Advance Your Career and Empower Others as a Dynamic Change Agent
Earning a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree from Keuka College will prepare you with the knowledge and skills necessary to provide effective, advanced psychotherapy and psychosocial services to individual, family, and group-level clients.
And because your academic program includes 500 hours of clinical field residency, you'll have the hands-on, practical experience prospective employers are looking for.
Your Keuka College MSW will qualify you to sit for the state licensing exam to become a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW). This will enable you to offer services spanning a host of mental, emotional, and social issues in a variety of clinical settings and, ultimately, sit for the Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) exam so you can engage in private practice.
Not only will you be ready to serve diverse client populations, but you’ll also be positioned to work in an administrative capacity and function as a leader across various organizations and communities.
A Clinical Focus
The MSW program at Keuka College is clinically focused and is fully accredited by CSWE. The program will provide you with a strong foundation of knowledge and skills to launch your career or take it to the next level. Graduates are eligible to take the LMSW exam after graduation and, once post-graduate state requirements are met, the LCSW exam.
Learn More About The MSW Degree
We make it as convenient as possible for working adults like you to earn their Master of Social Work degrees.
- Completion of a bachelor's degree in Social Work (BSW) from a CSWE-accredited institution within the past six (6) years or successful completion of Keuka College's MSW Foundations year.
- Cumulative minimum grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
- A "B+" or better in all undergraduate social work courses
- A "C" or better in writing, statistics, and human biology courses
If you don't have a BSW from a CSWE-accredited institution, you can still earn an MSW at Keuka College. Learn more about the MSW Foundations year.
How to Apply
- Complete your Application for Admission online
- Submit all official transcripts from each college or university you've attended
- Submit all supplemental items (2 letters of recommendation, current résumé, essay, and field placement evaluation)
- Pay your non-refundable $50 application fee
Worried About Something?
Keuka College offers one of the only clinically-focused MSW programs in the region.
The MSW program is offered in two Advanced Standing formats (for those who have earned a BSW) and one foundational format (for those new to the Social Work field).
- A full-time, 11-month academic year of coursework at Keuka College home campus. The program consists of ten courses, two electives, and 500 hours of field instruction. Classes are held year-round two days a week, online, and on some Saturdays.
- An extended, part-time format over 20 months at a partner location near your home or office. The program consists of ten courses, two electives, and 500 hours of field instruction. Attend class year-round two evenings per week, online, and on some Saturdays.
For those who do not have a BSW, Keuka College offers a full-time foundational year at our home campus in Keuka Park.
The program consists of ten courses and 400 hours of field instruction. You'll attend class during the fall and spring semesters one evening and one full day per week, online, and on some Saturdays. Once you complete the Foundations year, you can choose from one of the two available Advanced Standing options.
Your MSW program includes a number of courses that provide advanced clinical knowledge and further develop your practical application skills, preparing you to serve diverse client populations.
Our experienced faculty will guide you in developing skills within the framework of the National Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics, emphasizing cultural competence, social justice, service, and the importance of human relationships. Areas you'll explore include:
- Clinical Assessment and Treatment
- Ethics in Social Work Practice
- Social Welfare Policy
- Professional Agency Clinical Placement
The list below is a sample of the courses you'll take as part of your program. Please know that this list is subject to change as the program is reviewed and enhanced to provide you the best MSW program possible.
Writing for Professionals prepares graduate students with the knowledge and skills necessary to successfully meet the scholarly demands of Keuka College as well as the writing standards of practitioners. This course provides the student practical experience in the application of APA writing skills that are necessary for graduate school and employment success. This is achieved through the completion of a writing portfolio and subsequent analysis of their individual writing strengths and areas of need, which will be shared with program course instructors.
Utilizing an ecological/systemic conceptual framework this course is designed to help students expand and integrate theoretical knowledge and skills through which social work assessment and intervention may be carried out. Course content draws upon concepts and principals of psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, humanistic and family/systemic theories that focus on intrapsychic and transactional dynamics of an individual within various systems. The course explores the interconnected nature of these theories with emphasis on integration of the use of theory with social work principles and values as a way to guide competent social work practice with individuals. Therapeutic challenges and opportunities embedded in the various phases of the helping process are examined. Particular attention is given to evidence based methods of assessment and intervention within agency-based and socio-cultural contexts.
