MSW Programs in the Riverside / San Bernardino Area (Island Empire) - Campus and Online

There are three regionally accredited universities in the Riverside/San Bernardino area that currently offer Master of Social Work (MSW) degree programs. This includes two private, non-profit universities – California Baptist University and Loma Linda University – as well as one publicly funded California State University (CSU) system school, California State University, San Bernardino. All three schools offer traditional/full-length MSW programs in campus-based and/or hybrid formats that require students to attend a significant number of on-campus classes. Two schools in the region also offer traditional MSW programs in an online format.

In addition, there are two schools that offer programs with an advanced standing track for students who hold a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree from an undergraduate program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Both advanced standing programs are campus-based programs. MSW specializations offered by schools in the Riverside/San Bernardino area include advanced generalist practice, and clinical practice.

All of the Riverside/San Bernardino-area MSW programs on this page are fully accredited by the CSWE, as noted below.

  • California Baptist University (Accredited)
  • California State University, San Bernardino (Accredited)
  • Loma Linda University (Accredited)

Details on the programs offered by the above schools are provided in the sections below, which are broken into the following categories:

Note: None of the schools in the Riverside/San Bernardino area currently offer an advanced standing MSW program online. See our Advanced Standing MSW Programs page for a complete list of online programs, including programs offered by schools in the Los Angeles metropolitan area and in the rest of California.

Traditional MSW Programs in Riverside / San Bernardino

All three of the universities in the Riverside/San Bernardino area that offer MSW programs have traditional programs. A traditional MSW program is defined as a full-length master’s program in social work that is designed for students who hold a bachelor’s degree in a field other than social work and who thus would not qualify for an advanced standing MSW program. Full-length programs generally require two years of full-time enrollment to complete and include at least 900 hours of site-based field education. Many programs also have part-time enrollment options, which generally extend the time to completion by a year or more, resulting in a completion timeline of at least three years. All three schools in the Riverside/San Bernardino area have campus-based programs, while two of those schools also offer their programs online.

Campus

Traditional Campus-Based MSW Programs in the Riverside/San Bernardino Area

California Baptist University (CBU), a private, non-profit school located in the city of Riverside, offers a traditional, campus-based MSW program through its College of Behavioral and Social Sciences. The program, which is fully accredited by the CSWE, has an advanced generalist curriculum that includes coursework and training in both clinical and macro practice social work. The program requires 900 hours of field education that students complete at schools, foster care agencies, inmate services, and other social work and human services agencies and organizations in Riverside, San Bernardino, and the Inland Empire area. In addition, students in the program complete a capstone research project in which they partner with a community organization to explore specific issues and problems in the social work field. The CBU MSW program can be completed in one to two years by students who are enrolled on a full-time basis.

California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB) offers a traditional, campus-based MSW program with an advanced generalist curriculum that allows students to select a social issue, client population, or field of practice as a specialization in order to tailor their training. The program, which is offered through CSUSB’s CSWE-accredited School of Social Work, requires students to complete two field practicums for a total of 1080 hours of field education. Students who are accepted into the program can chose between a two-year/four-semester completion plan (full-time enrollment) or a three-year/six-semester completion plan (part-time enrollment).

Loma Linda University, a private, non-profit health sciences university located in the city of Loma Linda, has two MSW program options that are offered in a traditional, full-length format for students who are able to attend campus-based classes. One of these programs is a fully campus-based program in which students take all of their classes at the university’s School of Behavioral Health while also completing 1080 hours of field education off-site at social work agencies approved by the program. Students can complete this program in two years of full-time enrollment or three or four years of part-time enrollment. The other program offered by Loma Linda University is a hybrid MSW program that combines campus-based classes and online instruction. It also requires 1080 hours of site-based field education, but it only offers a three-year, part-time enrollment option. Both programs have an Advanced Clinical Practice specialization and give students the option of pursuing a Drug and Alcohol Counseling or a Play Therapy certificate.

Online

Traditional Online MSW Programs in the Riverside/San Bernardino Area

California Baptist University (CBU) offers its traditional MSW program with an advanced generalist concentration in a distance learning format that is primarily online, as most of the program’s didactic courses are taught via online instruction. However, students are required to attend four brief campus residencies (two days per residency) in the roughly two years it takes to complete the program. In addition, students must complete a minimum of 900 hours of field education in person at a site or sites approved by the program. Since the program requires two or fewer campus visits per year, it is classified as an online program on MasterofSocialWork.com.

California State University, San Bernardino (CSUSB) also offers a traditional, full-length online MSW program. The School of Social Work at CSUSB has a Pathway Distance Education Program that is similar in structure and curriculum to the school’s campus-based part-time MSW program. However, the online program allows students to complete all of their didactic coursework via online instruction. The program has an advanced generalist focus that covers knowledge and proficiencies in clinical and macro practice social work, and it allows students to select a social issue, client population, or field of practice in which to specialize. Students in the online MSW program are also required to complete 1080 hours of in-person field education at a program-approved site.

Advanced Standing MSW Programs in Riverside / San Bernardino

As noted previously, there are two schools in the Riverside/San Bernardino area that offer an advanced standing MSW track for qualified students who hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program. These programs require roughly half the coursework of a traditional, full-length MSW program as well as fewer field education hours, and thus they have a shorter completion time. Full-time students can typically graduate in one year from an advanced standing program, while part-time students can graduate in two years. It is important to note that advanced standing MSW programs generally have competitive admissions policies and do not automatically accept every applicant who holds a BSW degree from a program accredited by the CSWE. Finally, while there are currently no CSWE-accredited schools that offer an online MSW program with an advanced standing track in the Riverside/San Bernardino area, there are a number of schools throughout California that have online advanced standing programs, including schools that are located in the Los Angeles metropolitan area.

Campus

Advanced Standing Campus-Based MSW Programs in the Riverside/San Bernardino Area

California Baptist University (CBU) has an MSW program with an advanced standing track that requires students to hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program, preferably conferred within the past five years. CBU’s advanced standing program has an advanced generalist curriculum in which students learn the principles and practices of clinical and macro practice social work. Students in the program are required to complete one 500-hour field education practicum at a site approved by the program. CBU’s advanced standing program can be completed in one year of full-time enrollment.

Loma Linda University offers its Advanced Clinical Practice MSW program in a campus-based, advanced standing format for students who graduated from a CSWE-accredited BSW program within the last five years. The program, which includes a required 800-hour field practicum, has one- and two-year completion plans to accommodate both full-time and part-time students. In addition to the program’s Advanced Clinical Practice specialization, students in the program have the option of pursuing certificates in two sub-specializations: Play Therapy; and Alcohol and Drug Counseling.

All Master of Social Work Programs in Riverside / San Bernardino

The following icons are used to help students easily identify program types and delivery methods. Traditional programs are indicated with a T, while Advanced Standing programs have an . Campus programs are defined as programs that predominantly use face-to-face instruction, while Hybrid programs combine campus and online instruction. Hybrid-Online programs are mainly online programs but require 3 to ~6 campus visits per year. Online programs are defined as programs that are either fully online or only require 1-2 campus visits per year.
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