Master of Social Work

  • Sherisse Laud-Hammond

    Alumni Stories

    MSW Alumna Reflects on Transformative Year as Penn Women’s Center Director

    Last year, Sherisse Laud-Hammond was named the new director of the Penn Women’s Center, a position in which she is the first Black woman and woman of color to serve. A 2005 graduate of the... Read More

  • Image of Mackenzie Fierceton

    Student Life

    SP2 Student Awarded Prestigious Rhodes Scholarship

    University of Pennsylvania May graduate who is currently completing her master’s degree at Penn's School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) has been awarded a Rhodes Scholarship for graduate study at the University of Oxford. Penn’s 2021 Rhodes Scholar... Read More

  • School of Social Policy & Practice sign on the Caster Building seen with pink azaleas.

    Faculty & Research

    SP2 Dean and Associate Professor to Serve on CSWE Guide Committee and Task Force

    Sara S. Bachman, PhD, dean of Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2) and Allison Werner-Lin, PhD, associate professor and faculty director of the Social Work in Healthcare Specialization at SP2, have been invited... Read More

Welcome to the Master of Social Work (MSW) Program at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Social Policy & Practice, one of the oldest and most well-respected social work programs in the country. Our program (ranked 10th by U.S. News and World Report) is designed to prepare social workers for leadership roles in developing and providing services to individuals, families, groups, communities and organizations in the local, national, and global arenas. With a recently redesigned curriculum, Penn’s MSW degree melds cutting-edge innovation with a rich educational tradition rooted in social justice and social change.

Highlights of Penn’s MSW Program

  • Renowned Faculty
  • Modern curriculum rooted in a tradition of social justice and social change
  • Interdisciplinary opportunities, which allow students to take elective classes in Penn’s twelve graduate schools
  • International coursework and study abroad opportunities
  • Thirteen dual degree programs
  • Certificate and specialization programs
  • Small classes (15-25 students)
  • International alumni network
  • Extracurricular activities

Why Penn?

Under the guidance of its renowned faculty, the MSW program offers students the individual attention inherent to a small school where academic advisors oversee each student’s course of study. At the same time, our students take advantage of all that an Ivy League campus has to offer, including interdisciplinary opportunities, dual degree programs, vast student resources, and an international alumni network.

The MSW curriculum is comprised of a foundation year and an advanced year. The core courses in both of these years provide students with the requisite knowledge to think critically and practice as a social worker. In the advanced year, students choose either the clinical or macro concentration. Outside of the core required courses, students have a great deal of flexibility in putting together their course of study. For example, students may choose to take electives outside of the School of Social Policy & Practice at Penn’s other eleven graduate schools, or they may choose to participate in one the certificate programs focusing on aging, child welfare, criminal justice, global human rights, prisoner re-entryhealth care, school social work, and more.

The MSW Program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

Director's Welcome

Director's Welcome

Director's Welcome

Read a message from the Faculty Director of the MSW program, Dr. Malitta Engstrom.

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Mission, Goals, & Objectives

Mission, Goals, & Objectives

Mission, Goals, & Objectives

Learn more about the mission, goals, and objects of the MSW program and view CSWE program assessment data.

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The Penn Approach

The Penn Approach

The Penn Approach

Since its founding in 1908, the University of Pennsylvania School of Social Policy & Practice has articulated a social philosophy that shapes the program.

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Program Options

Program Options

Program Options

SP2 offers four different MSW program options, enabling students to choose the course of study that best fits with their personal circumstances and career goals.

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Admissions & Application

Admissions & Application

Admissions & Application

Review admissions requirements and tuition information for the MSW program.

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Curriculum

Curriculum

Curriculum

The Master of Social Work curriculum has been developed with a strong conviction that preparation for professional practice necessitates the integration of knowledge, values and skills.

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Field Education

Field Education

Field Education

Field education is an integral part of the overall MSW curriculum.

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Contact Information

Contact Information

Contact Information

View contact information for Admissions, MSW program staff, and Field Education.

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FAQs

FAQs

FAQs

View frequently asked questions about SP2's MSW program.

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SP2 News

Sherisse Laud-Hammond

Alumni Stories

MSW Alumna Reflects on Transformative Year as Penn Women’s Center Director

Last year, Sherisse Laud-Hammond was named the new director of the Penn Women’s Center, a position in which she is...

Olivia Welsh

Student Life

Going All In: NPL Student Founds Nonprofit Consulting Agency

Let’s say that you’re a student, and you’ve just completed your undergraduate studies in the midst of a massive global...

Dennis Culhane, PhD

Faculty & Research

SP2 Professor Opens Spring 2021 Penn Population Studies Colloquium Series

The Spring 2021 programming of the Penn Population Studies Colloquium Series opened with a talk by Dennis P. Culhane, PhD, Professor...

Image of Alicia Chatterjee

Student Life, Alumni Stories

PSCSW Awards for Clinical Excellence Recognizes PhD Student

Alicia Chatterjee, PhD candidate and MSW graduate at Penn’s School of Social Policy & Practice (SP2), recently won a Pennsylvania Society...

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