Master of Science in Social Administration

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Change Lives, Change Communities

Case Western Reserve University’s online Master of Science in Social Administration (MSSA) prepares students with the practical knowledge they’ll need to become influential leaders in the field, promoting social justice and empowerment in communities through social work practice locally, nationally and internationally.

Setting the Standard in Social Work Education
Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission of the North Central Association of Colleges and Schools (NCA) and the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), Case Western Reserve actively contributes to setting the best practices and standards for social work education. Our expert faculty actively engages students throughout their education, bringing firsthand experience and field practice expertise into every course.

  • 100% online coursework and CSWE accredited
  • Graduate in as few as 2 years (BSW students)
  • Ranked #3 in the nation for “Best Master’s Degree of Social Work” - NASW Survey
  • Ranked #9 in the nation among “Best Grad Schools of Social Work” - U.S. News & World Report
  • Only online master’s of social work program ranked in the top 10 According to U.S. News & World Report
  • Established in 1915, longest standing affiliated professional School of Social Work in the U.S.
  • Option for your choice of specialization in Community Practice for Social Change, Direct Practice Children, Youth & Families or Direct Practice Mental Health/Adults

As a part of the internationally recognized and highly ranked Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel School of Applied Social Sciences, the Master’s in Social Administration emphasizes real-world experience and a competency-based curriculum. The program addresses numerous key areas of social work practice, including ethics and values, self-awareness, cross-cultural knowledge, cross-cultural skills, service delivery, empowerment and advocacy, workforce diversity, professional education, language diversity and cross-cultural leadership.

Important:The MSSA program features two program entry tracks: a Traditional Track (60 semester credits) for non-BSW applicants and an Advanced Standing path (45 semester credits) for applicants with a BSW.

The Master’s Degree in Social Administration features two distinct concentrations:

Community Practice for Social Change

For those passionate about social change, the concentration in Community Practice for Social Change emphasizes the importance of community and organizations in local neighborhoods and villages around the globe. Students develop the real-world skills and social work values needed to lead comprehensive social change on a broad scale, addressing a range of issues including globalization, poverty, inequality and oppression, cultural diversity, women’s issues, human rights and more.

Direct Practice

Students enrolled in the Direct Practice concentration learn to engage individuals, families and groups, assess client needs and strengths, provide or help arrange needed services and support, weigh intervention alternatives, implement change strategies and evaluate results.

In addition, students will select one of two specializations for a Direct Practice master’s degree.

Children, Youth and Families (CYF): This specialization focuses on theory and practice directly relating to the identification and assessment of problems that affect youth and their families, including adoption, drugs, child and adolescent mental health, physical abuse and violence. Coursework may be applied toward educational requirements for membership in the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy (AAMFT).

Mental Health/Adult (MHA): A specialization focused on creating sustainable living by transforming communities and developing and disseminating effective theory and practice for community-based mental health practice with adults. Particular attention is given to biopsychosocial and developmental theoretical framework.

Social workers have the power to change our world, and it’s the analysis, counseling and support that social work practice provides for individuals, families and communities that is the catalyst for this change. The positive outcomes and transformative influence produced by social work practice is felt far beyond the immediate reach of an individual social worker, touching a multitude of lives and affecting our complex global community in countless ways.

The impact of social work practice is everywhere – dedicated and understanding social workers improve the quality of life and overall mental well-being for a diverse range of people. By turning knowledge and compassion into action, social workers strengthen people, their families and communities, furthering health, equality, human rights and social justice.

Scholarships Now Available!

Learn More Today!

Complete this form to download a free program brochure. An Enrollment Advisor will contact you promptly.

1. Which concentration most interests you?

2. Do you have a Bachelor's degree in Social Work?

3. Contact Information

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The Master of Science in Social Administration (MSSA) degree fulfills part of the requirements of social work licensure in nearly all of the states. For further information about various licensing requirements by state, visit the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) website.

Each state’s social work board determines the requirements applicable to candidates seeking licensure. If you intend to seek a clinical social worker license in New Hampshire, please note that no online degree program without an on-ground residency requirement, including the online degree program offered by Case Western Reserve University, is sufficient for licensure as a clinical social worker in New Hampshire.

Due to state regulations, Case Western Reserve University is presently unable to accept applications for admission to an online degree program from Alabama residents.