The mission of the UAA Master of Social Work (MSW) is to develop a community of MSW professionals located across rural and urban Alaska who are dedicated to advancing human rights, engaging in anti-racist and anti-oppressive social work practice, and pursuing justice, equity, and inclusion for all. Through a collaborative online learning environment and field practica, students develop advanced generalist social work values, knowledge, and skills in direct practice, leadership, critical scientific inquiry, and policy advocacy to address the complex health and social welfare needs in Alaska and the Circumpolar North.
The MSW is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The program is reviewed by CSWE for reaffirmation on a regular basis.
The MSW is structured to allow students to participate in part-time or full-time graduate studies plans requiring from one to four years of study. The MSW is an advanced generalist MSW program, and the curriculum has two components: the generalist curriculum and the advanced generalist curriculum. MSW students complete social work field practicum placements in the generalist curriculum and in the advanced generalist curriculum.
The generalist curriculum is composed of 31 semester credits and is completed in the first year of the full-time program, and the first two years of the part-time program. Students with a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) who are admitted with advanced standing are waived from the courses in the generalist curriculum, with the exception of SWK A624 Foundation Research Methods.
The advanced generalist curriculum is composed of 30 credits and is completed in the second year of the full-time program and the second two years of the part-time program. The advanced generalist curriculum is the curriculum completed by students with a BSW who are admitted with advanced standing. All students must successfully complete all courses in the advanced generalist curriculum.
The MSW does not grant social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.
Licensure and/or Certification
Graduates completing the Master of Social Work are eligible to sit for the Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) examination within the state of Alaska immediately after graduation. They are also eligible to sit for the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) examination within the state of Alaska after completion of requisite practice hours and supervision of those practice hours.
Please go to UAA's Authorization by State website for information about licensure or certification in a state other than Alaska.
- Complete the Admission Requirements for Graduate Degrees.
- The application deadline is January 15. Applications are accepted and reviewed once a year.
- Applications must be submitted online. Paper applications will not be accepted.
- The Master of Social Work (MSW) reserves the right to request additional materials and/or interviews pertaining to program admission. Admission to the MSW is based on the professional judgment of the MSW Admissions Committee. Only applicants eligible to be licensed as a social worker in the state of Alaska will be admitted to the MSW. Please contact the School of Social Work for further information.
Additional Criteria for Admission to the Full MSW:
- Two prerequisite courses (completed with a minimum grade of C):
Additional Criteria for Admission to the MSW with Advanced Standing:
Applicants who do not meet the criteria for advanced standing may apply to the full MSW.
- Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) completed within the past five years from a baccalaureate social work program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, recognized through its International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Services, or covered under a memorandum of understanding with international social work accreditors.
- Minimum GPA of 3.50 in BSW core courses (course work in human behavior, policy, research, practice, and practicum).
- Grade of A or equivalent in each field placement course.
- Two prerequisite courses - one in human biology and one in statistics (completed with a minimum grade of C):
To maintain satisfactory progress toward the degree, a student in the MSW is expected to achieve a minimum GPA of 3.00 on a 4.00 scale with no individual course grade lower than a C and to adhere to the Code of Ethics of the National Association of Social Workers. Students must earn a minimum grade of B in all field practicum courses: SWK A639, SWK A644, SWK A645, SWK A646, SWK A647.
Candidacy for a Master of Social Work
- Refer to Advancement to Candidacy criteria.
- Successfully complete MSW comprehensive examination, which is completed in SWK A635.
- Complete the General University Requirements for Graduate Degrees.
- Students admitted to the program on a part-time basis take from 2 to 7 credits each semester, including summer.
- Students admitted to the program on a full-time basis may take up to 7 credits each summer, and 12 to 16 credits in fall and spring semesters.
- Complete the following major requirements:
Generalist Curriculum: Complete, test out of or waive the following required courses1:
|Social Welfare Policy and Services
|Foundation Research Methods
|Practice with Individuals
|Introduction to Social Work Practice
|Practice with Families and Groups
|Practice with Organizations and Communities
|Human Behavior in the Social Environment
|Human Diversity in Social Work Practice
|Social Work Practicum I
|Social Work Practicum II
Advanced Generalist Curriculum: All MSW students are required to complete the courses in the advanced generalist curriculum.
|Advanced Policy Practice
|Advanced Practice with Individuals
|Advanced Practice with Families and Groups
|Transformational Leadership in Social Work Practice
|Transformational Leadership Capstone
|Advanced Generalist Practicum I
|Advanced Generalist Practicum II
|Two 600-level social work-related electives with advisor approval
A minimum of 34 credits and a maximum of 61 credits is required for the degree.
Program Student Learning Outcomes
The Master of Social Work program prepares advanced generalist social workers who:
- 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 individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
- Intervene with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
- Evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities
- Integrate the context of Alaska in social work practice