Earning an online degree in social work is rewarding, and in this article, we will be discussing the best online degrees for a social worker.
An individual with an online social work degree can help children, adults, and communities, especially those who are vulnerable or face challenges in their lives.
A social worker cares for and supports people going through hard times. With their expertise, they support individuals struggling with addiction, illness, unemployment, and emotional, physical, and mental problems.
There are more social workers can do to help children, adults, and communities.
If you have always wanted to pursue a career as a licensed social worker, a good step towards achieving your goal is to obtain an online degree in social work.
Find out the best online accredited institutions that offer top-quality education and what to look out for when choosing when searching for an online social work degree.
How to Find the Best Online Degrees in Social Work
As an aspiring licensed social worker, it’s important you find the best online degree. This can be challenging sometimes with many options available online.
But you need to make time and do your research to find the best online program that suits you.
You can choose between studying online full-time or part-time.
Always look at accreditation when choosing an online social work degree program. Ensure the institution offering the online degree program has national or regional accreditation.
Institutional accreditation will likely affect your eligibility for federal financial aid, as well as graduate school. It will also affect your chances of getting a job, as employers these days only hire graduates with degrees from an accredited institution.
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What Is the Cost of an Online Degree in Social Work?
The average cost for an online social work degree will vary based on several factors.
Firstly, you need to consider state residency, as in-state students pay less in tuition and fees. Tuition and fees will also vary if you are applying to a private college or university compared to public institutions.
According to the National Center for Education Statistics, tuition and fees for undergraduate students at public universities cost $9,375 on average for in-state. Out-of-state students pay an average tuition and fees of $32,825 per year.
On the other hand, the cost per credit for an online bachelor’s degree in social work range from $400 to $500. As a student who wants to earn an online bachelor’s degree in social work, expect to pay between $48,000 to $53,000.
List of the Best Institutions Offering Online Degrees for a Social Worker
Here are the best institutions offering accredited online degrees for a social worker.
- Liberty University
- Simmons University
- Walden University
- University of Buffalo
- Troy University
- Temple University
- University of Utah
- University of North Dakota
- Brescia University
- Wayne State University
- Indiana University
- Aurora University
- Maryville University of Saint Louis
- Georgia State University
- Texas State University
Best Online Degrees for a Social Worker
You can start your career as a licensed social worker by obtaining an online degree at any of these top institutions.
#1. Liberty University
- Location: Lynchburg, Virginia
Liberty University is America’s largest private non-for-profit university by total enrolment. The university is widely recognized as a private institution with a large online student enrolment.
LU is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).
Liberty University offers an online bachelor’s in social work which is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). The online undergraduate degree programs consist of 120 credit hours.
The online bachelor’s in social work offered at LU is designed to prepare students for successful careers in the field of social work. LU’s online bachelor’s program in social work can be completed in three and a half years.
All applicants are required to fill out a high school self-certification form and they must also provide official transcripts.
Learn more about this online bachelor’s offered at Liberty University by visiting their website.
#2. Simmons University
- Location: Boston, Massachusetts
Simmons University is a private institution with a small student enrolment. Just over 1,000 undergraduate students are currently enrolled at this university.
The university’s online bachelor’s degree is top-notch and offers hands-on experience. Online learners can complete the coursework and the fieldwork in 36 months.
Simmons University allows transfer students to apply up to 96 credits towards their degree program in social work. Students with alternative learning experiences can also apply up to 24 credits towards elective requirements.
#3. Walden University
- Location: Minneapolis, Minnesota
Walden University holds accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). It’s a private online for-profit university that offers Bachelor of Science, Master of Science, Master of Business Administration, Master of Public Health, Doctor of Business Administration, and Doctor of Education degrees.
The university offers both a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in social work. Earning a master’s degree in social work is essential to becoming a licensed social worker.
Walden University’s online master’s degree cost $482 per credit. The online master’s program also accepts about 30 credits from transfer students.
The online master’s degree in social work curriculum includes standard, accelerated, and advanced.
The standard option for online learners reduce the workload to one or two courses per term. The accelerated option allows students to complete three online courses per term.
For the advanced option, students must present a bachelor’s degree in social work alongside a minimum GPA of 3.0.
#4. University at Buffalo
- Location: Buffalo, New York
The University at Buffalo offers one of the best online degrees for social workers. UB’s online master’s degree is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
Enrolling in this online master’s degree program is your best shot to apply for state licensure as a social worker. UB’s online master’s degree is available on a full-time and part-time basis.
Full-time online learners who are state residents pay $7,950 as tuition. Out-of-state students on full-time pay $12515 as tuition.
The cost per credit hour for part-time state residents is $745, while out-of-state students pay $1,125 per credit hour.
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#5. Troy University
- Location: Troy, Alabama
Troy University is an institution that is interested in educating online learners through interaction with experienced faculty and peers.
The university offers an online bachelor’s degree in social work which comprises 120 credits. The degree includes 57 credits of general studies, 27 credits of social work-specific courses, 27 credits of core requirements, and 9 credits of free electives.