Since mental health issues are ubiquitous in all social work settings and practice, it is essential that social workers be familiar with conceptualizations and current developments in the area of psychopathology. This course is designed to develop a students' understanding of the bio psycho social model of psychopathology, including theories of etiology and diagnostic assessment of behavioral or psychological syndrome or patterns that are associated with an individuals' present distress. Course content will primarily be focused on the accurate classification and diagnostic criteria for the major mental disorders and developing an adequate understanding of the limitations of diagnostic assessment. Students are familiarized with various assessment measures used for psychiatric symptomatology. Ethical and socio-cultural factors in diagnosis and culturally competent professional application of diagnostic knowledge will be emphasized throughout the course.
The purpose of this course is to facilitate student competency in identifying and effectively confronting increasingly complex ethical questions and issues faced in daily social work practice. In addition to a critical review of the Social Work Code of Ethics, this course will address relevant ethical models and theories, steps to ethical decision making and ethical dilemmas specific to practice with individuals, families and groups. Finally the course will cover a series of ethic's related topics most encountered in contemporary practice. These included bioethics and risk management. Through this course, students will become more self-aware of their own values and biases, allowing them to solidify their professional identities. They will develop ethical decision-making capacities necessary for sound practice that is consistent with social work values and competencies.
This course is designed to prepare the Master's level social worker practitioner with the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in research practices that advance the knowledge base of the profession and meet the needs of agencies, funders, client systems and other various stakeholders. This course will cover research methodology and evaluation skills across the micro, mezzo and macro levels. This intensive advance standing course contains material generally obtained during the foundation year. Upon completion of this course, students will be proficient in their use of research to inform practice and ability to use practice to inform research.
This is the first course in a series of two in which students utilize several Clinical Social Work Practitioner skills through seminar and field education experiences in pre-approved social service agencies. The students expand their expertise in the area of practice of their field practicum while developing clinical skills with an emphasis on micro and mezzo. This course provides experiential learning along with discussion and assignments that support integration of theory as well as professional ethics and values. Through the completion of this two course sequence, students continue to master the competencies and practice behaviors required to become independent social work practitioners. Although each field placement is unique, students will be assessed on their level of competence in social work practice behaviors. Students will need to complete a minimum of 260 hours of field education to complete this course.
This clinical practice course teaches fundamentals in family therapy and counseling across the family life cycle. Students continue to develop knowledge and skill of various assessment and intervention strategies that are based within various family systems theoretical frameworks. This course provides the students practical application linking theories to techniques that are commonly applied in family therapy and counseling. This broad exposure provides the student with a wide array of perspectives and techniques to utilize in various settings. All families undergo changes and transitions that induce stress. This course explores these common family stressors so that students will have a better understanding as to why a family may be in need of counseling. Particular attention is given to diversity and how diverse families experience various family stressors.
This course concentrates on the basics of trauma theory, etiology, and treatment of traumatic symptomatology so that students can develop the knowledge and skills necessary to effectively treat survivors. Emphasis will be placed on the therapeutic, developmental, cultural, and social needs of the individual and their family system across the life span. Specifically, the course will review the assessment process, including frequently used standardized measures, and the various intervention approaches utilized with the population. Therapeutic considerations impacting the effectiveness of interventions, such as the therapeutic relationship, trust, and professional self-care, will also be reviewed.
This course is designed to enhance the Master's level social work student with the knowledge and skills necessary to engage in practice behaviors across various levels. Specifically, this course is designed to further engage social work students in social welfare advocacy by increasing their knowledge of the social welfare state, its history and development over time, and the impact it has on a diverse range of policies, programs and individuals. Students will further understand the values and beliefs underlying the contemporary welfare state, how this system is funded, the impact of the system at various levels, as well as become familiar with many of the basic social welfare programs currently in place.
This course provides the student with advanced understanding of human behavior in the context of social environment. This course further examines the family, the community, and the organization as social systems and contexts for the development of individuals and groups. The course reflects social work's unique integration of theories drawn from sociology, psychology, biology, anthropology, and economics to understand the multiple influences on behavior. Human Behavior and the Social Environment has the students apply sociological theories for critical analyses of society, communities, social institutions, and social organizations.
