Frequently Asked Questions – Part-Time MSW

Part-Time MSW Program

Prospective Students (Part-Time MSW)

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Can I tour the Campus and the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work?

Yes. The beautiful UW-Madison campus is architecturally and historically rich. Due to COVID-19, you can sign up for an official UW-Madison virtual tour through Campus and Visitor Relations: http://info.wisc.edu/plan-your-visit/.

To request more information about the Part-Time MSW Program, you can sign up for a Group Information Session or fill out your contact information and we will be in touch.

Can I transfer between the Full-Time and Part-Time MSW Programs?

No. It is not possible to transfer between the Full-Time and Part-Time MSW programs.

You can, however, reapply to the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work for acceptance into the other MSW program.

Part-Time MSW Program course sequencing means that applications from Part-Time MSW students seeking entry into the Full-Time MSW Program can only be considered if the applicant has completed the generalist foundation course sequence (years 1 & 2) and is ready to enter the Full-Time MSW Program at the start of the advanced practice year (year 3). Thus, Part-Time MSW students would apply to the Full-Time MSW Program in the fall of their second year.

Current students considering reapplying to the other MSW program in the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work are required to meet with their advisor as soon as possible.

How selective is the Part-Time MSW Program's admissions?

Admissions for the Part-Time MSW Program is highly competitive. The Part-Time MSW Program follows the same admissions review process as the Full-Time MSW Program. The only difference in the admissions process between the two programs is that the Part-Time MSW Program has a later application deadline. It should be noted that the slots for the Part-Time MSW Program fill quickly as the deadline approaches. To prepare a competitive application, carefully follow all of our application instructions.

Can I transfer courses from another graduate program to this MSW Program?

No. We do not transfer credits; however, students may be eligible for exemptions.

I obtained my BSW over five years ago. Am I eligible to qualify for exemptions from Generalist class and field coursework?

Yes, applicants whose accredited BSW degree is older than five years can exempt from all Generalist coursework by passing exemption exams.

For information about classroom course exemptions, go to the MSW Exemption Exams page.

If you meet the following criteria you are eligible to complete a portfolio field exemption exam to exempt from Generalist field coursework:

  1. You have post-BSW Social Work practice experience, the equivalent of two full-time years in the last five years;
  2. You graduated from an accredited Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) school of social work more than five years from the academic year of graduation to the academic year of enrollment in the MSW Program; and,
  3. Your field grade was a “B” or better or a “Pass” at a “B” or better level.

See the Field Handbook chapter titled “Policy for MSW Program Exemption from the Generalist Year of Field SW400 & SW401” for details.

Is it possible to waive some of the academic requirements for students with many years of experience in the field?

Our accrediting body, the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), does not permit us to give academic credit for life or prior work experience.

As a Certified Social Worker who does not have a social work degree, and may or may not have work experience in a social service setting, will I qualify for an exemption from the Generalist Practice field placement and field seminar?

No. The Social Work field course is an educationally directed experience not a work experience. It involves educational and professional social work learning experiences, as well as a level of autonomy beyond existing job descriptions and/or goals of an individual agency. Fieldwork, employment, or volunteer experience that was not obtained while attending an accredited Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) BSW program will not qualify you for an exemption from the Generalist Practice field placement and field seminar.

How long will the program take me to complete?

The length of time it takes to complete the program depends on prior academic degree and number of exemption exams passed successfully.

  •  Applicants who hold or are currently completing a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) from a CSWE accredited institution and who qualify for Advanced Standing can complete the program in two years
  • Applicants without a BSW can complete the program in four years

Do you offer an online MSW Program?

No. We do, however, offer a few social work courses online. Please visit the Course Search & Enroll app to see which social work courses are currently being offered online.

How large are classes in the Program?

Depending on the course, class size can range from 10 to 30.

How large are classes in the Field Seminar?

Depending on the Field Seminar, class size can range from 8 to 16.

How many students are currently in the Program?

The Part-Time Master of Social Work Program has around 160 students across four years of study.

Does the University offer childcare assistance to students?

Yes. To read more about the Madison Campus Office of Child Care & Family Resources, please go to their website: occfr.wisc.edu, where you will also find information on a childcare financial assistance program.

Are there any benefits for my domestic partner?

Yes. Health insurance benefit options are available for domestic partners through Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP).

Part-Time MSW Program

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Can I transfer between the Full-Time and Part-Time MSW Programs?

No. It is not possible to transfer between the Full-Time and Part-Time MSW programs.

You can, however, reapply to the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work for acceptance into the other MSW program.

Part-Time MSW Program course sequencing means that applications from Part-Time MSW students seeking entry into the Full-Time MSW Program can only be considered if the applicant has completed the generalist foundation course sequence (years 1 & 2) and is ready to enter the Full-Time MSW Program at the start of the advanced practice year (year 3). Thus, Part-Time MSW students would apply in the fall of the second year to the Full-Time MSW Program.

