MSW Admissions

 

Application Overview

The electronic application for admittance in fall 2021 (summer 2021 for advanced standing) is now open.

For 2021 we are enrolling in our Central Oregon, Eugene, Portland, and Online options.  Please see below for application due dates.  Applicants are allowed to apply to only one program option.

The School of Social Work admits applicants once a year to the MSW Program starting fall term only (summer term for Advanced Standing). All application materials, including letters of reference, must be submitted electronically and received by the due date. Late application materials are not accepted.

Apply to the MSW Program through the Graduate School »

Learn about the admissions process »


Application Due Dates by Program Option

Application Due Dates for Portland Option

The PSU School of Social Work MSW program admits once a year in the fall term. The following table shows the timeline for admission to the MSW program Portland 2yr, 3yr, or 4yr Options in the 2020–21 academic year.

MSW 2020–21 Admissions Cycle for Portland 2-, 3-, and 4-Year Programs
Electronic application opens September 1, 2020
Application due date for Portland 2-, 3-, and 4-Year Programs January 4, 2021
Admission notifications are sent Starting late March, 2021
Program starts Fall 2021

Application Due Dates for Distance Option: Central Oregon and Eugene.  

The PSU School of Social Work MSW program admits once a year in the fall term. The following table shows the timeline for admission to the MSW program Distance Options in the 2020–21 academic year.

MSW Admissions Timeline for Distance Option: Central Oregon and Eugene
Electronic application opens September 1, 2020
Early Notification Application due date for Distance Options January 4, 2021
Admission notifications are sent Starting late March, 2021
Final Application Due Date for Distance Options April 1, 2021
Program starts Fall 2021

Application Due Dates for Online Option

The PSU School of Social Work MSW program admits once a year in the fall term. The following table shows the timeline for admission to the MSW program Online Option in the 2020–21 academic year.

MSW Admissions Timeline for Online Option
Electronic application opens September 1, 2020
Application due date Online Option January 4, 2021
Admission notifications are sent Starting late March, 2021
Program starts Fall 2021

Application Due Dates for Advanced Standing Option

The PSU School of Social Work MSW program admits once a year in the fall term (summer for advanced standing). The following table shows the timeline for admission to the MSW program Advanced Standing Option in the 2020–21 academic year. The Advanced Standing Option will be available at the Portland Campus, Salem Campus, Southern Oregon Campus and Online.

MSW Admissions Timeline for Advanced Standing Option
Electronic application opens September 1, 2020
Application due date for Advanced Standing January 4, 2021
Admission notifications are sent Starting late February, 2021
Program starts Summer 2021

MSW Application Checklist

You may apply to the MSW Program in the School of Social Work at Portland State University by submitting a single application online. All application materials, including letters of reference, must be submitted
electronically. Links to the application will be available when the program for the coming year is open.

Basic Information

  • Your contact Information
  • Personal Information including your citizenship status, DOB, gender, ethnicity, etc.
  • The program option you are applying for admission (e.g. Advanced Standing, Campus, Online, Distance)
  • Your residency status for tuition purpose

Review the Criminal Conviction Statement »

Educational Information

  • Bachelor’s degree with a Liberal Arts foundation from an accredited college, university or equivalent
  • Advanced Standing applicants must have a BSW degree within the past five years from a social work program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
  • TOEFL scores if your undergraduate degree was not received from a U.S. college or university. See English Language Proficiency Requirements
  • List of every college or university you attended and a scanned copy of an unofficial transcript from each institution.
  • Minimum cumulative GPA requirement: To be considered for regular admission, applicants must have a minimum cumulative undergraduate GPA of 2.75 or the equivalent or a graduate GPA of 3.0.

Review Liberal Arts foundation course list »

Transcripts

Unofficial Transcripts

You must upload, using a PDF file, unofficial transcripts for each and every college or university you have attended. Unofficial transcripts include:

  • Web based transcripts that you download from your institution (institution name should be visible on transcript)
  • Photocopies of official transcripts (please include both front and back)

Official Transcripts

Once you have been offered admission, you will be required to submit official copies of your transcripts and/or documents for GPA and degree conferral verification. This is required before you will be given access to register for classes. Failure to provide official documents may result in registration holds that could delay your registration. Official transcripts should be sent to PSU by mail or electronic submission directly from each college or university attended. Enrollment in courses is contingent upon the receipt and verification of these official documents (which must show the awarding of degrees where appropriate). The official transcript will be compared to the document you uploaded in the online application.

