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Admission Requirements

Preparing your application to graduate studies at York University and/or other interested universities requires research and planning. Some students start preparing their plan for graduate studies as early as two years before they submit their application. Consider the following information below to help guide you through a successful application process. The School of Social Work also hosts numerous MSW and PhD Info sessions and we encourage anyone to attend.

The Advanced Standing (Full– or Part–time) Master of Social Work program is open to graduates of recognized universities with:

  • a BSW or an equivalent honours undergraduate social work degree accredited by a recognized professional social work education body equivalent to the Canadian Association of Social Work Education;
  • at least a B+ average in the last two years of study;
  • a minimum of two years of related social work experience (paid and/or voluntary) is preferred (but not required).

Individuals who do not have a BSW, but have completed the first year of a two-year MSW degree (including Practicum) are eligible to apply as well. This first year of MSW work is the basis of admission only and will not count towards credit towards the York MSW.

Our MSW program takes an approach to research and teaching that places oppression and marginalization (through race, class, ability, sexual orientation, age, gender, and religious/spiritual affiliation) as central to understanding how people who use social services are constructed as "in need". We teach students to reflect critically on personal and professional practice in light of possibilities and constraints created by the social construction of knowledge and practice. Students graduate prepared to conduct advanced social work practice in a manner that is sensitive to issues of difference, including a complex understanding of the dynamics of social location in practice contexts.

The Two–year (Full-Time) MSW program is geared toward applicants with a passion for social work and who currently have:

  • an honours degree in another related discipline. Related disciplines may include Social Sciences, Sociology, Political Science, Public Policy, Gender Studies, Journalism, Education, International Development Studies, Health-related Studies, etc. We look for candidates with a degree from a recognized university, with a minimum B+ average in the last two years of study.
  • a research methods course in a related discipline that covers qualitative methods or both qualitative and quantitative methods
  • they must also have relevant professional, volunteer or personal experiences that demonstrate a commitment to social justice and the potential for social work practice. A minimum of two years of experience in social work/social justice work (paid and/or voluntary) is preferred (but not required).

Emphasizing critical social work practice, the two–year MSW will equip students with the knowledge and skills they need to advance their careers. You will graduate with the same level of knowledge and skills as any other MSW social work student at York — prepared for leadership roles focused on the promotion of social justice and the pursuit of social transformation, as well as for further study at the doctoral level.

Have a minimum B+ average from the Master's degree (MSW or a related discipline) and have completed at least one social work degree (BSW or MSW). In exceptional cases, applicants who do not have a social work degree may be considered if they have a related degree. In such cases, applicants must also demonstrate extensive experience in social welfare, or community/social services.

Learn More

The Graduate Program in Social Work at York is an exciting environment to pursue innovative, socially engaging, career-ready education. Contact our Graduate Program Engagement Coordinator for information.