An Innovator in Online Master of Social Work Education

An Innovator in Online Master of Social Work Education Blog Header
An Innovator in Online Master of Social Work Education Blog Header

Established in 1928, FSU’s College of Social Work (CSW) holds more experience than any other institution in Florida offering social work education and was the first in the United States to offer a Master's of Social Work (MSW) through an online MSW program.

Consistently ranked as one of the Top 50 graduate MSW programs (No. 33, U.S. News & World Report), FSU offers students a prestigious program with a history of success and accreditation by the Council on Social Work Education.

This document will provide you with the inputs necessary to make an informed decision about applying to the program. It is also meant to demonstrate that we have structured our program to provide personalized support at every juncture of your online MSW experience. The personnel, offices, and technology that will contribute to your success are presented in bold typeface.

What If I Have Questions about the Program?

Questions regarding admissions, finances, curriculum, field experience, licensing, and career matters will be answered by this material and our website content. However, you may have questions unique to your situation requiring direct contact with us. In these instances, please contact us at 888-368-0834 and we can connect you to your Online Recruitment Advisor.

What are the Requirements for Admission?

Application requirements vary depending on which online MSW program you are pursuing -- Traditional program or Advanced Standing program. Advanced Standing candidates have earned a Bachelor of Social Work while Traditional program applicants have a degree in another concentration.

Requirements for the Traditional program include:

  • A bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Four letters of recommendation (two personal, two academic)
  • A transcript with all courses, indicating a GPA of 3.0 or better on everything past the first 60 hours of undergraduate courses

Advanced Standing program includes the above requirements, plus:

    Your bachelor degree must be in social work from a CSWE-accredited institution
  • A copy of a BSW internship evaluation or letter of recommendation from the field office
  • A minimum of 400 hours of field education

If you are interested in learning more about our admissions process, please contact us at 888-368-0834 and we can connect you to your Online Recruitment Advisor. They are available to guide you through our application process. We strive to promote a supportive environment for applicants wishing to join our profession through online MSW studies.

Money Matters: Tuition and Financial Aid

FSU strives to provide an affordable online MSW. Tuition is also reflective of program status:

For the Advanced Standing program:

  • In-state cost is $444 per credit hour or $17,316 total
  • Out-of-state, market rate cost is $625 per credit hour or $24,375 total
  • Program requires a total of 39 credits

For the Traditional program:

  • In-state cost is $444 per credit hour or $27,084 total
  • Out-of-state cost is $625 per credit hour or $38,125 total
  • Program requires a total of 61 credits

Financial aid is available for those who qualify. Options for financial assistance include scholarships, William D. Ford Direct Loan Program, Federal Perkins Loan, and Military and Veteran programs.

What Will My Course of Study Look Like?

Once admitted, you will be assigned a Student Success Advisor. The purpose of the Advisor is to maximize your chances of successfully navigating the MSW curriculum requirements. The Advisor will also assist you in taking advantage our various field, certification, and career resources.

Students take two courses at a time, and the courses run 16 weeks. Traditional students must complete two field placements while Advanced Standing students complete one. There are Fall, Spring, and Summer terms and the average degree completion time is two years for Advanced Standing and three years for Traditional.

A critical component of online life is Blackboard Learn. Blackboard is an industry-leading software platform that delivers a virtual learning environment fostering a sense of community among students, colleagues, faculty, and staff. Blackboard Learn is the tool that will enable you to complete your degree from anywhere you have a computer and an internet connection.

Will I Gain Field Experience?

The College of Social Work’s Office of Field Education works with agencies and organizations to place students in field placements related to their career interests. This on-the-job training occurs at locations across the globe and produces social workers uniquely qualified to make a difference. Some of the agencies offer stipends as well as the potential for future employment.

The Real World: Licensing and Career

As you begin your transition to your chosen career, you can turn to the Office of Professional Development at the College of Social Work for guidance and support. The Office is pivotal in helping students with certificate programs, continuing education, social work licensure and career advancement.

The Office will facilitate your licensing process. While the online MSW program meets all the licensure requirements for Florida, students who want to practice in a different state must contact these state boards for licensure requirements. We will work with you to satisfy out-of-state requirements.

Our graduates pursue a variety of career paths that include specializing in mental health, health care, substance abuse, child welfare, and gerontology. As practitioners, graduates work in a variety of settings, including:

  • Military bases and government agencies
  • Schools and universities
  • Hospitals, medical clinics, and outpatient care centers
  • Family service agencies
  • Substance abuse rehabilitation facilities
  • Private practice
  • Community-based/nonprofit organizations

During your time with online MSW program, you will have acquired the diagnostic, treatment, and support skills necessary for success in any of the environments described.