The capstone course is the final course of the MSW program. This course is the culmination of a process of becoming an Advanced Clinical Social Worker. Building upon SWK-628, students further establish social work knowledge and skills in the classroom and through application in field practicum. Through self-reflection assignments, students develop self-assessments that describe their professional growth and development, articulate the integration of learning, highlight accomplishments, and develop a plan for further professional growth. As similar to the previous courses, students have the benefit of seminars to discuss these areas with members of their cohort for additional insight from their peers. In addition to demonstrating competence in field, students further demonstrate mastery of clinical social work skills through the development and completion of a master's research project/portfolio.
Focus Your Practice
Choose one of the following electives to help fine-tune your practice around your areas of interest.
This clinical practice course enhances group practice skill development for use as a primary treatment modality in clinical social work group practice. Students expand their knowledge of the various theories, models and perspectives that guide practice with groups including the historical frameworks that inform current clinical practice. The course is grounded in the identification, analysis and implementation of intervention strategies for group work with diverse and at risk populations including children, adolescents, adults and the elderly. Emphasis will be given to the psychodynamics of group process, including group formation, group development and the role of social worker as leader/facilitator in the group helping process. Particular attention will be given to the issues of diversity and social justice in group work including continued examination of how differences of gender, race, ethnicity age, socio-economic class, disability and/or sexual orientation affect group dynamics and process.
This clinical practice course introduces the theory and practice of the post-structural approach of narrative therapy, including assessment, diagnosis, and treatment, and introduces the seminal work of narrative practice as pioneered by David Epston and Michael White. The course explores the theoretical and philosophical underpinnings of narrative therapy. Use of the DSM-V with this practice approach is also covered. Students will develop knowledge and skill in the areas of assessment and intervention, including the treatment approaches of re-authoring conversations, remembering conversations, scaffolding conversations, definitional ceremonies, externalizing conversations, and rite of passage. Practice exercises will facilitate application and evaluation of the therapeutic techniques. Utilization of narrative therapy with special populations, such as trauma survivors, children and families is explored.
This course describes the (in)active military members and his/her family system within the social context of the military and general society. The course will review both normative and unique stressors that this system navigates and how social workers can intervene effectively to aid with those stressors. Specific issues of family violence, coping with deployments, adjustments through the family life cycle, and advocating with the military for change are covered. The course illustrates how the ethnic identity and diversity concerns of the military family are addressed within military culture. The course explores the micro, mezzo, and macro concerns that impact the military family. Strategies utilizing a strengths-based perspective are emphasized throughout the course as a means of empowering the military member and their family systems.
This graduate level course provides students with an overview of basic concepts, theories and understanding of the etiology, assessment and various treatment modalities related to substance abuse disorders. Utilizing client-centered and strengths based approaches, this elective course builds on foundation social work courses, providing knowledge and clinical skills to students who specialize in or otherwise may encounter issues of substance abuse and addiction in their practice.
This 3-credit elective concentrates on the issues relevant to clinical social work practice with the LGBTQ population and their family members. Content of the course includes contemporary and historical foundational knowledge critical to successful advocacy and clinical practice. Specifically, the course wille examine sexual orientation and gender identity, theoretical perspectives associated with this population, issues of diversity, the impact of social and political contexts, issue commonly facing LGBTQ people, and assessment and treatment strategies.
Health Management Organizations (HMO) are increasingly limiting the number of outpatient mental health therapy sessions that are reimbursable by insurance companies. This course offers a time sensitive, solution oriented approach to working with indiiduals, couples and families, that address this issue. The course begins by introducing students to the historical development and theoretical underpinnings of Solution Focused Therapy. It then explores the theories, skills, and techniques of solution building, including exploring exceptions, formulating feedback, and asking the "right questions" for time-sensitive therapy. Several Solution Focused techniques are introduced and students will practice applications in class so that they may leave this course ready to begin the implementation of these techniques in a variety of settings. Strategies for evaluating this practice are provided.
To review a full list of program requirements and course descriptions, please see the Keuka College Record's information on the Master of Social Work degree program.
Keuka College’s Master of Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).
Keuka College's Master of Social Work program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). CSWE requires all programs to measure and report student learning outcomes. Students are assessed on their mastery of the competencies that comprise the accreditation standards of CSWE.
The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) requires all programs to measure and report student learning outcomes. Students are assessed on their mastery of the competencies that comprise the accreditation standards of CSWE.
Each of your professors will be highly experienced clinicians and credentialed academics. Not only will you learn textbook theory, but you'll also gain valuable experience and knowledge of the trends and upcoming needs gleaned directly from daily clinical practice.