East Carolina University


Social Work Programs at ECU

East Carolina University appears in our ranking of the 36 Most Affordable Accredited MSW Programs in the South East.

East Carolina University has its own College of Health and Human Performance that offers both a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) and a Master of Social Work (MSW). The BSW program serves as an introduction to the study of social work. It prepares students for getting a social work license and for working in a government agency or any nonprofit organization. Students will take 40 semester hours of general education and other required courses before focusing on the social work program.

To earn a BSW, students must complete the social work core, which is worth 57 semester hours. Those courses include Human Behavior and the Social Environment I and II, Social Work Practice I and II, Introduction to Social Work Practice with Special Populations and Introduction to Social Welfare and Social Work. Students must also take Applied Research and Statistics in Social Work. During the last semester, the university expects students to do a final internship. They will spend 448 hours working in the field, which requires that they do at least 32 hours of work each week.

MSW students have more options regarding how they will earn their degrees from East Carolina University. The university offers three part-time programs that take place on its main campus and in both Rocky Mount and New Bern. Part-time MSW students will take classes on the weekends and take some courses that include both online and offline work. There is also a full-time program available.

Traditional MSW students must take 60 semester hours of work, but advanced standing students only need to take 42 semester hours of classes. Advanced standing students include those who studied social work as an undergrad and those who have more field experience. Some of the core courses in the MSW program include Critical Thinking in Social Work Research, Social Work Practice: Community Foundations, Foundations of Social Work and Social Welfare and Advanced Practice: Individuals and Families.

MSW students will also do four practicums. The university requires that students spend a set amount of time working for an agency each week and that they complete 400 hours or more of work each week. At the end of each semester, they will present records that show the work they did and go over some of the things they learned in their practicums. It takes full-time students two years to finish the program. Advanced standing students can earn their degrees in one year, while part-time students will spend up to three years in the program.

About East Carolina University

East Carolina University is a large comprehensive public university in North Carolina that offers bachelor's programs as well as programs designed for doctoral and graduate students. Established in 1907 as a training school for teachers, it saw both its enrollment and its campus grow quickly over the last century. Often referred to as ECU, the university owns six different campuses that offer programs for students based on their majors.

Both U.S. News and World Report and Washington Monthly ranked ECU within the top 200 of all American schools today. Forbes also ranks the university on a national scale. The university also ranks as one of the more affordable colleges in the southern US. East Carolina University grew from a population of fewer than 50 students to an enrollment of more than 29,000.

East Carolina University Accreditation Details

The best social work degree programs in the country have accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). CSWE shows prospective students that the program follows the guidelines established by that organization and that they will learn the skills that any social worker needs in the field. ECU also has accreditation from the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCC). As SACSCC offers regional accreditation, students can both transfer credits to and from ECU and get financial aid.

East Carolina University Application Requirements

East Carolina University does not allow students to apply and begin the social work program in their freshman years. Students must actually meet all admissions requirements and take lower level classes first. Only after they complete 32 semester hours and maintain a grade point average of 2.5 or higher can they apply to the social work program. The university also requires that students take two social work introduction courses before declaring their majors. Students will need to submit the undergrad application and their transcripts and test scores to the university as part of the admissions process.

Prospective MSW students must complete five different admissions and application requirements. The university requires that students have a bachelor's degree and that they submit transcripts that show they have their degrees and the grades they earned in college. They will also submit three letters of recommendation and a resume. Though the university requires a GRE or MAT score, it offers waivers for those who have more than 10 years of social work experience, students who have a bachelor's degree from an accredited university and an undergrad GPA of 3.0 or higher and those who already took some graduate classes.

Tuition and Financial Aid

The cost of attending ECU depends on whether the student is a North Carolina resident and whether he or she is an undergrad or graduate student. North Carolina residents qualify for a lower tuition rate of $7,188 per year. Nonresidents and students who cannot prove that they are residents will pay more than $23,000 a year. Undergrads also pay around $10,300 per year for room and board. Graduate students also qualify for a lower tuition rate of around $7,400 a year if they are North Carolina residents. Nonresident graduate students pay $20,634 per year. ECU offers housing and meal plans for graduate students who want to live on-campus for an extra $9,300 a year.

Any student who needs financial aid must submit the FAFSA when they submit their applications to the university. Undergrads will file and receive aid based on how much their families can contribute to their overall costs. Graduate students can use their own incomes when filing and receive the same student loans, even if they think they don't qualify for aid. Students may receive some scholarships from the university too.