What is MSW (Master of Social Work)?

Full form of MSW is Master of Social Work. MSW is a post-graduation course in the field of Social Work which is usually of two years duration. Aspirants can pursue MSW course after pursuing a Bachelor’s degree. Candidates who have pursued a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree are preferred if they opt to pursue a post-graduation course in social work. The career in social work is all about giving and helping others in need. From various NGOs (non-government organisations) across the nation to social development, a master’s in social work will provide a candidate an in-depth knowledge about the work put into the development of humanity and social welfare.

After completing an MSW degree, candidates can work as healthcare social workers, clinical social workers, therapists or social workers in the field of medical health, mental health as well as educational fields. Aspirants can pursue MSW as a full time or even a part time/ distance education course. A full time MSW course is of two years duration and candidates can complete their MSW course through correspondence within a maximum duration of five years.

Required Skillset for MSW>

Candidates who want to pursue the MSW course need to have good communication skills. Some other key skills that an aspirant should possess when thinking of pursuing the MSW course are listed below:-

Good communication skills


Good listener

Emotional intelligence

Critical thinking


Social perceptiveness



Ability to set boundaries


Ability to coordinate

MSW Eligibility Criteria>

Candidates are eligible to pursue MSW as a course if they have completed their graduation from a recognised institute with passing marks. Aspirants who have pursued Bachelors in Social Work (BSW) course or have experience in the field of social work, sociology, psychology, or any related field are preferred if they opt to pursue a MSW course.

Candidates from any stream Humanities, Commerce or Science are eligible to pursue MSW as a course at the post-graduation level.

MSW Course Curriculum

The subjects taught as part of MSW course may vary from one college to the other. But some common topics that candidates are taught as part of Master of Social Work course are listed below:-

Course Curriculum for Master of Social Work (MSW)-

1.Social Work Profession

2.Social Group Work

3. Social Case Work

4. Community Organization

5. Concurrent Field Work including Social Work Camp

6 .Concurrent Field Work including Study Tour

7 .Analysis of Indian Society

8. Social Policy, Planning & Development

9. Dynamics of Human Behaviour

10. Social Work with Rural, Urban and Tribal Community

11. Study of Indian Economics

12. Social Work Approaches for Social Development

13. Study of Indian Constitution

14. Social Work and Social Justice

15. Social Work Research and Statistics

16. Social Work Administration

17. Personal & Professional Growth

18. Concurrent Field Work including Case Studies

19. Block Placement

20. Women & Child Development 

21. Labour Welfare & Legislation

22. Criminology & Correctional Administration

23. Human Resource Management

24. Introduction to Disaster Management

25. Medical & Psychiatric Social Work

26. Communication and Counselling

27. Concurrent Field Work including Summer Placement

MSW Job Profiles>

After completing MSW course, aspirants can either pursue higher studies in the field of social work. Apart from higher studies, candidates can also opt to pursue a job in the field of social work after completing their MSW course. Some popular job profiles that candidates can join after successfully completing their MSW course are listed below:

1. Social Worker: In such a job profile, one provides appropriate resources, advice and support to individuals who are facing difficulties or problems in their personal/ professional life. A social worker helps individuals cope with their monetary, emotional or social needs.

2. Project Coordinator: Aspirants are hired in NGOs at this job profile. Project Coordinators need to help in the planning, budgeting and monitoring process of a project undertaken by an NGO. Apart from this, a Project Coordinator also needs to ensure that the project is undertaken is being conducted within the framework established and all documentation work is complete. A project coordinator also gets in touch with volunteers and ensures that the project is being completed as per timelines fixed for it.

3. Professor: Candidates can also become educationists in the field of social work.