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Master of Social Work Program

This page contains resources for current students in the MSW program. Tricia Foster, the MSW program manager, is standing by to answer any questions you may have about the program. You may contact her at: tfoster@southern.edu or call 423-236-2629.

Go to admission information

2021-2022 Class Dates -

Aug
15

MSW Orientation for Students Starting Program

8:30 a.m.

Aug
22

MSW Classes

Sep
5

MSW Classes

Sep
19

MSW Classes

Oct
3

MSW Classes

Oct
24

MSW Classes

Nov
7

MSW Classes

Nov
21

MSW Classes

Dec
5

MSW Classes (Final)

Jan
9

MSW Orientation for January Starters

8:30 a.m.

Jan
16

MSW Classes

Jan
30

MSW Classes

Feb
13

MSW Classes

Feb
27

MSW Classes

Mar
13

MSW Classes

Apr
10

MSW Classes

Apr
24

MSW Classes (Final)

May
6

Social Work Pinning

6:00 PM

May
15-17

MSW Intensives Part 1

May
18-20

MSW Intensives Part II

Licensure Resources

The MSW program is fully accredited by Council on Social Work Education, and graduates are qualified to apply for LMSW master social worker (LMSW) and clinical social worker (LCSW) licensing. You are responsible for fulfilling the licensure requirements for the state to which you are applying.

 

Typical plan of study

Foundation placement. Students with a bachelor’s degree in another discipline (or from a non-accredited BSW program) take the foundation curriculum before advanced placement courses. Full-time students typically can complete the entire program in six semesters.

Advanced placement. With a bachelor's degree in social work (BSW) from a CSWE-accredited institution or applicants who have successfully completed the Foundation year of eduction at a CSWE-accredited Masters of Social Work program. Full-time students typically complete the advanced year in three semesters.

Fall (12 credit hours)
SOCW 509 Social Work Practice With Individuals and Families (3)
SOCW 511 Human Behavior and the Social Environment I - Biological and Psychological Development (Online) (3)
SOCW 513 Foundation of Professional Practice Seminar l (1)
SOCW 541 Integration of Faith and Foundation Practice Seminar I (1)
SOCW 547 Foundation Practicum I (1)
SOCW 597 Research Methods (3) 

Winter (12 credit hours)
SOCW 512 Human Behavior and the Social Environment II - Sociological and Spiritual Development (Online) (3)
SOCW 514 Social Work Practice with Groups, Organizations and Communities (3)
SOCW 516 Foundation of Professional Practice Seminar II (1)
SOCW 533 Social Welfare Issues and Policies (3)
SOCW 542 Integration of Faith and Foundation Practice: Seminar II (1)
SOCW 547 Foundation Practicum (1) 

Summer (5 credit hours)
SOCW 547 Foundation Practicum (5) 

Fall (12 credit hours)
SOCW 609 Advanced Social Policy (Online) (2) 
SOCW 611 Advanced Clinical Practice: Clinical Interventions (3)
SOCW 612 Advanced Administrative Practice: Program Development (3)
SOCW 620 Advanced Portfolio Seminar I (1)
SOCW 632 Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis I – 1 credit (Online)
SOCW 641 Integration of Faith and Advanced Practice: Seminar I (1)
SOCW 647 Advanced Practicum (1

Winter (12 credit hours)

SOCW 617 Advanced Clinical Practice: Clinical Assessment, Psychopathology and Psychotherapeutic Skills (3)
SOCW 618 Advanced Administrative Practice: Administration and Leadership (3)
SOCW 633 - Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis II – 1 credit (Online)
SOCW 642 Advanced Specialist Integrative Seminar II (1)
SOCW 647 Advanced Practicum (1)
SOCW ___ Select Advanced Foundation Core Concept of Emphasis (Online) (3)

Summer (9 credit hours)
Electives: 
SOCW ___ Part 1  of Advanced Emphasis (3 day intensive) (3)
SOCW ___ Part 2 of Advanced Emphasis  (3 day intensive) (3) 
SOCW 647 Advanced Practicum (3)

Questions and Answers

There are numerous definitions of social work explaining its fundamental mission. One of these definitions is adopted by the NASW Board of Directors: "Social work is the professional activity of helping individuals, groups, or communities to enhance or restore their capacity for social functioning and to create societal conditions favorable to their goals" (Morales and Sheafor, 1995, p. 39). This definition clearly identifies the profession's dual focus on person and environment. For more information, visit the following websites at: www.naswdc.org or www.helpstartshere.org.

The School of Social Work is designed to advance inclusive and innovative education that impacts not only Tennessee but our world today and for eternity. The MSW program prepares practitioners in a Christian learning environment for excellence and leadership across systems and in advanced autonomous social work practice.

The Commission on Accreditation (COA) from the Council on Social Work Education has granted full accreditation to Southern Adventist University’s Master of Social Work (MSW) program. Southern Adventist University maintains compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS-COC) and the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) policies through the appropriate and timely reporting on areas of substantive change.

For more information about Southern’s accreditation, click here.

 We do not require the GRE test for admission into the MSW program.

Southern's MSW program is fully accredited which qualifies you to apply for your LMSW and LCSW.

During a recent CSWE site visit, the site visitor had to say this about Southern's Social Work Program in regards to diversity: "The program works hard to be a leader in the area of diversity, contributing greatly to the campus context related to diversity, in hiring practices, teaching methods, student recruitment and campus activities that often get their start through members of the program’s suggestions in committees, etc. Experiences that will enhance experience with diversity of all types are carefully chosen for the students, and student interests related to diversity are creatively encouraged."

No. We recommend that you apply now and include an official transcript from universities/colleges you have attended. We will render a provisional admission decision. Please send us a second official transcript that indicates your final grades and your conferred degree as soon as it becomes available.

Yes. We look at the quality of the entire application in addition to your GPA. If your GPA is below 3.0, we encourage you to write about your undergraduate academic circumstances in your personal statement. You may have to enter the program on provisional status, but you should still apply.

Individuals who have a BSW may apply for Advanced Standing. The GPA used if cumulative of core social work classes. 

Applicants are notified of their acceptance status via email approximately three - four weeks after all application materials are submitted to the School of Social Work. 

The time limit for completing the program will be four years for full-time students and up to six years for part-time students.

If the student would like to transfer credit for a core social work course it must be from a CSWE accredited program to be considered. Transfer graduate students must complete 75% of their degree at Southern. Transfer grades must be “B” or higher. Southern does not transfer “P” grades.

You may have questions that we did not address. If so, please contact the MSW Program Director Lorri Merchant. She can be reached at lmerchant@southern.edu or 423.236.2641. 

MSW Accreditation

MSW Accreditation Outcomes 2019-2020

The Commission on Accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education has granted full accreditation to Southern Adventist University’s Master of Social Work program. Southern Adventist University maintains compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges and the Council on Social Work Education policies through the appropriate and timely reporting on areas of substantive change.

Additionally, Southern maintains compliance with the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

The Master of Social Work program utilizes multiple measures to assess student competency in advanced generalist social work practice.

See the Latest MSW Outcomes