This past March marked the release of the 2020 edition of U.S. News and World Report’s list of “Top Graduate Schools.” Among education and public affairs programs at Florida State University, the College of Social Work saw improved recognition. The College oversees both the campus and online Masters of Social Work program, which are accredited by the CSWE.
Social Work on the Rise
Since 2016, the College of Social Work’s graduate programs has climbed steadily in rankings. Over the past three years, it has jumped 11 places. Within the past year alone, the program soared from No. 38 to No. 33 nationwide. Florida State also checked in as No. 20 among public universities. Already holding strong as the No. 1 online MSW program in Florida, the College stands among the very best in the entire nation.
Jim Clark, Dean of the College of Social Work, applauded the tremendous effort behind this advancement, “The College of Social Work’s rise in the rankings reflects the work of our talented faculty, the dedicated support of our staff, and the excellence demonstrated daily by our students and alumni in the field.” This progress is evidence that an entire community of professionals, faculty, and alumni is invested in upholding the highest standards of social work education and practice.
In addition to the College of Social Work, other FSU schools lept in U.S. News & World Report rankings. The Askew School of Public Administration climbed three spots to land solidly in the top 25. Askew’s Local Government Management program witnessed a profound leap from No.12 to No. 8 in the country.
The College of Education also moved up seven spots to No. 39 this year. Within the school, multiple programs were recognized as extraordinary. The Higher Education Administration program reached No. 16, Special Education landed as No. 20, Educational Psychology made No. 21, and Curriculum marked as No. 18 for top programs in the nation.
Behind the Rankings
On a yearly basis, U.S. News & World Report calculates the value of professional school programs nationwide. These programs include business, engineering, law, education, medicine, nursing, and periodically, science, social science, health, and humanities.
When determining the quality of a program, both objective and nonobjective measures are incorporated. Statistical data is examined to assess a school’s faculty, research, and student experience. Expert opinions about a program’s excellence are also considered. For social work programs, academic reputation surveys are factored into the rankings. The outcome can help students weigh the value of a prospective program.
A History of Excellence
FSU’s College of Social Work has maintained a long and distinguished history in educating leaders of social work practice. Since 1928, the College has offered a robust academic program focused on preparing the best and brightest minds for success in the field. FSU holds more experience than any other institution in Florida and is also ranked in the Top 25 "Best Values in Public Colleges" by Kiplinger’s Personal Finance.
The College of Social Work has pioneered nationwide since the launch of the online MSW program. FSU was the first university ever to offer an accredited MSW degree online. The program has grown exponentially over time, resulting in widespread recognition. As one of the nation’s leading institutions for social work education, FSU’s rise in rankings demonstrate continued investment in shaping the next generation of professionals.