MSW/Home-School Visitor Certificate Program

In Pennsylvania, school social work is called “Home-School Visitor Certification.” Individuals with the Home and School Visitor Certification (HSV) provide professional social work services in a variety of K-12 educational institutions. The University of Pennsylvania is approved by the Pennsylvania Department of Education to prepare students to apply to the state for this certification.

Students in the MSW program who wish to complete the HSV certification complete required courses, special seminars, and a school-based field placement in order to meet the requirements set forth by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. These requirements include content on accommodations and adaptations for students with disabilities in an inclusive setting and meeting the needs of English Language Learners.

The Penn Home and School Visitor Certification program is open only to students enrolled in Penn’s Master of Social Work program. Alumni of Penn’s MSW program who have questions about getting their Home and School Visitor certification may contact the Associate Director of Academic Affairs for more information.

Certification Requirements

In order to be eligible to apply for the Home and School Visitor Certification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, students need the following:

  • SWRK 724: Developmental Disabilities;
  • One of the following courses:
    SWRK 722: Practice with Children and Adolescents;
    SWRK 742: Practice with At-Risk Youth; or
    SWRK 773: Mental Health Challenges with Children and Adolescents;
  • Education Law and Policy Seminar (offered in the spring semester; register now for the Spring 2018 seminar);
  • One field placement (or comparable work experience) in an accredited school setting under the supervision of an MSW;
  • MSW Degree; and
  • Pennsylvania Social Work License

Application and Certification Process

Becoming a certified Home and School Visitor is a two-step process. In the first step, students apply to the HSV program at Penn by submitting their intent to obtain the certification. In the second step, after students have completed all of the HSV requirements (outlined above), students submit an application to the Pennsylvania Department of Education to obtain their official certification.

Please note that BOTH steps are required. Even if students have completed the academic requirements for Home and School Visitor certification, certification is not complete or official until the certificate has been issued by the Pennsylvania Department of Education.

Students who are currently in the MSW program may inform SP2 at any time between matriculation and graduation of their intent to obtain the Home and School Visitor certification from the Pennsylvania Department of Education. Only students who have completed SP2’s intent to obtain HSV certification are guaranteed a seat in SWRK 724: Developmental Disabilities.

 

Complete the Intent to Obtain Home and School Visitor certification form.

Before submitting the state’s online application, students must:

  • Submit to SP2 their intent to obtain HSV certification;
  • Complete the academic requirements of the HSV certification (outlined above);
  • Graduate from the MSW program; and
  • Pass the Pennsylvania social work licensure exam and send a copy of your license to SP2.

To submit the state’s online application, go to the Department of Education’s TIMS website and follow the steps to create a login. The Home and School Visitor certification falls under the category of Educational Specialist.

Note: The state charges a $200 application fee as part of the certification process. You will be asked to pay this fee by credit card or money order.

Contact

Emily McCully, MSW

  • Associate Director of Academic Affairs and Global Programs

3701 Locust Walk, Caster Building, Room B-19
Philadelphia, PA 19104-6214
  • office: 215.746.4031
  • fax: 215.573.2099