Arizona State University Online MSW

arizona-state-university-online-mswArizona State University Online Master of Social Work

Program Options: Full-Time/Part-Time

Tuition: $10,810 per year

Acceptance Rate: 83%

GRE Required: Yes, if GPA below 3.20

1-Year/Accelerated Option: No

Campus Visits Required: No

Fieldwork Hours: 960

CSWE Accredited: Yes, reaffirmed in 2016

Application Deadline: June 15th


Arizona State University was opened on March 12, 1885, as the Territorial Normal School with an inaugural class of 33 on land bequeathed by George and Martha Wilson. Renamed six times through 1989, ASU doubled in size under G. Homer Durham to become the Grand Canyon State’s largest public, polytechnic RU/VH doctoral institution. Endowed for $612 million, Arizona State extends beyond its 661-acre Tempe headquarters with online study on Blackboard for 71,943 Sun Devils total. Arizona State University was named America’s 123rd top research center in Forbes and 34th best master’s college by Washington Monthly. According to the U.S. News & World Report, ASU has the 53rd best public education and 32nd best social work school.

In September 1961, the Arizona Board of Regents authorized ASU’s creation of the Graduate School of Social Service Administration headed by Dr. Horace Lundberg in Phoenix. Oriented toward casework, the Master of Social Work program graduated its first 14 advanced practitioners four years later. After adding extension courses in Tempe and Tucson, the Arizona State College of Extended Education piloted the Online MSW in 2013. Starting each Fall, the Online Master of Social Work is among the most diverse, CSWE-accredited programs preparing for community practice administration to combat today’s societal injustices. The Online MSW is consistently ranked among the country’s top 25 by College Choice, Best Value Schools, and others.


Ranked #1 for innovation nationally, Arizona State University is authorized to provide its Online MSW asynchronously in 49 states, excluding North Carolina. Diverse cohorts join to prepare for culturally competent practice on a vibrant Web-based platform. The well-funded College of Public Service & Community Solutions ensures online students are engaged with reflection assignments, discussion boards, team projects, and proctored tests. Joining the Graduate Social Work Student Association and Phi Alpha Honor Society is still possible. In-state and out-of-state residents pay the same affordable tuition. Online MSW grads also have the possible pathway of entering ASU’s Social Work Ph.D. program.


The Online Master of Social Work at Arizona State has a built-in Advanced Generalist Studies concentration for well-rounded leadership preparation and social change. Electives would help MSW majors gain expertise in specializations like child welfare, mental health, international social work, and policy advocacy though. Due to its Southwest location, extra attention is given to community challenges facing Native Americans and Latinos in the Borderlands.

Related resource: Top 10 Affordable Master of Social Work Online (MSW) Degrees

Program Requirements

Available 100% online, the ASU Master of Social Work only admits Traditional Standing students with non-BSW degrees to finish an intensive, 60-credit curriculum. Graduates are required to complete 24 credits of foundation courses, 18 credits of advanced generalist courses, six credits of professional training seminars, and 12 credits of clinical practice. Although not mandatory, online students could develop global awareness by studying abroad in 80+ countries from Ukraine to Uruguay. Coursework culminates with a pass/fail grade for the SWG 593 Applied Portfolio Project, which proves fieldwork competencies. Program requirements qualify post-grads for the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners’ Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) credential.

Admission Requirements

Getting into Arizona State University for the Online MSW requires completing a regionally accredited U.S. bachelor’s degree or foreign equivalent. Social workers are expected to hold a minimum “B” average, but GPAs above 3.2 will waive the requirement for Graduate Record Exam or Millers Analogies Test scores. Admitted ASU Sun Devils have average combined GRE scores of 307-322. The School of Social Work mandates that each MSW major has at least 240 hours of paid or volunteer service experience within the last five years. Admission counselors request the following materials with the $70 Graduate College Application:

• One transcript from every institution

• Official GRE/MAT scores if applicable

• Two or three professional references

• Record of volunteer/work experience

• Three-page statement of career goals


The School of Social Work at ASU has an average student-professor ratio of 23:1. 41% of courses to have under 20 learners. Dr. Barbara Klimek, the Online MSW coordinator, has 25+ years of experience working with the MRS Refugee Resettlement Program and was inducted into the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA). Other PhD-trained faculty have been named fellows by the American Psychological Association (APA) and Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences (ACJS). Professors are active researchers in several cutting-edge facilities, including the Office of American Indian Projects and Office of Sex Trafficking Intervention.

Online Courses

Arizona State University Online MSW students take 20 online courses in an accelerated, 7.5-week format. Most learning is asynchronous on Blackboard, but two professional training seminars will have live, web-conferencing elements. Traditional Standing grads access the following online courses anytime 24/7 to graduate within two years full-time or three years part-time:

• Advanced Generalist SW Practice

• Social Work Practice and Ethics

• Assessment of Mental Disorders

• Ecological Approach to Practice

• Practice in Health/Behavioral Health

• Public Child Welfare Services

• Practice-Oriented Research

• Advanced Practicum: Direct Practice


Choosing the Online MSW won’t let Arizona State post-grads escape the crucial leadership development benchmark of fieldwork. Students complete two 480-hour, semester-long internship placements for 960 total résumé hours. The School of Social Work’s Field Education Office accommodates students’ geographic diversity with far-reaching connections. Each internship agency must align to CSWE standards, have MSW-level supervisors with 2+ years of experience, and services addressing human needs. Though not exhaustive, here are some sample agencies for MSW internships:

• Sunnyslope Family Services Center

• Mesa Christian Health and Rehabilitation

• Hospice of the Valley Phoenix

• Haven Behavioral Healthcare

• Dignity Health General Hospital

• American Autism Association

• Greenway Family Success Center

• National Council for Adoption


ASU School of Social Work

411 N. Central Avenue, Suite 800

Phoenix, AZ 85004-0689

(602) 496-0800

Program Website

The ASU School of Social Work makes it easier to learn the latest, most ethical methods for serving vulnerable individuals, families, and groups on the Internet. Advanced generalist practitioners graduating with the Online MSW from Arizona State University enter an in-demand market poised for 15 percent growth by 2026, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.