Earn your MSW degree through our online campus.
If you’re looking to earn an MSW degree online from a top-ranked school, your search ends here. Columbia School of Social Work is the first among the top five social work schools (U.S. News & World Report) to offer our MSW degree online and the first and only Ivy League school to do so.
High Academic Standards
Students in our online campus are held to the same high academic standards for which Columbia University is renowned. Our program was built, and is administered and taught, entirely by social work specialists.
Rich Field Experiences
Online students complete field placements in their own communities. Placements are managed by our Field Education Department, ensuring sites are of the same level of quality as those in New York City.
Instructional & Career Support
Online campus students can access Columbia’s online library service, writing experts, and career guidance counselors. In addition, a social work professional in the student’s community serves as an advisor on curricular and field requirements as well as career goals.
…with Some 21st-Century Elements
Each student completes an orientation to learn the features of the online learning platform, including how to access coursework, the virtual classroom and student groups. Once classes begin, live support specialists—all of whom are specially trained CSSW alumni—attend each weekly class session to assist students and instructors.
Online learning requires excellent time management, but once they’ve made the transition, most students find the environment conducive to a deep understanding of course content. Instructors can quiz students or ask simple questions and receive real-time results. They can then tailor the contents of their classes to meet students’ immediate learning needs.
New enrollees in the online campus join a cohort of students who are starting their studies at the same time. Because of the nature of online learning, students in these cohorts come to rely on each other for support and motivation. They form a network of close personal and professional relationships.
Two Campuses, One School
Thanks to videoconferencing and similar tools, the Columbia University campus is never far away.
Online campus students can:
- Join events taking place within the Social Work Building.
- Lead or participate in student caucuses.
- Write for or edit the Columbia Social Work Review.
- Win student awards.
Our online campus students are always welcome at our residential campus. Although we don’t require them to visit us, many come for orientation and/or graduation, or just to say hello. While here, they attend events, take campus tours, pick up student ID cards and Columbia University souvenirs, and explore the city.
The Hybrid Option
As technology becomes more and more integrated into classroom learning, many of our on-campus students are opting to take the occasional online course, while a few of our online students choose to switch to the NYC campus for their final year of study.
Meanwhile, we are constantly piloting new ways to bring the two campuses closer together. Fortunately, CSSW has the advantage of an established Online Campus and considerable in-house expertise. Many of our faculty members teach online and in-person courses, and are engaged in robust training programs that emphasize best practices in interactive and effective teaching approaches.