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MSW Program

The Berkeley Social Welfare Masters in Social Welfare (MSW) is a two-year, full-time program organized around five areas of concentration. Each concentration area is designed to impart the specialized knowledge and skills required for advanced practice in a specific human service system. The MSW program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

MSW Program Mission Statement

Berkeley Social Welfare's MSW Program Mission is to develop future leaders of the profession who are deeply prepared for multi-level social work in specific areas of practice. We achieve this through an education built on the strongest available evidence, oriented to advancing social justice, and responsive to the changing needs of local and global communities.

MSW Program Goals

The Berkeley MSW Program educates students for a range of social work leadership and practice roles.  Students are prepared to practice with specialized skills at specific intervention levels, and are thoroughly grounded in social science knowledge, social welfare policies, and social service organizations. 

The goals of the MSW program are organized around three central themes focused on leadership development as articulated below:

Leadership for Service:

Goal 1:     Develop visionary thought and practice leaders who are responsive to communities and individuals, draw upon the best available evidence to continuously improve social work practice and policies, and who are able to change with shifting contexts of social work.

Goal 2:    Develop leaders who can flexibly and competently practice social work across multiple ecological levels.

Goal 3:    Develop leaders who can engage effectively in collaboration with diverse communities; articulate social problems; and promote innovation in social welfare practices, programs and policies.

Leadership for Social Justice and Social Change:

Goal 4:    Develop leaders with an understanding of concepts of equality and social justice.

Goal 5:    Develop leaders with the skills to promote meaningful and productive change with and in underserved communities and vulnerable populations.

Leadership for Evidenced-informed and Competency-based Practice:

Goal 6:    Develop leaders with the capacity to utilize research to support practice, and practice to support research, and translate the best available evidence into practice principles.

Goal 7:    Develop leaders with skills to work collaboratively with numerous community partners to gather and analyze evidence that reflects the changing needs of our communities.


MSW Degree Requirements and Curriculum 

Concentrations Descriptions & Curriculum Planning Guides

Special Program Options

Program Assessment Outcomes Survey

2015-16 MSW Handbook

2014-15 MSW Handbook

Forms and Handouts for Current Students