MSW Application and Admission Information

 

Applications for 2018-19 are due January 15, 2018.

MSW Application

  • How to Apply

    Applications to the MSW program are accepted and reviewed once a year. Applications must be submitted online by January 15. Paper applications will not be accepted. Incomplete applications will not be reviewed until all application materials have been submitted. Late applications may be accepted at the discretion of the MSW Admissions Chair.

    Complete a UAA MSW Application for Admission – All applicants to the UAA MSW program must complete an online application for admission, which includes a non-refundable $75.00 fee. Apply online at the UAA Office of Admissions website. The application includes the following documents:

    Professional Resume The resume will be uploaded to the online application. At a minimum, the resume should include: 

    • Work Experience: ​Prior employment history​​ with ​name and location of the organization, title / position​ held​, ​duties performed, and dates of employment​;
    • Volunteer Experience: Prior ​​volunteer experience with name and location of the organization, tasks performed, and dates of service;
    • Awards / Honors: ​ ​Highlight relevant activities and honors, such as academic awards and scholarships, membership in organizations, leadership positions, and work-related awards or honors. Provide dates of award or involvement.​

    Personal Statement - The personal statement should be typed, double-spaced, and should be no longer than four (4) pages total.  The personal statement will be uploaded to the online application. Please respond to each of the following:

    1. Explain how your personal, volunteer, education, and professional experiences have broadened your understanding of the role of social work in society.
    2. Explain how your personal, volunteer, education, and professional experiences have shaped your self-awareness and influenced your understanding of and commitment to social, economic, and/or environmental justice.
    3. How will earning a Master of Social Work degree prepare you to achieve your professional goals?
    4. Graduate social work education requires a major time commitment to meet program demands. Describe your plan to achieve a balance between the courses and field practicums required of a part-time or full-time student and other aspects (e.g., personal, work, family, and community responsibilities) of your life.

    Writing Sample – The writing sample should be typed, double-spaced, and no longer than three (3) pages. The writing sample will be uploaded to the online application. Please respond to the following in essay format:

    • Identify a social problem of great concern to you and relevant to the practice of social work.
    • Discuss the key factors contributing to the social problem.
    • Share ideas for how the problem may be addressed.
    • Discuss leadership roles you might undertake as a social worker in addressing the problem.

    3 Professional Letters of Reference – Three professional reference forms will be submitted through the online application. Do not send letters of reference directly to the School of Social Work.

    • Please select professional references from your work, educational, and volunteer experiences who can best speak to your qualities that make you suitable for a career as a social worker. Please do not use relatives or friends as references.
    • A UAA School of Social Work Letter of reference form will be electronically emailed to each of the references you provide. Your references should complete the form and electronically return it as instructed in the email.
    • Applicants with a BSW who are applying for advanced placement: One of the three professional references must be provided by a BSW faculty member who can address the applicant’s readiness for advanced placement, such as the BSW program coordinator, the BSW field coordinator, or the student’s academic advisor.

    Official transcripts from all colleges and universities attended - Provide official transcripts reflecting completion of all baccalaureate or master degrees as well as any transcripts with graduate credit. All requested transcripts must be official and securely transmitted directly to UAA by the issuing institution. Students do not need to request transcripts from any University of Alaska Campus.Transcripts can be sent directly from the issuing institution to UAA Admissions through a secure electronic transcript service by providing the following email address when requesting your transcript: application-documents@uaa.alaska.edu. Order printed transcripts sent to the UAA Office of Admissions (By USPS: UAA Office of Admissions, 3211 Providence Drive, UC 106, Anchorage AK 99508; By FedEx, UPS, DHL, or Courier: UAA Office of Admissions, 3901 Old Seward Highway, Anchorage, AK 99503).

     Review your complete MSW application. It is the responsibility of the applicant to ensure that all materials required for a complete application are uploaded in the online application portal. The MSW program reserves the right to request additional materials and/or interviews pertaining to program admission. Please note that the UAA MSW program does not grant social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.

     After submitting your MSW Application:

    • You will receive an email confirming submission of your application and notification of any incomplete documents.
    • Notify the School of Social Work if your name, address, email, or phone number changes.
    • Notify the School of Social Work if you decide to withdraw your application.
    Applying to the MSW Program

    The School of Social Work has transitioned to an online application process. The link to the application portal is below. Please refer to the MSW Admission Quick Guide for detailed instructions on navigating the application portal process.

    MSW Application Portal
  • Notice of Decision

    Applicants to the UAA MSW program will receive a written notice of the admission decision from both the UAA School of Social Work and the UAA Office of Admissions. The School of Social Work will notify applicants of the program admission decision in writing by April 1. Admitted applicants will be asked to complete and return an Intent to Enroll form to the School of Social Work in order to confirm their seat in the MSW program. Students admitted to the full-time program will be required to provide field education placement information with the Intent to Enroll form. The deadline to return the enrollment and field form will be listed in the program letter. 

    The School of Social Work will maintain a wait list. If seats become available in the MSW program, applicants will then be selected from the waitlist to fill those seats prior to the start of summer semester.

