2024 Admissions Information and Guide

The 2024 Admissions Information and Guide is a comprehensive view of our admissions process.

MSW Application Information

MSW Program Options

60-credit Hybrid MSW program (Baltimore) is for students applying to the program at the Baltimore location. Clinical and Macro concentrations are available.

60-credit Hybrid MSW program (Shady Grove) is for students wishing to complete the 60-credit MSW program at the Universities at Shady Grove location.  This is only available to students interested in the Clinical concentration. 

60-credit Online MSW program is ONLY for students with a Maryland address (for the Fall 2024 cohort) who wish to complete the 60-credit MSW program. Courses are offered in online synchronous and asynchronous formats while Field practicum experiences will be in-person.  This is only available to students interested in the Clinical concentration. 

Transfer (Baltimore) is ONLY for students who are or have been enrolled in another MSW program. All transfer students should apply for the 60-credit Hybrid MSW program even though you may be awarded enough credits to be considered an advanced student. Transfer students may ONLY apply to the Baltimore campus.

36-credit Hybrid Advanced Standing MSW program (Baltimore) is ONLY for students who received their Bachelors of Social Work (BSW) degree within the last 5 years. No other credentials allow students to apply for the Advanced Standing program. Advanced Standing applicants who wish to attend the Baltimore campus must complete this application.

36-credit Hybrid Advanced Standing MSW program (Shady Grove) is ONLY for students who received their Bachelors of Social Work (BSW) degree within the last 5 years wishing to complete the 60-credit MSW program at the Universities at Shady Grove location. This is only available to students concentrating in Clinical. Advanced Standing applicants who wish to attend the Shady Grove campus must complete this application. 

Term refers to the semester/year to which you are applying (i.e. Spring/Fall 2024).

**Applicants may only submit one application for each admission cycle (Spring/Fall of the upcoming year).

MSW Application Process

Download a PDF of the MSW Application Process.

Step 1


Visit www.ssw.umaryland.edu/admissions/apply/

  • Click "Go to Application"
  • Enter Legal First and Last Name, Email, and Phone, etc.
  • Create Username and Password

Step 2


  • Select correct application (Social Work Foundation, Social Work Online, Social Work Advanced Standing or Social Work Transfer), campus (Baltimore, Shady Grove, or Online), enrollment status (full or part-time) & term (spring or fall)  
  • Enter personal demographic information and address  
  • Complete all application sections 
  • Enter personal statement essay answers into matching text boxes

Step 3


  • Certify application and click ‘submit’ button  
  • Pay $65 application fee (or submit fee waiver)

Step 4


  • Go to ‘My Account’ & click ’View’ to work on supplemental items  
  • Upload a PDF or word version of chronological resume  
  • Request official transcripts 
  • Enter accurate information for recommenders (2 for hybrid and online MSW program applicants, 3 for advanced standing) 

Step 5


  • Sign in to Track Application Status and Updates
  • Send Reminders to Recommenders
  • To complete the application, ensure all Supplemental Items have been received before the deadline 

Step 6


  • Check email for notification of an application decision  
  • Sign in to view the application decision 
  • To accept offer, pay $300 confirmation deposit 
  • Complete all steps on the ‘Accepted Students’ webpage  
Personal Statement Essay Questions

The personal statements in your application offer the Admissions Committee a glimpse into your past experiences and how you connect them to the field of social work. These statements also demonstrate your capacity for critical thinking and effective writing. Please ensure each response stays within a 300-word limit. 

  1. Describe your understanding of social work as a profession, including any relevant information from current or previous experiences (e.g. employment, volunteer, academic, and/or personal). Please also describe the reasoning behind your decision to pursue a Master of Social Work at the University of Maryland. 
  2. Define a social problem affecting a population of specific interest to you that you would want to work with in the future. Please examine the relevancy of the problem to the field of social work, how you came to identify and understand it as a social problem, societal factors that have contributed to the problem. Also address specific ways that you, as a social worker, could address the problem.
  3. Social workers are expected to work with individuals, families, groups, and communities from diverse backgrounds in a caring and respectful fashion. What is your idea of diversity? Talk about an environment you’ve been in that flourished in or lacked diversity. How did it impact you?  

Additional Online MSW Program Statement 

Online MSW applicants must also submit the following:   

  1. What experience have you had learning in an online environment? Please discuss how you thrived, and also how you managed any challenges you encountered. 
  2. Based on your experiences learning online, what measures will you put into place to balance the required online coursework and in-person field practicum experiences with any other competing life priorities? 

Additional Advanced Standing Statement 

Advanced Standing applicants must also submit a case plan with the following information:   

Please choose a direct practice example on individuals, group, family or organization and describe it, disguising names and identifying information. Please introduce the example with a brief paragraph describing the agency, its function, and its purpose.  

