Online Master of Social Work (MSW)
An Award-Winning MSW for Aspiring or Advancing Social Workers
Best Online MSW1 and Best Social Work Program2
Advanced Standing and Foundation Options
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- Duration 1-3 years
- Cost per Credit $962
- Credit Hours 30–57
- No GRE/MAT Required
- Six convenient start dates per year
- Local field practicum coordinated by field placement specialist
- Personal guidance from field instructor and faculty liaison
A CSWE-Accredited Master’s Program for Both Current and Aspiring Social Workers
- Earn your MSW in as few as 12 months
- Flexible online format — complete fieldwork locally.
- Ranked a Best Social Work Program by U.S. News & World Report2
- High job growth — 12% increase by 2030, creating almost 89,000 new jobs.4
Our Lady of the Lake University’s (OLLU) online MSW was the first graduate-level social work program in Texas. We were ranked a Best Social Work Program among grad schools by US News & World Report in 2022.
This transformative program develops you into an expert social worker serving children, adults, families, and communities
What Makes Us Unique?
A focus on the Hispanic population. Our MSW is one of only three social work programs in the country with an emphasis on serving the urgent needs of the Hispanic community, the fastest-growing demographic nationwide.
Licensure pathway. The online MSW prepares you to sit post-graduation for the Licensed Social Work Exam (LSW)*, which can qualify you for advanced practice roles and work in clinical settings.
A Convenient MSW Degree to Support a Rich Heritage
OLLU’s MSW stands out among other programs because it’s keenly focused on changing demographics. We prepare you for a diverse, ever-changing population, which means caring for the growing Hispanic population, representing nearly 20% of U.S. citizens.
Combining convenient online coursework and hands-on experiences through engaging practicums led by expert field instructors, you’ll become a compassionate social worker who cares for individuals and families by addressing unique issues and concerns.
Depending on your situation, you can earn your MSW in as little as a year with our Advanced Standing program with a BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited program or complete our Foundation program in as few as two years.
Career Outlook: Prepare to Pursue Licensure
At OLLU, we develop your passion for social work into a specialized skillset for direct and advanced practice intervention.
We also pride ourselves on a unique focus within U.S. Hispanic communities. In 2019, the U.S. Hispanic population reached a record high of 60.6 million people.3 Members of these communities rely on social workers with the specialized tools and skills needed to understand their cultural position and make the greatest impact.3
As a general profession, demand for social workers is expected to grow at a rate well above the national average, with employment of mental health and substance abuse social workers projected to grow 12 percent from 2020 to 2030.4
By the time you graduate, you will be prepared to sit for the Licensed Social Work Exam (LSW)*, which can qualify you for advanced practice roles and work in clinical settings.
* Licensure requirements vary by state. Students are Licensure requirements vary by state. Students are responsible for understanding the requirements for social work licensure in their resident state. Applicants seeking licensure are encouraged to review all applicable eligibility requirements related to the respective occupational license per the Texas occupations code HB 1508.Careers in Social Work
Curriculum: Prepare for the Real World With Field Education
In OLLU’s CSWE-accredited master’s in social work online program, you’ll become a master in essential social work competencies of engagement, assessment, intervention and evaluation. Learn to apply data-driven knowledge to work with clients from diverse backgrounds to achieve mutually agreed-upon outcomes.
You’ll also partake in a fieldwork practicum to gain vital real-world skills, and build upon your strengths while becoming aware of areas for growth. You’ll hone new assessment and treatment skills under the guidance of an experienced social work professional while getting exposure to new areas of the field.
A field placement specialist will help you secure your practicum and support you throughout this critical experience. Learn more about your field practicum at the Field Experience page.
OLLU offers two online MSW degree options to meet your educational needs. The Advanced Standing program is a 30-credit hour program designed for students with a BSW from a CSWE-accredited program. It can be completed in 12–20 months. The Foundation program is a 57-credit hour program designed for students with an undergraduate degree in another field. It can be earned in 24–38 months.Review Curriculum
Program Outcomes: Deliver Specialized Intervention
You’ll complete this program with the ability to:
- Demonstrate ethical principles, critical thinking and knowledge of human behavior in your work with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities
- Apply a culturally competent perspective to your work with diverse communities
- Analyze, formulate, advocate for and collaborate on social policy, advancing human rights and social justice
- Conduct practice engagements, assessments, interventions and evaluations
To apply for the Master of Social Work program from Our Lady of the Lake University, you’ll need:
- Completed application
- 2.5 minimum undergraduate GPA for the foundation program (or a 3.0 for the most recent 60 credit hours)
- 3.0 minimum undergraduate GPA for the advanced standing program
- Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university
- Personal statement
- Three recommendation letters from academic or professional references
- Official transcripts from all previously attended institutions
GRE/GMAT scores are not required for admission into this program.Full Requirements
This 30–57 credit hour program costs $962 per credit hour. Furthering your career with an education from OLLU is an investment in your future. Find full tuition details at the link below.Full Tuition Details
Military Student Support
Our Lady of the Lake University is proud to support you as you balance your education with your personal and military service commitments. Our online programs offer the flexibility you need to conference with faculty members, study, and access course materials from wherever your busy life takes you. We also accept a variety of military education benefits to ensure the degree program you want is within reach.Get Support
Faculty: Active Leaders and Engaged Scholars
Faculty at OLLU’s Worden School of Social Service are engaged scholars who are active in the social work field and have adopted the National Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics as a guide in the classroom and school community.OLLU Faculty
Learning online with OLLU is just as engaging as our on-campus programs — the only difference is the flexibility to learn on your own schedule. Connect with lively discussion groups, complete your assignments and interact with your professors from wherever you prefer to work.OLLU Online
Seeking financial aid is a great way to reduce the out-of-pocket cost of getting your new degree — in fact, 90% of our students receive some form of financial aid to ease their transition back to school.Explore Financial Aid
Frequently Asked Questions
If you have a question we don’t cover here, request more information or call 855-275-1082.
Tuition for the Foundation program is $54,834 plus the cost of books and fees, and tuition for the Advanced Standing program is $28,860 plus the cost of books and fees.
Yes, the online MSW program is fully CSWE accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).
Each state’s licensure requirements vary. To ensure you’re on the correct academic path and prepared for the career you want, you must understand the licensing requirements set by the state where you plan to practice. To determine your state’s requirements, you can visit our licensure page here.
Graduate-level transfer credits are reviewed case-by-case. MSW students may transfer up to 6 credits to the Foundation program and 3 credits to the Advanced Standing program. Transfer credits are accepted at the discretion of the department and should be requested upon application to the program.
*The appearance of U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) visual information does not imply or constitute DoD endorsement.
- Ranked “Best Online Master of Social Work” program by College Choice.
- Ranked “Best Social Work Program” by U.S. News & World Report in the 2016 Best Grad Schools section.
- Noe-Bustamante, L., Lopez, M.H., Krogstad, J.M. (2020 July 7). U.S. Hispanic population surpassed 60 million in 2019, but growth has slowed. Pew Research Center. Retrieved March 31, 2022 from https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/07/08/u-s-hispanic-population-reached-new-high-in-2018-but-growth-has-slowed/
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (2022 March 24). Social Workers. Occupational Outlook Handbook. Retrieved March 31, 2022 from https://www.bls.gov/ooh/community-and-social-service/social-workers.htm.