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Frequently Asked Questions

Masters of Social Work Program Admission Questions

(Some information is subject to change for every new application process)

Please be mindful that some MSW programs require a minimum of BA field hours for admission. The MSW program at Fresno State DOES NOT have a minimum field hours requirement so it does NOT apply to Fresno State applicants.  

If you have applied to another MSW program, be sure to verify the prospective program’s current requirements, especially for advanced standing programs, as we cannot discuss other program’s requirements. 

Q: What are the requirements to apply for the MSW program?

A:You must have a BA/BS from an accredited 4-year institution and a cumulative minimum 2.75 GPA.

Q: Do I need a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work to apply for the MSW program?

A:You do not need a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work to apply for our MSW program. We only require that the BA/BS you have is from an accredited 4-year institution.

Q: Are there any prerequisites required prior to applying to the MSW program?

A:There are three prerequisites required to apply to our MSW program only if your undergraduate degree was not in Social Work.  Prerequisite coursework must be taken for letter grades (or document that CR means a “C” or better); you must earn a minimum grade of “C” in each course – there are three course prerequisites; 1) Research Methods/Data Analysis, 2) Human Biological Development, and 3) Cultural Diversity (Cultural Diversity must be an upper division course).

Q: Do you offer a part-time option for your MSW program?

A: Yes, you can choose to do the extended four year MSW program.

**The three year program will be phased out starting 2021. Current three year students will complete currently scheduled course progression.

Q: What is the difference between the full-time and part-time program?

A: The difference will be the sequence in which you take the courses. Click on the link below to see the MSW Sequence of Course Requirements.

MSW Sequence of Course Requirements (catalog years 2017-2019 and NEW catalog year 2020)

**PLEASE NOTE: the part-time 3 year program will be phasing out starting Fall 2021. The full-time (2 year) and part-time (4 year) programs will continue. Current three-year students will complete currently scheduled course progression.

Q: What degree emphasis does the MSW program offer?

A: We offer a multisystem approach to social work practice. We also offer a two-year Title IV-E Child Welfare Training Program. For those interested in the Title IV-E Child Welfare Training Program, you must submit a separate application for the Title IV-E Child Welfare Training Program. 

Q: Do I need to send transcripts to both Fresno State Admissions and to the Department of Social Work Education?

A: YES. University Admissions require that you have your official transcripts sent directly to them. The Department of Social Work Education will accept unofficial transcripts that have been uploaded into the Cal State Apply application (in the appropriate area). If you are already a Fresno State student your official Fresno State transcripts are already on file for admissions, but you still need to upload unofficial transcripts into to the program materials portion of the application.. 

Q: Do I need to complete the Statement of Purpose on the Cal State Apply Application?

A: Yes. The entire departmental application is through Cal State Apply.

Q: I am a transfer student interested in enrolling in the MSW program. How can I go about doing that?

A: If you are transferring from an accredited MSW program, and are accepted into our MSW program, we may accept up to 6 units provided we determine that they are equivalent to our coursework. However, you must submit an application to the university (CALSTATE Apply). If you are admitted, you can meet with the graduate program coordinator who will determine which prior courses meet the requirements for the Fresno State MSW Program.

Q: Can I apply to the MSW program in the Spring semester?

A: No, we only accept admission applications during the Fall semester for the following school year.

Q: I applied to the MSW program last Fall and was not accepted into the program. If I want to re-apply to the program this year, do I need to re-submit the documents again?

A: If you want to re-apply to the program, you will need to submit a new application via Cal State Apply. 

Q: Can I simply include a resume for my employment history?

A: Please follow the instruction on the Cal State Apply application.

Q: Does your MSW program offer rolling admission?

A: We do not have rolling admission.  We only accept students into our program for the Fall semester. 

Q: When is the MSW information session? Do I need to RSVP to attend?

A: MSW Info Sessions are held during the Fall semester. It is an informational meeting for prospective applicants, and any student interested in the MSW program is welcome to attend. For more information click here: 

MSW info session

**Due to Covid-19 restrictions, we have created a virtual info session. If you have further questions, please reference the video for the appropriate contact information.

Q: Are there any stipends given to students who are accepted into the MSW program?

A:Students can apply for a two year stipend program, the Title IV-E Child Welfare Training Program. For more information on Title IV-E Child Welfare Stipend program please visit the Department of Social Work website or contact the Title IV-E office at 559-278-3076.

Q: Do you offer financial aid for students who are admitted to the MSW program?

A: Yes. For more information, go to

Q: I am interested in the MSW program and the Title IV-E program, can I apply to both?

A: Yes. The Title IV-E program is a stipend program that we offer and requires a separate application, in addition to the MSW application, which has a separate application process and due date.  Acceptance to the Title IV-E program is contingent of being accepted into the MSW program.

Q: I am an international student interested in the MSW program, how do I apply and is there a separate process?

A:Yes. For more information about applying as an international student, go to

Q: How long is the MSW program?

A:The MSW program is a 60-unit program. We offer a two year full-time program or an extended four year program. 

**The three year program will be phased out starting 2021. Current three year students will complete currently scheduled course progression.

Q: What are my chances of being admitted in the MSW program?

A:We typically accept approximately 40% of the applicants whom apply to the MSW program each year with a targeted incoming class size of around 60. This estimate includes the two-year and four-year MSW program on-campus cohorts.

Q. What can I do with a Social Work degree?

A.For more information, please click on either of these links: Social Work Degree Center or Fresno State Career Services.