Young woman is using a laptop computer is her comfortable living

George Mason University Online Master of Social Work, Virginia

Why George Mason University?

The online Master of Social Work program at George Mason University attracts a variety of students to this large public research university in Fairfax, Virginia.  Applicants to the program should hold an undergraduate degree in any subject, with required prerequisite courses in Statistics, English Composition, History or Government and Social Science. 

Standardized test scores are not required, and a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.00  is expected.  

Program Snapshot

University Name George Mason University
Location Fairfax
State Virginia
Niche.com Grade B+
Name of Degree Master of Social Work
School or Department Administering Program Department of Social Work
Credits 60
Cost per credit $795.00
Tuition for Entire Program $47,700
Test Requirements No
Minimum GPA 3.00
Prerequisite Courses and Skills Statistics, English Composition, History or Government, Social Science
Campus Visit Required? No Visit Required
Typical Time to Complete 3 years
When Can Students Start the Program? Fall
Program Concentrations Children, Youth, and Families; Adults and Healthy Aging
Synchronous Classes N
Required Courses
  • Foundations of Social Work and Social Welfare
  • Human Behavior and Social Systems
  • Community Practice Across the Life Course
  • Poverty, Oppression, and Inequity
  • Organizing and Advocating for Change
  • Foundations of Direct Practice
  • Research Methods for Social Workers
  • Generalist Field Practicum and Seminar I and II
  • Psychopathology
Does the Program Include a Capstone? No
Does the Program Include a Practicum or Internship? Yes
Other Features that Make the Program Unique Students can earn both an MSW and a Master of Science in Conflict Analysis & Resolution; proximity to national capital; emphasis on social change; faculty research on human trafficking, etc
Program Objectives (quoted directly from the program) To prepare social workers with knowledge and advanced skills in direct and clinical practice, organizational leadership, social policy, and community practice to enhance social functioning and alleviate poverty, oppression, and injustice; To prepare ethical social work leaders who facilitate positive social change locally, nationally, and globally through direct and clinical services, advocacy, social action, and community empowerment in diverse social, cultural, political, and organizational contexts; To prepare social workers with appropriate knowledge and skills for practice with culturally diverse colleagues and client systems including veterans, LGBTQ populations, economic, religious and racial diversity and human trafficking in a variety of professional contexts; To prepare social workers who contribute to the social work profession through continuous professional development and leadership activities that promote competent social work practice.
Program Description This 60-credit program prepares students to contribute to practice and policy in the social work field. A capstone is not required but all students must complete a practicum.  Students can concentrate in Children, Youth, and Families or Adults and Healthy Aging. The department has special expertise in human trafficking issues.

What will I Learn?

The George Mason University social work program aims to prepare social workers with knowledge and advanced skills in direct and clinical practice, organizational leadership, social policy, and community practice to enhance social functioning and alleviate poverty, oppression, and injustice. The curriculum is designed to prepare ethical social work leaders who facilitate positive social change locally, nationally, and globally through direct and clinical services, advocacy, social action, and community empowerment. Working in diverse social, cultural, political, and organizational contexts, graduates will have appropriate knowledge and skills for practice with culturally diverse colleagues and client systems including veterans and LGBTQ populations. They will engage with economic, religious and racial diversity and understand the issue of human trafficking. Graduates will contribute to the social work profession through continuous professional development and leadership activities that promote competent social work practice.

All students take an introductory course in Foundations of Social Work and Social Welfare. Students learn to understand their clients in Human Behavior and Social Systems and Poverty, Oppression, and Inequity. Students learn key professional skills in Community Practice Across the Life Course, Foundations of Direct Practice and Psychopathology. Leadership and administrative competencies are covered in Research Methods for Social Workers, Organizing and Advocating for Change. The required practicum experience is accompanied by Generalist Field Practicum and Seminar I and II. 

Students may choose to pursue a dual degree in Social Work and Conflict Analysis & Resolution. Students can choose to specialize in one of the following concentrations: Children, Youth, and Families; Adults and Healthy Aging. 

How much will the program cost?

Students finish their degree within 3 years and pay $795.00 per credit for a total of 60 credits, or just under $48,000.

How does the program fit into my life?

All classes are asynchronous , meaning that students complete coursework on their own schedule each week, including watching pre-recorded lectures and participating in online discussion. No campus visit is required. Most students complete the program within 3 years. Students can enter the program in the Fall.  etc

Summary

With its proximity to the national capital and its curriculum emphasis on social change, the George Mason University online Master of Social Work program will likely attract applicants who are interested in administration, policy and government aspects of social work practice. Faculty have expertise in human trafficking issues and students can earn a dual degree combining social work and Conflict Analysis and Resolution. In terms of price, the GMU program is in the middle of the range for comparable programs. Coursework is flexible and the curriculum is comprehensive.