School Social Work
Make an impact on the life of a student as a School Social Worker.
School social workers collaborate with educational administrators, teachers, counselors, psychologists, nurses, speech and language pathologists, and other staff. They help create individalized education plans (IEPs) to address students' needs.
As a school social worker, you will provide counseling services for individuals, groups, and families.
Students often require resources outside of their school. In these situations, you will serve as an advocate for their needs.
This post-master’s certificate requires three school social work classes and 700 hours of practicum work in a school setting concurrent with your seminar course work. The specialization is offered part-time over two years.
Point of Pride
Illinois State's Center for Child Welfare and Adoption Studies established its First Start Academy in 2017 to help prepare high school-aged youth in foster care for college. There are only a handful of First Star academies in the U.S.
Discover what life as a Illinois State graduate student is like with an Online Graduate Student Information Session.
University Admission Requirements
A student applying to this post-master's graduate certificate program must:
- have earned a master's degree from a college or university that is accredited by the appropriate regional accrediting association
- present unofficial transcripts from each college or university other than Illinois State at which graduate, undergraduate, or non-degree credit was earned. The unofficial transcript should be easily readable and clearly indicate degree(s) awarded, courses and course grades for each term. If accepted, official transcripts can be emailed from the university to GraduateAdmissions@IllinoisState.edu or mailed in a sealed envelope to: Illinois State University, Graduate School, 209 Hovey Hall, Campus Box 4040, Normal, IL 61790-4040.
International students can learn more about specific application requirements by visiting the Office of Admissions.
Additional Program Admission Requirements
To be considered for this program, you must have earned a Master of Social Work degree from a CSWE accredited program. You must also have a 3.0 GPA in your graduate coursework.
You'll also need to submit:
- a resume
- statement of interest
- letters of recommendation
- TOEFL score (international students only)
Statement of Interest
Your statement of interest should address the following questions:
- What makes you interested in school social work?
- In your opinion, what are the most pressing issues in our school system today? (Cite relevant literature to support your argument.)
- How can you, as a social worker, address these issues?
Letters of Recommendation
Include recommendations from two individuals who are familiar with your academic potential and achievement, and with your professional or volunteer experience in social work or other human service related fields.
Recommendation letters should include how long and in what capacity the recommender and applicant have known each other. The letter will provide an assessment of the applicant’s:
- Capabilities and suitability for graduate education
- Capabilities and suitability for subsequent practice in the field of social work (i.e. applicant's level of competence in his/her ability to work with others, level of comfort with social and cultural differences, respect for differences, and commitment to social and economic equity)
- Potential for professional growth and development, capacity for self-awareness, and sensitivity to the needs and feelings of others
- Leadership abilities
- Academic or professional work performance
- Characteristics that could either help or hinder the applicant's development as an effective social worker
- Other comments that might inform the committee decision
TOEFL Score (international students only)
International students must have a TOEFL score of at least 79 iBT; the minimum acceptable IELTS score is 6.5 band.
- Fall (August) Term — March 1
- Spring (January) Term — No admission
- Summer (May/June) Term — No admission