School of Social Work

Master's Degree in Social Work

The Program

The mission of the Master's Degree in Social Work program is to prepare students for specialized, advanced-level, self-critical, accountable, and autonomous practice with oppressed, at risk, and vulnerable populations. The program provides a rigorous intellectual base, an opportunity for effective skill development, and an educational perspective that views human diversity as desirable and enriching to society. Students are equipped with the knowledge, skills, and values appropriate to the social work profession, the conceptual base of professional social work, the broad-based research strategies of the field, and the various social work roles and intervention strategies used in social work practice.

Admission Requirements

In addition to the Cleveland State University graduate college requirements for admission, the joint MSW program requires of all applicants:

  • (a) an undergraduate major in social work or a related field;
  • (b) a minimum grade point average of 3.00 in social work and behavioral sciences courses taken prior to application for admission;
  • (c) a minimum of 8 courses in this area;
  • (d) three letters of reference;
  • (e) an essay of 3 to 5 typed pages explaining;
  1. why the applicant wants to be/is a social worker;
  2. why a graduate degree is felt to be necessary to fulfill personal or professional objectives;
  3. the applicant's views regarding diversity in society;
  4. a situation in which the student was the recipient/provider of help, emotionally, socially, or economically; and
  5. a description of previous social work/human service work experience.

Application deadline is February 28

Program Requirements

The Traditional MSW Program requires 60 graduate credits of approved courses in social work. The Advanced Standing Program requires 30 credits.

MSW Field Manual

The MSW Field Manual is available to download in two formats.


Contact Information

Cleveland State University
The School of Social Work
2300 Chester Ave, 3rd Floor
Cleveland, Ohio, 44114
Telephone: 216-687-4560
Fax: 216-687-5590