MSW Online

The MSW online is an intensive 7-week module format, not the traditional semester format,  giving students six start dates while still completing the program in approximately 2 years of full time study or 3-1/2- 4 years of part time study. The online program is asynchronous meaning coursework is done at your own pace with guided dates and deadlines.  This program is year-round with 1-2 week breaks between modules. Students will enroll in 1 (part time) or 2 (full time) courses each module in a prescribed order set forth by the faculty. 

The program is open to all US residents living in the United States. No international students can be accepted. International placements are not permitted, except if approved on US military bases.

Those with a BSW who are eligible for advanced standing may enter twice a year (see deadline dates on our online webpage and the advanced standing eligibility criteria). It should be noted that enrolling in two online courses is the equivalent of a full-time campus course load. Those who are working 40 hours a week need to keep this in mind when scheduling. Students should plan to spend a minimum of 15 hours per week per class on coursework.  Internships are completed in social service agencies in home areas (not online) during these 7-week modules in block placements (40 hours/week) or over four modules (16-18 hours/week).  There are no night or weekend placements. Students who work full time will make arrangements to complete the internship while working. See the online link for more detailed information as well as the internship video on the field internship link that explains the two options available to complete the internship.  

Cost is $539 per credit hour for in or out of state. Admission and program requirements are the same for the MSW Online and the Baton Rouge campus. The LSU School of Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) and has been offering graduate education since 1937. No academic credit is granted for work or life experiences.

Criminal Background:   If a student has a criminal background, it is in the student’s best interest to disclose this information prior to beginning the program and prior to the field internship placement process. A criminal background may pose difficulties in securing a field placement for the student and/or may result in the inability to place the student. Students who have a criminal background should understand that some agencies may be precluded by law from accepting them in field placement. Additionally, some agencies are unwilling to supervise students having certain criminal charges. The field education team will make every effort possible to assist students in securing a field placement. However, if a placement cannot be accomplished for any reason, the student may not be able to complete the degree program. Students should also be aware that even if field placements are secured and a degree is awarded, certain criminal offenses may preclude them from obtaining employment as a social worker and that some states may refuse to license the applicant as a professional social worker. Students should seek counseling from the School of Social Work if questions arise regarding such matters.

Admissions

Admission Requirements 

School of Social Work admission requirements for ALL programs are the same. The following requirements must be completed prior to admission to the Full time, Part time, Advanced Standing and MSW Online programs:

  • A baccalaureate degree from an accredited college or university;
  • Demonstration of a liberal arts undergraduate preparation through completion of at least 12 credit hours in the social and behavioral sciences (psychology, sociology, anthropology, human geography, economics, political science, curriculum & instruction, etc.), and at least 9 hours in the humanities (literature, languages, history, women’s studies, art or music history, philosophy, cultural and comparative studies, communication studies, etc.);
  • “C” or better in an introductory statistics course in any undergraduate department; this course cannot be taken concurrently with MSW courses;
  • A grade point average (GPA) of at least 3.00 on all undergraduate work or in the final 60 credit hours or at least 9 hours of any graduate work already completed with appropriate grades;
  • Evidence that the applicant possesses the personal qualities and aptitudes essential for the social work profession;
  • A genuine interest in people and emotional stability;
  • Meeting minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission.

How to Apply

Application to the School of Social Work is the same for all campus and online programs. Applicants with missing application materials by the School of Social Work deadline will not be considered. A completed application is the LSU Graduate School application, fee payment, Social Work letter of intent, three letters of recommendations, resume, and receipt of official transcripts by the School of Social Work’s deadline dates. Note: Meeting minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission.

Applicants must submit the following: 

  • Graduate School Application and Fee
  • Letter of Intent (instructions located within the Graduate School application portal)
  • Current resume or vita
  • One official copy of all transcripts from all universities attended. Transcripts may be mailed in sealed envelopes to Graduate School, 114 David Boyd Hall, Baton Rouge, LA 70803 or sent electronically from a university to gradtranscripts@lsu.edu.  All transcripts are required, whether or not credit was earned or is desired. Official transcripts of work taken at LSU are not required.
  • Three letters of recommendation
    • A total of three (3) recommendation forms are required for your admission file to be complete by the appropriate deadline. A letter of support is optional. These forms are located in the Graduate School application portal. Recommendations must be Academic (college instructors, internship supervisors) or Professional (Work/Volunteer) Reference.  Family friends, clergy, therapist and high school teachers are not appropriate.
    • It is strongly recommended that if an internship was part of the degree program and the internship has been completed at the time of application, a recommendation from the internship supervisor be included as the professional recommendation.

MSW Online Deadlines

October 18, 2021 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
January 17, 2022  Module begins
October 18, 2021 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
January 17, 2022  Module begins

January 17, 2022 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received
March 21, 2022 Module begins

March 21, 2022 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
May 23, 2022 Module begins

May 23, 2022 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
July 4, 2022 Module begins

July 4, 2022 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
August 22, 2022 Module begins

August 22, 2022 Module application deadline—All SW materials, pre-reqs, and GS application materials must be received.
October 17, 2022 Module begins

 

Sample Curriculum

Less than 2 years less to complete. Students enroll in 2 classes each module with 40-hour internship over two modules. Designed for a student whose sole focus is school. Little outside distractions or obligations.

