Online Social Work Programs in Delaware

Social workers provide invaluable services to Delaware residents, helping clients overcome myriad problems. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, Delaware had an increased number of overdose deaths from fentanyl in 2017. In addition, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the proportion of Delaware citizens living in poverty increased nearly two points in 2018, making Delaware one of only two states in which the poverty rate rose. Earning a social work degree in Delaware positions students for careers in mental health.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the highest number of social worker jobs in Delaware are in child, family, and school social work; these professionals earn a mean annual salary of $40,380. The BLS also reports that healthcare social workers earn a mean annual salary of $55,870 while mental health and substance abuse social workers earn a mean salary of $50,700 per year.

Social Work Programs by Degree Level

Online Master’s in Social Work Programs

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Education and Licensure Requirements for Social Workers in Delaware

The Division of Professional Regulations’ Board of Social Work Examiners is in charge of licensing Delaware social workers. The state offers licenses in three categories: bachelor’s social workers, master’s social workers, and clinical social workers. The following section describes these licenses, their educational requirements, and the application processes.

Education Requirements

Candidates for social work licensure in Delaware must hold a degree from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). Delaware State University offers both a bachelor of social work (BSW) and a master of social work (MSW) program, which boast CSWE accreditations.

A bachelor’s license requires a BSW, and applicants for a master’s license need an MSW. Clinical social workers need an MSW and two years of postgraduate employment as a direct clinical social worker.

Exam Application Process and Requirements

All applicants for social work licensure in Delaware must submit a completed, signed, and notarized application to the licensing board along with a check or money order to cover the $183 processing fee. Candidates can mail the application and fee or deliver them to the board’s office in Dover, Delaware. After receiving approval from the board, candidates take the appropriate exam from the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB).

Candidates must also submit a criminal background check authorization, a supervisory reference form documenting 1,600 hours of professional supervision, and official academic transcripts. Applicants can download these forms from the Division of Professional Regulation website.

The licensing board’s website provides information about reciprocity and grandfather provisions, along with procedures for candidates who have already taken the ASWB exam and/or hold a license in another state.

After receiving board approval, licensure candidates register online to take the appropriate ASWB exam. Candidates pay an exam registration fee of $230 for the bachelor’s or master’s exam and $260 for the clinical exam. Registered applicants can purchase exam preparation materials from ASWB.

Continuing Education and Licensure Renewal

Practicing social workers must renew their licenses January 31 of each odd-numbered year. A few weeks prior to the expiration date, the board sends renewal notices with the fee amount and instructions for renewing online.

Each renewal cycle, active clinical license holders must complete 40 continuing education credits. Bachelor’s social workers must complete 20 continuing education credits, and master’s social workers need 30 credits. To renew their licenses, professionals must apply for active status, pay a $40 renewal fee, and meet the continuing requirements for their licensure level. Inactive licenses expire on January 31 each year.

Why Choose an Online Social Work Program in Delaware?

Delaware State University offers an online MSW program that is ideal for students who are unable to attend classes on campus. Learners can pursue the degree in three formats: fully online, blended, and web-enhanced. The blended format includes on-campus and online classes, and the web-enhanced format comprises in-person courses augmented by online content.

Distance learners complete internships in person. Students pursuing the online MSW pay a per-credit tuition rate that is comparable to the rate for on-campus, in-state students.

According to the BLS, Delaware social workers earn a mean annual salary of $55,255 per year, and healthcare social work jobs in Delaware are projected to increase 14.8% from 2016-2026. This makes Delaware a good place to pursue a career in social work.

Ranking Methodology

Here is our list of online social work degree programs in Delaware using data from the National Center for Education Statistics. The list includes online bachelor’s in social work, online master’s in social work, and online doctorate in social work programs. Each program holds accreditation from a regional agency and CSWE. All are 100% online.

Online Social Work Programs in Delaware

Delaware State University

Among the many social work schools in Delaware, Delaware State University (DSU) is the only one to offer an online degree. Based in Dover, the school offers a bachelor of social work on campus and a master of social work both online and on campus. Delaware State University has a long history as a historically Black college, and about 70% of its student population is Black.

Delaware State University Online Master of Social Work

  • Credits and Courses: The curriculum consists of 60 credits over 20 courses. DSU delivers all of the program’s coursework asynchronously.
  • Completion Time: A full-time student can finish the program in two years, while a part-time student typically graduates in three. Advanced standing students can bypass 28 required credits and graduate even more quickly.
  • Field Education: Each student can complete a four-part practicum experience at a placement site local to them.
  • Exam Preparation: The program prepares graduates for the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) exam.
  • Online Student Support: Online students in the social work program receive technology support and access to Delaware State University’s library services.
  • Cost: $430/credit in-state; $948/credit out-of-state
  • Admission Requirements: Each applicant must earn a minimum undergraduate GPA of at least 2.5, with a 3.0 for major-related courses. DSU also requires GRE, GMAT, or MAT scores, letters of recommendation, and official transcripts.

Delaware State University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). DSU’s online social work programs hold programmatic accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

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