About the MSW Online

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The online Master of Social Work (MSW) program provides the same quality professional education that our campus-based programs offer. We proudly educate social work professionals to work effectively with diverse individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities to optimize human potential for productive participation in society. Our Advanced Generalist Curriculum prepares students for effective advanced intervention with client systems of various sizes and to work in any setting where social workers are employed.

Preparing You to Make the World a Better Place

  • Earn a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited MSW from an outstanding New England University.
  • Complete your coursework at home and field internships in your community.
  • No campus visits are required at any time.
  • Learn from full-time faculty who are passionate about social justice and experts in their field of practice.
  • Earn a Graduate Certificate in Intellectual and Development Disabilities while completing your degree.
  • Use your professional skills to improve the quality of life for people in your community. 

A Program That Works Around Your Schedule

The online MSW program is ideal for working professionals, single parents, and anyone looking to enhance or move into careers such as health care, education, mental health, child care, substance abuse, child welfare, employee assistance programs, the military and other human service oriented environments. The online environment provides new learning opportunities and creates direct relationships between students and instructors.

  • The majority of the 20 required courses are provided asynchronously, meaning you do not need to log into a course at any specific time, rather you may complete required readings, discussion boards, and other course assignments on your own time as long as you meet assignment deadlines.
  • There are several courses that do have a synchronous component which requires students to log into a course at a designated time for a live class (typically held Monday or Wednesday evenings).

The flexibility that online education provides can make earning your MSW a reality.

Maintaining Quality and Integrity of Social Work Education

All online courses are designed by full-time faculty in the Department of Social Work. Additionally, full-time faculty share responsibility for teaching the core social work online courses and also provide guidance, mentorship, and oversight of all courses taught by faculty outside the Department to guarantee exceptional educational quality. Maintaining a personal connection with each student is a priority for our faculty. Doing so in an online environment presents challenges but also unique opportunities. We provide personal connections through use of technologies such as Skype and Zoom to provide advising and mentorship that is essential to becoming a professional social worker.

Frequently Asked Questions

Is this program accredited?

The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and UNH is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

What are my career opportunities with an MSW?

Social Workers practice in a very wide variety of employment settings including advocacy networks and organizations, child care, child welfare, disability, education, health care, employee assistance programs, juvenile and adult criminal justice, mental health, substance abuse, the military and other human service oriented environments. Additionally, national labor statistics demonstrate faster than average occupational growth through 2020 for social workers.

How do I become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker?

Graduates who wish to become a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) must complete a minimum of two years of work experience under the supervision of a LCSW, and then satisfy the specific requirements imposed by the state(s) in which they hope to practice. Individual state requirements vary, but each includes a fee. We strongly encourage you to become familiar with the licensure requirements expected in the states in which you expect to practice. To easily view the requirements of each state, please visit the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) website.

For your convenience, here are an additional pair of links that provide general information about licensure in each of the United States: http://www.socialworklicensure.org/ and http://socialworklicensemap.com/  We strongly recommend that students also contact your state licensure board to investigate their specific requirements.

How do the field internships work?

Students are required to complete two field internships at a program or agency in their local community. Students will work with Department of Social Work’s field office to identify acceptable field sites. Find out more information on field internships by visiting https://online.unh.edu/master-of-social-work/field-internships

How long does it take to complete the program?

The program will take 28 months to complete if you start in either the fall or spring, 29 months if you start in the summer. This assumes that you take two courses per term during each of the five annual UNH Online 8-week terms.

Is there an Advanced Standing option for online students?

Currently, no there is not an Advanced Standing option for online-only students.

Will UNH accept course transfer credit into the MSW program?

Credit Transfer Policy: Once admitted, students can request transfer consideration for a maximum of two non-UNH courses. Transfer Credit Requests are evaluated by the Social Work faculty and the Dean of the Graduate School. 

