Admission Requirements

Total University credits for a Master’s of Social Work: 60 credits (Traditional/Part-time) 36 credits (Advanced Standing)

The MSW program at Alabama State University consists of a 60-hour traditional program, and a 36-hour Advanced Standing program for students with a BSW earned within the last 8 years. Students with a Bachelor of Social Work degree must apply for admission to the MSW Program. Applicants must show proof of an earned bachelor’s degree from a college/University as demonstrated through the submission of required transcripts at the time of Application must be submitted. Included in the application are three letters of recommendations, a statement of purpose, an essay related to a social issue in one of the related areas of concentration and a resume. The deadline for application each year is March 15 of the year of intended enrollment. Applicants that meet this deadline will be considered for a priority admission in the fall semester.

Applicants seeking admission under the Advanced Standing Curriculum must be enrolled within 8 years post completion of their Baccalaureate degree in Social Work (BSW).

Applicants must do the following:

  • Demonstrate evidence of completion of a bachelor’s degree in social work from a Social work program accredited by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE);
  • Have a GPA of 3.0 or better on a 4.0 scale;
  • Submit official transcripts from ALL post-secondary institutions attended;
  • Submit a Statement of Purpose (not to exceed 1000 words, 2-3 pages double-spaced, size 12 font Times Roman);
  • Submit an essay related to a social issue in the related areas of Gerontology, Forensics or Mental Health (not to exceed 1000 words, 2-3 pages double-spaced, size 12 font Times Roman);
  • Submit three letters of recommendations (one from a previous professor, one from your previous intern supervisor);
  • Submit a Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Score as required by ASU’s Graduate School taken within the past five years; the university does not have a designated GRE score or range of scores for admittance. Nevertheless, students who score at least a 450 or 150 (revised GRE score) on the verbal portion of the GRE, a score of 3.5 or higher on the analytical writing portion of the GRE can qualify to be exempt from the Graduate Writing Competency Test (GWCT). Documentation of test scores must be provided for your graduate school file. Students not passing the GWCT by the end of their first semester will be unable to register for any more classes;
  • Submit an application to the Alabama State University Office of the Graduate School for admission consideration by March 15th of the year of intended enrollment;
  • Submit $25.00 non-refundable application fee; and
  • Submit a current professional resume.

Applicants seeking admission under the Traditional Curriculum (two-year full-time curriculum or four-year part-time curriculum)

Applicants must do the following:

Demonstrate evidence of completion of a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work from a Social Work Program accredited by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) or completion of a baccalaureate degree from an accredited, four-year college or university. Students having baccalaureate degrees in non-social work areas of study must demonstrate a broad liberal arts base to include six (6) hours in the Social, Behavioral or Psychological Sciences; three (3) hours in Statistics; and four (4) hours in Human Biology;

  • Have a GPA of 2.75 or better on a 4.0 scale;
  • Submit official transcripts from all post-secondary institutions attended;
  • Submit a Statement of Purpose (not to exceed 1000 words, 2-3 pages double-spaced, size 12 font Times Roman);
  • Submit an essay related to a social issue in the related areas of Gerontology, Forensics or Mental Health (not to exceed 1000 words, 2-3 pages double-spaced, size 12 font Times Roman);
  • Submit three (3) letters of recommendations (at least one from a previous professor, at least one from your previous intern supervisor);
  • Submit a Graduate Record Examination (GRE) Score as required by ASU’s Graduate School taken within the past five years; the university does not have a designated GRE score or range of scores for admittance. Nevertheless, students who score at least a 450 or 150 (revised GRE score) on the verbal portion of the GRE, a score of 3.5 or higher on the analytical writing portion of the GRE can qualify to be exempt from the Graduate Writing Competency Test (GWCT). Documentation of test scores must be provided for your graduate school file. Students not passing the GWCT by the end of their first semester will be unable to register for any more classes;
  • Submit an application to the Alabama State University Office of the Graduate School for admission consideration by March 15th;
  • Submit $25.00 non-refundable application fee; and
  • Submit a current professional resume.

The Department of Social Work at Alabama State University is seeking qualified applicants for its Master of Social Work (MSW) program. Our MSW program is a Cohort Program and we are beginning to review applicants for the next semester. Applicants to the Master of Social Work (MSW) program may be considered for one of three tracks as described below:

  1. Advanced Standing (1 year program): for all graduate applicants who have successfully completed a baccalaureate degree in Social Work from a CSWE accredited social work program and have earned an overall GPA of 3.0 or higher.

  2. Traditional (two-year program): for all graduate applicants who, have successfully completed a baccalaureate degree in Social Work or a closely related, broad liberal arts-based area of study from a College or University by a recognized regionally accrediting association.

  3. Part-time (four-year program): for all graduate applicants who, have successfully completed a baccalaureate degree in Social Work or a closely related, broad liberal arts-based area of study from a College or University by a recognized regionally accrediting association.

In order for us to quickly process your application, we need the following items to complete your application package.

