The Master of Social Work (MSW) degree is a professional degree enabling the graduate to enter practice as an advanced-level practitioner. Graduates are prepared to work in a variety of clinical, administration, and development focus areas. The foundation curriculum for the MSW consists of 9 core competencies that are required for every accredited MSW program: 1) Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior; 2) Engage diversity and difference in practice; 3) Advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice; 4) Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice; 5) Engage in policy practice; 6) Engage with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; 7) Assess and plan with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; 8) Intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities; and 9) Evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities. In addition, our program has added an additional competency: 10) Demonstrate a Christian social work perspective. The curriculum is designed to teach students the knowledge, values and skills, along with understanding of the cognitive and affective reactions and judgement that accompany these dimensions. Measurement outcomes for these competencies can be found on the first page of the Andrews University School of Social Work website. The Andrews University MSW program is accredited by the Council of Social Work Education through the year 2027.
All tracks of the MSW program are available in the face-to-face format. The Regular Standing and Accelerated Regular Standing tracks are also available in the interactive online synchronous format (see School of Distance Education definitions). Online students are encouraged to come to campus for graduation.
Dual Degrees Options
The MSW Dual Degree Programs allow the student to complete two degrees in one additional year, with a tuition reduction of 33% for the MSW credits. To facilitate this objective, the two programs will reduce the total number of required credits and will share a practicum and a limited number of elective courses. Specifically, the School of Social Work will reduce the required number of credits by 9-10 credits by allowing students to take their required social work electives in the other graduate program. In addition, approximately 16 credits will be shared between the two programs. The following Dual Degree options are available:
Core advanced interpersonal practice courses supplemented by optional areas of focus are offered. Students wishing to enroll in core graduate social work courses must be enrolled in the MSW program and/or have the instructor’s permission. Students may transfer up to 20% of the credits from one degree into the MSW program. All courses are subject to change based on accreditation needs.
Areas of Focus
Students may choose to specialize in the following focus areas: Human Resources, Mental Health, School Social Work, Marriage & Family, Christian Ministry, International Social Work, and Medical Social Work. Please refer to the School of Social Work website for further information: www.andrews.edu/cas/socialwork/. Students are not required to choose a focus area.
- A minimum cumulative GPA of 3.00 in Social Work Program.
- No grade of D or F (or U) may count toward a graduate degree.
- The maintenance at all times of professional conduct and behaviors appropriate for a social worker according to the National Association of Social Workers’ Code of Ethics.
- Defense of the professional degree portfolio as part of SOWK689 Advanced Professional Seminar. This portfolio is a demonstrative collection of professional competencies.
- Other Andrews University degree requirements as presented in the Graduate Academic Information section of this bulletin.
Past experience strengthens all MSW student applications. However, following Council on Social Work Education requirements, no social work course credit can be given for life experience or previous work experience.
English Language Requirements
For those applicants whose native language is not English, the following is required:
- Demonstration of English proficiency by obtaining at least a minimum score on any one of the following exams. Exam must be taken within two years prior to enrollment.
- TOEFL ITP (paper-based): A minimum score of 550
- TOEFL iBT (internet-based): 80 with a minimum of 20 on each section
- IELTS (Academic version ): 6.5
- PTE (Academic version): 54
- MSW program participates in the Bridge program which allows students who are close to the minimum scores to take 3-6 credits of MSW courses along with ESL courses. Requirements to participate in the Bridge program are below.
- TOEFL ITP (paper-based): A score of 500-549 (2-3 ESL courses and up to 3-6 credits of regular MSW course work)* OR
*with permission of the department
- Nelson Denny: score of 13
- Personal interview with MSW program director or designee
Applicants who fail to meet any of the above may be admitted only after committee consideration of the specific circumstances. Additional course work in English may be required.
A student who graduated from a four-year English-speaking high school, college or university may be exempted from all or parts of the above requirements.
Graduate Record Examination (GRE)
Students who are applying for admission to the MSW program are not required to take the GRE. For those students who are seeking the GRE scholarship, the GRE must be taken. The amount of a potential scholarship is related to the score achieved on the GRE as follows:
||50% tuition reduction
||25% tuition reduction
||10% tuition reduction
Since the MSW program does not require the GRE, an equivalent graduate scholarship is offered in the department. The amount of potential scholarship is related to GPA and supporting documents. This applies to the last 3 semesters of the program. Please refer to the School of Social Work website for further information:
|3.90 - 4.00
||50% tuition reduction
|3.50 - 3.89
||25% tution reduction
|3.30 - 3.49
||10% tuition reduction*
*available to Advanced standing 1 year students only, based on BSW GPA
Students have the opportunity to apply for graduate assistantships—teaching or research. These assistantships give students the opportunity to develop their expertise. Students interested in becoming social-work educators—especially those with years of clinical experience—may teach undergraduate courses. Research assistantships offer experiences in community consulting, grant writing, and/or conducting research.
MSW Student Handbook
The MSW Student Handbook has been designed as the social work student’s aid in understanding the program requirements of the School of Social Work as well as relevant policies of Andrews University. Inside the handbook you will find information such as expectations of students, the MSW curriculum, departmental policies, and other relevant information.
The Field Manual has been designed as your aid in understanding field education requirements, your role as a student in a field agency, and relevant policies of Andrews University.
You are responsible for the information found in this handbook, so please take the time to familiarize yourself with the handbook and know where to find questions and answers if the need arises.
Student Learning Outcomes
Students who complete this program will:
- Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior
- Engage diversity and difference in practice
- Advance human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice
- Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice
- Engage in policy practice
- Engage with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
- Assess and Plan with Individuals, Families, Groups, and Communities
- Intervene with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
- Evaluate Practice with Individuals, Families, Groups, Organizations, and Communities
- Demonstrate a Christian Social Work Perspective