Nonacademic considerations include experiences in providing social services, references and personal narratives. Measures of volunteer as well as paid experience in social services contribute to candidate rankings. References are primarily asked to provide an indication of the applicant’s suitability for entrance into the profession. Indicators of readiness for graduate studies and of suitability for the profession are drawn from descriptions of life experience, motivation, career goals and values as described in the applicant’s personal statement and references.

Admission Procedure

To be considered for admission, applicants must do the following:

  1. Complete an MSW application packet which can be accessed online;
  2. Submit to the Graduate School the designated application for admission and supporting transcripts; and
  3. Submit to the School of Social Work, by 5 p.m., December 15, a completed MSW application form, personal statement and three references.

Electronic submission is preferred. Records will be reviewed when all materials have been submitted and received by the School of Social Work. All supporting documentation and application materials must be on file with the Graduate School and the School of Social Work by the December 15th deadline. The School of Social Work MSW program does not have a year-round admission review process. Admission review will begin shortly after the December 15th submission deadline and applicants will be notified of their admission status by the Graduate School. Admission review will not begin prior to the December 15th application deadline nor after final admission decisions are determined. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed.

Field Practicum Requirements

Students enrolled in the regular MSW program (63 credit hours) will be required to complete a total of 1180 agency-based clock hours in Field Practicum placement during their course of study. For their foundation year practicum, 240 hours per semester, or 480 total hours of field experience are required; for the advanced generalist year practicum, 350 hours per semester, or 700 total hours are required. Students enrolled in the Advanced Generalist Practicum will complete 350 agency-based clock hours per semester, or 700 total hours. Admission to social work practice and practicum classes is absolutely restricted to social work students who have been formally admitted to Foundation or Advanced Generalist Practicum.

Life Experience

In accordance with Council on Social Work Education accreditation requirements, academic credit will not be given for life experience or work experience in coursework or field practicum.

There will be no credit towards the social work degree for prior life or work experiences.

Nondegree Students

Persons who already possess a graduate degree, who do not want to seek an additional graduate degree at this time, or who wish to take graduate courses for professional advancement or personal satisfaction must apply for nondegree admission with the Wichita State University Graduate School. Students wishing to enroll in select graduate social work courses in a nondegree category may do so on a space available basis. Under such nondegree admission, students may take up to a maximum of 12 credit hours of MSW graduate credit in only the following specified foundation level courses including:

SCWK 710Micro Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
SCWK 712Macro Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
SCWK 717Policy I: Social Welfare and Analysis3
SCWK 751Fundamentals of Social Work Research3
700-level MSW graduate electives when offered
Total Credit Hours12

Students wishing to seek full admission to the MSW program must follow the normal admission procedures for both the Graduate School and the School of Social Work. Enrolling and successfully completing any or all of the above specified courses as a nondegree student does not automatically guarantee full admission to the MSW program.

A maximum of only 12 credit hours taken prior to acceptance and full admission to the MSW program may be applied toward the MSW degree. Only students fully admitted into the MSW program may enroll in practice and field practicum courses.

Degree Requirements

The curriculum for the regular MSW program consists of 63 credit hours — 47 credit hours of classroom work and 16 credit hours of supervised practicum. The curriculum for the advanced standing program consists of 37 credit hours — 29 credit hours of classroom work and 8 credit hours of supervised practicum. The 63 credit hours for regular standing students and the 37 credit hours for advanced standing students includes 9 credit hours of graduate-level electives. Social work graduate elective courses are offered in the summer, spring and fall semesters of each year. Students must maintain a 3.000 grade point average; a grade of 2.000 is the minimum passing grade.

Advanced Standing Program

SCWK 760Advanced Generalist Practice Seminar I1
SCWK 810Cultural Competency for Advanced Generalist Practice3
SCWK 816Advanced Generalist Practice With Individuals3
SCWK 817Policy II: Advocacy and Social Justice3
SCWK 822Field Practicum III 14
SCWK 823Field Practicum IV 14
SCWK 833Advanced Generalist Practice with Families and Groups3
SCWK 851Applied Social Work Research3
SCWK 860Advanced Generalist Practice Administrating Organizations and Communities3
SCWK 899Advanced Generalist Practice Seminar II1
Concentration Electives — Select 9 credit hours of graduate-level electives9
Total Credit Hours37

Regular Program

SCWK 700Foundations of Generalist Practice I3
SCWK 702Foundations of Generalist Practice II3
SCWK 710Micro Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
SCWK 712Macro Human Behavior and the Social Environment3
SCWK 717Policy I: Social Welfare and Analysis3
SCWK 720Field Practicum I 14
SCWK 721Field Practicum II 14
SCWK 751Fundamentals of Social Work Research3
SCWK 760Advanced Generalist Practice Seminar I1
SCWK 810Cultural Competency for Advanced Generalist Practice3
SCWK 816Advanced Generalist Practice With Individuals3
SCWK 817Policy II: Advocacy and Social Justice3
SCWK 822Field Practicum III 14
SCWK 823Field Practicum IV 14
SCWK 833Advanced Generalist Practice with Families and Groups3
SCWK 851Applied Social Work Research3
SCWK 860Advanced Generalist Practice Administrating Organizations and Communities3
SCWK 899Advanced Generalist Practice Seminar II1
Concentration Electives — Select 9 credit hours of graduate-level electives9
Total Credit Hours63
1

The Field Practicum courses require the following supervised hours in a social work setting:
SCWK 720: 240 hrs. (15 hrs. a week over 16 weeks)
SCWK 721: 240 hrs. (15 hrs. a week over 16 weeks)
SCWK 822: 350 hrs. (21–23 hrs. a week over 16 weeks)
SCWK 823: 350 hrs. (21–23 hrs. a week over 16 weeks)

Thesis Option

Students are not required to complete a thesis, but do have the option of completing a thesis as part of their MSW degree. The thesis option requires a total of 3 credit hours of thesis coursework (SCWK 800). Students must be enrolled in at least 1 credit hour of thesis during the semester of graduation. Thesis hours can count toward the required 9 credit hours of electives. Students who are interested in the thesis option should discuss their interest with the MSW program director prior to enrolling in the advanced (800-level or higher) curriculum.