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M.S.W. Program

Highly ranked academic programs at convenient locations.

The Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) program offers the preparation you need for advanced professional social work practice. Our foundation curriculum provides the knowledge, skills, values and ethics essential to all forms and levels of generalist social work practice. In your advanced year, you will complete a concentration in a contemporary, direct practice—and prepare to be an advanced social work practitioner using sophisticated clinical skills in work with individuals, small groups, families and couples.

Organization and Structure of the Master of Social Work Curriculum

All students in the foundation year of the Adelphi University M.S.W. program are required to take the same ten courses. Eight of the ten are academic courses, and two are supervised field internships where you apply theories learned in class to direct practice with clients. The ten required foundation classes are distributed as follows:

  • two consider social welfare policy
  • two examine theories of human behavior
  • two present theories of social work practice
  • one teaches about diversity, oppression and cultural influences in social work practice
  • one teaches the methods of empirical research
  • two provide supervised field education

In the advanced year of the M.S.W. program, all students must complete ten courses, two of which are supervised field internships. The eight remaining second-year classroom courses are distributed as follows:

  • three courses in advanced social work practice
  • one course in assessment and diagnosis from a social work perspective
  • one course in advanced social work research
  • one course in the organizational context for professional practice
  • a capstone course
  • one elective

Courses of Study

Our practice methods sequence will prepare you for direct work with individuals, couples, families, groups and communities. The courses cover:

  • theoretical models
  • empirical bases
  • values and ethics
  • professional skills

There’s also a field education component to all Adelphi social work programs. The field practicum is where you put your practice methods to use—integrating your knowledge as you assess needs, set goals and intervene with clients to achieve those goals.

Our human behavior and social environment courses provide foundational knowledge about the determinants of human behavior, including:

  • biological determinants
  • psychological determinants
  • social determinants

Our social work research courses instill a scientific approach to practice and provide the tools required to:

  • systematically evaluate a social work practice and its services
  • build a professional knowledge base
  • critically evaluate professional literature, as well as the literature of other disciplines
  • assess the effectiveness of one’s own practice

Finally, social welfare policy and organization courses teach you about the social policies, programs and organizations that provide services and shape a professional practice. You’ll learn to direct social programs through:

  • development
  • design
  • implementation
  • evaluation

Transfer Credits

If you’ve taken a graduate course in an accredited graduate program similar to an Adelphi social work course, you may request a transfer of credit. The course must have been taken within five years of matriculation, with a grade of B or better. To make a request, submit the following to our Office of Graduate Admissions:

  • transcript
  • course description
  • course outline
  • bibliography

The Office of Graduate Admissions, in consultation with the sequence chair, will assess if your course corresponds to an existing Adelphi course. If the graduate credit is approved for transfer, you do not have to take another course in its place. A place-out exam may be required at the discretion of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs. If the course was counted toward a baccalaureate degree, it cannot be used for transfer credit. Only courses completed for graduate credit can be transferred. Life experience credits are not granted for social work course requirements.

Course Waivers

Course waivers are granted selectively on an individual basis. If you’ve taken an undergraduate course similar to an Adelphi social work course, you may request a course waiver. The course must have been taken within five years of matriculation, with a grade of B or better and you must submit the following to the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.:

  • transcript
  • course description
  • course outline
  • bibliography

The associate dean, in consultation with the sequence chair, will assess if your course corresponds to the Adelphi course. If the course does correspond, you will then be required to take a place-out exam. If you pass the exam with a score of at least 80—a B grade—the course is waived, and you must take another course in its place. Graduate credit is not granted for undergraduate courses.

Graduate Policies and General Information

Academic support and advisement is available through the Office of the Associate Dean for Academic Affairs.

All students in the M.S.W. program are expected to maintain a minimum 3.0 GPA throughout the program. You are continually monitored for academic performance and referred to the Office of Academic Affairs if you fall below the minimum standard. Academic contracts are written for all students who do not earn the minimum 3.0 GPA.

Program Paths

Your specific degree requirements.

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Field Education

Experience is a key part of learning.

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You can take selected M.S.W. courses in blended or online formats?
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