Admissions Requirements

Applicants for admission to the DSW program are required to:

  • Hold a master’s degree in social work from an accredited social work degree program;
  • Have three years post-MSW practice experience;
  • Provide three letters of reference (one academic and at least one from a supervisor of your clinical work);
  • Submit a sample of written work that reflects the applicant’s abilities as a writer and demonstrates potential for doctoral study; and
  • Complete an application essay, responding to the following questions:
    • What factors have contributed to your decision to pursue a doctoral degree in clinical social work at Penn, and what do you expect to gain through advanced studies?
    • What conceptual framework do you use in your clinical work? How, if at all, has it changed since you received your Masters in Social Work?
    • Describe a challenging case or professional situation that you have encountered, where you were in the role of social work practitioner, supervisor, administrator, or teacher. Discuss how you intervened and explain how you used practice knowledge, theory, and/or research to guide your decision-making and interventions.
    • Discuss an issue that you wish to explore in-depth through your doctoral studies. Include in your discussion how your exploration of this issue will contribute to the social work knowledge base.

Application deadline: February 15th

Apply Online

Tuition & Fees

SP2 News

AJ Ortiz

Student Life

MSSP Partners with CHILD USA to Offer Social Science Fellowship Program

The Master of Science in Social Policy (MSSP) program at Penn’s School of Social Policy and Practice (SP2) has partnered...

Vet students listen to instructor

Student Life

Penn SP2, Penn Vet Develop Dual Degree Program

Interdisciplinary education is the bedrock of new academic programs forming at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine (Penn...

Faculty & Research

Penn on the World after COVID-19

Penn on the World after COVID-19 is a joint project of Penn Global and Perry World House. In this series,...

Black Lives Matter sign

Student Life

Message to the SP2 Community, August 27, 2020

Dear Members of the SP2 Community, Again, another appalling tragedy. The unnecessary and tragic shooting of Jacob Blake, the subsequent demonstrations,...

Discover More