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School of Social Work
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School Social Work

The Certificate Program in School Social Work is for students who wish to work as a school social worker upon graduation from the MSW program, or focus on work with school-age children and adolescents. Courses for the Certificate Program in School Social Work are all taught online. One year of field placement in schools is also required. Completing the requirements of this certificate program will also fulfill the eligibility requirements for a recommendation of temporary approval as a School Social Worker. Open only to Clinical Social Work students in their concentration year.

Obtaining the certificate is an internal process within the MSU School of Social Work, provided as a means of demonstrating specialization and competence particular to working in schools.

Please note: You do not need to obtain the certificate in order to become eligible for temporary approval as a School Social Worker in the state of Michigan, although doing so serves as a formal mechanism representing your commitment and knowledge to this specialization. If scheduling or other restrictions prevent you from obtaining the certificate you still may meet the requirements during your MSW Program and the Coordinator of the Certificate Program will assist you in doing so.

For the Certificate Program in School Social Work you are required to complete at least one placement in a school setting. The state of Michigan does not require completion of a placement in a school setting. You are eligible for temporary approval with the completion of an MSW degree and the three specified courses.

How to apply

Currently enrolled MSW students may apply for admission to this certificate program. Students who have already earned the MSW degree are not eligible for the certificate program. Interested students must submit their certificate application at the time they submit their field application to the Field Office.


Download Certificate Program Application Form (pdf)

Applications must be submitted to:

Graduate Office

655 Auditorium Road
Baker Hall Room 239

East Lansing, MI 48824-1118

Students currently enrolled in the MSW program may contact Mark Nester, LMSW, for more information about how this certificate program assists students to prepare for temporary approval as a school social worker.

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We are dedicated to educating students for competent, responsive, and ethical social work practice. Our teaching, research, and outreach seek to promote positive change and social justice for diverse communities, organizations, groups, families, and individuals.
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