Master of Social Work (MSW) Programs in New Jersey - Campus and Online

Updated: December 27, 2022

There are currently eight schools in New Jersey that have Master of Social Work (MSW) programs. Of these schools, three offer online MSW programs, and seven offer campus-based programs which include hybrid program options that combine campus-based instruction with online coursework. In addition, all eight of the colleges and universities in New Jersey that have MSW programs offer at least one traditional program option and one advanced standing program option. Students can pursue MSW concentrations in Clinical Practice with Families and Children, Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice, Forensic Social Work, Behavioral Health, Global and Community Practice, and more.

Traditional MSW programs are designed for students who hold a bachelor’s degree in any field or discipline and do not require applicants to have majored in social work as an undergraduate. (Students should note that some programs may prefer or give preference to students who have an undergraduate degree in a related field or who have work experience in social services.) In contrast, advanced standing MSW programs offer a curriculum that is specifically designed to meet the needs of students who have already begun their academic and professional training in social work at the undergraduate level in a CSWE-accredited Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program. As such, advanced standing MSW programs require a BSW degree for admission.

All eight New Jersey schools that offer MSW programs have either received full accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) or been granted candidacy for CSWE accreditation, as is noted in the list below.

  • Fairleigh Dickinson University (Granted Candidacy)
  • Kean University (Accredited)
  • Monmouth University (Accredited)
  • Montclair State University (Accredited)
  • Ramapo College (Accredited)
  • Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (Accredited)
  • Seton Hall University (Accredited)
  • Stockton University (Accredited)

In the sections below, MSW programs offered by schools in New Jersey are categorized based on several important factors. Traditional programs are grouped separately from advanced standing programs because they have different admissions requirements. Within the sections for traditional and advanced standing applicants, programs are further broken down based on instructional format. Campus-based programs and programs that incorporate online instruction but require students to attend more than two in-person sessions on campus per years are grouped together. Programs that are entirely or primarily online and that do not require more than two campus visits per year are grouped separately, as indicated below.

Traditional MSW Programs in New Jersey

There are eight colleges and universities in New Jersey that offer MSW programs in a traditional format. These are full-length master’s degree programs that provide graduate training in clinical and/or macro practice social work and that are either fully accredited or in the candidacy phase for accreditation by the CSWE. Seven of these schools have programs that are fully or partially campus-based. This includes hybrid/blended programs that utilize online instruction but require students to attend more than two campus-based sessions per year. In addition, three of the New Jersey schools offer online MSW programs.

A traditional MSW program generally takes two years to complete for students enrolled full-time. The first year of these programs is devoted to foundational social work courses and field education, while specialization training and fieldwork takes place in the second year. Field education is akin to internship experiences in other fields and is a central feature of formal training in social work. Indeed, the CSWE requires all accredited MSW programs to have traditional standing students complete at least 900 hours of field education while earning their MSW degree. This is true for full-time students and for part-time students, who generally take three to four years to earn their degree. It is also true for students in online programs, which typically allow field education requirements to be completed at agencies, clinics, and other suitable sites near a student’s place of residence.

Campus

Traditional Campus-Based MSW Programs in New Jersey

Kean University in Union County offers a campus-based, traditional standing MSW program with a Direct Clinical Practice specialization. This program’s 60-credit curriculum emphasizes social work in multicultural environments, social work research and program evaluation, and social welfare initiatives. Among the program’s requirements are 1080 hours of field education, including a 480-hour foundational field practicum, and a 600-hour advanced specialization field practicum. Kean University’s traditional MSW program is designed to be completed in four semesters (two years) by full-time students, although it also has a “Three Year Extended Full-Time Option” in which field practicums do not begin until the second year.

Monmouth University, a private, non-profit university located in the Monmouth County borough of West Long Branch, has a traditional MSW program with specializations in Clinical Practice with Families and Children (CPFC), and Global and Community Practice (GCP). The CPFC specialization is offered in a primarily campus-based format, although some courses have an online component. The GCP specialization allows for hybrid instruction, with students taking a mix of online and campus-based courses during their first year and fully online courses in their second year. Both specializations require students to complete a 54-credit curriculum that includes 1000 hours of field education. While the program is designed for two years of full-time enrollment, students can opt for a part-time enrollment plan, which typically leads to graduating in 3.5-4 years.

