Skip to main content

MSW Admissions

Information Sessions for Prospective Applicants

Recognizing that many prospective applicants have questions about the MSW program, the GCSW offers a series of information meetings between August and February. Interested persons can register online for an information meeting here.

Application Deadlines 

Fall Admissions: 

January 1: Early Consideration (Advanced Standing Face-to-Face applicants only)

February 1: All Face-to-Face applicants (including Advanced Standing)

March 1: All Hybrid and Online applicants (including Advanced Standing)

To be considered for Advanced Standing, applicants must hold or be in the process of completing a CSWE-accredited BSW degree.

Spring Admissions *Only for applicants requesting to transfer from another CSWE-accredited MSW program

October 1: MSW transfer applicants

A nonrefundable $50.00 application fee for domestic applicants and $80.00 for international applicants must be paid within ApplyWeb to submit your application. Late applications may be accepted based on space availability and may be subject to a non-refundable additional late fee of $50.00.

Admissions Requirements and Necessary Documentation

To be considered for unconditional admission to the MSW Program, applicants must:

  • Hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university. The undergraduate education must reflect a sound liberal arts foundation, including courses in the humanities, arts, and in the social and biological sciences. Scanned copies of official transcripts can be used to make an admissions decision. If admitted, an official transcript showing degree awarded must be sent to the UH Graduate School in order to enroll in classes.
  • Have achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or better (4.0 scale) for all undergraduate and graduate course work. We will calculate your GPA based on your transcripts. If your cumulative and last 60 hours GPA are below a 3.0 you may be considered for conditional admission.
  • Submit recommendations from persons who can address your ability and potential for graduate education and professional social work practice (i.e., former professors, employment supervisors, professional colleagues). If you are applying for Advanced Standing, the suggestion is that at least one of your two references be from an individual in your BSW program who can speak to your BSW performance, which could include the program director, a faculty member, or your Field Practicum Instructor or Coordinator.
  • Submit a personal narrative statement that describes your interest in social work and your commitment to social, racial, political, and economic justice. Specific instructions for the narrative statement are provided on the MSW Application Checklist page.

Persons who hold a nonimmigrant type visa or who have received their degrees from outside the U.S. have additional application requirements. Please refer to the University of Houston's information for International Applicants.

Application Fee Waivers

Public Service and Volunteer Groups

University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work supports several public service and volunteer organizations by waiving the application fee of $50 for current or former volunteers/employees of Teach for America, Peace Corps, Americorps, and City Year. If an applicant of one of these organizations is admitted to the GCSW, they also receive the possibility for a 1-year deferral on admission.

To receive instructions for the application fee waiver, email before submitting your application. Please allow 3-5 business days to receive the instructions. Please note that application fee waivers are not retroactive, and we are unable to provide refunds for applications submitted without the waiver code.

In addition to the application fee waiver and deferral, GCSW has a partnership with City Year which provides additional benefits, including scholarships, to City Year corps, alumni or staff members. You can read more about the partnership here.

McNair Scholars

University of Houston Graduate College of Social Work also offers application fee waivers for McNair Scholars applying to the MSW program. To receive the instructions for the application fee waiver, email before you submit your application. Please allow 3-5 business days to receive the instructions. Please note that application fee waivers are not retroactive, and we are unable to provide refunds for applications submitted without the waiver code.


Applicants who are recipients of DACA may also be eligible for an application fee waiver. Please email for more information.

Admissions Reviews & Decisions

Applications are reviewed by the GCSW admission committee members. Reviewers take into account the "whole applicant" and no single criterion automatically determines whether an applicant is or is not admitted into the program. Admissions decisions are communicated electronically; no decisions are given over the telephone.