Accelerate Your Success
Master of Social Work 3+1

Saint Mary’s is committed to nurturing compassionate and skilled social workers who make a profound impact in various fields, including mental health and healthcare. Our Master of Social Work Degree Program is designed to equip students with the knowledge, practical experience, and licensure preparation they need to excel in the dynamic field of social work.

The 3+1 Pathway

Our innovative 3+1 program offers an accelerated track for motivated individuals seeking to earn both their bachelor of social work (BSW) and master of social work (MSW) degrees. Completing the BSW in three years and the MSW in an additional fourth year positions students saves students time and money, preparing them to lead in their field with two degrees.

Program Overview

Saint Mary’s College provides a clinical program to ensure graduates are prepared to take the Licensed Social Worker Exam—or comparable, qualifying exams in other states—to work in the field of healthcare. After passing the LSW exam and fulfilling the required number of supervised hours, graduates can sit for the LCSW exam, becoming Licensed Clinical Social Workers (LCSWs). This pathway prepares you for entry into the workforce or further study in a doctoral program.

Clinical social workers are versatile professionals who address a wide range of societal needs across specialties like healthcare, geriatrics, children and families, schools, and mental health and substance abuse.

How it Works

If you’re a high school senior: 
Apply to Saint Mary’s with an intended major in social work, and you’re automatically considered for direct entry into our 3+1 pathway. 

If you’re a current student:
Applicants can apply during the second semester of their junior year or first semester of senior year. 

For those on an accelerated pathway, some summer coursework and an internship are required. For full enrollment into the master’s program, you must meet the following criteria:

an overall cumulative SMC GPA of 3.0

no grades lower than a B in select social work courses

the ability to pass a criminal background check and drug test


A master’s degree is now the minimum requirement for effective social work practice. The field is projected to grow by 9 percent from 2021 to 2031, with clinical social workers in high demand due to their specialized expertise.

Tuition Savings

We empower students to pursue their ambitions while minimizing financial burdens. In the first three years, students complete their BSW degree and undertake summer credit hours, with selected classes counting twice toward their graduate degree. In the fourth year, students transition to full-time graduate studies, but continue to pay the undergraduate tuition rate.

Contact Information and Links

Join our mailing list to learn more

Office of Graduate Studies, Saint Mary’s College, Notre Dame, IN 46556

Phone: (574) 284-4587

Email: admission@saintmarys.ed