Last semester, the Howard University School of Social Work launched a part-time online Master of Social Work (MSW), its first online program. In Fall 2022, the school launched the full-time program online. Recently jumping in rankings to the 16th best social work program in the country, the online option makes the school’s expertise in social justice work accessible to professionals around the country.
The School of Social Work’s mission is grounded in the Black perspective: a framework that articulates how oppression, segregation, self-determination and culture inform the service of individuals and communities. The move to online course offerings has been in development at the School of Social Work for four years, as a part of the school’s strategic plan. All courses have a combination of synchronous and asynchronous content with course material developed by faculty.
“The online degree allows us to offer the MSW degree to students from diverse geographical communities. The MSW online degree continues the focus on professionals who are equipped to serve Black and marginalized populations in a range of contexts and transform oppressive systems into ones that sustain and uplift their communities. Through partnerships with human service and health networks throughout the country, we are expanding the Howard Social work brand. We anticipate our first MSW online graduates in December 2023 and a larger cohort May 2024,” said Sandra Crewe, dean of Howard University School of Social Work.
The School of Social Work's online option makes the school’s expertise in social justice work accessible to professionals around the country.”
The school had just under 300 submitted applications for September 2022 term and accepted 128 exceptionally talented students with over 50% registered as full-time students. They represented 25 states including the District of Columbia.
The full-time program can be completed in as few as 16 weeks for students attending year-round, compared to four semesters for students enrolled in the traditional program. The curriculum will include 60 credit hours and 1,000 hours of field education. Through partnerships with agencies like District of Columbia Child and Family Services Agency and more, graduates are equipped to serve Black and marginalized populations in a range of contexts and transform oppressive systems into ones that sustain and uplift their communities.
“Our initial student and course evaluations indicate that students are pleased with our instruction and noted how it broadens their lens through the introduction of the Black Perspective in Social Work Education,” said Crewe. “We hope to continue to strengthen our online MSW degree option through recruiting faculty members who bring diverse perspectives into the classroom. Additionally, I am looking forward to the opportunity to bring our online students to campus for an immersion experience.”