Social Work Programs

September 24, 2011

Virginia Schools Of Social Work

virginiaschoolsofsocialworkVirginia is home to several schools of social work, including Virginia Commonwealth University (VCU), George Mason University, and Norfolk State University. All three programs offer Bachelor of Social Work and Master of Social Work degrees. VCU is located in Richmond, Virginia, and is one of the top-ranked social work programs in the country. VCU offers a MSW program that allows students with previously-earned BSW degrees to complete the curriculum in three continuous semesters (advanced standing), or to complete the curriculum in 60 hours through either a part-time or full-time schedule.

VCU also offers a doctoral program in social work that allows students to pursue studies that are thorough preparation for a career in research or teaching. PhD students must complete comprehensive exams as well as defend a dissertation prior to graduation. VCU also plans to discontinue their Northern Virginia program to offer a distance education program beginning in 2012 in order to serve a more diverse group of students.


George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, is a private school that offers many opportunities for students pursuing undergraduate or graduate degrees in social work. The social work program offers undergraduate minors in both social work and aging studies as well as a Bachelor of Science in social work. Graduate programs allow students to complete their MSW in two or three years.

In the first year, students complete foundation courses, and in the second year students complete concentration courses. Concentrations include Clinical Practice and Social Change. A Dual Degree program is also offered in collaboration with the Institute for Conflict Analysis and Resolution (ICAR), which can be completed in three years and gives students the opportunity to engage in building a separate set of skills to be used in the Washington, D.C., area.

Virginia School of Social Work- Norfolk, VA

Norfolk State University in Norfolk, Virginia, is an accredited social work program that offers BSW, MSW, and PhD degrees. The BSW program includes Pre-Social Work Education as well as Professional Social Work Education in order to prepare undergraduate students for entry-level social work jobs or for graduate school. These students must enroll in a Field Practicum as well as academics in their junior year. The MSW program emphasizes human rights and social justice, and allows students to pursue a Clinical Concentration if they wish to enter direct practice in social work following graduation.

Students must complete a minimum of 60 hours if they wish to earn their MSW degree. NSU’s PhD program focuses on connecting theories with clinical practice in order to improve social work with African-American families. PhD students must complete comprehensive examinations and a dissertation.

Virginia is a beautiful state and is in a central location if you wish to visit friends or family in the northeast or southeast areas. It also is a nice drive to go to the Blue Ridge mountains.

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