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Online Master of Social Work

Offered through the acclaimed Worden School of Social Service at Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU), the online Master of Social Work will prepare you to change the lives of children and families in need. Through this program, you'll build the foundation for your career in social service leadership and advanced direct practice.

Whether you're already working in the field or you have the desire to join it, OLLU's online MSW can help you achieve your goals of helping society and fighting for justice.

Quick Look

  • CSWE-Accredited Program. You'll meet employers' education qualifications to treat clients.
  • Advanced Standing Program. Those with a social work degree and experience can take fewer credit hours and graduate faster, saving time and money.
  • Foundation Program. No previous social work background is required to earn your Master of Social Work (MSW) and start working in this rewarding field.
  • Relevant Focus. We're one of only three universities nationwide to directly address the urgent needs of the Hispanic population, one of the fastest-growing communities in the U.S.
  • Top-Ranked Program. Recognized as a top social work program in 2016 by U.S. News and World Report and in 2017 by College Choice.
  • Licensure Preparation. We help prepare you for licensure to work in advanced practice roles and clinical settings.
  • Online Learning. You can earn this valuable credential without having to relocate, studying whenever and wherever is most convenient for you. You'll complete fieldwork in your local area, not ours.
  • Field Placement Specialists. Kind, knowledgeable professionals with years of social work experience help you find and secure a practicum.

"I was noticing that with just a bachelor's degree, there wasn't a lot of room for growth in the positions I was in. With a Master of Social Work, there are just endless possibilities …"
– Rebecca Rebstock, Online MSW Student

Gain Control of Your Clients' Treatment Plans

To gain autonomy in your assessment and treatment plans with clients, and to work with a broader client base, you need to hold a Master of Social Work degree and appropriate licensure.

When you earn these credentials, industries such as healthcare and education will be open to you, you'll qualify for management positions, and you'll possess the skills to direct programs and treatment plans with less oversight.

Earning your MSW online at Our Lady of the Lake University (OLLU) empowers you to expand your client base and career opportunities while expertly preparing you to work with the Hispanic population and other diverse groups.

Serve a Greater Population of Clients

The U.S. Census Bureau projects that the Hispanic population will grow by 86 percent between 2015 and 20501 — making it one of the fastest-growing demographics in the United States.

While 90 percent of social-work academics agree that preparing students to work with the Hispanic population is important, 60 percent of educators don't believe their students are knowledgeable enough to work with this population effectively.2

The online Master of Social Work from Our Lady of the Lake is one of just three programs nationwide to provide a focus on the Hispanic community in its degree.

The award-winning, CSWE-accredited program is offered through the acclaimed Worden School of Social Service and provides a rich understanding of the needs of children and families in this demographic.

Which Award-Winning Curriculum Is Right for You?

Ranked as the "Best Social Work Program" by U.S. News & World Report in 2016, and "Best Online Master of Social Work" program by College Choice in 2017, the online MSW at OLLU offers two program options to meet your needs no matter where you are in your career.

  • Advanced Standing MSW – This 30-credit hour program is designed for those with an undergraduate degree in social work from a CSWE-accredited program. It can be completed in just under two years.
  • Foundation MSW – This 57-credit hour program is designed for those with an undergraduate degree in another field. If you'd like your next career move to involve service through social work, you can earn your MSW in the foundation program in a little more than three years.

Browse the curriculum options for your program.

Winner of the Presidential Award for Excellence from the CSWE, an honor reserved for only one of the nearly 500 social work degree programs in America.

Prepare for Licensure to Advance Your Career Options

The online MSW at Our Lady of the Lake prepares you for advanced licensure so you can:

  • Expand the reach of those you treat
  • Qualify to work in more positions and settings
  • Gain autonomy in your treatment plans
  • Enter clinical practice
  • Take leadership positions

OLLU's Worden School of Social Service has been educating social work leaders since 1942.

Experienced Faculty Are Always Here for You

OLLU's expert faculty are here to support you as you learn, just as they would if you were in the on-campus program. As you would expect of an award-winning program, your instructors include many of the industry's finest policymakers, social-service educators, and advocates.

"Working with the faculty in this program was an amazing experience. The staff was awesome about giving me their phone numbers, including cell phone numbers; setting up Skype meetings if you wanted to see them face-to-face, and responding to emails very quickly."
— Jacob Thornhill, Online MSW Student

Support During Your Field Education Experience

Your practicum allows you to build upon your strengths while becoming aware of weaknesses and biases. You'll hone new assessment and treatment skills under the guidance of an experienced professional while getting exposure to new areas of social work.

Completing the practicum is a vital part of earning your degree and advancing your career. Students also report it's one of the most stressful. Because OLLU is dedicated to supporting you through this critical component of your program, we assign each student to a field placement specialist to help you find and secure placement in your local area.

You can learn more about this important aspect of your education by visiting our field education page.

Rewarding Careers Await You

Earning your MSW degree opens the door to numerous career opportunities across industries. While the industry as a whole is growing at an above-average rate of 16 percent, specific positions are growing even faster than that, with some expecting a 23 percent job-growth rate.3,6

Position

Annual Mean Wage in the Top-Paying Field

Employment Growth Rate

Health Care Social Workers

$69,8604

20%3

Mental Health/Substance Abuse Social Workers

$61,3605

19%3

Marriage & Family Therapists

$72,5806

23%6

Mental Health Counselors

$65,6807

23%8

Social and Community Service Managers

$103,5709

18%10

Child, Family and School Social Workers

$62,69011

14%3

The specific focus on the Hispanic community also delivers a competitive edge in top-paying fields. You'll find your experience and advanced knowledge of the Hispanic demographic — one of the fastest-growing groups in America — will be enthusiastically received by potential employers, regardless of the setting you choose to work in.

Learn more about the career titles you'll qualify for.

Find Out More Today

To learn more about the award-winning online Master of Social Work from Our Lady of the Lake University, call 855-275-1082 or request more information today.

NOTE: Applicants seeking licensure are encouraged to review all applicable eligibility requirements related to the respective occupational license per the Texas occupations code HB 1508.

Sources

1http://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2014/12/16/with-fewer-new-arrivals-census-lowers-hispanic-population-projections-
2https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2861823/#R18
3Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2017-18 Edition, Social Workers, on the Internet at http://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/social-workers.htm
4https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes211022.htm
5https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes211023.htm
6https://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/marriage-and-family-therapists.htm
7https://www.bls.gov/oes/2016/may/oes211014.htm
8https://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/substance-abuse-behavioral-disorder-and-mental-health-counselors.htm
9https://www.bls.gov/ooh/management/social-and-community-service-managers.htm
10https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes119151.htm
11https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes211021.htm