    Provisional Admission Status – Applicants accepted into the MSW program who are enrolled in the last semester of their undergraduate program or who have not completed the three prerequisite courses will be given a provisional admission. Provisions must be completed prior to the first day of classes of the fall semester of the admission year. If the provisions are not completed by that date, then the student will be removed from degree seeking status.

Admission Criteria

  • Criteria for Admission to the MSW Program
    • Bachelor's degree with a sound liberal arts foundation from an accredited college or university (or the equivalent if degree was earned outside of the U.S.). The liberal arts baccalaureate should include a minimum of 45 semester credits or 68 quarter credits which reflect the following liberal arts classes:
      • Two university courses in the humanities (history, philosophy, languages, literature or similar disciplines);
      • Two university courses in the social sciences (political sciences, sociology, anthropology, psychology or similar disciplines;see note below concerning human development);
      • One university course in the fine arts (music, theater, art appreciation or similar disciplines);
      • One university course in oral communication;
      • One university course in written communication;
      • Two university courses in the natural sciences and/or mathematics (biology, chemistry, physics, geology, astronomy or similar disciplines; algebra, calculus, trigonometry, statistics or similar disciplines; see notes below concerning human biology and statistics); and
    • 3.0 cumulative undergraduate GPA (The MSW Admissions Committee may make exceptions, taking into account special circumstances based on a review of the entire application packet)
    • Three prerequisite courses, if not previously completed (earning a grade of "C" or better):
      • Human biology (Appropriate courses include: human biology; introductory biology; human anatomy and physiology; fundamentals of biology. The UAA courses that will satisfy this requirement are BIOL 100, Human Biology; BIOL 102, Introductory Biology; BIOL 111 or 112, Human Anatomy and Physiology I or II; BIOL 113 or 114, Lectures in Human Anatomy and Physiology I or II; BIOL 115 or 116, Fundamentals of Biology I or II)
      • Lifespan development (Appropriate courses include human development across the lifespan, developmental psychology, human lifespan development. The UAA course that will satisfy this requirement is PSY 150, Lifespan Development)
      • Statistics (The UAA courses that will satisfy this requirement are STAT 252, Elementary Statistics or PSY 453, Application of Statistics to the Social Sciences).
  • Criteria for Admission to the MSW Program with Advanced Placement

    All applicants must meet the following criteria for advanced placement without exception. Applicants who do not meet the criteria for Advanced Placement may apply to the full MSW program.

    • BSW degree completed within the past five years from a degree program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
    • 3.0 cumulative undergraduate GPA
    • 3.5 GPA in BSW program core courses (course work in human behavior, policy, research, practice, and practicum)
    • Grade of "A" or equivalent in each BSW field placement course
    • Three prerequisite courses, if not previously completed (earning a grade of "C" or better):
      • Human biology (Appropriate courses include: human biology; introductory biology; human anatomy and physiology; fundamentals of biology. The UAA courses that will satisfy this requirement are BIOL 100, Human Biology; BIOL 102, Introductory Biology; BIOL 111 or 112, Human Anatomy and Physiology I or II; BIOL 113 or 114, Lectures in Human Anatomy and Physiology I or II; BIOL 115 or 116, Fundamentals of Biology I or II)
      • Lifespan development (Appropriate courses include human development across the lifespan, developmental psychology, human lifespan development. The UAA course that will satisfy this requirement is PSY 150, Lifespan Development)
      • Statistics (The UAA courses that will satisfy this requirement are STAT 252, Elementary Statistics or PSY 453, Application of Statistics to the Social Sciences).

Important Information

  • Transfer Credits
    Up to nine (9) semester credits earned at a regionally accredited institution and not previously used to obtain any other degree may be transferred to UAA and counted toward degree completion.Transfer credits involving a previously earned graduate degree may be affected by additional university policies.
  • Admissions Decisions

    The UAA MSW Admissions Committee, which is composed of faculty of the UAA School of Social Work and members of the professional social work community, reviews all applications to the MSW program. Only complete applications will be reviewed by the Admissions Committee. The Committee determines admission based on a combination of factors, including:

    • Undergraduate grade point average. While a minimum GPA of 3.0 is desired, exceptions may be made taking into account special circumstances based on a review of the entire application packet, particularly if the grade point average in the last 60 credits is above 3.0.
    • Assessment of the applicant's understanding of and commitment to social work and their capacity for the profession as evidenced by the applicant's resume, letters of reference, personal statement, and writing sample.
    • Letters of reference.
    • Demonstration of critical thinking and writing ability based on the personal statement and writing sample.
    • Diversity considerations.

    Types of Admissions Decisions

    Admitted – All admissions requirements are met and the applicant is selected for admission to the MSW program.

    An Intent to Enroll form is enclosed with the UAA School of Social Work notice of admission, and applicants must return this form to the School of Social Work by the date specified in the letter in order to confirm their seat in the MSW program. Students admitted to the full-time program will be required to provide field education placement information with the Intent to Enroll form.

