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University of Tennessee at Knoxville Online Master of Social Work, Tennessee

Why University of Tennessee at Knoxville?

The online Master of Social Work offered by this large public research university in Knoxville, Tennessee, is aimed at students with a broad undergraduate preparation. Applicants to the program should demonstrate completed coursework in at least four of these five areas: economics or mathematics; government, political science, or history; sociology or anthropology; psychology philosophy, literature, or the arts. In addition, they should have substantial preparation in the social sciences. 

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

Program Snapshot

University Name University of Tennessee at Knoxville
Location Knoxville
State Tennessee
Niche.com Grade A-
Name of Degree Master of Social Work
School or Department Administering Program College of Social Work
Credits 48
Cost per credit $626.00
Tuition for Entire Program $30,048
Test Requirements GRE Required
Minimum GPA 3.00
Prerequisite Courses and Skills Course work from at least four of the following five areas: economics or mathematics, government, political science, or history, sociology or anthropology, psychology philosophy, literature, or the arts; substantial preparation in the social sciences
Campus Visit Required? No Visit Required
Typical Time to Complete 3-4 years
When Can Students Start the Program? Fall
Program Concentrations Evidence-Based Interpersonal Practice; Organizational Leadership; Certificates in Gerontology; Forensic Social Work; School Social Work; Trauma; Veterinary Social Work
Synchronous Classes Some Y
Required Courses
  • Introduction to Interpersonal Social Work Practice
  • Interpersonal Social Work Skills Lab
  • Social Welfare Policy and Programs
  • Introduction to Macro Social Work Practice
  • Human Development in Context: Pre-Natal through Adolescence
  • Human Development in Context: Young Adulthood through Older Adulthood
  • Foundations of Social Work Research
  • Evidence-Based Practice
  • Introduction to Direct Social Work Practice
  • Generalist Field Practice Block
  • Social Justice and Anti-oppressive Practice
  • Generalist Field Practice
  • Generalist Seminar
  • Micro Social Work Practice
  • Generalist Seminar: Macro Social Work Practice
  • Advanced Field Practice
Does the Program Include a Capstone? optional capstone; required comprehensive exam
Does the Program Include a Practicum or Internship? Yes
Other Features that Make the Program Unique distinctive veterinary social work program; comprehensive exam
Program Objectives (quoted directly from the program) Demonstrate ethical and professional behavior; Engage diversity and difference in practice; Advance human rights and social, economic and environmental justice; Engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice; engage in policy practice; Engage, assess, intervene and evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities
Program Description The online Master of Social Work offered by the University of Tennessee-Knoxville required 48 credits of coursework as well as a required practicum and comprehensive exam. Students can choose between concentrations in Evidence-Based Interpersonal Practice or Organizational Leadership. Certificates in gerontology, forensic social work, school social work, trauma and veterinary social work distinguish this program. 

What will I Learn?

Like all schools accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, the University of Tennesse-Knoxville aims to produce graduates who are both ethical and professional in approach. Graduates should engage diversity and difference in practice and advance human rights and social, economic and environmental justice. Graduates are equipped to engage, assess, intervene and evaluate practice with individuals, families, groups, organizations and communities. They should also engage in practice-informed research and research-informed practice, and be involved in formulating and assessing social work policy.  

Students are required to complete Introduction to Interpersonal Social Work Practice, Interpersonal Social Work Skills and Social Welfare Policy and Programs in their first year. A course entitled Introduction to Macro Social Work Practice lays practical groundwork, while students learn more about the people they serve in Human Development in Context: Pre-Natal through Adolescence andHuman Development in Context: Young Adulthood through Older Adulthood. Research methods are taught in Foundations of Social Work Research and Evidence-Based Practice. Students gain practical skills and approaches in Introduction to Direct Social Work Practice, and within the required practicum course, Generalist Field Practice Block. Complex issues affecting the profession are addressed in Social Justice and Anti-oppressive Practice, and two Generalist Seminars, one in Micro and one in Macro social work practice.  Advanced students also complete a required Advanced Field Practice seminar to accompany their practicum work.

In contrast to many other similar MSW programs, students at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville are required to complete a comprehensive exam at the conclusion of their studies. 

How much will the program cost?

Students finish their degree within 3-4 years and pay $626.00 per credit for a total of 48 credits, or just over $30,000.

How does the program fit into my life?

Most students in this program complete their courses in 3-4 years. Classes are offered in both the synchronous format and asynchronous format. Synchronous classes are offered the same time each week, offering a chance for connection and collaboration. Asynchronous courses can be completed on a flexible schedule. No campus visit is required. Students can apply to enter the program in the Fall semester only.

Summary

With a lower overall cost and fewer prerequisite undergraduate courses than some comparable programs, the online MSW at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville offers an accessible route to a career in social work. Flexibility is offered through an asynchronous course model, but students are constrained as to when they can begin their studies, with one intake per year, in Fall.  Some students may be attracted by the comprehensive exam requirement as a way to consolidate their studies and ensure they are prepared for professional practice. Some students may find the comprehensive exam makes the UT program less attractive.