New changes to Distance MSW program offer more flexibility for students

distance msw students from the denver cohort in 2020 standing together and smiling
Applications are now being accepted for the next regular Distance MSW Program cohort, which meets for a limited number of in-person weekends in Boulder. Applications are also now open for the next Advanced Standing MSW Program cohort, which meets in Denver. The due date for both program applications is July 1, 2020.

To increase program accessibility for prospective MSW students, Colorado State University is streamlining its distance Master of Social Work program with fewer travel dates for in-person meetings.

CSU’s Distance MSW program is an Advanced Generalist Master of Social Work degree, with the same curriculum as its on-campus program, in a part-time schedule for balancing work and life demands.

The distance program’s combination of online and in-person coursework gives students an important opportunity for meeting face-to-face with professors and classmates. In-person weekends occur during semesters with practice-based courses, where skill development is supported in-person with faculty guidance.

“We are committed to retaining in-person components because we value the professional mentorship and critical skill building that occurs during our weekend intensives,” said MSW Program Director Amy Martonis.

Students move together through the three-year distance MSW program with the same cohort or group. Advanced Standing students who already hold a BSW degree join the cohort in the second year.

The new program format reduces the number of required in-person meetings, while still providing the opportunity to form connections with fellow students.

“We see the supportive cohort peer-dynamics as an invaluable part of this graduate experience,” Martonis said. “At the same time, we recognize students’ need for more flexibility, with less travel required, especially as they progress through the program.”

Each social work practice course will offer 16 hours of in-person class time, but over one weekend instead of two per semester. The location varies by cohort, and have been based recently in Denver, Boulder, and Fort Collins.

Altogether, the new model for distance MSW students requires six in-person sessions over a three-year program of study, in alignment with practice coursework.  All other content is offered online.

About CSU’s Master of Social Work

Colorado State University is unique among MSW programs for its Advanced Generalist curriculum that also provides elective credits to concurrently earn a Graduate Certificate. For MSW students, the School of Social Work offers on campus, distance, and Advanced Standing program options, as well as a dual degree Master of Social Work/Master of Public Health degree program in partnership with the Colorado School of Public Health.

CSU’s Master of Social Work program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

About the School of Social Work

Since the first baccalaureate social work major was first offered in 1968, Colorado State University’s School of Social Work, part of the College of Health and Human Sciences, has made a continuous effort to develop and maintain a program that is responsive to the standards of the social work profession, to the needs of human services agencies and clients in the state, and to the land-grant mission and goals of CSU. Our mission is to provide exemplary education, applied research, and transformative outreach to advance social, environmental, and economic justice; promote equity and equality; alleviate oppression; and enhance human health and well-being across local and global community systems.

The School of Social Work is part of CSU’s College of Health and Human Sciences.