Master of Social Work (MSW)

students conversing in the lobby

York University's MSW

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View our Program Book to see what we have to offer!

York's School of Social Work is recognized as being one of the most progressive and socially responsive social work programs in Canada. The School is centered around human rights, social justice and anti-oppression and is committed to teaching from a critical approach which recognizes the ways that individual problems are shaped by social structures that reflect deeply inequitable power relations in society.

The School offers a full–time and part–time Advanced Standing Master of Social Work degree, and a Two–Year Master of Social Work program designed for students who do not have a Bachelor of Social Work, but who have a four-year undergraduate degree in a related field.

Both MSW programs involve a combination of coursework, a practicum, and a practice–based research paper. Students receive a thorough foundation needed to work successfully with diverse populations in a wide variety of social work settings. The program prepares students for careers in child welfare, international work, gerontology, diversity and anti–oppression, family support services, direct practice, community development, an/or social policy and planning etc. The program also prepares students for further study at the doctoral level.

Program Objectives

York's MSW program places diversity of experience (due to race, class, ability, sexual orientation, age, gender, and religious/spiritual affiliation) as central to understanding how oppression, marginalization and assistance are constructed for persons in need of social work services. The program’s key objectives are to:

  • Encourage students to critically reflect on their personal and professional practice;
  • Invite students to consider that social work knowledge and practice are socially constructed;
  • Prepare students for social work practice that is sensitive to issues of difference, including a complex understanding of the dynamics of unjust power relations in practice contexts; and
  • Create opportunities for students to experience applied research.