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  1. Online Graduate Admission Application (including non-refundable application fee of $85)
  2. Transfer Applicants
  3. Supplemental Form: Social Work (complete on the online application)
  4. Resume (upload to the online application)
  5. Statement of Purpose (upload to the online application)
  6. Recommendations (submitted online; two required, third optional)
  7. Official Transcript(s)
  8. TOEFL or IELTS Score (if applicable)

The following seven components are required for an MSW application to be considered complete:

  1. Online Graduate Admission Application (including non-refundable application fee of $85)

    The USC Graduate Admission Office has developed an online application system that allows you to login anytime to continue your application and track your application status. For the MSW program, you must upload the Statement of Purpose and a resume to the online application (see below for more instructions). Read more about the application process, requirements and application deadlines for the traditional program on the Traditional Program Admissions page.

  2. Transfer Applicants

    To apply as a transfer student, please review the additional application requirements.

  3. Supplemental Form: Social Work (complete on the online application)

    A required part of the online Graduate Admission Application is the Supplemental Form: Social Work. These additional questions provide the School of Social Work with information specific to the MSW program.

  4. Resume (upload to the online application)

    You must upload a resume to the Employment Information section of the online Graduate Admission Application. The School of Social Work requires a resume that specifically highlights your social work-related experience.

  5. Statement of Purpose (upload to the online application)
    You must upload a Statement of Purpose to the Supporting Documents section of the online Graduate Admission Application. Your Statement of Purpose must be five double-spaced pages in length, with one-inch margins, and 12-point Times New Roman font.

    You must address all 3 topics below:
    • Describe your understanding of the social work profession and its core values. How have you incorporated social work values in your human service experiences and interactions with others? What significant relationships and life experiences have you had in giving or receiving help that have motivated you to enter the field of social work? What personal qualities equip you for the social work profession? Discuss your experiences and feelings about working with populations different from your own.
    • The USC School of Social Work is dedicated to providing excellent graduate education for people destined to create social change. What social welfare areas interest you and why? What social problem most concerns you that might be addressed with an MSW?
    • Please discuss your career goals. What do you expect to be doing in five years and 10 years? How will your chosen concentration and practice area help you reach your personal/professional goals and future contributions as a social worker? Include why the USC School of Social Work is a good fit for your goals.

  6. Recommendations (submitted online; two required, third optional)

    You are required to submit a minimum of two recommendations; a third recommendation is optional. Preferred recommendations are those that come from academic instructors or professionals who have supervised you in a social work-related position (paid, volunteer or internship). Personal recommendations are not acceptable.

    Recommendations must be submitted online through the online Graduate Admission Application. Each recommender must have a valid email address and internet access in order to use the online recommendation system. If your recommender strongly prefers to submit a paper form or letter, please contact us at 877.700.4MSW.

  7. Official Transcript(s)

    We recommend a sense of urgency when requesting transcriptsfrom your undergraduate university as the turn around times vary from school to school.

    When requesting application items, please note that we accept official electronic transcripts. If you are able to select from a list of universities, please choose "University of Southern California, School of Social Work Online."

    Alternatively, your school can e-mail official, password protected electronic transcripts directly to: applicationservices@msw.usc.edu or mail them to the address below:

    • MSW@USC
    • 8201 Corporate Drive Suite 900
    • Landover, MD 20785

    If you are an international candidate, you will need to submit your transcripts to World Education Service (WES) for review. WES will then forward your translated transcripts to the USC School of Social Work. To learn more about WES evaluation, call your admissions counselor.

  8. TOEFL or IELTS Score (if applicable)

    For students whose native language is not English, the TOEFL or the IELTS exam is required. You will need to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores in order to complete an application and be reviewed for admission to the MSW program.

    The USC School of Social Work will only accept the internet-based TOEFL test and requires all applicants to submit a minimum score of 100, with no less than 20 in each category. Applicants who choose to take the IELTS must achieve a minimum total score of 6.5, with no less than 6 points on each band score. TOEFL/IELTS tests must be taken within the last 2 years and scores must be submitted electronically directly from testing service. Failure to meet the USC school of Social Work’s English proficiency requirements will result in your application not being reviewed for admissions

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The GRE is not required to apply to the MSW program.

Note: You do not need to mail any documents directly to the USC School of Social Work.

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