Master of Social Work

Duration: 2 Years
Level: Post Graduation
Type: Degree
Eligibility: Graduation

M.S.W. or Master of Social Work is a postgraduate Social Work programme. Social Work is both a professional and academic discipline whose area of study is intended for improving the quality of life of an individual, group and or community belonging to a weaker section. The duration of Masters in Social Work is 2 years, usually comprising 4 semesters; these may vary depending upon the institute providing it. The course can be pursed through distance learning, correspondence or part time mode. A correspondence in MSW offers a bit less of practical training as compared to the classroom program. The maximum duration for completing the course is 5 Years through Correspondence as per IGNOU, this duration may vary in some institutes. The medium of instructions is mostly English and Hindi. Certain institutes offer it as M.A. (SW) which stands for Master of Arts in Social Work. University provides Five Year Integrated Course in Social Work which leads to BSW (three years) and MSW (two years) Degrees. The Master Degree course curriculum offers opportunities for specialization in four distinct areas, namely, Family and Child Welfare, Medical and Psychiatric Social Work, Industrial Relations and Personnel Management and Community Development. Depending on situation, normally two specialization areas are offered every year to the MSW final year students.

Master Degree Programme in Social Work is aimed at training individuals who are already working or desire to work in the Development and Welfare sectors. M.S.W. enables a candidate to become a Social Worker and perform in various capacities. Social workers perform interventions through research, policy, community organizing, direct practice and teaching. The National Council of Professional Social Work in consultation with the Universities, including IGNOU and NAPSWI (National Association for Professional Social Workers in India) takes decision for the promotion, maintenance, co-ordination of standards of education, training, research and practice. It lays down guidelines in respect of minimum qualifications for persons to be employed as social work professional and lays down guidelines for granting recognition to institutes as well as existing courses and for starting new courses for social work education and training, including the minimum eligibility criteria for admission.

Master of Social Work Eligibility

  • The eligibility of Social Work Masters Degree Programs is Bachelor of Social Work degree from a recognised Institute.
  • Candidates who have a Bachelor's degree in Humanities/Social Science/Science/Commerce or Management subjects are also eligible. Students with a background in social work, psychology, social science, sociology or any other related fields are given preference over others.
  • Candidates appearing for final year degree exam are also eligible to appear for First year. However, their final admission to MSW is subject to passing degree examination before opening of the classes of 1st semester.
  • The selection is on the basis of one's performance in Entrance Test, Group Discussion and Interview. The test measures one's mental ability and general awareness. The aim of the interview is to establish a candidate’s genuine interest in Social Work.
  • Candidates belonging to the SC/ST require at least 40% marks at the qualifying examinations. This Percentage may vary depending upon the University.

Few of the MSW Entrance Test

  • Aligarh Muslim University (AMU) MSW Admission Test
  • Jamia Milia Islamia - JMI M.A. (Social Work) Admission Entrance Test.
  • Sree Sankaracharya University (SSUS) MSW Entrance Examination.
  • Tata Institute of Science and Technology Social Work (TISS) Entrance Exam.

MSW Entrance Exam Pattern

The paper for the MSW exam will contain questions of the objective category. The paper will carry a minimum of 100 marks. The negative marking system will be followed by the majority of the institutions. 

The questions will be from topics like:

  • General Knowledge
  • Reasoning Ability
  • Social Work
  • Verbal Ability

Common Master of Social Work Subjects/Topics

  • History, Philosophy and Fields of Social Work
  • Theory and Practice of Counselling
  • Project Planning and Management
  • Social Work Research and Social Statistics

Master of Social Work Specialisations

  • Human Resource Management
  • Criminology and Correctional Administration
  • Medical and Psychiatric Social Work
  • Family and Child Welfare
  • Rural and Urban Community Development and Schools Social Work
  • Medical and Psychiatric Social Work
  • Urban and Rural Community Development
  • Personnel Management
  • Industrial Relations & Labour Welfare

Master of Social Work Course Structure

Most of the Institutes follow the below mentioned Course Structure:

  • Extra Disciplinary Courses offered by other Departments - Candidates who have joined the MSW Degree course, besides undergoing the courses offered by the Department of social work, undergo any two Extra Disciplinary Courses (one in second semester and another one in third semester) offered by other departments.
  • Course features - The programme consists of Foundation Courses (FC), Core Courses (CC) and Extra Disciplinary Courses (EDC) distributed among the 4 semester periods. The courses include concurrent Fieldwork Practicum, Block Placement and Research Thesis Work.