Expect a 400-hour practicum in a supervised field placement before graduating.
The online bachelor’s degree program in social work offered at Troy University is accredited by the Council on Social Worker Education.
#6. Temple University
- Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
At Temple University, you can choose to earn your online bachelor’s degree on a full-time or part-time basis.
If you choose to study full-time, you will complete the online bachelor’s program in two years. Part-time students take two or more years to complete this online program.
Researchers at Temple University are experts with experience in the field of social work. You will learn how to connect and work closely with children, adults and communities.
Online learners are allowed to find their field placement. Temple University encourages its student working full-time to complete their field placement at places that are top employment-based placements.
#7. University of Utah
- Location: Salt Lake City, Utah
The University of Utah offers students the opportunity to earn an online bachelor’s degree in social work. The program’s curriculum focuses mainly on marginalized communities and how they can be supported.
As a student who wants to become a social worker to work closely with individuals and communities, this is one of the best online degrees available. The program’s curriculum also focuses on making a positive impact on marginalized communities and improving social justice.
Whether you are a resident of the state of Utah or an out-of-state, expect to pay $260 as cost per credit hour.
#8. University of North Dakota
- Location: Grand Forks, North Dakota
The University of North Dakota offers an online education which connects online learners with peers. The online programs offered at UND consist of 120 credits.
The degree program requires classes in social work research, introduction to psychology, and social policy. Students are also required to complete two field education experiences.
The cost per credit is the same for in-state and out-of-state students at the University of North Dakota.
#9. Brescia University
- Location: Owensboro, Kentucky
Brescia University’s online degree program in social work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. The university’s online degree includes classes in human behaviour and research methods.
You can apply to Brescia University at any time of the year. The university also allows applicants to work with an admission counsellor to know what materials they must submit.
Also Read: Can You Get a Master’s Without a Bachelor’s Degree?
#10. Wayne State University
- Location: Detroit, Michigan
Wayne State University offers one of the best online bachelor’s degrees to aspiring licensed social workers.
WSU also provides one of the best online education for adult learners. The university’s online bachelor’s degree requires a 460-hour field placement with classes in human behaviour, social welfare, and research methods.
Wayne State University is one of the best places to earn online degrees, with experienced faculty ready to educate you to become a licensed social worker.
#11. Indiana Wesleyan University
- Location: Marion, Indiana
Indiana Wesleyan University offers an online bachelor’s degree in social work accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. The online program requires classes in social policy, intergroup relations, and statistical analysis.
Online learners are also required to complete two field experiences during their final year.
To apply for this online bachelor’s degree, you must present a high school diploma or GED.
Indiana Wesleyan University accepts up to 45 transfer credits and students can also earn up to 40 undergraduate credits from the university’s assessment learning process.
#12. Aurora University
- Location: Aurora, Illinois
Aurora University offers an online bachelor’s degree in social work. The online program prepares students for entry-level roles and an online master’s degree in social work.
The online bachelor’s degree program consists of 120 credits and it’s one of the most affordable programs you will find online.
#13. Maryville University of Saint Louis
- Location: Saint Louis, Missouri
This university provides both full-time and part-time options for distance learners.
On average, it takes four years to complete this online bachelor’s degree on a full-time basis. Part-time students will need an additional year to complete the same online program.
The online program consists of 128 credits which every student must complete before graduation. The Marysville University of Saint Louis also accepts transfer credits earned through 100-level courses completed at accredited institutions.
#14. Georgia State University
- Location: Atlanta, Georgia
Georgia State University offers an online bachelor’s degree accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
Full-time students complete this online bachelor’s program in two years, while those on part-time complete theirs in three years.
Georgia State University demands that all online learners live in the state where they can complete their field placements.
#15. Texas State University
- Location: San Marcos, Texas
If you aspire to become a licensed social worker, then you should consider Texas State University as one of the best option online offering degrees.
The university offers a full-time hybrid program in social work. The program’s coursework is separated into three different phases.
Phase one incorporates introductory social work and general education courses, while phase two concentrates on the major curriculum.
The third phase concludes with a field practicum.
Also Read: 15 Best Online Degrees in Social Work 2023
Frequently Asked Questions
Below are frequently asked questions about the best online degrees for a social worker.
How long does it take to obtain an online social work bachelor’s degree?
Many online bachelor’s degrees in social work usually consist of 120 credit hours and it takes full-time students up to 36 months (four years) to complete.
What bachelor’s degree is the best for social work?
The best bachelor’s degree in social work is the degree that suits your schedule. Your program of choice must be accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.
What can I do with a bachelor’s degree in social work?
Graduates with online degrees in social work are experienced and possess certain skills required to with children, adults and communities. Social workers work with marginalized communities, and individuals struggling with mental, emotional, and physical problems.
A successful career in the field of social work starts with a bachelor’s or master’s degree in social work. You can obtain an online bachelor’s degree in social work at any accredited institution in this guide.
Always do your research first before submitting your application online, if not, you may not receive any federal financial aid.
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