Montclair State University, a public university located in the Essex County township of Montclair, offers a fully campus-based traditional MSW program with a specialization in Social Work Practice with Children, Youth, and Families. This is a 60-credit program that requires students to engage in 1000 hours of field work, divided between a 400-hour foundational year practicum and a 600-hour advanced field practicum in a setting specific to children and families. The program, which takes two years of full-time enrollment to complete, is designed to prepare students for clinical and/or macro practice social work with individuals, families, groups, and communities.

Ramapo College, which is a state-funded liberal arts college in Bergen County, has a traditional MSW program with an Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice specialization that prepares students for careers in clinical and/or macro practice social work. Students in the program attend campus-based evening classes twice per week and receive supplemental instruction online, while also engaging in site-based field practicums. Traditional students complete a 64-credit curriculum that includes 1200 hours of field education. The program also has a study abroad component for interested students. Study abroad trips take place in the spring semester and have taken students to Cuba, Ghana, Portugal, and the Netherlands to explore international social work issues and needs. Ramapo College’s MSW program has a two-year, full-time completion plan and a three-year, part-time completion plan for traditional standing students.

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey (Rutgers University) is a large state university with campuses in New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden. The Rutgers School of Social work in New Brunswick has a campus-based MSW program that is offered in a traditional format at all three of the university’s campuses. The program has a Clinical Social Work concentration with optional specializations in: Children, Youth and Families; Health; and Mental and Behavioral Health. Students also have the option of a macro practice Management and Policy concentration that allows for specializations in: Children, Youth, and Families; Mental and Behavioral Health; Global Social Work; and Social Policy. Those who prefer to attend all of their classes in person can enroll in the program at any of the three Rutgers campuses and graduate in two years of full-time study or up to four years of part-time enrollment.

Rutgers’ MSW program is also offered in a part-time, blended format that combines two years of online instruction with a third year in which courses use a hybrid delivery mode. In addition to the campus-based and hybrid MSW program options, Rutgers has an Intensive Weekend (IW) MSW program, which is designed specifically for human services professionals who have been employed in the field for at least one year. The program pairs asynchronous online instruction with in-person, campus-based residences that are held once per month on weekends. The IW program has a three-year enrollment plan and students complete a Clinical Practice specialization with a Leadership and Management focus. Traditional students in the various MSW program options offered by Rutgers are required complete a 60-credit curriculum that includes 1125 hours of site-based field education.

Seton Hall University, a private research university located in South Orange, offers a traditional MSW program with two concentration options: Behavioral Health; and Forensic Social Work. This 60-credit program is divided between a campus-based foundational year and an advanced or specialized year that utilizes a hybrid mix of online and in-person instruction. The program is designed to be completed in two years of full-time enrollment by traditional standing students, although students have the option of taking up to four years to earn their degree on a part-time basis. Students in the program are required to engage in 900 hours of field education.

Stockton University, a state school located in Galloway Township, has an Advanced Practice with Individuals, Families, and Communities MSW program that gives students the option of specializing in Clinical Social Work or in Leadership and Management. The program, which is offered at the university’s Atlantic City campus, has a 60-credit track for traditional students that includes 900 hours of field education. Students in the program receive a mix of online and campus-based instruction, with in-person meetings taking place on Wednesday evenings and Saturday mornings. The completion time for this program is two years for full-time students or three years for those who enroll on a part-time basis.

Online

Traditional Online MSW Programs in New Jersey

Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) has a traditional MSW program that is offered in a fully online format. The program has an Advanced Social Work Practice curriculum that provides training and instruction in clinical and macro practice social work. Students in the program complete all of their didactic coursework via online instruction and engage in 900 hours of in-person, site-based field education. Full-time enrollment in this program leads to graduating in two years; students who enroll on a part-time basis are allotted up to four years to earn their degree. FDU’s MSW program is in the candidacy phase for CSWE accreditation. This means that students who attend the program while it under review for accreditation are retroactively credited with having earned their degree at a CSWE-accredited school once the program has attained full accreditation.

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey (Rutgers University) has a traditional MSW program that is offered in a fully online format that does not require campus visits. This is 60-credit program that includes 450 hours of generalist or foundational social work field education, and 675 hours of specialized or advanced field education, ensuring that students graduate with a total of 1125 hours of in-person, site-based field experience. Full-time students can complete the program requirements in two years, while part-time enrollment generally leads to graduating in three years. The Rutgers University online MSW program has a Clinical Social Work practice specialization.

