There are 11 schools in Florida that offer Master of Social Work (MSW) degree programs. In many cases, students who have bachelor's degrees in social work or related fields can sometimes participate in advanced standing programs, which take considerably less time to complete. Full- and part-time as well as online scheduling options are offered by select schools and many curricula includes the completion of practicum or clinical elements.
Barry University offers part-time MSW programs at its Palm Beach, Fort Myers and Miami Shores campuses, as well as a full-time program at Miami Shores. The full-time program consists of 60 credits and can be completed in four semesters. Coursework includes classroom work and supervised field experiences, with courses in poverty, trauma, human development and psychopathology. Students who have a Bachelor of Social Work can complete an accelerated version of the program in just seven months.
Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University
Located in Tallahassee, Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University offers a 67-credit Master of Social Work program. The program focuses on preparing students to work with oppressed and underserved communities, especially African-American communities. Coursework draws on the experiences of these groups in order to give students a foundation for understanding and changing social policy and serving the global community. Students can expect to complete a field practicum and receive instruction in welfare policies, social work research and human behavior.
Florida Atlantic University
Florida Atlantic University features a Master of Social Work program at its main campus in Boca Raton. The program aims to train students as social work generalists, giving them a wide theoretical and practical educational base. The university offers full- and part-time program options, and students who already have training the field may qualify for the 1-year advanced standing program. In addition to participating in field experiences, students can expect to gain instruction in diversity, human behavior and welfare policy.
Florida Gulf Coast University
Located in Fort Myers, Florida Gulf Coast University offers a Master of Social Work program that consists of 60 credits. Twelve of those credits consist of fieldwork with a social work agency, giving students 500 hours of experience each year of the program. Students who pursue the degree full time can complete the program in two years. The first year of the program covers foundational concepts in the field, and the second year focuses on clinical training and interventions with small systems, such as families or individuals. Students who qualify for the advanced standing program option can finish it in one year.
Florida International University
Florida International University (FIU) is located in Miami and has a Master of Social Work program. The curriculum is tailored on an individual basis by students and faculty to meet each student's career goals. Coursework includes classroom work and practicum experiences in order to give students a broad understanding of human behavioral science and the social environment. Students who have a bachelor's degree in the field may qualify for the advanced standing program and can skip the foundational coursework that makes up the first year of the program.
Florida State University
Located in Tallahassee, Florida State University offers a Master of Social Work program that educates students in five areas of the field in order to provide students with a broad knowledge base. The program offers concentration options in clinical social work or social policy and administration. The program is offered in full- and part-time formats, and students who choose the clinical concentration can also opt for an online program. Students in the standard program must complete 61 credits of coursework, and those who qualify for the advanced standing program only have to complete 39 credits.
Saint Leo University
Saint Leo University is located in Saint Leo and offers its MSW program online to residents of Virginia, Florida and Georgia. The program allows students to have live interaction with faculty through the use of webcams. Students with advanced standing can complete the program in one year, while the standard full-time program takes two years to complete, and the part-time version takes three years to finish. Students complete 30 credits of foundational coursework in their first year, followed by 32 credits of coursework in their second year.
University of Central Florida
This school's main campus, located in Orlando, features a Master of Social Work program that can be completed in full- and part-time formats. Students in the part-time program take two courses each semester, and these courses may be offered in online or on-campus formats. Students must complete a total of 1,050 hours of clinical experience throughout the program. In addition to required core courses, students may have the opportunity to take electives in children services, spirituality in counseling, interventions and abuse treatment/prevention. The school also offers part-time versions of the program at its Daytona Beach and Valencia Osceola campuses.
University of South Florida
The University of South Florida is located in Tampa and offers a Master of Social Work program that consists of 60 credits of coursework. The curriculum covers topics like human behavior and social environment, social work practice, policy and services and social work research. The program takes can be completed in four semesters by full-time students and seven semesters by part-time students. Students who already have a bachelor's degree in the field may only be required to complete 48 credits of coursework. The program requires all students to complete 12 credits of field experience as well.
University of West Florida
Located in Pensacola, the University of West Florida offers a 60-credit Master of Social Work program that is available to part- and full-time students. The first 30 credits of the program consist of foundation courses that provide students with instruction in the theory, practice and history of social work. The second half of the program is focused primarily on clinical practice experiences and advanced courses. Each field experience consists of 300 hours of training. Students in the advanced standing version of the program only need to complete 30 credits of study.
Students who wish to become licensed as clinical social workers in the state of Florida must first complete a master's degree program that's accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. Following graduation, aspiring social workers must gain two years (1,500 hours) of experience working under a licensed professional and pass the exam created by the Association of Social Work Boards.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type and Setting||Social Work Master's Degrees Offered||Graduate Tuition and Fees (2018-2019)|
|Barry University||4-year, private not-for-profit; large suburb||Master of Social Work||$17,820*|
|Florida Agricultural and Mechanical University||4-year, public; midsize city||Master of Social Work||$9,876 in-state; $23,965 out-of-state*|
|Florida Atlantic University||4-year, public; small city||Master of Social Work||$6,657 in-state; $17,885 out-of-state*|
|Florida Gulf Coast University||4-year, public; large suburb||Master of Social Work||$8,961 in-state; $30,157 out-of-state*|
|Florida International University||4-year, public; large suburb||Master of Social Work||$11,097 in-state; $23,578 out-of-state*|
|Florida State University||4-year, public; midsize city||Master of Social Work||$11,553 in-state; $25,985 out-of-state*|
|Saint Leo University||4-year, private, not-for-profit; small suburb||Master of Social Work||$8,498*|
|University of Central Florida||4-year, public; large suburb||Master of Social Work||$8,872 in-state; $27,715 out-of-state*|
|University of South Florida||4-year, public; large city||Master of Social Work||$10,428 in-state; $21,126 out-of-state*|
|University of West Florida||4-year, public; small city||Master of Social Work||$9,062 in-state; $24,140 out-of-state*|
Source: *NCES College Navigator.