Case Plan description headings should include: 

  • Brief Agency description  
  • Assessment: a summary of the essential case data (age, ethnicity, race, presenting problem, history of the problem, coping abilities. If group or organization, describe the type of group/organization, membership make up, and purpose).  
  • Case plan: describe the plan and how it relates to the assessment evaluation.  
  • Interventions: describe and analyze your practice interventions and how they are related to the case plan or assessment formulation.   

Optional Statement 

Please address any other considerations (e.g. previous academic performance, financial, balancing work, family, and/or other commitments with school) that you would like the Admissions Committee to be aware of when reviewing your application.  

Applicants who have an undergraduate GPA of 2.99 or below, please use this optional statement space to explain how your previous/current educational experience helped you develop strategies to successfully maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA in our MSW program. 

Applicants who are reapplying after being dismissed from the MSW program, or who have been dismissed from another graduate program, should follow the additional instructions under the section Readmission and Reinstatement after Dismissal.

Application Fee Waiver Information

Understanding Fee Waivers: How It Works

At the University of Maryland School of Social Work, we value the contributions of various service members and alumni. To facilitate your application process, we offer fee waivers to the following groups:

  1. Americorps
  2. Peace Corps
  3. McNair/TRIO
  4. Fulbright
  5. Veterans/Active Military

If you belong to one of these groups and are awarded a fee waiver, you can submit your application without any payment. However, please note that fee waivers require proper documentation for approval (see details below), and if your fee waiver request is denied, you will be notified. In such cases, payment through credit card, check, or money order will be required to submit your application.

Documentation Requirements:

To request a fee waiver, prospective applicants must provide the following information to the admissions office:

  • Your full legal name, current address, phone number(s), email address, and any other relevant contact information.
  • A copy of your acceptance letter into Americorps, Peace Corps, McNair/TRIO, Fulbright, or proof of your status as a Veteran or Active Military member. (Veterans should submit a copy of their DD214 form, while active duty members should provide written proof of their current service).

Submission Deadline:

Please submit the proper documentation to our Admissions Recruiter, Ms. Camille Johnson, at least 7 days before the application deadline. Please note that invitation letters will NOT be accepted as proper documentation.

We value your service and commitment, and our goal is to make the application process as accessible as possible. If you have any questions or need further assistance, please do not hesitate to contact us. We are here to help you every step of the way.

Instructions for Submitting Transcripts

Official transcripts play a vital role in your application process. Please follow these guidelines for a smooth submission.

Submission Methods

  • Transcripts can be submitted either by mail or electronically to our Admission Recruiter, Ms. Camille Johnson.
  • If your school does not offer an electronic transcript option, you must request that your transcript be mailed to our address.

Mailing Address

University of Maryland School of Social Work

Attn: Office of Admissions

525 West Redwood Street

Baltimore, MD 21201

Important Note

  • DO NOT send materials to the Graduate School, as it may cause delays or cancellations in your application process.

University of Maryland College Park Transcripts

  • For transcripts from the University of Maryland College Park, please use the mailing option only. DO NOT use the electronic submission method.

Identification Information

  • Ensure your complete full legal name and social security number are clearly provided when submitting application materials by mail.

Questions or Assistance

  • Should you have any questions, comments, or suggestions, feel free to reach out to our Admissions team at admissions@ssw.umd.edu.

With multiple pathways to complete the MSW program, which one is right for you?

Hybrid MSW


60 Credit Program (Foundation)

Program Length: 2 to 4 years 

Learning Format: Majority in-person or hybrid, with some online asynchronous/synchronous classes 

Campus: Available at both Baltimore and The Universities at Shady Grove (USG) campus 

Concentrations: Choose between Clinical and Macro concentrations (USG only has Clinical) 

Application Intake: Spring and Fall semester starts 

Advanced Standing Hybrid MSW

36 Credit Program

Eligibility: Requires a Bachelor of Social Work degree

Program Length: 11 months to 2 years 

Learning Format: Majority of in-person or hybrid with some online asynchronous/synchronous classes 

Campus: Available at both Baltimore and USG campuses

Concentrations: Choose between Clinical and Macro concentrations (USG only has Clinical)

Application Intake: Spring and Fall semester starts 

Online MSW

60 Credit OMSW

Program Length: 3 years 

Learning Format: Fully online (majority synchronous courses), with an in-person field practicum component 

Campus: Fully online

Concentration: Clinical 

Application Intake: Fall semester start only 

Transfer Application


Learning Format: Majority in-person or hybrid, with some online asynchronous/synchronous classes 

Program Length: Varies, but up to 30 MSW transfer credits may be awarded. The last 30 credits of the MSW program must be completed here.

Campus: Baltimore campus

Concentrations: Choose between Clinical or Macro concentrations in Baltimore  

Application Intake: Spring and Fall semester starts 

Ready to be a Changemaker?