Master of Social Work

In-person or online


Curriculum: Coursework focuses on training you to be an ethical and competent advanced practitioner. Through collaborative and interprofessional practice, you'll learn to follow a person-in-environment and ecological systems approach to advance individual, community, societal, and global well-being, and human rights; promote social justice, diversity, equity, inclusion, and belonging; and serve as a leader and changemaker.

Specializations: The program provides the opportunity to specialize in:

  • Play Therapy
  • Trauma-Informed Care
  • Evidence-Based Practice in Mental Health
  • School Social Work
  • Interdisciplinary Specialty Program in Autism
  • Early intervention, which may include participation in Project RISE:  Rochester Interprofessional Scholars of Early Intervention
  • Gerontology

Program options

  • 36 credits (if you have an undergraduate degree in social work) or 60 credits
  • Part-time or full-time


  • Choose in-person (on campus in Rochester, New York) or synchronous online courses, or a mix of both.

Program Options

60-credit Program

This program option is for students who have an undergraduate degree in a major other than social work.

  • The program can be completed in two years of full-time study (fall, spring, summer, fall, and spring) or three (enrolled in six to nine credits per semester with summer courses) or four years (enrolled in six credits without summer courses) of part-time study
  • Requires completion of two practicum experiences totaling 900 hours
36-credit Program (Advanced Standing)

This program option is for students who have an undergraduate degree in social work from a program accredited by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) or the Canadian Association for Social Work Education (CASWE), or from an international program evaluated by the Council on Social Work Education's International Social Work Degree Recognition and Evaluation Service (ISWDRES) as being comparable.

  • The program can be completed in one year of full-time study (summer, fall, and spring) or in two years part-time (fall, spring, summer, fall, and spring)
  • Requires completion of one practicum experience totaling 500 hours (The undergraduate practicum provides the other 400 hours needed for advanced standing qualification.)

Grant to cover 6 students

Want to work as a social worker in a high-need school? See if you are eligible for the AMPs Up MSW grant — and be sure to apply by the March 1 deadline.

Course Examples

  • SWK 508: Diagnostic Process
  • SWK 601: Individuals and Families
  • SWK 605: Cultural Humility
  • SWK 606: Ethics


36 or 60 credits, full-time or part-time


Daytime and/or evening classes


In person, hybrid, or online classes


Practicum experience and study abroad opportunities

Making Grad School Affordable

Grants, veterans benefits, loans, and public service loan forgiveness are options for paying for this grad degree.


Graduate's Perspective

"Something really special about Naz is they offer the opportunity of service trips that students can participate in; I went to Jamaica with the social work program. This was a life changing experience, I still treasure everything I learned on that trip today."

— Stephanie Colao '19, '21G, LMSW, hired as a Hillside clinician

What to Expect

  • Interprofessional, interdisciplinary course training: As part of Nazareth’s College of Interprofessional Health and Human Services, you have the opportunity to collaborate with others in multiple health professions. During the in-person, on-campus program, experiential opportunities are offered in most classes including collaborations within the York Institute for Wellness and Rehabilitation.

  • Field education: Our program partners with over 250 agencies to offer experiential learning opportunities in field education. Opportunities exist across settings where you will be part of interprofessional and collaborative teams.

  • International opportunities: Short-term study abroad trips to India, Jamaica, or Finland offer interprofessional, transformational experiences and global perspective

  • Results: Nazareth MSW students are well prepared for state licensure, and many accept social work job offers soon after graduating from the program. (Among the Class of 2022: 98% were employed within six months of graduation.)


Nazareth University's MSW program is registered with the New York State Education Department, and is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

Professional Licensure Disclosure

The Nazareth University curriculum meets the accreditation standards for the CSWE-accredited bachelor’s and master’s degrees in Social Work. Additionally, the master’s degree meets educational requirements to apply for the licensed master social worker (LMSW) examination in New York State upon graduation. The master’s degree also provides all the clinical content necessary to apply for the licensed clinical social worker (LCSW) examination in New York State. The LCSW application has additional requirements of clinical hours in post-degree employment accompanied by clinical supervision. 

At this time, Nazareth University cannot determine if the MSW program meets the licensing requirement for every state. You will want to contact the licensing board in the state in which you intend to pursue licensure for their requirements.

To obtain information for the social work license national exam, please contact the Association for Social Work Boards.

Hannah Mickle

Hannah Mickle '21, '22G, LMSW

School Social Worker, New Hartford Central School District

"This degree opened a lot of doors for me. Once I decided that I wanted to work in a school, I was able to select courses that applied to that setting. I have learned how I can continue to be a lifelong learner, which is one of my life goals. This degree has taught me so much about empathy, working with people, advocacy for others and myself, and how to take care of me while I do the work I love."

Jordan Bailey

Jordan Bailey '20, '22G

Primary Therapist for Children, Genesee Mental Health

"Nazareth's Social Work Department is very strong academically and prepares you well for your career. I felt well supported by all professors and comfortable with them. They go the extra mile for you and I felt peace of mind in the program."

Izabella Kimber

Izabella Kimber '21, '22G

Therapeutic Visitation Clinician, Society for the Protection and Care of Children

"I now have experience facilitating group therapy, play therapy, developing therapeutic programs, research, crisis intervention, non profit work, and school social work. My courses in play therapy and trauma informed care guide me most in my position working with children and their biological parents towards repairing their relationship during visitation."