Submit copies of your transcripts »

MSW-Specific Information

  • Resume, including Social Work-related experience: Employment, volunteer, internship and other
  • Three Letters of Reference
    • Choose references from your work, educational, and volunteer experiences who can address your qualities that make you suitable for social work. Do not use relatives, therapists, or personal friends as references.
    • At least one reference should address your ability to do graduate-level academic work.
    • Please read carefully the statement on the Reference page in the application system regarding the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act of 1974.
    • Letters of reference must be uploaded electronically to the application by the recommender (a link will be provided to the recommender to upload their letter). Letters cannot be submitted or uploaded by the applicant.
  • A three- to four-page statement of purpose

View instructions on writing your statement of purpose »


Application Procedures for Transfer Students

The School of Social Work may admit students who have successfully completed MSW coursework in another accredited school of social work. In reviewing an application, we look for students who have experience in or related to social work prior to beginning their social work studies and have demonstrated strong academic and field performance. Students are notified of admission in late April for admission in the fall. We do not admit mid-year to the MSW program.

Transfer Credits

The MSW Program allows for some transfer credits to be applied toward the MSW degree.  The SSW Director of Student Affairs reviews all transfer credit petitions and if approved forwards them to the MSW Program Director and then to PSU Graduate Admissions for approval.  Credit from foreign institutions is generally not transferable.  Students may not receive credit for life experience or previous work experience nor have any field experience or generalist courses waived on this basis.

The MSW Program requires 78 credit-hours. Up to the equivalent of 36 quarter credits may be transferred into the MSW program (P/NP courses are not transferable).  In most cases, transfer students who have completed the generalist year of field work will not be required to take those credits.  As a transfer student, 42 credits must be completed in residency at PSU. Completion of this coursework may take more than one academic year. After admission, coursework will be evaluated for comparability to required PSU courses. After admission, an individual course of study plan will be developed.

Transfer Student Application Process

To apply, please provide a completed MSW Program Application and the following supplemental transfer materials:

  • Study plan and syllabi for all coursework completed or in process from current MSW program.
  • A statement from your current MSW program indicating you are in good academic standing.
  • Letter of reference from MSW Field Instructor.
  • Field placement evaluation, if applicable.

Submit supplemental transfer materials to sswmsw@pdx.edu.  


Application Procedures for International Students

The MSW Program welcomes applications from international students. The student body at Portland State University includes students from many countries. The greater Portland area is home to industries, stores, restaurants, and cultural activities reflecting the diverse populations in the Portland metropolitan area.

In addition to submitting the MSW Program Application, international applicants must also submit:

International applicants with a bachelor's degree in social work from outside of the United States will need to complete the International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service (ISWDRES).


MSW Estimated Program Costs

This chart is provided to help you estimate the minimum tuition and fees for program completion. Please note that each year the tuition and fee rates change. Please refer to the PSU Tuition and Fees page for the most up-to-date tuition and fee rates.

Estimated Tuition and Fees (2020-2021)

Advanced Standing (46 credits) * Total
Resident $25,572
Non-Resident $36,012
2-year (78 credits) Total
Resident $42,180
Non-Resident $60,516
3-year (78 credits) Total
Resident $44,448
Non-Resident $62,157
4-year (78 credits) Total
Resident $45,714
Non-Resident $63,426
Distance 3-year (78 credits) Total Total
Resident $44,448
Non-Resident $62,157
Online 3-year (78 credits) Total
Resident $48,452
Non-Resident $66,155

Notes

  • Program cost estimates are based on the 2020–2021 MSW tuition and fees only. 
  • New students and transfer students, add one-time $350 matriculation fee.
  • *Online Advanced Standing, add $35 per credit for technology fee.