Advanced Standing MSW Programs in New Jersey

There are eight schools in New Jersey that offer CSWE-accredited MSW programs, and all eight have at least one advanced standing program track for qualified students who hold a BSW degree conferred by a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program. Additionally, three New Jersey schools offer online MSW programs for advanced standing students.

Advanced standing MSW programs allow BSW graduates who have already taken the foundational courses that typically comprise the first year of a full-time traditional MSW program to earn their MSW degree without having to repeat those courses. Similarly, advanced standing programs credit students with field education hours they completed at the BSW level, reducing the number of hours that must completed at the MSW level by roughly half. This allows qualified BSW graduates to earn their MSW degree in one year of full-time enrollment or two years of part-time enrollment.

Most advanced standing programs require applicants to have earned their BSW degree relatively recently, typically within the last five to ten years. In addition, many programs expect advanced standing applicants to have distinguished themselves academically at the undergraduate level by attaining a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher. BSW program graduates who are not eligible for a school’s advanced standing program track can still earn their MSW degree by enrolling in a program’s traditional track.

Campus

Advanced Standing Campus-Based MSW Programs in New Jersey

Kean University has a Direct Clinical Practice MSW program with an advanced standing track that requires applicants to have earned a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited program within the last five years. In addition, advanced standing applicants are expected to have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher with a 3.5 GPA in all social work major courses. Students who qualify for advanced standing status complete a 30-credit curriculum that includes a 600-hour field practicum. The program has a Direct Clinical Practice specialization with elective coursework in contemporary family issues, palliative care, health and aging, healing from trauma, and substance use disorders.

Monmouth University offers its campus-based MSW program in an advanced standing format for BSW graduates who earned their degree within the last six years and who have a cumulative GPA of 2.75 or better and a GPA of 3.0 or better in all social work major courses. Monmouth’s MSW program has a Clinical Practice with Families and Children (CPFC) specialization and a Global and Community Practice (GCP) specialization. However, only the CPFC specialization is available via campus-based courses, while the GCP specialization is offered fully online. The program’s advanced standing track consists of 30 credits of coursework, inclusive of one 500-hour advanced field practicum. Advanced standing students can complete the program in one year of full-time enrollment. Part-time advanced standing students can earn their degree in two years.

Montclair State University offers an advanced standing MSW program with a specialization in Social Work Practice with Children, Youth and Families. This 33-credit program is campus-based and designed to be completed by full-time students in one academic year, or three semesters (summer, fall, and spring terms). Advanced standing students are required to engage in 600 hours of field education. For advanced standing students who enroll on a part-time basis, the completion time is two years. To be eligible for advanced standing status in the program, applicants must hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited program conferred within the last five years, with a grade of C or better in all social work major courses. In addition, it is recommended that applicants have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher on a four-point scale.

Ramapo College has an Advanced Generalist Social Work Practice MSW program with an advanced standing track for BSW graduates who earned their degree from a CSWE-accredited program within the last five years. In addition, applicants for advanced standing status are required to have a GPA of 3.25 or higher in all undergraduate social work major courses. Students who are granted advanced standing status complete a 32-credit curriculum that includes 600 hours of field education. Courses are taught using a hybrid format, with students coming to campus twice per week for evening courses and receiving the rest of their instruction online. The program gives students the option of pursing study abroad opportunities, which bring students to countries such as Cuba, Ghana, Portugal, or the Netherlands to study international social work every spring semester. Advanced standing students in the program can earn their degree in one year of full-time enrollment or choose part-time enrollment and graduate in two years.

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey (Rutgers University) has an MSW program that is offered in campus-based formats at its New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden campuses. All three campuses have an advanced standing track for MSW program applicants who hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Advanced standing students complete a 39-credit curriculum that includes 675 hours of field education. The program has a Clinical Social Work concentration with Areas of Emphasis in: Children, Youth and Families; Health; and Mental and Behavioral Health. In addition, the program offers a macro practice Management and Policy concentration with Areas of Emphasis in: Children, Youth and Families; Health; Mental and Behavioral Health; Global Social Work; and Social Policy. Advanced standing students can complete the program in one year of full-time enrollment or extend the time to completion by an additional year by enrolling on a part-time basis.

