Master of Social Work

FAQ'S

Please note that this information is subject to change.  The application packet will contain the correct most up-to-date information for the cohort applying. 

Is social work the right career for me?

The National Association of Social Workers has a wonderful site which offers much information about the profession of Social Work.  Additionally, they provide a copy of the Code of Ethics and informative issues regarding advocacy.  You are encouraged to review all these areas before deciding if Social Work is the right career for you.  The web site address is http://naswdc.org.

Where is the MSW program offered?

The main campus is in Indianapolis at the IUPUI campus.  Branch campuses are at IU Northwest (Gary) and IU South Bend.  Programs that run on a three year cycle are currently at the IU East (Richmond) and IPFW (Fort Wayne).  The next admission date for IU East and IUPFW is 2014.

How long does it take to get the degree?

The MSW program consists of 60 credit hours.  There are 16 classes (3 credit hours each) and two practicum experiences (internships – non-paid).  The part-time program offered at IU East (evening, Saturday and part-time day) take 3-4 years to complete depending upon your scheduling needs and time commitments. 

Students accepted with Advance Standing Status (students who have a Bachelor of Social Work and begin the MSW program within 5 years of their BSW graduation) will complete 45 credit hours and receive credit by credential for the other 15 hours.  Part-time advance standing usually take two years.  The School of Social Work provides student advising to assist with scheduling and program completion time lines.  

When does the program begin at IU East? 

The next part-time evening and Saturday cohort begins in the fall term of 2014. If you do not begin the program at the above start time, you must wait to apply with the next IU East cohort in 2017.  You may also check with IUPUI, IUSB, and IUN for their specific start dates. 

When can I apply for the program? What are the deadlines?

A potential student can submit their application as soon as applications are available in the fall.

  • 2011-2014 MSW application deadlines: May 14th for fall 2011 admission and February 3rd, 2012 for Advance Standing admission. 

Do I need to submit my GRE scores?

No, IUSSW does not utilize the GRE scores – they will not be viewed even if submitted.

How are GPA’s figured?

IUSSW requires a GPA of 3.0 for the final 60 credit hours of an undergraduate degree.  Each applicant should review their transcripts to ensure that they have a clear understanding of their GPA.  IUSSW uses a four point scale when calculating GPA.  Information regarding how to figure your GPA can be found on our application CD.

What if my GPA is lower than 3.0? Can I still apply?

Absolutely - IUSSW recognizes that every applicant has not necessarily enjoyed the same access and opportunities to undergraduate education.  However, it is necessary that an applicant address the issues that impacted their lower GPA in a written petition.  Therefore, we have provided a form titled “Petition for Exceptional Consideration” for use in this situation. It outlines the information needed in the petition. An applicant with a GPA below 3.0 and no petition will not be considered for admission.

What are the pre-requisites for the MSW program?

There are two requirements for the program.  You must have taken and passed at least one 3- hour course in statistics.   In addition, each applicant must have completed at least six courses in social/behavioral science areas, such as social work, psychology, sociology, anthropology, economics, criminal justice and political science.  If you have taken statistics in a social science area, it will count toward the six social science courses that you need as well. 

Am I required to have all the pre-requisites completed before I apply to the program?

No, the pre-requisite classes must be completed before the start of the cohort to which you are applying, but you can apply before they are completed.  An applicant can be admitted conditionally, based on the successful completion of the required pre-requisite course(s).

Is there a minimum grade for the pre-requisite courses? Will a low grade in these courses negatively impact my ability to be admitted?

While there is currently no minimum grade for each course (see 2014 application for any changes to this policy), you must receive a passing grade.  IUSSW wants each student to possess the knowledge/content of the course.  An applicant that is unsure of their abilities is welcome to take the course on a pass/fail basis, as long as the professor agrees.

What if the statistics courses i want to utilize for the pre-requisites is not on the list of approved courses?

The listing of pre-approved statistics courses is provided in our application CD in the section titled “Current Approved Pre-Requisite Course Roster.”   However, the list is not exhaustive.  If you do not find an exact match of your state, school and course number, then that could simply mean that it has not been submitted for consideration.  Please make sure that you submit an official course description and/or syllabus for each pre-requisite not already listed for the committee’s review and consideration.  If you would like to have your class pre-approved, then you can contact Dr. Ed FitzGerald efitzger@indiana.edu for assistance.

What if i do not have current academic references?

Not every applicant has a current professional affiliation with former professors.  We encourage each applicant to choose those persons who can best speak to their abilities to practice social work and succeed in graduate school.  Please note that applicants should never use family members or significant others.  Additionally, please carefully consider the use of clergy or counselors – sometimes these individuals are limited in their scope of answers due to confidentiality issues.

What else should i know about the application?

Make sure that you understand that the MSW application to the School is self-managed which means that the applicant must gather all required documents and send in one complete application.  Do not send in an incomplete application as it will not be reviewed.  It is better to submit a completed application shortly after the priority date than it is to submit an incomplete application by the priority date.  The address for the IU East School of Social Work is:

Indiana University East
School of Social Work (TR150)
2325 Chester Blvd
Richmond, IN 47374

What about the programs at IPFW and iu east?

These programs begin every three years, and the next admission date will be in summer of 2011.  However, students with a BSW degree eligible for advance standing status may apply for and start in 2012 in either of these programs. For the most updated information about the IU East program, please contact the advisor there, Dr. Ed FitzGerald, edfitzger@indiana.edu.

I have graduate credits from a non-social work program.  Can these be transferred into the MSW program?

A person with graduate credits in a behavioral science, within the last five years, may petition the school to accept three credit hours as an elective.  Course work that is part of a conferred graduate degree may not be considered for transfer credit.

What is the cost of this degree?

The MSW degree offered at Indiana University is a 60 credit hour program.  Updated tuition and fees will be in the application when available.  Current tuition for 2012-2013 IU East campus:

CAMPUS

Cost per credit hour for Indiana Residents

Cost per credit hour for Non-Residents

IU East Grad Social Work

$348.00

$855.00

Each semester a student must also pay a variety of required fees that are based on the number of credit hours per semester which can average up to $200.  This does not include the cost of books for each course.  Additional information about this issue can be found in the application CD.  Usually most students in the MSW program can plan on spending about $20,000 – 22,000 for tuition, books and fees for their entire program (2011).  This does not include living expenses. 

What are the opportunities for financial aid?

The majority of the resources for graduate students in the MSW program are in the form of student loans.  All students are encouraged to search for individual opportunities for financial aid.  Utilizing internet sites such as www.fastweb.com or www.finaid.org can be helpful.  DO NOT PAY FOR ANY SEARCHES FOR FINANCIAL AID AWARDS.  THIS INFORMATION IS FREE TO ANYONE.

The School of Social Work has its own financial aid counselor.  For specific financial aid questions, please contact Jennifer Vines at gradaid@iupui.edu and let her know you are a prospective student seeking information.

Do you have additional questions?  Feel free to call the IU East School of Social Work, (765) 973-8535