Frequently Asked Questions









What is Seattle U’s MSW focus in clinical social work?  Our social justice-centered community-based clinical MSW program will prepare you for an advanced clinical social work practice to engage in all aspects of social work practice, including psychotherapy and counseling, crisis intervention, case management, client-centered advocacy, consultation, supervision, and organizational management.  At our program, you will study with faculty who are passionate about social justice and engaged in research, teaching and practice that aim to produce social change. Building upon the strong foundation of generalist practice, you will gain critical knowledge of contemporary theories and evidence-based practice to understand the interconnection between personal struggles and structural oppression and develop exemplary clinical and advocacy skills to work with individuals, families and groups. 

Is your program accredited? Seattle University’s MSW program is in the accreditation process with the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The accreditation process takes three years, and the MSW program is on CSWE's June 2019 initial accreditation schedule. When the program is granted initial accreditation, all students accepted to the program while the program is in candidacy will be retroactively recognized as having graduated from a CSWE-accredited program. In the interim, graduates would be able to state that they graduated from a program in candidacy from CSWE. 

Since the initial cohort of the MSW program is to graduate in 2018, the program should achieve accreditation well before the time the initial cohort of students will sit for their clinical licensing (LICSW) exam. In Washington State, LICSW licensing requires at least 4000 hours of postgraduate supervised clinical experience, over a 3-year minimum period, which will be 2021 at the earliest for the initial cohort of students.

The BSW program at Seattle University has been accredited by CSWE since 2003, receiving the highest possible reviews. If further information is needed, the MSW Program Director could write a letter stating that we are in good standing. 

How much is tuition? For the 2016-17 academic year, one credit is $687. At $687 for 66 credits, the two-year program will cost $45,342 total ($24,732 in the first year; $20,610 in the second year). This cost is the same for in-state and out-of-state students. See how our tuition compares to other program's tuition below:

Other questions regarding your tuition and student account can be directed to the Student Financial Services Office at or 206-220-8020.

What is the size of each cohort? We aim for a cohort size between 20 and 25 students.

What is the average age of your students? The average age of students in the initial cohort is 28.

Can I attend the MSW program part-time? No, the MSW program is designed for students to attend full-time day classes and field practicum placements for the duration of the program.

When are MSW classes held? The MSW classes are generally held during the day. The program begins in Fall Quarter and runs for two years with no classes during the summer between year one and year two. The Advanced Standing Program begins in the summer and runs for ten months. Both programs conclude in June.

Does the Social Work Program offer any dual degree programs? Not at this time. We will be considering that prospect in the coming years.

Where can I find information about social work licensing in my state? The Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) has information on the licensing exam and provides an online handbook that takes licensing candidates through the various steps, including how to register with the ASWB for the exam and even how to make an exam appointment with Pearson VUE. Candidates can also find test prep tips and sample questions. For information on licensing by state, visit the Association of Social Work Boards website:


I am currently an undergraduate BSW student and will not be graduating until May or June; can I still apply for advanced standing status now? Yes. You may apply but you must supply us with a transcript listing all completed and in-process courses. A final, official copy of your transcript listing the degree earned must be received by the Office of Graduate Admissions by July 1st. Offers of admission are contingent upon successful completion of your undergraduate degree.

If I graduated from my BSW program a long time ago, can I still apply for advanced standing? As long as your BSW was earned within the last five years from a CSWE-accredited program, you would be eligible for advanced standing. If it has been more than five years, contact the Program Coordinator to discuss a possible waiver of this requirement. 

What letters of recommendation would best serve an applicant seeking advanced standing?  Advanced standing applicants must provide at minimum one letter of reference from the BSW program attended, and two other letters of recommendation. These two letters will depend on the opportunities you may or may not have had to work or volunteer in human service settings either on campus or in your community.


When is your application deadline? Applications for Fall 2017 admission will be accepted from September 2016 through March 2017. The due date for priority consideration is January 20th, 2017.

Do you require the GRE, subject test or general test? Applicants with degrees from non-graded institutions will be required to submit official GRE scores in lieu of a GPA. For more information, please visit the Graduate Admissions website.

Is an interview required? Interviews are not required. On occasion, the Admission Committee may request an interview if they feel one would be helpful to them in the assessment of your application.

Do I need to take a college-level statistics course before I can be accepted into the program? Completion of a statistics course (college level) with a passing grade is required for enrollment as either a Two-Year MSW student or Advanced Standing student. However, students may apply to the program prior to completing a statistics course.

What is the average length of the Personal Statements required in the application? The length of this statement is described in the APPLY section of the application (Part 1 = 750 words; Part 2 = 1500 words).

I have a BSW. Will I receive Advanced Standing status? Advanced standing is designed for students who have completed their BSW within the last five years from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. Applicants are required to have a “B” (3.0) in each of their required social work courses. Advanced standing allows students to complete their MSW in ten months. Those with advanced standing will enter as a second-year student in the summer, and then move directly into an advanced clinical field internship in September with graduation the following June.

Do you offer credit for life experience? As per the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) Education Policy and Accreditation Standards (EPAS) 3.1.5, the MSW program does not grant social work course credit for life experiences or previous work experience.

Can I apply as a transfer student? Because of the cohort model and the highly sequenced nature of the program, a transfer from another institution or program is seldom accepted.  The program may consider students who have completed one full year of academic and field work, are in good standing at an accredited master of social work program and demonstrate competencies at a graduate level.  To be considered an applicant for transfer, students should:

  • Submit the Graduate Admissions’ on-line application for the two-year MSW program
  • Meet all requirements for admission into the two-year MSW program.
  • Indicate that they wish to be considered as a transfer applicant in their essay.  
  • Each transfer application will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis by the Admissions Committee. 



What English language tests do you accept? What scores must I reach on these tests? This chart should answer your questions. If it does not, please contact Graduate Admissions.



Graduate, General Admission

Graduate, CLB Program

TOEFL (Internet) | SU Code: 4695 



TOEFL (Paper) | SU Code: 4695






Pearson Test of English
















Contact Us          

Hye-Kyung Kang, MSW, PhD
Director, Master of Social Work Program
Casey 309W

Mary Kay Brennan, MSW, LICSW
Director, Bachelor of Social Work Program
Casey 308W

Riva Zeff, MSW
Field Director, MSW Clinical Professor
Casey 314W

Peggy Stevens
Senior Administrative Assistant
Casey 3W