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Most current stats on acceptance rates for social work programs?

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Hey all,

I am just curious as to whether or not anyone has been able to access a comprehensive, up-to-date list of admissions statistics for master's programs in social work. Other than reaching out to program affiliates directly, I know of only two resources that give these figures: petersons.com, and an article published in the Journal of Social Work Education consolidating data from 1990-2004. But, these sources are conflicting and obviously, a lot can change in ten years. Does anyone know of a better, more recent, or more reliable resource, or is it pretty much dredging up the numbers from wherever you can in a piecemeal fashion and hoping they're in the right ballpark?

I know these stats posts can be annoying, but I think most of us know what it's like to be nervous about our chances of being admitted to our schools of choice... I won't even be applying for another year, and I'm already trying to soothe my worries and anxieties about grad school.

Edited by ediblestranger
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Heres a tip that I found VERY useful when I applied to MSW programs: START EARLY. I began working on my applications for MSW Fall 2014 the summer before (May-August 2014). This gives you plenty of time to secure recommenders, craft and revise an excellent personal statement, send it transcripts, and complete whatever else you need to for specific program (scholarship letters, etc.) Also, a lot of schools have rolling admissions, so by starting your applications early and getting them in ASAP, you will tend to hear back sooner rather than later. The longer you wait to submit an application, the more stressful it will be. Obviously if you are waiting for another semester to improve your GPA, there isn't much you can do about that. 


From what I know, there aren't any current databases that have admissions info for MSW programs. I would focus on the schools you want to go to and ask them directly, or try to find it on their website (it might take some searching). From my experience, and what I have read, most MSW programs aren't highly competitive compared to others grad programs. 

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Here is some data from 2009, it is the only semi-current data I've been able to find.


In a 2009 study, ranked by admission selectivity, Kirk, et al. found that the top 10 MSW programs were:

1. SFSU (17.4%)

2. UCB  (27.5%)

3. BYU (28.6%)

4. Southern Connecticut State  (33.2%)

5.  UNC (34.3%)

6. U of Utah (34.7%)

7. Hunter College (35.1%)

8.  Rhode Island College (40.9%)

9. Portland State U (42.3%)

10.  UCLA (42.4%)


According to the same study, the 10 least selective MSW programs (that provided data) were:

119.  Washington U (86.2%)

120.  Washburn U (87.5%)

121. Howard U (87.5%)

122.  Missouri State U (87.6%)

123.  Gallaudet U (88.9%)

124.  U of Kentucky (89.7%)

125.  Alabama A&M U (91.2%)

126. Our Lady of the Lake U (91.4%)

127.  Case Western Reserve (95.3%)

128.  Walla Walla College (96.8%)

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  • 2 weeks later...

The study Inatcup refers to was published in 2009, but is based on data as old as 1992, so although there may not be much out there to go on, that study is based on really old data from when a lot of things were different.  Just keep that in mind if the data means something to you.

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