Master of Social Work (MSW) Programs in Ohio
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Social workers take on a critical role in society — they aid people who may not otherwise have resources to help themselves, like children, the elderly, or those grappling with substance use.
This important career path can certainly be challenging, and social workers must go through plenty of schooling and training for their jobs. To become a fully independent social worker in Ohio, you need a master of social work (MSW) and the right qualifications.
This guide offers a breakdown of what you can expect from social work programs in Ohio, and how they can give you an essential boost in your career.
At a Glance: Social Work Programs in Ohio
11 colleges and universities in Ohio offer CSWE-accredited MSW programs.
Ohio has a high employment of social workers compared to the rest of the country, especially substance misuse social workers.
Government data shows the social work industry could increase by 5-15% in the next decade.
CSWE-Accredited MSW Programs in Ohio
When looking for an MSW program, make sure your potential schools hold accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education accreditation (CSWE). All of the programs in this directory have CSWE accreditation
|University||Location||Available Concentrations||Enrollment Type|
|Case Western Reserve University||Cleveland, OH||Aging; Children, Youth, and Families; Community Practice for Social Change; Health; Mental Health; School Social Work; Substance Use Disorders and Recovery||Full-Time, Part-Time, Online, Advanced Standing Option|
|Cleveland State University||Cleveland, OH||Clinical Social Worker or Advanced Generalist Social Worker||Full-Time, Part-Time, Online, Advanced Standing Option|
|Ohio State University||Columbus, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Online, Advanced Standing Option|
|Ohio University||Athens, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Online, Advanced Standing Option|
|Bowling Green State University||Bowling Green, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|Miami University||Middletown, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|University of Akron||Akron, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|University of Cincinnati||Cincinnati, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|University of Toledo||Toldeo, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|Wright State University||Fairborn, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
|Youngstown State University||Youngstown, OH||N/A||Full-Time, Part-Time, Advanced Standing Option|
Popular Online Social Work Programs
Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.
What to Expect from an MSW Program in Ohio
MSW programs give students the tools they need to work as independent social workers, dedicating their careers to helping the vulnerable in society. Students learn skills such as case management, therapeutic intervention, grant writing and advocacy approaches.
Students can find 11 CSWE-accredited MSW programs in Ohio. Some of these programs cater to incoming students who already have a bachelor's degree in the field, whereas others admit students from backgrounds other than social work.
These programs can last 1-3 years, and sometimes longer, depending on a student's qualifications and the program format.
MSW candidates can find both online and traditional MSW programs to prepare them for licensure. They can enroll in accelerated, full-time and part-time programs. Along with advanced theory classes, students also go into the field to participate in supervised experience — regardless of whether they choose distance or on-campus learning.
Some programs allow students to choose a concentration, such as:
- Mental Health
- Health and aging
- Children and families
- Substance use disorders and recovery
- School social work
How to Apply to an MSW Program in Ohio
Prospective MSW students can apply to two types of MSW programs in Ohio: programs that require a bachelor of social work (BSW) for admission, and programs that allow bachelor's-degree holders from any discipline to apply.
Beyond the type of undergraduate degree applicants hold, these programs may come with other requirements, too. Those could include a minimum undergraduate GPA, a professional resume, reference letters and essays or statements of purpose. Some schools might require GRE scores, although many do not.
Additionally, students without a BSW might need to have completed undergraduate prerequisite courses like psychology and statistics.
What You Can Do With an MSW in Ohio
Requirements to become a social worker vary in every state. In Ohio, students who complete their MSW degrees often go on to qualify for their Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) credential. Candidates for the LISW also need to carry out 3,000 hours of supervised post-degree experience, and they also must pass the Advanced Generalist - Clinical social work qualification exam.
Professionals with master's degrees who wish to further their career can also qualify for the Licensed Independent Social Worker - Supervisor (LISW-S) credential. These high-level social workers can oversee candidates who carry out supervised experience before they earn their license. Social workers need to first work for a full year before they qualify for the LISW-S.
Salaries also vary for social workers, depending on location, area of expertise and experience. Generally speaking though, social workers in Ohio earn an average wage between about $48,000 and $59,000, according to figures from the Bureau of Labour Statistics (BLS).
Everything Else You Need to Know About MSW Programs in Ohio
How long does it take to complete an MSW in Ohio?
The time it takes to complete an MSW in Ohio depends on several factors. Students who already hold a BSW can complete their degree in one year if they enroll full-time, or two years if they prefer part-time study. Incoming students without a BSW may take 2-3 years — or sometimes longer — to graduate, depending on their study format.
What careers are available with an MSW in Ohio?
Often MSW graduates use their degrees to become licensed social workers (LSWs) in Ohio. A master's degree also qualifies professionals to work as an LISW or a LISW-S, which provides more career opportunities in the state.
What skills will you learn with an MSW in Ohio?
An MSW builds upon the skills that students learn in a BSW, or it introduces and expands on those skills for students coming in from other disciplines. These skills include communication, problem-solving, case management tools, advocacy, and conflict management.
Are social workers in demand in Ohio?
Yes, social workers are in demand in Ohio. Data show that Ohio can expect to see an increase in the number of social workers in the next decade. Projections Central, which uses federal data, projects that from 2020 to 2030:
- The number of mental health and substance misuse social workers could increase by 14.7%
- The number of child, family, and school social workers could grow by 11.2%
- The number of healthcare social social workers could increase by 9.3%
- The number of other social workers could increase by 7.4%