    Admitted with provisions - Applicants who show potential for success in the MSW program but do not meet all the admission requirements may be provisionally admitted. For example, applicants who are enrolled in the last semester of their undergraduate program or who have not completed the three prerequisite courses will be given a provisional admission. Provisions must be completed by the date specified in the letter of admission. If the provisions are not met within the specified deadlines, the student may be removed from graduate degree-seeking status. 

    An Intent to Enroll form is enclosed with the UAA School of Social Work notice of provisional admission, and applicants must return this form to the School of Social Work by the date specified in the letter in order to confirm their seat in the MSW program. Students admitted provisionally to the full-time program will be required to provide field education placement information with the Intent to Enroll form.

    Waitlisted for admission – Each year we receive more qualified applicants than space available. A small number of applicants may be selected for a waitlist. If space becomes available before May 1, applicants will be removed from the waitlist and offered admission. If space does not become available, then applicants on the waitlist must reapply to be considered for admission in subsequent years.

    Denied admission – Unfortunately, each year we receive more applications than space available, so we must deny admission to applicants. Applicants who are denied admission may reapply in subsequent years.

     Deferring Admission - Applicants who are admitted or admitted with provisions to the MSW program may request to defer admission to the MSW program for one year. The MSW Admissions Committee reviews all requests for deferral of admission. Applicants may submit a request for a one year deferral of admission by completing the following steps:

    • Submit the Intent to Enroll Form to the School of Social Work by the date specified indicating a request to defer admission for one year. Enclose a written request for deferral that is addressed to the MSW Admissions Committee. The written request should describe the reasons for requesting a one year deferral.
    • If a deferral is granted, applicants must complete and submit the UAA Graduate School Change Application for Graduate Admission by May 1. MSW program approval is required for this form.
  • Non-attendance and Re-application

    Admitted applicants who cannot attend should indicate their decision on the Intent to Enroll form that is sent with the letter of admission. The Intent to Enroll form should be returned to the School of Social Work by the date specified in the letter of recommendation.  

    Admitted applicants who fail to submit the intent to enroll form and who do not enroll in the required summer semester MSW course by the end of the add/drop period for summer semester will be removed from the MSW program. Accepted applicants removed for non-attendance who wish to pursue the MSW degree must reapply for admission.

  • Field Placement 

    The UAA MSW field education program provides students with a rich opportunity to apply knowledge, values, skills, and cognitive and affective processes developed in the classroom to the demonstration of generalist and advanced generalist competencies in real-world agency settings while working directly with and on behalf of a variety of client groups in Alaska, including clients and constituencies in rural and urban communities. 

    MSW students complete two field practicum placements: one in the generalist curriculum and one in the advanced generalist curriculum. The MSW Field Coordinator assists students with the field placement process. Both practicum placements are a year-long, and they are completed during the fall and spring semesters. Students are required to complete a total of 480 hours in each practicum, which is approximately 16 hours a week in the field practicum placement for a total of 30 weeks (2 semesters). While in the field practicum, students are also enrolled in a field practicum seminar, where they integrate MSW didactic course content with field learning experiences. 

    Please note that the UAA MSW program does not grant social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.

  • Dual Degree, Master of Social Work / Master of Public Health

     The Master of Social Work/Master of Public Health (MSW/MPH) dual degree provides academic training in order to maximize the impact of both public health and social work practices. This dual degree develops expertise at the nexus of public health and social work. The goal of this program is to train leaders who have the skills and competencies to address many of the social and public health problems facing the state of Alaska, this nation and the world.

    Admissions requirements: Students must apply separately and meet the admission requirements of both the MSW and MPH programs. 

  • Technology Requirements

    UAA MSW Students must be able to access the internet, navigate web pages, check and respond to email, and attach files to email. Students need access to word processing software (such as Microsoft Word), presentation software (such as Microsoft PowerPoint), and media playing software (YouTube, Windows Media Player, etc.) as courses often use these programs to complete assignments. Many courses use web conferencing, such as Blackboard Collaborate, for the synchronous class meetings. To participate in the UAA MSW program, students will need a web camera, speakers, and a microphone (or a headset with a built-in microphone).

  • Felony Conviction

    The School of Social Work MSW Admissions Committee will, in their discretion, deny an applicant for admission if the committee finds that the applicant's history of a felony or misdemeanor convictions make the applicant unfit for social work practice. The committee will consider the number and recency of any convictions and the relationship those convictions may have on practice.

    Not withstanding the above, a person who has been convicted of a felony crime against a person described in AS 11.41 within the ten years before the date of application is unfit for admission to the MSW program and will be denied.

  • Notice of Nondiscrimination

    The University of Alaska is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution.  The University of Alaska does not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, color, national origin, citizenship, age, sex, physical or mental disability, status as a protected veteran, marital status, changes in marital status, pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions, parenthood, sexual orientation, gender identity, political affiliation or belief, genetic information, or other legally protected status. The University's commitment to nondiscrimination, including against sex discrimination, applies to students, employees, and applicants for admission and employment. Contact information, applicable laws, and complaint procedures are included on UA's statement of nondiscrimination available at www.alaska.edu/nondiscrimination.

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