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UNH offering exclusive online master’s degree in social work

Union Leader Correspondent

October 07. 2013 6:24PM

DURHAM — The University of New Hampshire has launched the first online master of social work degree program in the state and one of only two in northern New England.

It is the second online master’s degree offered at UNH, which launched an online master in business administration degree in 2012.

The 28-month MSW program was designed by full-time department of social work faculty at UNH’s Durham and Manchester campuses. The faculty also share responsibility for teaching the core online courses and oversee all courses taught online.

The program consists of 20 courses offered online with no campus visits required. Students can participate, view lectures, complete assignments and access materials at any time.

In addition, students are required to complete two field internships at a program or agency in their communities, identified with assistance from the department of social work’s field office.

The program is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

A feature of UNH’s online MSW program will be an option for students to earn a graduate certificate in intellectual and developmental disabilities through a partnership with the UNH Institute on Disability. Other specialty certificates will be offered in the future.

The first session for the program begins in January 2014. The application deadline is Nov 1.

“With this online MSW, we can prepare students to make the world a better place, whether or not their schedules or lifestyles allow them to come to campus,” Patrick Shannon, associate professor of social work and coordinator of the online MSW program, said. “Like our campus-based programs in Durham and Manchester, the online MSW will educate social work professionals to work effectively with diverse individuals, families, groups, organizations, and communities to optimize human potential for productive participation in society.”

A master of social work degree helps prepare students for a very wide variety of employment settings including advocacy organizations, child welfare, disability, education, health care, employee assistance programs, juvenile and adult criminal justice, mental health, substance abuse, the military and other human service oriented environments.

National labor statistics demonstrate faster than average occupational growth through 2020 for social workers.

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