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Department of Social Work
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Department of Social Work

Master of Social Work

Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.)

What options are available for pursuing the MSW degree at Winthrop University?

a.) The One-Year Advanced Standing Program is for applicants who have obtained the BSW degree from a Council on Social Work (CSWE) accredited college or university. There is no time limit for when the BSW degree was earned. Years since graduation will be considered within the context of the entire application. 


b.) The Two-Year Full-Time Program is for applicants wishing to purse full-time study.


c.) The Three-Year Weekend Program is designed for working professionals and others who desire a program with weekend course oferings. Weekend Program students attend class one weekend each month and complete a field internship 12 hours per week after the first semester.

d.) Two Year-Weekend Advanced Standing Program is designed for working professionals and others who desire a program with weekend course oferings. Weekend Program students attend class one weekend each month and complete a field internship 12 hours per week after the first semester.Like the one year Advanced standing Program, the Weekend Advanced Standing Program is for applicants who have obtained the BSW degree from a Council on Social Work (CSWE) accredited college or university. There is no time limit for when the BSW degree was earned. Years since graduation will be considered within the context of the entire application. 


What is the focus, or concentration of study in the Winthrop MSW Program?

The MSW Program offers an advanced concentration in empowerment practice across systems (individuals and families, small groups, and communities and organizations). Empowerment practice utilizes advanced critical thinking skills to assess the influence of multiple and interlocking personal, structural, and societal systems of power on vulnerable and oppressed populations. It incorporates the use of advanced social work theories and methodologies for culturally relevant assessment, intervention, and evaluation at multiple levels of complexity and across systems in order to promote human and social well-being.

I Live in North Carolina. Is it possible for me to gain in-state tuition status?

Yes! Winthrop University has been authorized by state law to offer graduate in-state tuition to residents of the member counties of the Charlotte Regional Partnership, up to existing academic capacity. The South Carolina counties of York, Chester, and Lancaster Counties have been joined in this partnership by the North Carolina counties of Mecklenburg, Gaston, Alexander, Anson, Cabarrus, Catawba, Cleveland, Iredell, Lincoln, Rowan, Stanley and Union. Potential enrollees who are residents of any of these counties should request further details about this policy from the Winthrop University Graduate School, 800/411-7041 or 803/323-2204.

Does the Master of Social Work Program offer graduate assistantships?

Yes! Students admitted to any of the three MSW Program options are eligible to apply for a Social Work Department Graduate Assistantships.  Students may also apply for a paid graduate research positions through the Department of Social Work’s Center for Social Welfare Research and Assessment. Admitted students may also apply for graduate assistanships in other departments across campus.

Does the Master of Social Work Program offer online courses?

No, the MSW Program at Winthrop offers on-site instruction rather than online instruction.


I am not sure if my work experience relates to the field of social work.

Applicants are not required to have human service related work experience. In the review of an application work experience in a human service field is considered a strength. 


My Undergraduate degree is not a BSW degree; can I apply for the MSW Program?

Absolutely! People pursuing the MSW degree come from many different undergraduate programs. Individuals with any undergraduate degree based in the liberal arts tradition are eligible to apply for either the Two-Year Full-Time Program or the Three-Year Weekend Program. Applicants to the One-Year Advanced Standing Program must have earned a BSW degree from a CSWE accredited institution. There are no time limits as to when the BSW degree was completed.

How important are my test scores and undergraduate grade point average?  

The MSW Program requires that applicants complete either the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) or the Miller Analogies Test (MAT). Test scores are considered within the context of the broader application.   We seek applicants who have an undergraduate GPA of 3.0 during their final 60 credits of study (3.0 overall GPA for the Advanced Standing Program). While test scores and GPA are highly valued by the Admissions Committee, you can be assured that all components of your application will be fully reviewed by the Committee in determining a final admission decision.

When do MSW classes meet?

Full-Time and Advanced Standing classes meet in the afternoons and early evening. Weekend Program classes meet four weekends per semester. (one weekend a month)

Will I be responsible for finding my placement for field instruction?

No. The MSW Program has a Field and Continuing Education Office that assists students with obtaining a field placement site. We have over 300 approved field internship sites and will work with you to establish internships that are a good match for your interests and learning needs.

How many hours must I complete for field instruction?

Students in the MSW Program complete field internships at area community agencies under the supervision of an MSW credentialed professional. First year Full-Time students complete a field internship of 16 hours per week during their second semester in the Program. Second year Full-Time students and Advanced Standing students complete a field internship of 24 hours per week. Weekend Program students complete internships of 12 hours per week extended over longer periods of time.

May I work full-time while completing the MSW Program?

Applicants who wish to continue full-time employment are encouraged to apply to the Three-Year Weekend Program as it is specifically designed for working students. We strongly discourage full-time employment for students enrolled in the Full-Time and Advanced Standing Programs

I am unsure as to which of the MSW degree programs I want to apply for. Is it acceptable to enroll in one program and then change into another program at a later date?

Applicants are required to declare the Program option in which they wish to enroll at the time of their application and all applicants are admitted for a specific Program. Because of the sequenced nature of courses, it is difficult to change Programs once you are already enrolled. Requests to change Programs must be submitted to, and are evaluated by, the Admissions Committee. Because of course sequencing, changing from one Program to another often results in an extension in the overall time of enrollment.

How do I register to attend an MSW Information Session?

Information Session dates and times are posted on the Department and the Graduate School website. You may click here to go to the PDF file with dates.  You may contact our office at 803/323-2168 to register to attend a session.

Where can I get more information about the MSW Program?

  • Attend any one of our Information Sessions
  • Contact the MSW Admissions office with any question or concern you may have about the MSW program at msw@winthrop.edu or 803/323-3396
  • Contact the Social Work department for other inquiries at socialwork@winthrop.edu

 

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