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Faculty and Staff
Diane Beckerle O'Brien
Lois Pierce (Director)
Student Social Work Association
The Master of Social Work (MSW) prepares students for professional social work practice. Graduates will have the knowledge, skills and values for direct social work practice with individuals, families, or older adults, or the knowledge, skills and values to effectively manage and lead human service agencies. Social justice principles will guide graduates in their practice at all levels of intervention particularly with persons who are oppressed because of their color, ethnicity, gender, age, sexual orientation or physical or mental ability.
The MSW program requires 60 hours of graduate coursework with options for full time or part time study. Most of our classes are offered in the late afternoon and evening to allow for flexibility. A student who has previously earned a Bachelor of Social Work (within the past five years) or who has taken graduate coursework in another department or University may receive credit toward the 60 hour requirement according to the provisions of the Advanced Standing or Transfer Credit policies.
The MSW has two levels of study. In the first year, students complete 30 graduate credit hours identified as foundation content. In the second year of study, students complete another 30 credit hours in their concentrations. There are two concentrations offered in the MSW program at UM St. Louis. Students select their concentration at the end of their foundation course work. Students also have the option of completing a Graduate Certificate in Gender Studies, Non-Profit Leadership and Management, Prevention of Family Violence, or Gerontology concurrently with the MSW degree.
Students may - but are not required to - select a Specialization. There are four Specializations (please refer to the MSW handbook for more details).
- Aging and Social Work Practice
- Health and Behavioral Health
- School Social Work
- Social Work and the Military
Specializations can be earned within 60 credit hours. They will typically take all of a student's elective options. Some Specializations require specific policy or practice courses from the core concentration. Students must complete at least one graduate concentration practicum (300 clock hours) in a selected Specialization.
Students complete practica in their first and second years of study. Students entering with a BSW, who meet the Advanced Standing requirements, are exempt from the first year practicum.