M.S.W. Plans of Study

New York City’s Most Flexible M.S.W.

At Fordham’s Graduate School of Social Service, students have the opportunity to be a true partner in creating their educational experience. We pride ourselves on the flexibility of our plans of study, allowing you to tailor your M.S.W. education to your own interests and needs. 

We know there is no one-size-fits-all M.S.W. plan of study, and we want to meet students where they are. 

For those who want to dedicate all of their attention to the program, we have full-time and advanced standing plans available. But working professionals need options, too. At Fordham, you can complete your M.S.W. in three to four years as a part-time student, while taking classes in the evenings or on Saturdays.

Not only will you get to choose between full-time and part-time plans of study, but as a GSS student, you’ll have the opportunity to pursue one of four advanced practice areas:

  • Individuals and Families: Learn how to provide direct services that address clients’ environment and overall well-being.
  • Organizations and Community: Be prepared to work effectively with entire communities and various types of organizations, including private and public companies and nonprofits.
  • Evaluation: Become a more versatile social worker as you study and apply new ideas in the field.
  • Policy Practice and Advocacy: Develop skills related to managing organizations and systems, creating policy, writing grant proposals, and obtaining funding.


Our master of social work degree is a 62-credit program, broken down as follows:

  • 48 credits of classwork.
  • 14 credits of fieldwork experience


Foundation Phase (31 credits)

This is where you build your bedrock of social work knowledge. Everyone at this level takes the same coursework, since it is so crucial to your effectiveness as a social worker. The good news is, this is a great chance to connect with your classmates, since you’re all going through the same experience together. Here’s a few examples of courses you’ll take in the Foundation Phase:

  • Integrating Human Rights and Justice in Practice
  • Advanced Clinical Assessment and Diagnosis
  • Social Work Practice With Organizations and Communities

Advanced Phase (31 credits)

This is where your M.S.W. education really becomes your own. As a GSS student, you have the opportunity to take eight (8) “Selectives”, based on your own interests. No written-in-stone plans of study, no tuition spent on classes that don’t spark your desire. We believe the M.S.W. is an extremely versatile degree, and the educational experience should reflect that. 

Have questions? We understand. This much freedom and variety in a graduate school program is unheard of. We have your answers. Read out to an admissions counselor today to start formulating your plan. 

Want Some More Detail? 

If you’re in the thick of the admissions process, you’re going to want more information ASAP. Just click on the plan of study below that fits your timeline, and start mapping your social work journey today. 

Plans of Study at Our Lincoln Center and Westchester Campuses

We offer four plans of study in which you can complete your M.S.W. degree:

Plans of Study at Our Long Island Molloy Campus

Plans of Study for Our Online Program

Additional Opportunities for On-Campus Students

Internship with the United Nations

Is policy your passion? Want to make an impact for the golbal good? Each year, on-campus M.S.W. students at Fordham have the opportunity to complete their internship at the United Nations in this highly competitive program. Visit the United Nations field internship webpage to learn more. 

London Summer Study Abroad Program

Learn from our colleagues across the pond! On-campus students can sign up to study in London during the summer semester, receiving a rich experience in the classroom and outside of it, learning about the origins of Setllement Houses in New York City and London. Explore London's culture and history while networking around Fordham's London Centre campus. Visit this webpage to learn more. 

Palliative Care Fellowship Program

One of the only programs of its kind in the country, this fellowship gives students the opportunity to immerse themselves in the ever-growing field of aging and palliative care. Along with a tuition stipend and mentorship, students receive access to additional workshops and courses from Fordham's Continuing Education program. Learn more about the fellowship here.

PIPELINE for Youth Health Fellowship Program

Through this program, advanced-year on-campus students receive a $10,000 tuition stipend along with the ability to learn about the crucial field of behavioral health. This fellowship also offers exclusive workshops from experts in the field and display their skills through an immersive capstone project shaped by the needs of the community and population. Ready to make your impact in NYC's behavioral health field? Learn more here.