Master of Social Work Program

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Program Information and Admission Application

Fall 2018 Admission Application Period Now Closed


The Master of Social Work Program at California State University, Stanislaus prepares social workers to advance social justice. This education is committed to social change based on an analysis of social, political and economic structures and their impact. This teaching and learning environment enables faculty, students and graduates to collaborate with others to transform the conditions which contribute to privilege and oppression. Graduates are prepared to use an advanced integrative practice approach to work with individuals, families and communities to promote personal and collective liberation.

Information & Flyers

Applications for Fall 2018 has closed. Classes begin August 22, 2018.


Program Goals

  1. Prepare professional social workers to engage with diverse populations in a process of critical reflection and action to address oppression and promote social justice.
  2. Prepare professional social workers to engage in the struggle to understand and transform their biases.
  3. Prepare social workers to use an integrative practice framework for multi-system interventions guided by ethics and informed by research.
  4. Prepare professional social workers to assume leadership roles in meeting the social service needs of the region.
  5. Create a learning environment based on principles of social justice where faculty and students participate in the development of knowledge that contributes to improving the social conditions of the region.
  6. Create partnerships with community constituents based on principles of social justice that allow faculty and students to participate, both as leaders and learners, in the development of social work knowledge and service delivery systems.

The Master of Social Work Program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

Admission to the MSW program is based on meeting the general University requirements, plus an evaluation of the applicant's potential for advanced practice in the profession of social work. The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. Students are admitted to a two-year or three-year program in the Fall semester only.

Complete the following application materials:

  • Social Work Program Admission Application.pdf
  • Autobiographical statement refer to Social Work Admission Requirements.pdf for detailed guidelines. This autobiographical statement should reflect your experience in light of the MSW Program mission statement, should be type written (1200 – 1500 words), and should enable the Admissions Committee to know something of you as a person, you're writing ability, your understanding of social work, and your own life experiences.  The statement should address the eight questions (listed on page 2 of  the Admissions Requirements) in your autobiographical statement.
  • Criminal History Form.pdf
  • Provide a resume or vitae.
  • Three (3) letters of reccomendation attached to the Request for Reference Form.pdf  
    • Academic and/or professional references from individuals who can address qualifications for graduate study in social work, academic readiness, work performance and proficiency.

Two-Step Process

To be admitted individuals must first apply to the University as a graduate student, then apply to the graduate program of their choice.

University Requirements

A Bachelor's Degree from an accredited college or university. While it is common for students to apply before a bachelor's degree has been posted on his/her transcript, a final transcript indicating date of degree completion is required prior to the 20th day of instruction.

  • A 2.5 GPA in the last 60 units of coursework is required for admission
  • Good standing at the last college or university attended.
  • Complete the on-line University application at for admission and pay a $55 non-refundable application fee.

Graduate School

It is strongly recommended that you apply to the Graduate School in advance as the University must complete processing of your University application before the MSW program will review your application to the program.

Submit one official transcript from EACH institution you have attended or are attending, including those from community colleges attended. ** Stan State Alumni, who have not attended elsewhere since graduation, do not need to submit new transcripts. Send official transcripts to:

Graduate School 
California State University, Stanislaus
One University Circle
Turlock, California 95382

Questions about the University application, contact the Graduate School at:

Office location: MSR 120
Phone: (209) 667-3129

Master of Social Work Program Requirements

Applicants must meet the following Social Work Admission Requirements.pdf

  • Complete University requirements/Graduate School application requirements
  • GPA of 2.5 required; 3.0 in the last 60 units preferred.
  • Liberal arts background demonstrated by having met the CSU general education requirements or a comparable course of study as an undergraduate.
  • Academic background including instruction in the behavioral and biological sciences related to the human condition.
  • Voluntary and/or paid experience in human services.

It is recommended that applicants complete a course in statistics and be computer literate.

*Applicants may only apply to either the Turlock campus based program OR the Hybrid Program in Stockton you cannot apply to both*

The MSW Program Admissions Committee evaluates each applicant on the basis of all submitted materials and information.  Because admission into the MSW Program is competitive and enrollment space is limited, qualified applicants may not be offered a letter of admission but can opt to be placed on a waiting list.