M.S.W. Program options

The M.S.W. Program at VCU's School of Social Work is available in several formats so you can choose the best option for you.

Check out our explanations below to learn the differences between the online and on-campus, regular and advanced standing, and part-time and full-time options.

M.S.W. Program options comparison chart

 On campus, advanced standing, full timeOn campus, full timeOn campus, part timeOnline, advanced standingOnline, full timeOnline, part time
Credits 42 60 60 42 60 60
Format length 1 year 2 years 3-4 years 1 year 16-24 months 3-4 years
Credits per semester 12-15 15 6-9 12-15 15 6-9
Class type In person In person In person Asynchronous* Asynchronous* Asynchronous*
Start term Summer Fall Fall Fall Fall, Spring** Fall, Spring, Summer
Number of field placements 1 2 2 1 2 2
Field hours per week*** 14-21 14-21 14-21 14-22 14-22 14-22
Clinical or SWAPPP specialization**** Both Both Both Clinical***** Clinical***** Clinical*****

*Asynchronous classes are all online and completed on your own time. Each course has three live synchronous classes per course a semester.
**24-month option only available for Fall program starts.
***All field placements are in-person internships at an agency in the student’s community.
****Social work administration, planning and policy practice
*****The SWAPPP specialization will be available online starting in Fall 2023 in the regular standing format in specific curriculum tracks.

Online M.S.W. synchronous class days

In synchronous classes, students develop essential social work skills and professional competencies; and participate in activities that include live presence and interaction, collaborative teamwork, team projects, presentations, and experiential activities, such as role plays and videotaping of clinical simulations. View our 2021-22 meeting schedule. »


VCU’s B.S.W. and M.S.W. programs are accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the Council on Social Work Education — the accrediting body for all schools of social work at both the baccalaureate and master’s levels.

Financial aid

M.S.W. students can apply for support such as scholarships, assistantships and the Child Welfare Stipend Program through the school — in addition to aid accessible through VCU's Office of Financial Aid.

Have questions?

Prospective students interested in an online M.S.W. program option can contact onlinemsw@vcu.edu. For on-campus M.S.W. questions, please reach out to sswinfo@vcu.edu.