Frequently Asked Questions

Admissions & Prerequisites

What are the academic prerequisites required for admissions?

All applicants need to have successfully passed three (3) courses in the Behavioral Sciences (sociology, psychology, political science, economics, etc.); and two (2) courses in the Humanities (humanities, philosophy, literature, history, etc.). We also require completion of one (1) course in either human development or its equivalent, as well as one (1) elementary statistics course or its equivalent. For a list of human development and elementary statistics prerequisite equivalents, please visit the MSW Admissions page on our website.

What is the minimum GPA? Do I need to take the Graduate Record Exam (GRE)?

We invite candidates who have a minimum GPA of 2.75 in the last 60 semester units or 90 quarter units. 

The GRE is not required, but it is recommended for those who possess a GPA of 2.75 to 3.0.

Do I need a car and valid insurance to enroll in the MSW program?

Although a car is not required, students will be expected to spend 16-20 hours a week in a community-based fieldwork agency. Many agencies will require that student interns have a car and valid driver's license. If a student does not have reliable transportation, it may impede the field placement process.

Can I apply in the spring or summer semester?

No, not at this time. The MSW program only accepts applications for the Fall semester.

What type of undergraduate degree do I need?

We invite candidates with an undergraduate degree that is founded in the liberal arts background. This includes coursework in the humanities, social and behavioral sciences, and English composition. We believe this set of courses provides a solid foundation that adequately prepares students for generalist social work education. If a student does not have this background, he/she can still apply and complete all of the coursework prerequisites before being admitted.

I have a misdemeanor and/or felony on my record. Can I still apply?

The MSW program does admit students with certain criminal offenses on their record. However, there are certain fieldwork settings and professional social work settings that will not allow persons on-site if they have certain misdemeanors or felonies in their background. Students should consult with CSUDH faculty immediately if they have concerns about their ability to be placed in an agency, or their future employability in the social work field.

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Applying to the Program

When is the deadline for admissions?

Fall applications for our 2-year full-time program and our 3-year part-time program are accepted on a rolling admissions basis beginning October 1. Applications will be reviewed on a first-come, first-serve basis until spaces are filled. The deadline for application submission is February 1 for Fall terms. Please note that you must complete an application via Cal State Apply. Once spaces are filled the department will no longer be able to accept applications!

What major code do I use when applying to the program on Cal State Apply?

"Social Work" or "Social Work – Part time" (the application is identical for both program options).

Will I submit my transcripts and my application separately?

Yes, once you complete your application in CalState Apply, the Office of Admissions will send a notification informing you where to submit official transcripts.

All materials, including transcripts must be submitted by the deadline in order for your application to be deemed complete and forwarded for review by the admissions committee.

Do I need to have completed all the requirements and/or prerequisites before applying for the MSW program?

No, however, at least 80% of the requirements and/or prerequisites should be completed prior to submitting and application. Please note that all requirements and/or prerequisites must be formally completed before actually enrolling in the program.

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Program Experience: Course Work, Completion

Does the Department of Social Work offer an advanced standing program?

Our Department does not offer an advanced standing program at this time.

How long is the program?

The full-time program is a two-year program (4 semesters), which includes fieldwork (internship) on Mondays, Wednesdays, and/or Fridays. The part-time program is a three-year program, which includes fieldwork on Mondays, Wednesdays and/or Fridays in the second and third years of the program.

Does the MSW program give social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience?

In accordance with the Council of Social Work Education, the Department of Social Work cannot grant course credit for life experience or previous work experience.

What are the options for concentrations in particular social work areas of study?

"Social Work" if applying to the Full time program (2yr) or "Social Work-Part Time" if applying to the part time program (3yr).

Do you offer any stipend programs?

Yes, our program offers both CalSWEC and LA County DCFS stipend programs for full-time students who are interested in Child Welfare.

Both full-time and part-time students may be eligible for stipend programs in mental health or geriatric social work in their second year.

Each stipend program has its own set of criteria, application process and terms associated with the award. Please visit the MSW Stipend page on our website for eligibility requirements, terms and application information for each stipend.

I am interested in getting my PPSC (Pupil Personnel Services Credential). Do you offer this credential program?

Though our department does not offer the PPSC credentialing program, we assist enrolled CSUDH MSW students in fulfilling many of the requirements. Enrolled CSUDH MSW students who declare their interest in obtaining their PPSC can fulfill their field hour and field experience requirements while in our program.

Where is the Department of Social Work located?

The Department of Social Work is located at the James Welch Hall WH-385.

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