The University of St. Thomas

School of Social Work

Graduate Program Admission

Graduate Program Admission

Admission Objectives 

The School of Social Work is committed to the selection of a culturally, racially and ethnically diverse student body  as the optimal leadership group for the future of the social work profession. The MSW Admission Committee will recruit, screen and admit those individuals with the highest potential for clinical social practice and professional leadership.

Objectives identified to achieve this  desired goal include the following:

  1. Develop a pool of applicants valued because they bring diverse views to the program by virtue of cultural, ethnic and racial backgrounds and varying levels of skills.
  2. Closely follow the enrollment and retention rates for students described above.
  3. Support achievement of excellence in all applicants admitted to the MSW program and the successful completion of the program by all students.

Admission Options

Advanced Standing (AS) admission is for applicants with an undergraduate degree in social work from a program accredited by the CSWE. Advanced Standing students complete 42 credits and 600 hours of field practicum for their degree.

Regular Standing (RS) admission is for applicants without an undergraduate degree in social work from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Regular Standing students complete 60 credits and 1,000 hours of field practicum for their degree.

Admission Materials

For a complete list of the materials required to apply for the MSW program, visit the Office of Graduate Admission at the St. Catherine University website listed below:

Attend A Graduate Program Information Session or Request Information


Admission Requirements

The following materials are required for application to the program:

  1. Prior degree: A completed  baccalaureate degree from an institution that is accredited by a nationally recognized, regional accrediting association, with a GPA of 3.00 of better (on a 4.00 scale). If the applicant's GPA is less than 3.0, an explanatory statement should be included with the application.
  2. Academic transcripts: Official transcripts are required from each post-secondary institution attended, even if the courses  are recorded on another transcript and regardless of the number of credits earned. All transcripts should be mailed in a sealed envelope directly from the registrar of each institution to the Office of Graduate Admission at St. Catherine University.
  3. Application form: Complete all sections of the online application form.
  4. Application fee: Submit a $35 non-refundable application fee. Make your check or money order payable to St. Catherine University.
    This fee is waived for students who:
    • Previously applied to St. Catherine University (at the graduate or undergraduate level
    • Attended  a graduate information session
    • Had an appointment with admissions staff or graduate faculty
  5. Prerequisite content: Please indicate on the application the prerequisite courses you have taken or plan to take in: statistics or research methods, lifespan developmental psychology (including child, adolescent and adult development) and human biology. Students may apply if they are missing one or more of the prerequisite courses, but they must make arrangements for all three courses to be completed prior to the first day of graduate classes. A syllabus or catalog description should  be included for each prerequisite course you have taken or plan to take. General/introductory biology and general/introductory psychology courses do not fulfill our prerequisite requirements. Questions concerning prerequisites can be answered by contacting the graduate admissions staff at St. Catherine University at 651-690-6933.
  6. Recommendations: Three MSW recommendation forms must be completed by references who are familiar with your academic and/or professional experience. Forms must be sent directly from the references to the Office of Graduate Admission at St. Catherine University. References must submit both the checklist and an accompanying statement in order for the recommendation to be considered complete.
  7. Personal statement: Prepare a personal essay (minimum three pages) that demonstrates written communication skills and clarifies personal goals, academic background and purpose in pursuing a graduate degree in social work. Please see the application materials for exact questions/issues to address in your personal statement.
  8. Resume: Please submit a current, typed resume indicating paid and unpaid experience, including internships and volunteer positions.
  9. Fieldwork instructor evaluation: Advanced-standing applicants must submit a copy of the senior fieldwork evaluation from their undergraduate social work program. If the evaluation is no longer on file, the social work department should submit a brief letter of explanation to include with your application. Students who have not yet completed their senior field placement may submit a copy of their junior fieldwork evaluation.

The deadline for completed applications is January 10 for the following academic year.

Submit all items to:
St. Catherine University
Graduate Admission, Mail Stop 4027
2004 Randolph Ave
St. Paul, MN 55105
(651) 690-6933
Fulfillment of the admission requirements does not guarantee admission to the program. Applications with the items listed above and received by St. Catherine University will be considered by the Admissions Committee. No credentials will be returned to the applicant.

Statement of Non-Discrimination
St. Catherine University and the University of St. Thomas do not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin, sexual orientation, age, religion, creed, disability, marital status, status with regard to public assistance, membership or activity in state or local commission and sex to all the rights, privileges, programs and activities generally accorded to or made available to students at the Universities.

Accreditation Status
The MSW program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education:  Commission on Accreditation.  In 2012, the program was reaccredited by the Council in Social Work Education:  Commission on Accreditation for the full eight-year cycle.  For more information on this organization check the Web at

St. Catherine University and University of St. Thomas are accredited by the Higher Learning Commission and are members of the North Central Association.  For further information visit

The University of St. Thomas and St. Catherine University are registered as  private institutions with the Minnesota Office of Higher Education pursuant to sections 136A.61 to 136A.71. Registration is not an endorsement of the institutions. Credits earned at the institutions may not transfer to all other institutions.