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The College of St. Scholastica

Build a Meaningful Career by Earning Your Master’s Degree in Social Work

Building on the academic excellence of our BA in Social Work program, our Master of Social Work (MSW) program will prepare and equip you to assess and address individual, family, group and community health and wellbeing needs in advanced clinical practice. Through the curriculum, you will develop skills in assessment and diagnosis, evidence-based intervention and treatment, and group therapy.

You’ll also learn how social policy, as well as social and ecological justice issues, affect clinical social work practice. Upon completing this rigorous graduate program, you will be ready for the challenges of this rewarding field.

Fast Facts

This CSWE-accredited MSW program allows students with or without a Bachelor of Social Work to prepare for careers that make a difference. Our clinically-focused program features:

  • A limited residency requirement, supplemented with an intensive summer experience, weekly classes and small group activities
  • A flexible, hybrid learning environment that couples on-campus and online components
  • Efficient MSW completion through an Advanced Standing track, which helps students with a bachelor’s degree in social work complete their MSW in as little as a year (38 credits vs. 63 Regular Standing credits)

Receive Program Info and Financial Aid Options

  • Detailed program overview
  • Personalized financial aid
  • Individual admissions support

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I graduated with a better sense of self, which allowed me to visualize what I can contribute to my community.

Corrie Ehrbright, MSW, LICSW

Degree Details


Tuition: $725/credit*

* Tuition rates are for the 2024-25 academic year. Additional fees and costs for course materials may apply. Total program cost and completion time varies depending on transfer credits and individual program plans. Tuition rates are subject to change. View 2023-24 rates

Program Overview

Program Format and Location

At The College of St. Scholastica, we design rigorous degree programs that are flexible enough to meet the needs of your busy life. The MSW hybrid format program blends on-campus and online courses, integrating weekly face-to-face classes which includes seminars, small group activities, labs and live lectures with web-based course delivery. You can pursue your degree in a flexible format without compromising the standards needed for Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) licensure.

Please note: because online learning is an integral part of this program, access to broadband internet is required in order to complete coursework.


Visit our Catalog to view the program, course and degree requirements, and learning outcomes. Be sure to create your course plan in consultation with your advisor.

Program Options

Regular Standing Track

Length: 2 years (63 credits)

This track is for students with bachelor’s degrees from fields other than social work. The track includes one year of foundational coursework built around core professional competencies. This is followed by a second-year within the program in an advanced concentration.

The Regular Standing track includes a minimum of 900 hours of supervised field practicum instruction.

Advanced Standing Track

Length: 1 year (38 credits)

This track, for students with a bachelor’s degree in social work, includes an advanced concentration, focusing a student’s studies on a particular area of interest within the field.

The Advanced Standing track includes a minimum of 450 hours of supervised field practicum instruction.


LICSW Licensure

The College of St. Scholastica’s MSW program meets the Minnesota licensure standards which require LICSW candidates to document 360 clock hours (24 credits) in six clinical knowledge areas.

In addition to the completion of an MSW program, prospective licensees must complete 4,000 hours of practice. Of those hours, 1,800 are clinical and 200 are supervised. You’ll also need to pass an Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) exam.

Prepare for Advanced Clinical Practice

By pursuing your master’s degree in social work at St. Scholastica, you’ll be prepared to enter an in-demand field with opportunities to practice in a variety of clinical and non-clinical settings, including community mental health centers, hospitals and clinics, state and local government, child welfare agencies and more.

Be a leader for social change and use your career to advocate for others.

Career Outlook

More than ever, social workers are taking on a greater role in social and ecological justice, activism, and social and ecological change — leading higher education professionals from across the country to argue that the master’s in social work is becoming the new law degree.

As such, the job market is strong for MSWs and clinical social workers are in high demand. Duluth, the North Shore and much of greater Minnesota (excluding the Twin Cities) are designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSAs) by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

This means the demand for mental health professionals greatly outweighs the number of practitioners in the area. It also means those who practice in an area designated as an HPSA may be eligible for federal or state loan forgiveness programs.

Admission Information

Visit our admissions page for information about transcripts, online application, international admissions and financing.

Application Deadlines

Both the Regular Standing Track and Advanced Standing Track offer two deadlines for applications. The priority deadline offers students an opportunity to learn of their acceptance into the program earlier in the application cycle. Applications will continue to be accepted until the application final deadline. Deadlines are:

Regular Standing Track Timeline

Cohort start time: Sept.
Application priority deadline: Feb. 15
Application final deadline: Aug. 1

Advanced Standing Track Timeline

Cohort start time: May
Application priority deadline: Feb. 15
Application final deadline: April 15


New Students
  • Applicants should have a minimum of 3.0 GPA (on a 4.00 scale) or better on the last 60 hours of undergraduate coursework.
  • BA/BS degree from a regionally accredited institution. No specific baccalaureate major is required.
Note: Meeting minimum entrance requirements does not guarantee admission.
Returning Students

A returning student is a student who was admitted and enrolled in a program at St. Scholastica but has been absent from the program for at least three continuous semesters, including summer. To return to the same program at St. Scholastica, a returning student must be in good academic standing and must apply for readmission to the College.


  • No GRE required

Meet Our Faculty

Experienced, Dedicated and Distinguished Educators

Expect to be heard, to be challenged and to be involved. St. Scholastica faculty are world-class scholars and experts in their field who invest in your success. Our values of community, respect, stewardship, hospitality and love of learning reflect our faculty’s commitment to lifting up others and celebrating our common humanity.