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My Social Work

Graduate Students

The Master of Social Work program provides the knowledge and skills to work with individuals, families, groups, and commnities, and prepares students for the profession as advanced generalist social workers. We are transforming our state and nation and building healthier, better educated communities through a strong emphasis on transdisciplinary research. 

Members of our faculty and staff can answer your questions regarding the Master of Social Work program, student services, advising, field education and our MSW site locations in Charleston and Greenville.

We want every student to have a successful MSW program experience. However, some circumstances can make this process difficult. Here are some tips to help you be as successful as possible:

  • Use and check your University of South Carolina email account frequently. Emails from the Bursar, Registrar, College of Social Work and your graduate advisor will be sent to your UofSC email account. Do not miss an important message, such as applying for graduation, because you failed to check your email. 
  • Communicate often with your advisors. Email communications often allow us to determine whether your question or concern is a policy being discussed or next steps that are required in a process.
  • Ask questions of your graduate advisor if you are unsure of next steps, having difficulty in your program, or if you think you need to take a break from courses for awhile. We want you to be successful and graduate, but we also realize dilemmas and roadblocks can make success harder to achieve.

UofSC publishes the academic calendar which includes important dates such as start dates, holidays, and scheduled breaks. 

In addition to regular UofSC tuition and fees, students are responsible for the following one-time required fees:

  • Matriculation Fee of $80: A one-time, non-refundable fee is assessed to all degree-seeking students.
  • Enrichment Fee of $970: The fee is used by the college for expenses such as workshops, field travel, professional liability insurance, and to meet accreditation requirements outlined by the policy and accreditation body for the College of Social Work.
  • All other appropriate fees as outlined by the University Bursar (

Note: All fees are subject to change.

To apply to a master’s program, applicants must submit a complete application to The Graduate School in their desired major and are recommended for admission to The Graduate School after a faculty review of their application materials.

The Graduate School has requirements for progression, and each college or school can identify additional progression requirements. The College of Social Work requirement is that 12 hours of credit below a grade of B on graduate work while admitted to a college's graduate degree or certificate program will disqualify a student from continuation in the program.

The expectation is that graduate students in the College of Social Work n are completing their course work with grades of A or B. If you make a C, contact your graduate advisor.

Students in all master’s programs are assigned a graduate advisor and a faculty advisor. The advisors work together to ensure that students receive information about courses and progression information. Faculty advisors have several responsibilities such as teaching, conducting research and writing. Graduate advisors assist students by answering questions about university processes, providing course registration information, and serving as a liaison with the faculty.

Faculty advisors are critical to students’ success and assigned by each program. While course information is communicated by graduate advisors, the faculty advisors are a critical step in the process since they are knowledgeable about the course rotation that the graduate advisors use.

Graduate advisors at the College of Social Work are housed in on the second floor of Hamilton College. They are responsible for communicating with all newly admitted students regarding steps leading to registration and with all students regarding course registration for an upcoming semester. The graduate advisors work closely with faculty program coordinators and advisors to ensure that students have access to important information about program and university policies. Programs of study are approved by the faculty advisor and are filed with the graduate advisor. If students need to step out of a program due to health or family concerns, the graduate advisor assists with important paperwork.

Each student is required to complete a Masters Program of Study form. The MPOS shows the courses that you plan to take in your program. Your graduate advisor will provide a template MPOS that you and your faculty advisor will complete and sign.

If you have completed previous graduate course work that is not part of a completed degree, talk with you graduate advisor about possible transfer of courses when you receive the template MPOS. There process for the approval of transfer courses is found under the Transfer of Course Credit heading. The faculty advisor will forward the MPOS to your graduate advisor who will ensure that it is filed with The Graduate School.

If you have completed graduate courses that are not part of a completed degree, you may transfer a limited number of hours if you meet requirements. View the transfer policy for master’s degrees. If you do have a completed degree, your graduate advisor can share the process for appealing to The Graduate School to request a maximum of nine hours of transfer credit. Courses must be completed within six years at time of graduation to be approved.

Graduate students may take a maximum of 15 graduate hours per semester. Your graduate advisor will make recommendations of courses to take each semester. You will also have course rotation information to know the frequency of the course offerings. If you are enrolled in six credit hours in a semester, you may qualify for financial aid. You must be enrolled in the semester that you graduate.

The Master of Social Work program require comprehensive exams at a specified time. Successful completion of the comprehensive exam indicates that students have learned, retained, and apply the content they have learned in the program. Comprehensive exams are typically administered near the end of the degree program.

Upon receiving the registration email from your graduate advisor each semester, courses will be listed or contain the course rotation for you to select the next courses to take based on your program of study. Students register in the spring for the upcoming summer (if needed) and fall courses, and in the fall for the spring courses. You can use your Masters Program of Study as a guide, but your graduate advisor can assist if you have any questions.

Log in to Self Service Carolina and select the Student tile to view your registration time each semester. Select the Registration tile, then click  Registration Status. You should see any holds that may prevent registration and the date and time that you can register. Registration time tickets are not always available for viewing, but usually available by the midpoint of each semester.

In order to successfully complete a program and graduate, you must complete all required course work with an appropriate grade, have an approved program of study on file with The Graduate School, pass comprehensive exams, and apply for graduation. While not required for graduation, completion of the College of Social Work exit survey provides important information for improving our services and program offerings for students.


Computer Lab: Several computers are provided in the BSW/MSW Student Computer Lab located in Hamilton College, Room 201B.

Mailboxes (Columbia Students): Mailboxes for MSW students, faculty and staff are located on the first floor of Hamilton College.

MSW Student Listserv: MSW students are automatically members of The listserv is closed to the public; only current students, faculty and staff are eligible to join the listserv. The listserv is used by college administration to communicate with students about news, events and activities.

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