University of Arkansas Online MSW


University of Arkansas Online MSW

Program Options
Full time for advanced standing students only
$7,563 for resident students plus $1,008 fees, tuition for online MSW degree $383 per credit hour
Acceptance Rate
GRE Required
1 Year Accelerated Option
The Online MSW is only offered in a one-year advanced-standing format
Campus Visits Required
Field Hours
CWSE Accredited
Yes, since 1985
Application Deadline
January 15th

The University of Arkansas is in our ranking of the Top 10 Most Affordable Master of Social Work Online (MSW) Degrees.


The University of Arkansas is a public land-grant university classified by the Carnegie Institute as a research university. That classification indicates a large portion of its funding is spent on research. The school was founded in 1871 as the Arkansas Industrial University, and in 1899 it became the University of Arkansas. It is the largest university in Arkansas and was the first southern university to admit an African-American student without being forced to do so by litigation.

Graduates of the university have made some notable contributions to society. University of Arkansas alumni discovered vitamin C, developed radio technology and were on the front lines of superconductivity research.

The school is best known for its architectural, agricultural and business programs. The university student body numbers more than 27,500 students studying in more than 200 programs. The US News and World Report ranks the University of Arkansas as # 133 of National Universities. The School of Social Work, ranked #88 in the US News listing of Best Social Work Programs, emphasizes critical thinking skills, community collaboration and research projects.


The program is presented in a cohort model with all courses, including orientation, online. No campus presence is required. Although students work independently, they learn with the same peer group throughout and so have access to support as well as professional networking foundations. Internships in a student’s current place of employment are considered, and students are placed in internship opportunities close to their residences. The program supports the internship component by holding field seminars once a week through a virtual classroom.


The online MSW is only offered in the Multi-System Life Course Concentration. Students gain competencies across several areas of practice including family, group, organizations, individuals, and communities.

Program Requirements

The program, which is not available to Colorado or North Carolina residents nor to people residing outside the United States of America, consists of 39 credit-hours which are completed in one year of full-time study. In addition to meeting all the requisites of the on-campus Advanced-Standing MSW program, applicants must be able to meet technical requirements which include possessing a computer with sufficient memory and processing capabilities, access to a high-speed Internet connection and specific software programs. Students must complete the curriculum sequentially, foundation classes before concentration classes. Students must also complete 900 hours of field work and a year-long, 18-credit hour internship that involves a minimum of 22 hours of work a week. This internship is arranged in the geographic area where the student resides. The program includes a capstone research project which is a major part of the research and technology requisite for this program. With committee approval, however, students may elect to complete a thesis. All students in the program are expected to build advanced professional knowledge and skills in working within multiple types of social systems.

Admission Requirements

• A Bachelor’s in Social Work degree from a CWSE-accredited program
• Admission to graduate school
• Minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0
• Submission of official transcripts of all post-secondary courses
• Completion of a personal statement and a Social Needs paper
• Three letters of recommendation including at least one from a field liaison, one from an employer and one from a supervisor.
• Completion of a required statistics course
• A personal interview may be requested
• No work experience required


The student-to-faculty ratio is 18:1. Many faculty members are engaged in important research projects including a current study on truancy.

Online Courses

Although courses are online and asynchronous, students meet online in four or five synchronous sessions each year. In addition, the following is a list of required courses for the Online MSW.

During the summer semester, these courses are taken:
SCWK 5013 Bridge Course: Evidence-Based Social Work
SCWK 5444: Field Internship III (three days per week)
SCWK 5442: Field Seminar III

Fall semester classes are:
SCWK 6003: Advanced Practice Using the Multi-System Life Course Perspective
SCWK 5073: Social Work Research and Technology II
SCWK 6000L: Thesis Lab (only for students who selected the thesis option)
SCWK 6444: Advanced Field Internship (three days per week)
SCWK 6442: Advanced Field Seminar

Spring Semester:
SCWK 6233: Advanced Practice with Children and Youth Using the MSLC Perspective or
SCWK 6243: Advanced Practice with Adults Using the MSLC Perspective
SCWK 6000L: Thesis Lab (for students who selected this option)
SCWK 6454: Advanced Field Internship II (three days per week)
SCWK 6452: Advanced Field Seminar II
Electives may be taken at any time during the program if students have met the prerequisites. Nine credits of electives are required.


School of Social Work
University of Arkansas
525 Old Main, Fayetteville, AR, 72701
Program Website

Online graduate programs allow adult students the flexibility of earning their degrees while remaining employed. The same faculty that teaches the traditional courses at the University of Arkansas developed the online curriculum. That means an online degree is equal to a traditional degree earned on-campus. This school is a member of the “Quality Matters” program that ensures courses and faculty meet universal standards of quality. The equity factor is so important to the school that online students share in the tradition of having their names engraved on the Senior Walk, three miles of sidewalk boasting the names of students who have earned their degrees from the school. Students who want to earn their MSW degrees in an online format may discover that the University of Arkansas is their best educational option.