Our Programs: Making an Impact

The Boston University School of Social Work is a dynamic, urban-based graduate school nestled in the heart of culturally and educationally rich Boston. We enroll graduate and doctoral students on a full- and part-time basis, offering MSW and PhD degrees, as well as continuing professional education. Our programs are rigorous, enriching, and impactful. Aside from stimulating classroom work, students have the opportunity to bring their knowledge into a variety of real-world human service settings. Our primary aim is to educate outstanding social workers who can integrate and apply clinical and macro practice methods in urban settings and diverse communities.

Our full-time program is based on BU’s Charles River Campus in Boston, while our off-campus, part-time weekend programs are located in northeastern Massachusetts (Bedford) and southeastern Massachusetts (Fall River and Barnstable/Cape Cod). A part-time, online program is available to individuals in most states around the country.

An Urban Mission

Our school specializes in educating and training master’s and doctoral degree students for social work in urban environments. Greater Boston offers fertile ground for both those with a long-standing interest and those new to this dynamic work. Our academic departments are constantly expanding and refining programs to meet the demands of the field, while staying true to our core mission: providing an education that furthers social and economic justice and seeks empowerment of oppressed groups. Our faculty are at the forefront of evidence-based practice, research, and training with diverse populations in such areas as:

  • Aging
  • Disability
  • Substance abuse
  • Children and adolescents
  • Mental health
  • Group work
  • Public health
  • Trauma
  • Refugees and immigrants
  • Suicide prevention
  • HIV and AIDS
  • Hoarding

A Diverse Student Population

The student body reflects the changing face of the urban environment. BUSSW attracts students with diverse racial, ethnic, cultural, religious, and economic backgrounds; students with disabilities; gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender students; and students of various ages and life experience.

Particular emphasis is placed on the recruitment of ALANA students (African Americans/Blacks, Latinos, Asian Americans/Pacific Islanders, and Native Americans). Scholarships earmarked for ALANA students provide important support for this effort.

Students with disabilities are welcomed, and faculty and staff work closely with the Boston University Disability Services Office to provide appropriate support for students with disabilities; all of the School’s sites are wheelchair accessible.


Boston University is accredited by the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., one of six nationally recognized accrediting agencies. The MSW degree program at the Boston University School of Social Work is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

NOTE: State Board of Education requirements and state licensing requirements for social workers differ from state to state. Please be sure to research the your state’s Board of Education and social work licensing requirements.