Catholic University of America


Social Work Programs at CUA

Catholic University of America appears in our ranking of the 35 Best Value Christian Colleges with CSWE-accredited Programs.

Students who want to study social work will find that the Catholic University of America offers a number of different programs. Undergrads can enroll in its Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) program, which teaches them the fundamentals of social work and the skills they will need in the field. The university requires that students take 14 distinct social services classes and that they do two field placements. They'll spend 96 hours in the field early in their college careers and then do 480 hours of fieldwork in their final years.

Its Master of Social Work (MSW) is available as both a traditional and an online program. This program features 30 credits of foundation work and 30 credits of advanced work. The advanced standing program, which accepts students with more experience, only requires that students take 30 credits of advanced classes. Students can choose a clinical or a social change concentration, but the university also offers a combined concentration for those who want to study both areas. CUA students will do 480 hours of fieldwork in their first years and 600 hours of fieldwork in their second years.

One of the only Doctor of Philosophy in Social Work programs in the Washington DC area is the one that CUA offers. Students can enroll on a part-time or full-time basis, and the university allows students to transfer credits into the program that they earned elsewhere. In addition to taking research and other advanced classes, students must also take a comprehensive exam in their final semesters before getting their degrees. The Catholic University of America also offers a joint degree program that allows students to earn a law degree that allows them to take the Bar exam and an MSW.

About Catholic University of America

The Catholic University of America is a small private university that has an affiliation with the Roman Catholic Church. Founded in 1887, the university opened two years later. It offered programs that combined religious studies with practical education. The university saw its enrollment grow quickly in the years after World War II as soldiers returning from war used their GI Bills to go back to school. It went through changes in recent years that added new residence halls for students and new buildings too.

Also called CUA, the university now has an enrollment of more than 6,000 students. Students come from all 50 states and from some other countries also. Washington Monthly and U.S. News & World Report both rank CUA among the top American colleges. It also ranks as one of the more affordable private colleges in the nation. The Cardinal Newman Society lists CUA as one of the top 25 colleges in the country for Catholic undergrads.

Catholic University of America Accreditation Details

CUA has regional accreditation from the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE). Many graduate and doctoral students earned credits from other colleges and want to transfer those credits into a social work program, which they can do because of this accreditation. The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) also awarded the university accreditation for all of its social work programs, including both its undergrad and graduate options.

Catholic University of America Application Requirements

The Catholic University of America has different admissions and application requirements based on the level that students want to study. Undergrads must present transcripts that show they followed a college prep curriculum during their high school years. This curriculum must include four units of English, math, and history or social science classes and three years of science classes with two years of a foreign language. The early decision deadline of November 1 is best for students who know they want to attend CUA. Those accepted must agree to attend the university. It also has a regular decision deadline of January 15.

All types of students must submit an application prior to one of the university's deadlines. Prospective MSW students will complete the CUA application and pay a $60 fee. They will also write and submit a statement of purpose that is between four and six pages long. This statement must answer questions about their personal lives and why they want to study social work as well as how their past experiences will help them in this field. MSW students will also submit three letters of recommendation and a resume. Those applying for one of the CUA graduate scholarships must provide the university with a standardized test score too.

The university's Ph.D. in Social Work program also has an application with a $60 application fee. Students will write a similar statement of purpose and submit three letters of recommendation. They should also submit any transcripts from schools they previously attended. Ph.D. candidates must provide the university with a writing sample such as a professional article published in a research journal and a resume as well as an official GRE score. Students applying to the graduate advanced standing program must submit resumes and transcripts that show they have studied social work in the past and have more experience.

Tuition and Financial Aid

The cost for undergrads who want to live on the CUA campus is around $60,500 a year. Students pay around $45,000 a year for tuition alone and close to $15,000 a year for room and board. The fees that the university charges add to this cost. Students are also responsible for either having health insurance before they enroll or buying insurance from the university.

Graduate and doctoral students pay nearly $70,000 a year to attend CUA. This figure includes more than $46,000 a year for tuition and a room and board cost of more than $16,000 a year. The university does not require that students live on its campus though. Many students live with their parents or either on their own or with roommates in nearby apartments and rental homes.

CUA allows students to apply for federal and state financial aid via the FAFSA. Students of all ages will receive a financial aid package based on their individual needs. Grants and loans, as well as the work-study program, are all examples of federal and state aid. Students can also borrow money from the government in the form of unsubsidized or subsidized student loans. The Catholic University of America offers scholarships and other programs that can help students too.