Master of Social Work (MSW) Programs in South Carolina

The University of South Carolina and Winthrop University are the two universities in South Carolina that currently offer Master of Social Work (MSW) programs. The College of Social Work at the University of South Carolina, a public research university located in Columbia, has an MSW program with designated specializations in Child, Youth, and Families; Community, Social, and Economic Development; and Health and Mental Health. The program is a campus-based program with an advanced standing track for students who hold a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) from an undergraduate program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), and a traditional track that does not require applicants to hold a BSW degree.

Winthrop University, a public university located in Rock Hill, offers an MSW program with a focus on Empowerment Practices Across Systems that includes training in social work with individuals, families, small groups, communities, and organizations. The Winthrop program has advanced standing and traditional tracks and offers its MSW program in three formats: a full-time, campus-based format with classes that are held during the week; a part-time, campus-based format with classes that are held on weekends; and an online format that does not require any campus visits.

The social work programs at the University of South Carolina and Winthrop University are both accredited by the CSWE:

  • The University of South Carolina (Accredited)
  • Winthrop University (Accredited)

MSW programs are grouped by admission requirements (traditional vs. advanced standing) and instruction method to help students find programs based on their educational background and desired learning method. Explore programs categorized in the following sections:

Traditional MSW Programs in South Carolina

Both the University of South Carolina and Winthrop University offer traditional MSW programs. A traditional MSW program, like traditional master’s programs in many other fields, requires a bachelor’s degree for admission. However, traditional MSW programs do not require applicants to hold their bachelor’s degree in social work for admission. These programs typically consist of roughly four semesters or two years of coursework for full-time students, including a minimum of 900 hours of site-based field education. Students who choose to enroll on a part-time basis in a traditional MSW program generally take an additional year or two to complete their degree.

Campus

Traditional Campus-Based MSW Programs in South Carolina

The University of South Carolina (UofSC) offers a traditional, campus-based MSW program through its College of Social Work. The program gives traditional students two enrollment options: a full-time, two-year completion track with classes that meet on weekdays during normal school hours; and a three-year, part-time track with classes that meet on Saturdays and on weekday evenings. The full-time track gives students a choice of three specializations: Children, Youth and Families; Health and Mental Health; and Community, Social, and Economic Development. The part-time program only has one specialization option: the Health and Mental Health specialization.

In addition to didactic courses, students in the program complete 446 hours of field education in their foundation year – the first year for full-time students and a combination of the first and second years for part-time students – and 528 hours in their second or third year. Both the full-time program and the part-time program are offered on the University of South Carolina’s main campus in Columbia. The part-time program can also be completed at UofSC’s satellite campuses in Charleston and Greenville.

Winthrop University offers a traditional, campus-based MSW program through its Department of Social Work that has an Empowerment Across Systems specialization that provides advanced generalist instruction and training in clinical and macro practice social work. The program has a full-time traditional track that takes two years to complete and holds classes on weekdays on Winthrop’s Rock Hill campus, as well as a three-year, part-time traditional track with courses that meet once per month on the Rock Hill campus while school is in session. Students in the program are required to complete a minimum of 905 hours of field education at social work and health and human services agencies and organizations.

Online

Traditional Online MSW Programs in South Carolina

Winthrop University offers its Empowerment Across Systems MSW program in an online format for traditional students. This is an advanced generalist MSW program that provides instruction and training in both clinical and macro practice social work. The online program is only offered part-time and can be completed in three years. Students in the online program are required to complete a minimum of 900 hours of field education at program approved sites. However, the online program does not require students to attend any campus visits.

Advanced Standing MSW Programs in South Carolina

Advanced standing refers to MSW programs that are designed specifically for students who hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program. Both the University of South Carolina and Winthrop University have advanced standing tracks for qualified BSW graduates that allow students to effectively skip the first year of a full-time, traditional MSW program (as the first year of a traditional MSW program typically covers the same content as an accredited BSW program) . In addition, advanced standing students are given credit for the field education hours they completed during their undergraduate program. As a result, an advanced standing MSW program can typically be completed in one year of full-time enrollment or two to three years of part-time enrollment.

While a BSW degree is the baseline requirement for admission to the advanced standing track of an MSW program, many programs have additional admissions requirements, such as a cumulative undergraduate grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher on a four-point scale. It is also common for advanced standing MSW programs to only consider applicants who have completed their BSW degree within the last five to seven years. BSW graduates who do not qualify for an advanced standing program track can still earn their MSW degree by enrolling in a traditional program.

Campus

Advanced Standing Campus-Based MSW Programs in South Carolina

The University of South Carolina’s College of Social Work offers its campus-based MSW program in an advanced standing format that can be completed in eleven months. The program has three specialization options: Children, Youth and Families; Health and Mental Health; and Community, Social, and Economic Development. In addition to didactic courses that meet during normal school hours at the university’s Columbia campus, advanced standing students must complete 528 hours of field education. To qualify for admissions consideration to the advanced standing program track, applicants must hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program that was conferred within the last five years and have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher on a four-point scale.

Winthrop University’s Department of Social Work offers its Empowerment Across Systems advanced generalist MSW program in two different campus-based, advanced standing formats: a full-time format with classes that meet on the school’s Rock Hill campus on weekdays when school is in session, and a part-time weekend advanced standing format that holds campus-based classes one weekend per month during the school year. The full-time program takes one year to complete, and the part-time program has a two-year completion plan. Advanced standing students in the Winthrop program must complete two field internships for a total of 680 hours of field education. Applicants to the advanced standing program tracks are expected to have a cumulative undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 on a four-point scale.

Online

Advanced Standing Online MSW Programs in South Carolina

Winthrop University’s MSW program is offered in an online advanced standing format for qualified students who hold a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited undergraduate program with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Like Winthrop’s campus-based MSW programs, the online program has an Empowerment Across Systems curriculum that provides advanced generalist training in social work practice with individuals, families, small groups, communities, and organizations. The online advanced standing program is a part-time, two-year program that offers all of its coursework via online instruction and requires students to complete 660 hours of in-person, site-based field education at program-approved sites.

All Master of Social Work Programs in South Carolina

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