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Social Work: Part-Time MSW

Master of Social Work

a social worker talks to a boy

Enhance human well-being through the UW–Madison Part-Time Master of Social Work program. This Saturday-only hybrid program is ideal for recent graduates of a BSW program or those seeking a new career path or supervisory role.


Is this program right for you?

As a student in the UW–Madison Part-Time Master of Social Work (MSW) program, you obtain a broad perspective on the causes and solutions to social problems and develop the knowledge, skills and values to practice advanced social work as a professional.

This commuter-friendly program is designed to work with your schedule by offering Saturday classes, some delivered online and some in person. In-person classes take place every other Saturday on the UW–Madison campus.

As a national leader in social work education, the UW–Madison Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work offers a renowned field education program that parallels coursework and direct practice. The hands-on field internship, a hallmark of social work education, will deepen your knowledge of social work under the guidance of experienced professional social workers. Coursework may fulfill Wisconsin or Minnesota social work licensure requirements.

Graduates become leaders across fields of social work practice and pursue careers including child welfare, school social work, mental health, medical social work, administration, child and family practice and policy development.

Is this program right for you?

As a student in the UW–Madison Part-Time Master of Social Work (MSW) program, you obtain a broad perspective on the causes and solutions to social problems and develop the knowledge, skills and values to practice advanced social work as a professional.

This commuter-friendly program is designed to work with your schedule by offering Saturday classes, some delivered online and some in person. In-person classes take place every other Saturday on the UW–Madison campus.

As a national leader in social work education, the UW–Madison Sandra Rosenbaum School of Social Work offers a renowned field education program that parallels coursework and direct practice. The hands-on field internship, a hallmark of social work education, will deepen your knowledge of social work under the guidance of experienced professional social workers. Coursework may fulfill Wisconsin or Minnesota social work licensure requirements.

Graduates become leaders across fields of social work practice and pursue careers including child welfare, school social work, mental health, medical social work, administration, child and family practice and policy development.

Admissions requirements

All applicants must:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution.
  • Earn a grade of C or better in an approved statistics course within the last five years.
  • Have a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on the last 60 credits of degree.
  • Submit evidence of English language proficiency, if applicable. The required proficiency scores are: TOEFL IBT 92, PBT 580 or IELTS 7.0.

Ideal applicants will:

  • Have completed 30 semester credits of social science coursework before applying.

Application materials required:

  • Online application
  • Supplemental application with analytical essay addressing prompt
  • Resume/CV
  • Statement of purpose addressing prompt
  • Transcripts
  • Three letters of recommendation

Connect with us

Virtual Open House: Explore and Apply to Graduate School at UW-Madison

November 10
8:30 a.m.-3 p.m.
Meet with staff and faculty from our 160+ graduate degree programs, gain insight into the application process, and discover the array of services and resources available to graduate students at UW–Madison.
Register for Grad School Virtual Open House

Pathways: Part-Time Master of Social Work

November 17
noon-1 p.m.
The Part-Time Master of Social Work focus area chairs will talk about the courses, field units, and career paths for each focus area.
Register for Pathways: Part-Time Master of Social Work

View all events

Program highlights

  • The Part-Time Master of Social Work is offered on Saturdays, with in-person classes on campus every other week.
  • Our class sizes are kept small, so you have more one-on-one time with faculty and can work more closely with your fellow students.
  • You can choose one of the following focus areas to hone your skills: Aging; Child, Youth, and Family Welfare; Health; or Mental Health.
  • Draw on faculty expertise and top-notch academic advising to guide you.

How you'll learn

  • Classes meet on Saturdays beginning at 9 a.m.
  • Some courses are designed as hybrid classes, with a mix of online and in-person sessions. Other classes are delivered fully online. Students should plan to be on campus each semester.
  • Field placement can be in your home community.
  • A two-year, 23-credit program is available to recent social work bachelor’s (BSW) graduates, and a four-year, 49-credit program is offered to those who are seeking a new career path or have a BSW degree older than five years.
  • Learn from the shared experiences of fellow students with the program’s cohort model.
  • Gain practical experience through fieldwork.

Sample curriculum

Year 1

  • Field of Social Work
  • Social Policy
  • Human Behavior and the Environment
  • Diversity, Oppression and Social Justice in Social Work
  • Methods of Social Work Research

Year 2

  • Field Practice and Integrative Seminar I
  • Generalist Practice with Individuals, Families, and Groups
  • Field Practice and Integrative Seminar II
  • Generalist Practice with Communities and Organizations
  • Psychopathology in Generalist SW Practice

Years 3 and 4

Specialized Advanced Practice Years

  • Advanced Practice
  • Advanced Policies and Services
  • Advanced Macro
  • Field Practice and Integrative Seminar III and IV
  • 3 Electives

Job outlook

Top Job Titles
  • Social Worker
  • Clinical Social Worker
  • Medical Social Worker
  • School Social Worker

Market Salary
$59K in 2019

Projected Job Growth
8.3% for General Social Workers (2016-2026)

Job Postings
46,498 in 2019

Source: Burning Glass Technologies: Labor Insight. 2020.
Burning Glass Technologies’ Market Salary is an estimated expected salary. Market Salary uses machine learning algorithms to account for experience, skill, and education among other factors that may impact individual salaries.

Ready to learn more about Social Work: Part-Time MSW?
View the UW-Madison Guide

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Connect with our enrollment coaches

Our friendly, knowledgeable enrollment coaches are here to answer your questions. Contact an enrollment coach to:

  • Learn how to make this program work with your life/schedule
  • Verify credit transfers
  • Get help with your application
  • Determine if financial aid is available

Visit with our coaches on campus or at an upcoming student fair in your area. Search student fairs & events

Connect with a coach

Marie Nofodji

 This program challenged me in the way I approach situations and prepared me for advanced practice within the generalist specialization. My classmates and I have examined practice problems in the context of social work values, and the program has allowed me to examine how I professionally think and feel while incorporating social work competencies. 

Marie Nofodji, Part-Time Social Work