Module 1
Generalist Required Course Generalist Required Course

Module 2
Generalist Required Course Generalist Required Course

Module 3
Generalist Required Course Generalist Internship I—40 hrs/week Required Course

Module 4
Generalist Required Course Generalist Internship II - 40 hrs/week Required Course

Module 5
Generalist Required Course Generalist Required Course

Module 6
Specialist Required Course SW Elective #1

Module 7
Specialist Required Course SW Elective #2

Module 8
Specialist Required Course Specialist Internship II—40 hrs/week Required Course

Module 9
Specialist Required Course Specialist Internship I - 40 hrs/week Required Course

Module 10
SW Elective #3
SW Elective #4

Approximately 2-2 ½ years to complete. Students enroll in 1 or 2 classes each module and 2 full days internship/16-18 hours over four modules. Designed for a student who works and/or has other obligations in addition to work.

Cannot complete the 40 hour per week internship. Needs time to plan for the internship. A slower pace than the fast track.

Module 1
Generalist Required Course
Generalist Required Course

Module 2
Generalist Required Course
Generalist Required Course

Module 3
Generalist Required Course

Module 4
Generalist Required Course

Module 5
Generalist Required Course
Generalist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course

Module 6
Generalist Required Course
Complete remaining 120 hours for Generalist Internship I--16-18 hrs/wk

Module 7
Generalist Internship II—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course
SW Elective #1

Module 8
Complete remaining 120 hours for Generalist Internship II--16-18hrs/wk
SW Elective #2

Approximately 3-4 years to complete. Students enroll in 1 class per module and 2 full days internship/16-18 hours over four modules. Designed for a student who works and/or has other obligations. Does not want to enroll in 2 classes each module due to work, financial, and/or other obligations. Needs time to plan for the internship. Slower pace than the standard track.

Module 1
Generalist Required Course

Module 2
Generalist Required Course

Module 3
Generalist Required Course
Generalist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course

Module 4
Generalist Required Course
Complete remaining 120 hours for Generalist Internship I--16-18 hrs/wk

Module 5
Generalist Required Course
Generalist Internship II—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course

Module 6
Complete remaining 120 hours for Generalist Internship II--16-18hrs/wk
Generalist Required Course

Module 7
Generalist Required Course

Module 8
Generalist Required Course

Module 9
Specialist Required Course

Module 10
Specialist Required Course

Module 11
Specialist Required Course

Module 12
Specialist Required Course

Module 13
Specialist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course
SW Elective #1

Module 14
Complete remaining 120 hours for Specialist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk
SW Elective #2

Module 15
Specialist Internship II—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required
SW Elective #3

Module 16
Complete remaining 120 hours for Specialist Internship II—16-18 hours/week
SW Elective #4

Advanced Standing Students have 27 hours waived toward the MSW degree.

Approximately one year or less to complete. Students enroll in 2 classes each module with 40-hour internship over two modules. Designed for a student whose sole focus is school. Little outside distractions or obligations.

Module 1
SW 7010 Differential Diagnosis (required generalist course)

Module 2
Specialist Required Course
SW Elective #1

Module 3
Specialist Required Course
SW Elective #2

Module 4
Specialist Required Course
SW Elective #3

Module 5
Specialist Required Course
Specialist Internship I—40 hrs/week Required Course

Module 6
Specialist Internship II—40 hrs/week Required Course
SW Elective #4

Advanced Standing Students have 27 hours waived toward the MSW degree.

Approximately 1- 1 ¼ years to complete. Students enroll in 1 or 2 classes each module and 2 full days internship/16-18 hours over four modules. Designed for a student who works and/or has other obligations in addition to work.

Cannot complete the 40 hour per week internship. Needs time to plan for the internship. A slower pace than the fast track.

Module 1
SW 7010 Differential Diagnosis (required generalist course)

Module 2
Specialist Required Course
SW Elective #1

Module 3
Specialist Required Course

Module 4
Specialist Required Course

Module 5
Specialist Required Course
Specialist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course

Module 6
Complete remaining 120 hours for Specialist Internship I—16-18 hrs/wk
SW Elective #2

Module 7
Specialist Internship II—16-18 hrs/wk (120 hrs) 240 hours Required Course
SW Elective #3

Module 8
Complete remaining 120 hours for Specialist Internship II—16-18 hours/week
SW Elective #4

How to Obtain the MSW Degree

To obtain the MSW degree, students must:

  • successfully complete 60 hours of study, following the prescribed course sequence including passing internship courses 
  • maintain an overall grade point average of 3.00, with no grade less than “C” in any course offered for the degree
  • cannot be on probation
  • no more than two C’s toward the MSW degree

Thesis Option: Students are encouraged to undertake a thesis, yet it is not required to graduate. Students choosing to write a thesis must submit a thesis proposal to a prospective thesis committee chair by the last day of class in the fall semester, generalist year or the last day of class of the second module. Six total credit hours of SW 8000 are required for the thesis, and no more than six credit hours can be used toward the MSW degree. 

Resources

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Contact Us

Application Status
Tara Landry
225-578-1326

MSW Program Information
Frankie Johnson
225-578-2183

 

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