Abell, Dr. Melissa L.
Director, M.S.W. Program
Maroney, Jacqueline A.
Program Assistant, M.S.W. Program
Social Work, Master of (M.S.W.)
Full-time – Fall
Part-time – Fall
Summer only – Richmond campus
Applications that are complete and received by Oct 15 will be reviewed by Dec 1.
If applying for off-campus, indicate location in item 5 on application
See Social Work Web site for application checklist form.
The school offers a graduate professional curriculum accredited by the Commission on Accreditation of the Council on Social Work Education leading to the Master of Social Work degree. The M.S.W. is offered on the Monroe Park Campus in Richmond and, through 2012, at an off-campus site in Northern Virginia.
The purpose of the M.S.W. program at VCU is to educate persons for advanced practice in either clinical social work or social work administration, planning and policy practice. The guiding principle in educating students is the promotion of a more just society that includes a commitment to the value of diversity and social work practice in a multicultural society. The VCU School of Social Work emphasizes critical thinking, self-awareness, data-based decision making and ethical integrity.
Graduates of this program will be able to address personal and social problems; formulate, implement and evaluate policies and programs; engage in knowledge development for the profession; and influence community decision making. The educational program focuses on service to and empowerment of people who experience oppression or vulnerability due to inadequate or inequitable distribution of personal, social or institutional resources.
Within this context, social work practice is defined as the application of professional knowledge, skills and values across a range of settings and populations for the prevention and amelioration of personal and social problems. The interactions among persons and their environments are the primary targets of social work practice. Services provided by social workers include the restoration, rehabilitation, maintenance and enhancement of optimal functioning of individuals, families, groups, communities and organizations.
Knowledge for social work practice is based on analysis and critical application of qualitative and quantitative research from within the profession and related social, behavioral and biological sciences. Skill in professional practice is based on the differential application of theories and research findings about people in their sociocultural and organizational contexts. Skill is developed by the social worker through the educational process, self-critical practice and the use of supervision and consultation. Values in social work practice are articulated in the profession’s code of ethics and reflect the core values of service, social justice, dignity and worth of each individual, importance of human relationships, integrity, and competence.