Click the following links to find more information on each topic:

Our Professors

  • Will Lusenhop
    Will Lusenhop, MSW, PhD
  • Patrick Shannon
    Patrick Shannon, PhD
  • Michael Ferrara
    Michael Ferrara
  • Melissa Wells
    Melissa Wells, PhD
  • Mary Banach
    Mary Banach
  • JoAnne Malloy, Ph.D.
  • Jerry Marx, Ph.d.
  • Brian Miller
    Brian Miller
  • Anne Bussard
    Anne Bussard, Ph.D.
  • Anita Tucker
    Anita Tucker
  • Christine Tappan
    Christine Tappan
  • Will Lusenhop, MSW, PhD
  • Patrick Shannon, PhD
    Associate Professor and Coordinator, Online MSW Program
  • Michael Ferrara
    Dean, College of Health and Human Services, University of New Hampshire
  • Melissa Wells, PhD
    Associate Professor and Graduate Coordinator
  • Mary Banach
    Department of Social Work
  • JoAnne Malloy, Ph.D.
    Clinical Assistant Professor

    JoAnne Malloy, Ph.D., is a Clinical Assistant Professor at the UNH Institute on Disability and Department of Social Work. She has over 30 years of experience in community-based employment and youth transition practice, research, evaluation, and management. She has also directed four nationally funded projects in youth transition, employment of individuals with serious mental illness, and dropout prevention (with a focus on youth and young adults with serious emotional disturbance). JoAnne was part of the team that developed the RENEW (Rehabilitation for Empowerment, Natural

    Supports, Education, and Work) model in 1996 and has since developed and directed projects that have continued to refine and expand implementation and evaluation of the RENEW model. She is the author of over 15 journal articles and co-author of four book chapters focused on transition and youth with serious emotional disturbance and consumer choice and control models.

  • Brian Miller

    Clinical Assistant Professor, Substance use Disorders Graduate Certificate Program Director

    See courses taught by Brian Miller

  • Anne Bussard, Ph.D.
    Associate Professor and Department Chairperson
  • Anita Tucker
    Associate Professor
  • Christine Tappan
    MSW, CAGS, Child Welfare Expert Advisor

    Ms. Tappan is a Senior Manager with ICF, International and Deputy Project Director of the Child Welfare Information Gateway, a service of the Children’s Bureau. In this role, Ms. Tappan directs a national team of child welfare and information specialists responsible for the development and maintenance of web and print content focused on child welfare program and practice issues, as well as responses to informational inquiries from professionals in State and Tribal agencies, national organizations, government officials, and the media. Prior to joining Information Gateway, Ms. Tappan lead the Bureau of Organizational Learning and Quality Improvement for New Hampshire’s Child Welfare/Juvenile Justice agency overseeing data, research, policy, training and QA/QI activities statewide. In 2012, Ms. Tappan received the agency’s Spirit of New Hampshire award for Leadership and Excellence.

    Ms. Tappan has U.S. and international experience managing, implementing, monitoring and evaluating programs and policies, as well as providing training and technical assistance in a variety of human service settings. Her career experiences span government, non-profit, and for-profit environments, and both primary and higher education. She has a successful track record promoting team, organizational and community learning, engaging key stakeholders in complex, collaborative partnerships, and defining system/project accountability measures that drive quality. Ms. Tappan has conducted research and program evaluation on topics; such as workforce development, organizational culture and climate, development of inclusive communities, and the intersection of child welfare and the developmental disabilities fields. Her articles have been published in the Children and Youth Services Review and the journal Social Work, as well as Child Welfare 360. From 2009 – 2011, Ms. Tappan served as a Fulbright Program Specialist in Kyrgyzstan where she collaborated with the Ministry of Social Protection, National Association of Social Workers, U.S. Embassy, and local NGOs to design, implement and evaluate a family-centered model of practice for the care and protection of children. This included working with higher education faculty to develop and implement a 3rd year social work specialization in children and families and training for local, regional and national child protection professionals from across the country. An article detailing Ms. Tappan’s experiences was published in the The Spektator, November 2011.