The Admission Criteria for the Master of Social Work Program are as follows:

  1. Transcript

  2. Three (3) Professional Letters of Recommendation

  3. Statement of Purpose

  4. GRE or MAT Test scores or Proof of Receipt

  5. Resume

Please forward the necessary documents to The Murphy Graduate School as soon as possible at:

ALABAMA STATE UNIVERSITY

The Harold Lloyd Murphy Graduate School

P.O. Box 271

Montgomery, AL 36101

If you should have any questions or concerns, please contact: Courtney Smith at cysmith@alasu.edu or (334) 229-4275


APPLICANT EVALUATION PROCEDURE

Applications for admission consideration are due March 15th for the next academic school year. Admission to the MSW program at Alabama State University is based on the following weighted value percentages:

A. Academic Record (40%): Undergraduate cumulative GPA of 2.70 (traditional) 3.0 (advanced standing) or higher. If the applicant’s cumulative GPA is 2.69 to 2.60 (traditional) the applicant must submit graduate exam test scores. Applicants with a cumulative GPA of less than 2.6 are not considered. Previously awarded graduate degrees are considered in the admissions decision-making.

B. Three Letters of Recommendation (10%): Appropriateness of letter writers (e.g., supervisory person, employer or professor) and quality of the writer's evaluation (degree to which the letter indicates appropriate qualities and attributes of the applicant and supports these with details and examples).

C. Statement of Purpose (15%) & Essay (20%): Applicant’s demonstration of personal maturity, written communication skills, interest in and understanding of social work as a profession.

D. Resume (15% for human service experience): Applicant’s prior work or volunteer experience in the human service field.

The evaluation process for determining admission to the MSW program includes all applications being read by the Admissions Chair and a second reader from the Committee, as assigned by the Chair. Each reader will assign scores for each applicant on an MSW Reviewers Worksheet. Any one reader may not reject an applicant unilaterally, unless an applicant does not meet the GPA criterion. The Admissions Committee meets face-to-face to determine appropriate suitability. Scores assigned by readers are given to the Committee, and the second reader presents the applicant to the committee for review. Each application is reviewed by the committee and a recommendation is made. Applicant interviews may be recommended by the Committee. Students will be notified of their final admission status in writing no later May 15th of the academic year.

Decisions made on applicants include:

An applicant may receive full or provisional admission status

a. Full admission. No conditions must be met.

b. Provisional admission may be offered to: 1) Foundation applicants with a deficiency in Biology, Statistics, and/or Research Methods; and/or 2) Applicants with a cumulative GPA  between 2.60 and 2.69, with graduate exam test scores.

If students receive a provisional admission letter, they will be notified of deficiencies and expectations to correct eligibility requirements.

The Admissions Chair will inform the student, advisor, and Office of Graduate Studies of any deficiencies, as indicated on the applicant’s transcript(s). Students may challenge the identified deficiencies by providing full documentation about courses taken to meet the deficiencies. Deficiencies must be completed prior to enrolling in the course with the prerequisite and will be monitored by the Department’s Secretary and the Program Chair. Students provisionally admitted because of a GPA between 2.60 and 2.69 must earn a “B” or better in their first 12 hours of graduate work. If these conditions are not met, the applicant’s provisional admission will be rescinded.

Applicants who receive full or provisional admission must return a signed contract to the Admissions Chair within 10 working days of the date of the letter of admission signifying they intend to honor their acceptance. Applicants failing to return the contract within the required time will be given a 10 day grace period before their names will be removed from the list of admitted candidates. If all spots are filled, admissible applicants will be placed on a waiting list by priority, and notified in writing as space becomes available


FELONY CONVICTION

Applicants for admission to the School of Social Work are asked if they have been convicted of a felony. Conviction of a felony will not necessarily prevent a student from being admitted to the Social Work program, but may make licensure in the state of Alabama more difficult to acquire. Social work students may be assigned to a field practicum site which serves vulnerable clients, and liability issues may prevent a student who has been convicted of certain felonies to be assigned to those practicum sites. Students are required to report a felony conviction at the time of application for admission to the Social Work program and again when making application for Field Placement I or II. Failure to report a felony conviction will result in the termination of the student from the Social Work program.


ADVANCED STANDING ADMITTANCE POLICY

If your undergraduate degree is not in Social Work, you must apply for the MSW foundation program (2 year-traditional program). The MSW Advanced Standing program (1 year, 36 hours) is for students who have completed a BSW degree within 8 years or have completed the MSW foundation program from an institution accredited by CSWE, those recognized through its International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service, or covered under a memorandum of understanding with international social work accreditors.


TRANSFER OF CREDITS

MSW students may apply for a maximum transfer of nine (9) semester hours of graduate credit in which grades of “B” or better are earned at an accredited graduate degree-granting institution. Credit earned in correspondence work will not be accepted. Any graduate work to be transferred must meet the following requirements: (1) courses must be taken within time limitation (up to 10 years) as stated for the graduate program of study (2) the course was restricted to graduate students only; (3) the content of the course must correspond to that of a course at this institution; and (4) courses (foundation courses and approved electives) must be approved by the student’s Advisor and the MSW Program Director. Students desiring to have graduate credits transferred must complete a Transfer of Credit form (available in The Graduate School) and have an official transcript sent from the Registrar of the college/university previously attended. Students transferring courses for teacher education programs must have taken them at an institution with state-approved programs.

In compliance with CSWE’s standard, academic credit for life or previous work experience is not awarded. Therefore, academic credit for life and/or previous work experience will not be given, in whole or in part, in lieu of the field practicum or of courses in the MSW course curriculum guide. Students are informed of this policy in the Social Work Program’s Student Handbook; Field Education handbook, it is also noted in the application materials and included in the University Catalog. Academic credit for life and/or previous work experience will not be given, in whole or in part, in lieu of the field practicum or of courses in the professional foundation areas.