Application Requirements

All applicants must submit:

  • The online application
  • A current resume/CV highlighting paid and volunteer work experience
  • Transcripts from all previously attended institutions
  • One letter of recommendation (two preferred)
  • A two-part essay
  • If Advanced Standing, essay detailing your previous field education experience (requirement varies depending on your intended program track)

Upcoming Cohorts

CohortEarly Decision Application DeadlinePriority Application DeadlineFinal Application Deadline
August 2024
April 19, 2024
May 17, 2024
June 14, 2024

GRE scores are not required for admission and will not be considered as part of the review if provided. There is no application fee.

Request Information


Provide an up-to-date resume or CV with dates for each job you have held and school or academic institution you have attended. Please highlight paid and volunteer experiences.


We require transcripts from a regionally accredited college or university, recognized by the Council for Higher Education Accreditation (CHEA), that demonstrate completion of a bachelor’s degree in any field of study. The Mandel School also requires transcripts from any school at which you completed six or more credits. Unofficial transcripts may be uploaded into the application system for application review. Official degree conferring transcripts will be required following admission.

Request official transcripts be mailed to:

Case Western Reserve University
Application Processing Center
Online Social Work at CWRU
PO Box 30096 004-001
College Station, TX 77842

Official electronic transcripts should be sent to

Please note: To be considered an official transcript, the transcript must be sent in a sealed envelope directly from your institution(s) or through an electronic transcript vendor retained by that institution.

Letters of Recommendation

While it is highly recommended to submit two recommendation letters, please note that the application process requires only one recommendation letter. The recommended letter(s) should ideally be references who can speak to your qualifications for this rigorous program and your potential for the field of social work. Ideal references include faculty members, direct supervisors or volunteer coordinators.


Traditional Track

Submit a two-part essay that addresses the questions below. The entire essay should consist of a maximum of five typed pages (double-spaced, 12-point font) and exemplify graduate-level writing.

Part 1: Personal Statement

Discuss significant factors influencing your decision to pursue a Master of Social Work (MSW), including:

  • Your interest in the social work profession, your intended concentration/specialization and your career goals
  • How any past school, community, volunteer, professional work and leadership experiences will contribute to your success as a social worker
  • Describe your strengths that you bring to the program and how the Mandel School might support your educational or career goals

Part 2: Analytical Essay

Analyze a social, racial, economic and/or environmental justice problem of great concern to you.

  • What do you think are the causes of this problem?
  • Assuming you have the power and resources at your disposal, in what ways do you think this problem could be addressed?
  • Please include possible steps for implementation and challenges likely to surface in seeking a solution.

Advanced Standing Track

Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) graduates of a CSWE-accredited program are automatically eligible for advanced standing, if you completed the BSW within the past seven years. In addition to the two-part essay detailed above, you must include a description of your previous field education, including roles, responsibilities and key learning objectives. This description should be no more than two double-spaced pages.

Any applicant who has a BSW from a CSWE-accredited program, but who completed the degree beyond the seven-year post-graduation requirement may submit a written request for advanced standing consideration to the Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences. The exemption request should include a detailed statement of your social work experience and continuing education activities. Demonstration of professional growth through social work experience, continuing professional education, leadership, and advancement in the social work field would be elements for consideration. You may request this approval before applying.

Certificate Eligibility

The Certificate in Trauma-Informed Practice is a program available to online MSW students and is also available as a post-master’s certificate for Mandel School MSW and MSSA alumni. Alumni may also be eligible to leverage past MSW classes toward the 15-credit-hour certificate.

New students interested completing the certificate in the online MSW program are required to complete the following form and email a copy of the form to

Transfer Applicants 

If you have completed graduate-level social work courses at a CSWE-accredited institution, you may request an evaluation of coursework for transfer credit approval. To be eligible for consideration, you must have earned a grade of B or better (3.0 on a 4.0 scale) and completed the course within the last seven years. Mandel School faculty will review previously completed courses to determine which, if any, are eligible for transfer credit.

If you are applying as a transfer student, you must submit the following documents in addition to all other application materials:

  • Final official transcripts
  • Course syllabi
  • Fieldwork evaluations (if applicable)
  • Statement – Reason for transfer request

To obtain a Request for Transcript Credit Evaluation Form, reach out to our admissions team at or +1.855.997.2972.

Request information today and an admissions counselor will contact you.