Master of Social Work Degree

The MSW program is a 2-year program and is offered every two years.

Why earn a Master of Social Work degree?

Graduates of the MSW program at UFV will be able to demonstrate:

  • a critical understanding of social work theory, social problems, and the development of policy initiatives and processes in social work
  • a core professional knowledge base for advanced assessment and intervention
  • advanced competence in social work practice and research
  • skills and knowledge that advance the principles of social justice, including the analysis of social policies and practices
  • critical thinking for the analysis of social work knowledge, skills, and values
  • a commitment to self-directed and life-long learning
  • an ability to articulate ethical social work practice
  • ways in which individual professional practice is systematically evaluated.

Why earn my master's degree at UFV?

Our MSW program builds on the success of the School of Social Work and Human Services’ successful BSW program, and draws on the expertise of the School’s experienced and diverse faculty members. Strong relationships and consultation with community agencies in the Fraser Valley and Lower Mainland enhance the delivery of our MSW, particularly in terms of practicum placements and supervision.

Our program goals include respect for Aboriginal self-determination and a commitment to working in partnership with local First Nations communities. As well, the MSW encourages students to integrate principles of anti-oppressive and cross cultural social work into their practice frameworks. Our program also emphasizes social work education through practices and partnerships that respect ethno-cultural diversity, development through research, and collaborative community work.

These goals are consistent with the principles of inclusion and social justice, and the mandates of UFV, the BC College of Social Workers, and the Canadian Association for Social Work Education.

What is the focus of the MSW program at UFV?

UFV's MSW is a five-semester, two-year program comprised of 30 credits, including a 450-hour practicum. 

The program’s core courses and electives are designed to develop a broad professional competency base at the graduate level. Core courses provide a comprehensive perspective on supervision and leadership, the integration of anti-oppressive and cross-cultural practice in social work, social policy, and advanced assessment techniques.

Based on your interests and career path, you will select one elective course (Health, Children and Families, or Mental Health), and complete a major paper/project in your area of interest.

Generally classes are online with two or three face-to-face classroom and online learning.

What do I need to get in?

Academically you must hold a Bachelor of Social Work degree from an accredited program, with a minimum overall grade of B (75-79%) - GPA 3.00.   

Professionally, you must have at least two years (3,600 hours) of documented employment in social services, social work, or a closely related field.

UFV will admit approximately 20 students based on a two-year cohort model. Admission is competitive and is based on seat availability, so you are encouraged to submit your completed application package in a timely manner. Meeting the minimum standard does not guarantee your admission.

Please see General Regulations for Graduate Studies in the UFV calendar at

Who will be teaching me?

Learn more about the accomplished faculty in UFV's School of Social Work and Human Services on our faculty contact page. You will be interacting with highly qualified instructors and researchers who have decades of experience in the field of social work, both locally and in locations across the globe.

How much will it cost?

UFV’s MSW is conveniently delivered in the Fraser Valley, allowing you to live at home and carry on working full-time while you earn your MSW.

Graduate fees are subject to change, but for 2014/15 are $537.82 per credit, or $1653.66 per 3-credit course, for a total MSW program tuition cost of $16,134.  Ancillary student fees are an additional cost of $147.40 per semester. Textbooks and travel costs are also your responsibility. For up to date cost information, visit the Academic Calendar.

What sort of support will I have?

While earning your MSW, there may be times when you need to seek program advice or just get some helpful information.

Our program advisor and academic advisor will work with you to ensure you have the correct resources, information, and advice that will guide you throughout your program of study.

How do I apply?

Your application must include the following items, otherwise it will be deemed incomplete, and not considered for admission. Visit Application Forms and Relevant Documents to find the forms you need.

  1. UFV application for MSW Graduate Studies (including the $75 processing fee)
  2. Official sealed transcripts for all previous post-secondary credit, including courses in-progress, to be mailed directly from the issuing institution to Office of the Registrar (OREG) at UFV.
  3. Detailed personal resume organized chronologically, starting with most recent, including position title, name of immediate supervisor, start and end dates, and whether the experience was full or part-time. Please include research experience, publication lists, related interests, skills, etc.
  4. Work hours summary sheet to be completed by each applicant, clearly listing and totaling the number of hours worked in all relevant human/social service related positions (paid and volunteer). This will determine applicant eligibility under the required 3,600 hours of related work experience.
  5. Three professional letters of reference with at least one referee addressing your most recent academic experience and potential, and at least one from a supervisor, addressing the demonstrated skills and abilities in your most recent related work experience. These letters must be on the official reference forms for the MSW available on our Application Forms and Relevant Documents page.
  6. Declaration of Concentration Form indicating your preferred elective concentration.
  7. A personal statement (to be assessed and rated), typed and double spaced, about 1,500 to 2,000 words in length, clearly addressing the following (no more than 500 words under any one section heading):

BSW Applicants

  • What experiences have motivated you to continue your social work education?
  • Describe at least two recent professional experiences that demonstrate your capacity for innovative and independent thinking.
  • Describe your most substantial accomplishment within your professional practice, particularly as it relates to your ability to uphold the Social Work Code of Ethics.
  • Select a social issue of personal importance, explain why the issue is important to you, and discuss how you believe a Social Worker should facilitate change to address or resolve the issue.  

When should I apply?

Your application package should be mailed to UFV Office of the Registrar (OREG) by January 30, 2016 for you to be considered and admitted to the September 2016 cohort.

I have more questions... 

More detailed information about our MSW can be obtained by emailing the Program Advisor, at

We look forward to hearing from you!

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