Graduate Admissions - The University of Iowa

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Social Work (MSW, PhD, or Combined MSW/PhD)

The MSW, PhD, and the combined MSW/PhD in Social Work are awarded by the Graduate College. The MSW is offered with or without a thesis. Iowa also offers Combined Degree Programs in Social Work.

Admission Requirements 

Applicants must meet the Admission Requirements of the Graduate College and the department offering the degree program (review the department's web site or the General Catalog for departmental requirements).

Estimated Cost of Attendance

Tuition and fees vary by degree program and the type of student you are.

Application Deadlines 

  • Fall semester—February 1
  • Spring semester—not offered
  • Summer session—January 4th for Accelerated Advanced MSW only.

Application Procedures 

The graduate application process has two steps

  • You must first submit the online application to the Graduate College and pay the $60 application fee by credit card ($100 for international applicants).
  • Once you have submitted your application, you will receive an email instructing you on how to upload your supporting documents and submit letters of recommendation.  A few programs require materials be sent directly to them. However, almost all supplemental material can and should be uploaded from your Admissions Profile on Iowa Student Information System, our online service center for applicants and students.  You can only access this AFTER you have submitted your application.

Degree Program Supplemental Materials

  • MSW applicants must submit:
    • School of Social Work MSW Supplemental Data Form
    • Three completed Recommendation Forms
    • A statement of purpose and essays as described in the Admissions Policy (Section III-D)
    • A résumé
  • PhD candidates must submit:
    • Three letters of reference attached to the specific completed PhD Recommendation Forms
    • The PhD Supplemental Data Form
    • A résumé
    • An example of your scholarly writing
    • A personal statement of your professional goals, important guidelines are addressed in PhD Admissions Packet
  • MSW/PhD combined-degree candidates:
    • You may email the Program Administrator Kate Kemp to first determine your eligibility for this program.
    • Candidates submit all parts of both MSW and PhD applications. Instructions for applying are found on the School's website.


The application requirement section of your Profile includes an electronic "letter of recommendation" feature. You will provide the contact information of your recommenders including their email on your Admissions Profile. The recommender will then get an email with a link to the correct SSW recommendation form and instructions on adding a letter, (optional in some cases).

  • Three recommendation forms, request additional required forms for the accelerated MSW program from

Materials to send to Admissions

  • A set of your unofficial academic records/transcripts uploaded on your Admissions Profile. If you are admitted, official transcripts will be required before your enrollment.
  • International students may also be required to submit TOEFL or IELTS scores to comply with the university's English Language Proficiency Requirements.
  • Once recommended for admission, international students must send a Financial Statement.
  • Your official GRE scores from Educational Testing Service (the University's institutional code is 6681) if you are applying to the PhD or combined MSW/PhD program. 


Apply Online, the $60 application fee ($100 for international students) is payable by Discover, MasterCard, or Visa.

Contact Information 

School of Social Work
The University of Iowa
308 North Hall
Iowa City, IA 52242

Office of Admissions
The University of Iowa
107 Calvin Hall
Iowa City, IA 52242-1396