Current students considering reapplying to the other MSW program in the Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work are required to meet with their advisor as soon as possible.

What is Advanced Standing, and how is it determined?

Advanced Standing means an applicant has obtained exemptions from the first year of the MSW Program. To qualify, the applicant must have completed a BSW degree from a CSWE accredited program within five years from the academic year of graduation to the academic year of enrollment and who earned a grade of B (3.0) or better in all social work courses and field work. Advanced Standing is determined after you have been accepted to the MSW Program.

Exemptions are based on course syllabi review of completed comparable course work. These courses must have been completed with a grade of B or better, statistics with a grade of C or better. Exemptions are not granted for Advanced Practice courses.

For more information on exemptions and exemption exams, visit Exemption Exam Information.

What specialization and focus areas does the Part-Time MSW Program offer?

We offer the advanced generalist specialization with focus areas in:

  • Aging
  • Child, Youth, and Family Welfare
  • Health
  • Joint Health & Aging
  • Mental Health

In the Advanced Practice Specialization Year can I choose more than one area of focus?

Given the overlap in curriculum in the Aging and Health focus areas, students can easily combine their interests in this joint focus area. However, students interested in Child, Youth, and Family Welfare or Mental Health must choose only one focus area.

Can I enroll in other programs or courses while a student in the Part-Time MSW Program?

Students in this program cannot enroll in other graduate programs. All MSW requirements must be met by taking courses in the Part-Time MSW Program. You must consult with an advisor prior to taking any coursework outside of the Part-Time MSW Program.

What is the class schedule for Saturdays?

Class hours are listed in the plan charts found at the Part-Time MSW Program.

For approximate course dates, review the University Academic Calendar. Due to a Saturday class schedule, the Part-Time MSW Program academic calendar may differ from the University academic calendar. Contact an advisor for specific dates.

Can I work full-time (40 hours/week) while attending the Part-Time Program?

We highly encourage students to NOT work 40 hours a week while in graduate school. That being said, some of our students are able to balance their schedule and continue to work full-time. Please note, however, that field placements offering night and weekend hours are very limited. This is due to the fact that most social work agencies only provide services during business hours. Therefore, it is important to consider the flexibility of your work schedule with regard to participating in field education during years 2 and 4.

Financial Aid & Tuition (Part-Time MSW)

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Can I take a position as a graduate assistant while in the Part-Time MSW Program?

Students enrolled in this program are not permitted to accept teaching assistantships, project assistantships, research assistantships, or other appointments that would result in a tuition waiver.

How do I determine if I am a Resident of Wisconsin for tuition purposes?

Visit the Registrar’s Office page on Residence for Tuition Purposes for information relating to residency, appealing nonresident status, and information on Minnesota reciprocity.

Please note that beginning Summer 2020, newly admitted Part-Time students will pay $800 per credit tuition (plus fees) regardless of state residency.

 

Can I get financial aid?

How much will school cost?

Costs are based on number of credits taken. We have prepared a sample chart specific for the Part-Time MSW Program.

Tuition rates, fees, and payment schedules can be found on the Bursar’s Office Tuition and Fees website. Visit the Office of Student Financial Aid to find out more about the cost of graduate school at UW-Madison.

Will I incur any special fees when I register for the program?

Yes. Students in our professional programs are charged a lab fee of $110.00 per semester enrolled in field. This fee is used to provide students with supplemental experiences and information designed to shape “the professional character and competence” of students and to help promote a culture “congruent with the values of the profession and the mission, goals and context of the program.” (2015 Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards, Implicit Curriculum, Council on Social Work Education)

Part-Time MSW Program students at both the Eau Claire and Madison sites pay a $125 per semester (fall and spring only) term fee.

Health & Housing (Part-Time MSW)

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Does the University offer childcare assistance to students?

Yes. To read more about the Madison Campus Office of Child Care & Family Resources, please go to their website: occfr.wisc.edu, where you will also find information on a childcare financial assistance program.

Although neither campus has normal business hours on Saturday, both campus childcare centers report that if there is enough interest, they will consider opening a center on Saturday. To read more about the Madison Campus Office of Child Care & Family Resources, please go to their website: occfr.wisc.edu, where you will also find information on a childcare financial assistance program. For information on the Eau Claire Campus Children’s Center, visit their website at www.uwec.edu/Children/.

Are there any benefits for my domestic partner?

Yes. There are health insurance options available for domestic partners through Student Health Insurance Plan (SHIP).

Licensure, Certification, and Continuing Education

Review the Certification & Licensure and Continuing Education tabs for questions relating to those topics.

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