Master of Social Work

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.

SP2 News

book cover of "After Campus Sexual Assault: A Guide for Parents"

Faculty & Research

New book offers lessons for parents on discussing campus sexual assault

In the guide for caregivers whose child was sexually assaulted on a college campus, Susan B. Sorenson provides advice and...

Chad Lassiter

Alumni Stories

Chad Dion Lassiter, SP2 Alum, Receives 2021 Social Worker of the Year Award

On October 26th, the National Association of Social Workers, Pennsylvania Chapter, presented Chad Dion Lassiter, Penn’s School of Social Policy...

Ezekiel Dixon-Roman sits at a table with a laptop and speaks to an audience

Faculty & Research

Ezekiel Dixon-Román on the Facebook whistleblower

In a Senate hearing earlier this month, former Facebook project manager Frances Haugen testified against the tech giant, saying that...

cover page containing title of report

Faculty & Research

New Research Underscores Role Museums, Libraries Play to Create Healthier, More Equitable America

The Institute of Museum and Library Services, in partnership with Reinvestment Fund, have released a new study, Understanding the Social Wellbeing...

Discover More