Supplementary Information for Application to MSW Program

The following materials must be submitted to complete the MSW application packet:
  1. A $30.00 non-refundable application fee.
  2. A completed graduate program application.
  3. An official transcript from each graduate and undergraduate institution you have attended.
  4. Student requesting to transfer from another MSW program must include a syllabus for course work, a copy of your field work evaluation and a recommendation from a faculty member of the school from which you are transferring.

Master of Social Work Requirements for Admission

Admission to the MSW program is based on an assessment of prior academic preparation, social work related employment, volunteer experience and/or participation in community activities; and intellectual and emotional readiness for graduate education.

Applicants are evaluated based on the following:

  1. A baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution of higher education.
  2. Submission of all required admission materials. In order to ensure full consideration applications should be received by March 15th.
  3. Cumulative undergraduate GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale (calculated on the last two years of undergraduate study). A limited number of applicants may be admitted with less than the minimum GPA requirement. This exception may be granted to students who have been out of school for five or more years and/or those with references indicating outstanding work experience in human service employment.
  4. A broad liberal arts background with minimum of 33 hours required in the following areas: behavioral sciences, arts and humanities and natural science, and mathematics / statistics. Most applicants will exceed these minimums.
  5. Academic credit cannot be granted for previous life or work experience.
  6. A 3-5 page double spaced essay on your career and educational objectives. Please address the following:
    1. What in your life experience motivated you to pursue a career in social work?
    2. What do you view as your personal strengths and limitations.
    3. What has been your experience with diverse populations (e.g. racial, ethnic, different abled s in field practicum over 4 semesters, please indicate how you plan to meet this commitment.(This is particularly critical for employed students!)
    4. Why do you think you would make a good social work student and an effective social worker?
    5. What are your future career goals and how will an MSW program help you meet them?
  7. A minimum of three letters of recommendation. At least one academic reference is required if you graduated within the last 3 years. Other references should include individuals who have supervised your work, internship, or volunteer experiences and can objectively assess your qualifications for the practice of social work. Advanced standing applicants must have a recommendation and/or evaluation from their undergraduate field instructor.
  8. A resume.
Students with specific academic deficiencies may be asked to complete compensatory undergraduate work prior to admission. Students who do not meet all the requirements but whose experience, achievement, etc. may warrant an exception, may be invited for a personal interview to discuss admission and explore options. Because of limited class size we are not able to accept all qualified applicants.

Note: If you have been convicted of a felony or have been arrested for a crime for which criminal charges are pending, you must attach an explanation of the nature of the crime and relevant facts. (This information cannot be used to automatically disqualify applicants.) Many agencies will require background checks prior to accepting a student for an internship.

Registration and Financial Aid

RECORDS AND REGISTRATION

The dates and basic procedures for registration are determined by the Registrar’s Office at the University; however, registration materials are distributed by the Social Work Department. Filing of additional forms, validation, and payment of fees are completed at the Cook Administration.

During or at the end of the registration process, class lists are reviewed by the Director and Dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. Adjustments may be made in order to relieve overcrowding, equalize class size, cancel classes because of insufficient registration or open new sections.

We strongly urge you to keep all bursar’s receipts, copies of official registration and grade records sent to you by the University. Also, keep all copies of materials distributed during the registration period that update academic policies.

The Registration Process

Q.WHAT DOES REGISTRATION INVOLVE?

Registration occurs prior to the beginning of each semester and is organized in two parts:

  1. Course registration at Chicago State University is conducted on campus and through the web. PIN numbers are available from advisors each semester.
  2. Payment of fees is completed at the Cook Administration Building. Keep your Bursar’s receipt for your records. Student ID cards can be obtained in the Library during formal registration.

Q. WILL I SEE AN ADVISOR PRIOR TO REGISTRATION?

Except for incoming students, all students should consult with their advisor prior to registration. Incoming students receive specific registration information and instructions in the summer prior to the beginning of classes.

Q. HOW MUCH IS TUITION?
Please contact the Bursar’s Office at (773) 995-2470 for up-to-date information on tuition charges for the Social Work Department. The Bursar’s Office is located in the Cook Administration Building. Tuition costs are also published in the semester course schedule book which is available on the web.

Q. HOW DO I GET INFORMATION ABOUT REGISTRATION?
Incoming students receive official registration information during the summer. In subsequent semesters, this information will be available in the Social Work Department several weeks before registration. Course sections and registration dates are posted in advance on the Program Bulletin Boards outside the office. Course schedule books are available 4-6 weeks prior to registration. Registration information is also available on the CSU web site.

Q. WHO HAS EXPERTISE ON THE IN’S AND OUT’S OF REGISTRATION?
If you have a problem with the registration process, contact the Registrar's Office, Room 128, (773) 995-2522. Your Academic Advisor or Program Director should be able to answer most questions or provide direction to other responsible CSU personnel.
Transfer, Waiver and Prior Graduate Credits

Q. CAN MY CREDITS FROM ANOTHER SCHOOL OF SOCIAL WORK BE ACCEPTED AT CHICAGO STATE UNIVERSITY?
Yes, up to 30 credits may be transferred if they are “B” or better. The courses must be less than 6 years old at the time of your graduation in a CSWE accredited graduate social work program. Transcripts are necessary for all courses. Please keep in mind that courses can be transferred only in the context of the School’s requirements. No academic credit is given for life experience and previous work experience. Courses that are waived to avoid duplication, may not reduce the number of hours to graduate.

Q DOES THE UNIVERSITY OR DEPARTMENT OFFER ANY FINANCIAL AID?
Yes. However, resources are primarily limited to Perkin and Stafford loans. Military scholarships may be available through the office of Veteran's Affairs (SUB 260, 773-995-2413) and who administers tuition for spouses, children of MIA/POW's and 100% disabled veterans. Most financial aid requires students to have their eligibility determined through the FASA application process. Forms available in the department of the Office of Financial Aid, Cook Building, Room 207).
The Department of Social Work offers an annual $300-$500 award from the Gladys Scott Community Scholarship Fund on a competitive basis.

Q. HOW DO I GO ABOUT TRANSFERRING MY CREDITS?
If the courses were taken as a non-matriculant at another school of social work or graduate level program, student request credit from MSW Program Director at the beginning of their second semester as a matriculated student. Course descriptions and outlines must be included. All decisions regarding transfers are made by the MSW Program Director.

Q. CAN COURSES AT THE GRADUATE LEVEL IN OTHER FIELDS BE ACCEPTABLE FOR CREDIT AT CHICAGO STATE?
Yes, up to six credits may be used to meet elective requirements, if the credits were taken in related fields in graduate level courses and not used for another degree. Final approval is made by the Program Director. The courses must be less than 6 years old at the time of graduation. Any graduate courses taken at another institution must have prior approval to receive credit in the MSW program.