Course Structure of M.S.W. as per Social Science Centre, Pune - Bharati Vidyapeeth University

Sr. No.

Subjects of Study


Theory Courses


Field Work


Research Project Report


Viva - Voce

The M.S.W. Curriculum also include Rural Camps, Study Tours, Seminars, Dissertation, Block Placement etc

Master of Social Work Colleges

Master of Social Work Course Suitability

  • It is best suited for those Graduates who have a flexible outlook towards humanity. They should have enormous patience and deal with complex situations efficiently.
  • Those who have high understanding of human psychology and posses the ability to analyse an issue and take decisions apt to the situation are perfectly suited for this course.
  • Social Work as profession is not considered a prestigious in spite of its noble intent so one has to be content even if one may not acquire as much repute as some other professional courses like B.E. or M.B.B.S.

How is Master of Social Work Programme Beneficial?

  • Candidates who have completed Masters Degree in Social work can apply for Ph.D. or M.Phil. Degree.
  • After gaining some experience M.S.W.'s can be appointed as Consultants with various high reputed organizations.

Master of Social Work Employment Areas

  • Clinics
  • Correction Cells
  • Counselling Centres
  • Disaster Management Department
  • Education Sector
  • Gender Issues Associations or Groups
  • Health Industry
  • Hospitals
  • HR Department of Industries
  • Human Rights Agencies
  • M.N.C's
  • Natural Resources Management Companies
  • NGO's
  • Old Age Homes
  • Prisons

Master of Social Work Job Types

The M.S.W Degree holds a good repute at the International Level. Premier international organizations like WHO, UNESCO and UNICEF employ Social Workers in awareness campaigns and projects meant for developing countries. Internationally recognized NGO's like the International Federation of Social Workers (IFSW), International Association of Schools of Social Work (IASSW) and the British Association of Social Workers (BASW), the largest professional organization for social workers in the United States is the National Association of Social Workers (NASW) also employ Indian social workers along with good salary. Help Age India and other similar organisations also hire Social Workers. Teaching, Research based and administrative jobs are the other jobs which one can acquire.

  • Documentation & Communication Officer
  • Humanitarian Values & PMER Officer
  • Project Coordinator
  • Programme Co-ordinator
  • District Consultant
  • Professor
  • Junior Research Fellow
  • Sub Regional Training Coordinator
  • Welfare Officer
  • Senior Manager - Human Resources
  • Assistant Director

Advance Courses in Master of Social Work

Social Work Courses
Social Work Degree Courses
B.A. (Gandhian Social Work)
B.A. (Hons) (Social Work)
B.Sc. (Fire Safety and Hazard Management)
M.A. (Extension Education & Rural Development)
M.A. (Extension Education and Social Work)
M.A. (Gandhian Peace and Rural Development Studies)
M.A. (Gandhian Studies)
M.A. (Gender and Development Studies)
M.A. (Holistic Child Development)
M.A. (Labour and Development)
M.A. (Social Management)
M.A. (Social Work)
M.Phil. (Social Work)
M.Phil. (Tribal Studies)
M.Sc. (Social Work)
Ph.D. (Social Work)
Ph.D. (Women's Studies)
Social Work Diploma Courses
Advanced Diploma in Community Development
Advanced Diploma in Human Rights and Value Education
Diploma in Community Development
Diploma in HIV and Family Education
Diploma in Management of Welfare and Developmental Services
Diploma in Village Health Worker
Diploma in Women Studies
Diploma in Youth in Development Work
Diploma Programme in Conflict Transformation and Peacebuilding (CTPB)
Post Graduate Diploma in Labour Studies
Post Graduate Diploma in Social Work & Rural Development
Post Graduate Diploma in Social Work (PGDSW)
Post Graduate Diploma in Social Work among Tribals (PGDSWT)
Post Graduate Diploma in Women's Studies
Social Work Certificate Courses
Certificate Course in Women and Legal Literacy
Certificate Course in Abolotion of Child Labour
Certificate Course in Accounting of Trust and Society
Certificate Course in Social Work
Certificate Course in Women’s Studies
Certificate in AIDS and Family Education (CAFÉ)
Certificate in NGO Management
Certificate in Social Work and Criminal Justice System (CSWCJS)
Certificate in Volunteer Management
Certificate in Youth in Development Work (CCYP)
  Page Views: 30105 | Updated On: 02-Dec-2014