Program-Specific Application Information

Program Options

All students admitted to the M.S.W. program will be entered into the Course-based option automatically. After the start of your program, if you wish to complete the Thesis-based option, it will be in your best interests to consult with the School of Social Work at your earliest opportunity at ask.socialwork@ubc.ca.

Professional Program

When you accept admission to the M.S.W. program, you agree to conduct yourself as a student of a graduate level professional program. Thus, you agree to abide by the policies of the School of Social Work and the College of Graduate Studies as well as UBC, and agree to adhere to the professional values and Code of Ethics of the Social Work profession:

School of Social Work policy on personal suitability for the social work profession: https://www.socialwork.ok.ubc.ca/home/our-vision-2/personal-suitability/.

Canadian Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics and Guidelines for Ethical Practice: https://www.casw-acts.ca/en/what-social-work/casw-code-ethics

STATEMENT OF PURPOSE

The Statement of purpose questions are updated each year prior to the application opening on September 1st.

A Statement of Purpose must be included as part of your application (maximum 1,000 words). The Admissions Committee, in its evaluation of the Statement of Purpose, will rate the essay’s clarity, academic strength, and relevance, as well as the student’s fit with our clinically-focused social work program. The Statement of Purpose is an applicant’s response to the provided questions below; please note that the Advanced Track & Foundational Track each have their own set of questions to respond to.

Your Statement of Purpose submission should be single-spaced and must address the items in the list below. You are encouraged to use question-and-answer format with these statements/questions as headings. You will be required to have this document prepared in a Word or PDF format to upload to your application before it can be submitted. Typing out the Statement of Purpose questions will not be included in your maximum word count.

  1. What motivates you to want to enter the profession of Social Work and complete a clinically-oriented MSW program? Please explain why you chose an MSW Program over a degree in a related field, such as counselling, clinical psychology, educational psychology, etc.
  2. What specific client population(s) and related social issues would you like to learn to professionally address at the clinical graduate level? Explain.
  3. Based on academic literature, what makes the above social issue(s) important to social work?
  4. How will the MSW program benefit you, and what do you see as your contribution to the program?
  5. Describe a situation in which you disagreed with the actions taken by a colleague or a supervisor. Describe the way(s) in which you managed or resolved the situation. Looking back on this situation, is there anything you would do differently?
  6. Tell us about a time you had an idea to improve a process at work/school. How did you go about making the improvement and what was the result? Would you do anything differently next time?
  1. What motivates you to want to complete a clinically-oriented MSW?
  2. What specific client population(s) and their related social issues would you like to learn to professionally address at the clinical graduate level? Explain.
  3. Based on academic literature, what makes the above social issue(s) important to social work?
  4. How will the MSW program benefit you, and what do you see as your contribution to the program?
  5. Describe a situation in which you disagreed with the actions taken by a colleague or a supervisor. Describe the way(s) in which you managed or resolved the situation. Looking back on this situation, is there anything you would do differently?
  6. Tell us about a time you had an idea to improve a process at work/school. How did you go about making the improvement and what was the result? Would you do anything differently next time?
  • The maximum word count for your Statement of Purpose is 1000 words.
    • This total word count will not include footnotes or in-text citations but any direct quote (if provided) will be included in this evaluation.
    • It is your choice the response format you choose for the Statement of Purpose.  If you choose to write out the questions and then write your response to each, the written out questions will not be included in the total word count.
  • The Statement of Purpose is a key assessment tool used by our MSW Admission Committee when considering your application.  Be sure to be clear and concise in your responses as they are wanting to know about why you are a match to our specific MSW program and that you are prepared for graduate level study in social work.
  • Have someone review your draft Statement of Purpose that can be objective and provide constructive feedback regarding your submission.

Acknowledgement Statements

The MSW Application requires you to complete four acknowledgement statements.

The MSW application includes a required set of four Acknowledgement Statements that are a mandatory section of your submission. These statements are fundamental policies and regulations that pertain to the MSW program, direct social work practice, and the profession of social work.

To prepare for this task we recommend you review the four statements below and read the linked documents prior to applying.  When you complete the application you will be asked to type a response with a brief acknowledgement of each of the four individual statements; this will indicate that you have completed the review of each item and are accepting the policies and procedures they outline.

  1. Confirm that you have read the MSW Student Handbook and the Field Education Handbook from the School of Social Work website.
  2. Confirm you have read the Canadian Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics & Guidelines for Ethical Practice.
  3. Confirm you have read the definition of Clinical Social Work on the School of Social Work website and understand this is our principle pedagogical focus.
  4. Confirm that you understand it is your responsibility to independently learn about the process of becoming a Registered Clinical Social Worker in the province/territory you plan to practice. (If that is a professional goal of yours)