UGA School of Social Work rises in national rankings

UGA School of Social Work logo on black background

The UGA School of Social Work’s master of social work program rose to No. 22 in national rankings, according to the U.S. News & World Report’s latest list of the nation’s best graduate schools. The position is the highest the program has reached and marks the second year it has risen in the rankings. The program’s climb began last year when it jumped 14 places, from No. 38 to No. 24. The new ranking places it No. 12 among public schools that offer an MSW degree.

“This rise in ranking really reflects the quality of both our students and our faculty,” said Anna Scheyett, professor and dean of the school. “Over the past two years we have completely revised our master’s curriculum and dramatically increased our publication rate and presence at national conferences. As one of my dean colleagues said at a recent national conference, ‘UGA is everywhere!’”

The master of social work program is the largest and oldest degree program at the school, which was founded in 1964. The School also offers a Ph.D. in social work, a master of arts and a graduate certificate in nonprofit management and leadership, and a baccalaureate in social work. The school emphasizes curriculum that addresses issues of power, oppression, social justice, evidence-informed practice, advocacy and diversity–summarized by the acronym PrOSEAD (pronounced “proceed”). The approach is uncommon among schools of social work and has attracted national attention.

“We get many student applicants who don’t have a background in social work, and I think the PrOSEAD component gets people more excited that their degree will help them make even larger changes in the world,” said Mumbi Mwaura, the graduate recruitment coordinator.

To determine ranking, U.S. News assessed 262 social work graduate programs accredited by the Council on Social Work Education’s Commission on Accreditation, the sole accrediting agency for social work education in the U.S. Placement was calculated based responses to a survey of academic experts, including deans, program directors and faculty. Only fully accredited programs in good standing during the survey period were ranked.

“This new ranking puts the MSW program solidly in the top tenth percentile of programs nationally,” said David Okech, associate professor and program director. “It confirms what we’ve believed for some time – that our program is one of the best in the nation.”

Read more at UGA Today.

– Laurie Anderson

Posted March 12, 2019.

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