Rutgers University also has an Intensive Weekend (IW) MSW program with an advanced standing track for eligible BSW graduates who have spent a minimum of one year working full-time in a social or human services field. The IW program is offered part-time and utilizes a mix of asynchronous online instruction and campus-based class meetings that take place over one weekend per month when school is in session. Students in this program complete a 39-credit Clinical Social Work curriculum with a Leadership and Management focus. Advanced standing students must engage in 675 hours of field education and can graduate from the program in two years.

Seton Hall University offers a hybrid advanced standing track for BSW graduates that combines on-campus and online instruction. In fact, the majority of courses in the program are offered online. BSW program graduates with a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 on a four-point scale and a 3.0 GPA in their undergraduate social work major courses may be eligible for the program’s advanced standing track. The MSW program has two concentration options: Behavioral Health; and Forensic Social Work. The 33-credit advanced standing curriculum, which includes 500 hours of site-based field education, is designed to be completed in one year by full-time students and in two years by part-time students.

Stockton University offers an Advanced Practice with Individuals, Families, and Communities MSW program with an advanced standing track for qualified students who hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program and a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or better on a four-point scale. The program gives students a choice between specializing in Clinical Social Work or in Leadership and Management. Advanced standing students complete a 30-credit curriculum that includes 500 hours of field education and can earn their degree in one year of full-time enrollment or two years of part-time enrollment. While Stockton University’s main campus is in Galloway Township, the MSW program is offered at Stockton’s Atlantic City campus.

Online

Advanced Standing Online MSW Programs in New Jersey

Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) has an online MSW program with an advanced standing track that requires applicants to have earned a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program and to have graduated with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher on a four-point scale. The program has Advanced Social Work Practice curriculum that provides training and instruction in clinical practice and in macro practice social work. Advanced standing students must complete 30 credits in order to fulfill the program’s academic requirements. This includes 500 hours of site-based field education. Full-time advanced standing students can graduate in one year, while part-time students generally take two years to earn their degree. The MSW program offered by FDU is in the candidacy phase for CSWE accreditation. This means that students currently enrolled in the program will be retroactively credited with having graduated from a CSWE-accredited program once full accreditation has been granted.

Monmouth University offers an online advanced standing MSW program with a specialization in Global and Community Practice. To qualify for the program, applicants must hold a BSW degree conferred within the last six years by a program accredited by the CSWE. In addition, advanced standing applicants must have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or higher with a 3.0 GPA in all social work major courses. Students granted advanced standing status complete a 30-credit curriculum, inclusive of 500 hours of site-based field education. The program supports both full-time enrollment, which leads to graduating in one year, and part-time enrollment, which adds another year to the completion time.

Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey (Rutgers University) offers an online MSW program through the Rutgers School of Social Work. The program has a Clinical Social Work specialization and an advanced standing track designed for BSW graduates whose cumulative undergraduate GPA is 3.0 or higher on a four-point scale. Advanced standing online students complete a 39-credit curriculum that includes 675 hours of site-based field education. Once admitted to the Rutgers online program, students have the option of applying for a Violence Against Women and Children Certificate (VAWC) or a Latina/o/x Initiatives for Service, Training, and Assessment Certificate (LISTA), either of which can be completed as part of the program’s 39-credit curriculum. This program is designed to be completed in four consecutive semesters (summer, fall, spring, summer), which leads to graduating in just over one year.

All Master of Social Work Programs in New Jersey

T Traditional programs, Advanced Standing programs, Campus programs, Hybrid programs (campus and online instruction), Hybrid-Online programs (3 to ~6 campus visits per year), Online programs (fully online to 2 campus visits per year)
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Fairleigh Dickinson University

(Teaneck)
Department: School of Pharmacy and Health Sciences
CSWE Accreditation Status: Granted Candidacy
Programs:

Montclair State University

(Montclair)

Ramapo College

(Mahwah)
Department: School of Social Science and Human Services
CSWE Accreditation Status: Fully Accredited
Programs:

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey

(New Brunswick, Newark, Camden)
Department: School of Social Work
CSWE Accreditation Status: Fully Accredited
Programs:

Seton Hall University

(South Orange)
Department: Department of Sociology, Anthropology, Social Work and Criminal Justice
CSWE Accreditation Status: Fully Accredited
Programs: