Social Work M.S.W.

Social Work M.S.W.

Social Work

Advanced professional knowledge and skills for advancing your career in the field of social work

What is social work?

Social work is a field dedicated to helping others and empowering people, families and groups to effect positive change in their lives and communities. Our master’s in social work program offers flexible options tailored toward your needs. You’ll develop your professional knowledge and skills to work in fields such as healthcare, education, substance abuse, child welfare, employee assistance programs, the military and other human services disciplines.

Why study social work at UNH?

Studying social work at UNH, you’ll earn a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited MSW from an outstanding New England University. You’ll learn from full-time faculty who are passionate about social justice and experts in their field of practice. Our advanced generalist curriculum offers a wide range of elective courses, and you’ll be able to specialize in areas including disabilities; health and mental health; addictions and substance abuse; and children, youth and families. You’ll also gain hands-on experience while making a difference in your community through two local field internships.  

Potential careers

  • Child welfare case worker
  • Community health worker
  • Community outreach organizer
  • Juvenile/adult criminal justice social worker
  • Medical social worker
  • Mental health social worker
  • Public health administrator
  • Public policy analyst
  • Research assistant
  • School social worker
  • Substance abuse counselor


Request Information

The University of New Hampshire Department of Social Work is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). In keeping with the recommendations of CSWE, the Department of Social Work is committed to maintaining excellence in our programs. Through regular assessment of our programs and their effectiveness in attaining student learning outcomes, we will continue to do so. 

Curriculum & Requirements

The M.S.W. program features an advanced generalist concentration, which is the most common concentration in social work. It is very well suited for practice in rural, suburban, and urban settings and is viable for career positions where a CSWE-accredited degree is required. Completion of the M.S.W. program provides the foundation for license eligibility. 

MSW students will be able to select three electives in one or more fields of practice:

  1. Health and mental health;
  2. Addictions and substance abuse;
  3. Children, youth, and families,
  4. Disabilities; or a self-designed field of practice.

M.S.W. Degree Requirements

An M.S.W. candidate must complete 62 credit hours of 800- or 900-level courses including two, two-semester field internships, comprising a total of 1,240 hours in the field. Grades below the B­ level in a graded course or a "fail" in a credit/fail course are considered failing grades for the purposes of determining academic standing. Repeating a course does not remove the original failing grade from the record. Graduate students receiving failing grades in 9 or more credits, received either in three courses or in any combination of courses taken twice, will be dismissed from the M.S.W. program.

Although a significant portion of the curriculum is required, students will be able to complete three elective courses. At least one of these must be taken from among Department of Social Work course offerings.

Core MSW Program Advanced Generalist Courses

Core courses
SW 820Social Welfare Policy I3
SW 830Social Work Practice I3
SW 840Implications of Race, Culture, and Oppression for Social Work Practice3
SW 850Human Behavior and the Social Environment I (HBSE I)3
SW 880Field Internship I 13
SW 860Research Methods in Social Work3
SW 831Social Work Practice II: Practice in Small Groups and Community Organizations3
SW 851Human Behavior and the Social Environment II (HBSE II)3
SW 926Social Welfare Policy II3
SW 881Field Internship II 23
SW 930Advanced General Practice III: Clinical Assessment and Intervention3
SW 952Human Behavior and the Social Environment III3
SW 962Data Analysis and Statistics3
SW 982Field Internship III 34
SW 931Advanced Generalist Practice IV: Community and Administrative Practice3
SW 965Program and Practice Evaluation3
SW 983Field Internship IV 44
Select three 3-credit elective courses of social work (other graduate programs with permission):9
Women and Aging
Child and Adolescent Risks and Resiliency: Program, Policy and Practice
Social Action in the Dominican Republic
Understanding Developmental Disabilities
School Social Work
Introduction to Addiction: Assessment and Intervention
Practice with Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender People
Addiction: Myth, Science and Policy
Addiction Recovery
Adventure Therapy: Facillitation and Processing of the Experience
Intimate Partner Violence
Special Topics in Social Work and Social Welfare
Fund Development and Grantwriting
Interventions with Groups
Social Work Supervision
Theory and Practice of Family Therapy
Social Work and the Law
Total Credits62


Applications must be completed by the following deadlines in order to be reviewed for admission:

  • Fall: May 1 (Extended to June 5)
  • Spring: N/A
  • Summer: N/A
  • Special: N/A

Application fee: $65

Campus: Manchester

New England Regional: No

Accelerated Masters Eligible: No

New Hampshire Residents

Students claiming in-state residency must also submit a Proof of Residence form. This form is not required to complete your application, but you will need to submit it after you are offered admission or you will not be able to register for classes.


If you attended UNH after September 1, 1991, and have indicated so on your online application, we will retrieve your transcript internally; this includes UNH-Durham, UNH-Manchester and UNH Non-Degree work. 

If you did not attend UNH, or attended prior to September 1, 1991, then you must request one official transcript be sent directly to our office from the Registrar's Office of each college/university attended. International transcripts must be translated into English. We accept transcripts both electronically and in hard copy:

  • Electronic Transcripts: Please have your institution send the transcript directly to Please note that we can only accept copies sent directly from the institution.
  • Paper Transcripts: Please send hard copies of transcripts to: UNH Graduate School, Thompson Hall- 105 Main Street, Durham, NH 03824. You may request transcripts be sent to us directly from the institution or you may send them yourself as long as they remain sealed in the original university envelope.

Letters of recommendation: 3 required

Recommendation letters submitted by relatives or friends, as well as letters older than one year, will not be accepted.

At least one letter must attest to observed skills in a volunteer or employment setting that would be indicative of success in the social service field.

Personal Statement/Essay Questions

Applicants must provide a well-constructed double-spaced essay of 4-5 pages. Please respond to the questions below:

  1. How did you become interested in social work?
  2. What personal, academic, organizational, volunteer and/or paid work experiences have influenced your choice of social work as a profession?
  3. Briefly discuss a current social issue of great concern or interest to you.
  4. Describe some intellectual and personal attributes that you believe make you particularly suited for the profession of social work.

Statements must be included with your submitted application.


A current resume is required with your submitted application.

Additional Department Requirements

The Manchester program admits every other year, please contact the Social Work program for the current year.

Important Notes

All applicants are encouraged to contact programs directly to discuss program specific application questions.

Additional Department Requirements

Significant volunteer and/or work experience in the field is strongly recommended. Graduation from an accredited undergraduate institution with a broad liberal arts background is required.

International Applicants

Prospective international students are strongly encouraged to complete our international pre-application process and are required to submit TOEFL, IELTS, or equivalent examination scores. Please note that English Language Exams may be waived if English is your first language. If you wish to request a waiver, then please visit our Test Scores webpage for more information.

This program is normally not available to international applicants who are currently living outside of the U.S.

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