Students at the Columbia School of Social Work earn their MSW degrees by completing a progressive sequence of courses designed in accordance with the standards of the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the School’s accrediting body.

All MSW students are required to take courses in human behavior and the social environment, social welfare policy and services, research, social work practice, and field education. At CSSW, students are required to earn a total of 60 credits, along with 1,200 hours in the field.

The majority of our students complete these requirements in two years—or four semesters (fall, spring, fall, spring). They spend two days a week in class and three days a week at their field placements. The Two-Year Program begins with a required Orientation in August and concludes with graduation in May of the second academic year.

Note: If you opt to complete the degree in more or less than two years, your curriculum will vary somewhat from the standard while having the same outcome (see Degree Options).

For more information, go to CSSW Study Plans (PDF: 58 pages).