Top Masters of Social Work (MSW) Programs

Choosing an Advanced Social Work Degree

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Looking to earn a master of social work? Discover the top MSW programs. There are plenty to choose from, but the ones below are graduate programs in social work are consistently ranked by US News and World Report as leaders. Keep in mind that the fit of the program -- that is, the match between your goals and abilities -- matters more than a program's rank. Use these programs as a guide, but remember to choose the program that's right for you, regardless of its rank.

Washington University: St. Louis St. Louis, MO

In addition to the MSW program, there is a Master of Public Health (MPH) degree, a combined MSW/MPH degree, and a Ph.D. program.

Boston College: Boston,MA

This college offers MSW and Ph.D. degrees.

University of Michigan: Ann Arbor Ann Arbor, MI

The University of Michigan also offers a masters program and a doctoral program, a Joint Doctoral Program in Social Work and Social Science, an interdepartmental program that awards a joint Ph.D. degree in social work and one of five social science disciplines: anthropology, economics, political science, psychology, or sociology.

University of Chicago: Chicago, IL

The master of arts in social work, or AM, degree is an alternative to the MSW and is recognized as such, especially given that the University of Chicago is one of the top programs in the country. Don't let the AM degree prevent you from considering this program. In addition to the master's degree, the institution offers a Ph.D. degree.

Columbia University: New York, NY

Offers an MS program in social work as well as a Ph.D. program.

University of Washington: Seattle, WA

The University of Washington offers MSW and Ph.D. programs programs

University of California, Berkeley: Berkeley, CA

MSW and Ph.D. programs and several combined degrees, such as a social welfare/public health dual degree, social welfare/law degree, and dual masters in international and area studies, are available here.

University of Texas: Austin Austin, TX

The University of Texas in Austin offers a master's of science in social work (MSSW) degree and Ph.D. degree. Similar to the AM degree, the MSSW is recognized by the social work field as a valid master's degree in social work, similar to the MSW. Don’t let the unfamiliar acronym keep you from considering this program.

University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill: Chapel Hill, NC

Offers the MSW degree and several dual master's degree programs in law, public administration, public health, and divinity. The school also offers a Ph.D. degree.

University of Southern California: Los Angeles, CA

Offers the MSW and Ph.D. degree as well as a nurse social work practitioner option for nurses who wish to pursue study in both health and social services.

Case Western Reserve University: Cleveland, OH

Offers a master of science in social administration (MSSA) degree as well as dual programs in law, management of nonprofit organizations, business administration, social administration, and bioethics.