Program description

The Statewide Blended Advanced Standing Clinical MSW Program admitted its first cohort of students in the summer of 2013, with a new cohort of students admitted every year since then. Students complete this program through a unique blend of face-to-face instruction, videoconferencing, and online learning. The first year of the program starts with the annual Summer Institute (mid-June), followed by online coursework during the fall and spring semesters. For the second year of the program, students attend regional meetings linked through ITV (videoconference) one Saturday per month during the fall and spring semesters. In between these regional meetings, coursework is completed online, providing greater flexibility for students who wish to continue working while completing the MSW Program. All MSW programs are fully accredited by CSWE.

Admissions process

The application deadline is January 10 of each year for all MSW programs. Detailed admissions information is available on our website at The entire admissions process is completed online, and online applications open in September.

Specific requirements for admission:

  1. A bachelor’s in social work degree from a program accredited by the CSWE and granted within the last six years.
  2. A minimum grade-point average (GPA) of 3.25 (on a 4.0-point scale) during the last 60 credits of undergraduate study.
  3. One official transcript sent directly from your degree-granting institution. If fewer than 60 credits, include transcripts from previous colleges and/or universities attended.
  4. Evidence of personal qualities considered important for the practice of social work.
  5. Evidence of strong academic writing skills.
  6. Prior academic work reflecting a liberal arts perspective that provides the basis of social work graduate education, including at least 19 semester credits in humanities and social and natural sciences.
  7. Three recommendation letters (one specifically from field practicum) and/or prior academic and work experience (paid and/or volunteer).
(Note: The GRE is not a requirement for admission into any of the MSW programs.)

Admission will be determined by a combination of factors including: grade point average, length and type of work and volunteer experience, letters of reference addressing the applicant’s academic and professional potential, writing ability, diversity, and assessment of the applicant’s commitment to social work and capacity for the profession.

In addition, applicants for the Statewide Blended Advanced Standing MSW Program must:

  • Live more than 50 miles from the East Lansing, Oakland, AND Saginaw campuses and, if out of state, must live within 50 miles of the Michigan border.
  • Have easy access to high-speed Internet service (not dial-up) on a regular basis.

Once admitted into the program and before the first course starts in June, students are asked to complete an online assessment and orientation program (OAOP) on how to learn effectively in the online environment.

Schedule of courses and concentrations

The Statewide Blended Advanced Standing Program is a 38-credit, 2-year, part-time, year-round program. The first year of the program is focused exclusively on academic courses, while the second year of the program combines academic courses with field education. Students can choose between Clinical Practice and Organization and Community Leadership (OCL) concentrations. Students who choose the OCL concentration are required to commute to Lansing for some classes or take part via teleconference.

Field education

Students in the Statewide Blended Advanced Standing MSW Program complete the field education requirement of the program during the second year of the program. Students spend 16 hours per week for 2½ semesters in human service organizations that are affiliated with the University, totaling 600 hours over the course of 2½ semesters. Every attempt is made to locate field placements close to where students live or work. Employment-related field placements are not available for Advanced Standing students.


The Summer Institute is hosted at the Kellogg Hotel and Conference Center on MSU’s main campus in East Lansing. Once admissions decisions have been made, regional locations are selected based on where students live and technology availability. The locations of the regional meetings are specific to each cohort. To date, regional meetings have taken place in Marquette, Gaylord, Mt. Pleasant, Grand Rapids, Battle Creek, Saginaw, and Oakland.

Contact information

MSU School of Social Work
655 Auditorium Road
Room 239 Baker Hall
East Lansing, MI 48824 USA