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Online MSW Programs in Florida

By Seph Anderson | Updated 10/25/2022

Social workers in Florida have numerous opportunities to contribute to their local communities. They not only have the option to provide program and policy support in office or agency settings, but they can also offer in-person services to populations in need. Students can become a social worker in Florida through two different licensing paths. In order to obtain permission to practice social work in Florida, professionals who already hold a social work license in another state can apply for a social work license endorsement. Whether social workers become licensed in Florida, or obtain an endorsement to work there, it is important to understand the renewal process and be mindful of the continuing education requirements. Florida social work is overseen by the Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling.

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CSWE Accredited Online MSW Programs in Florida

School Annual Tuition Locations
# Barry University $17,910 Miami Shores
# Chamberlain University $13,940 Multiple Locations
# Florida State University $26,707 Tallahassee
# Saint Leo University Online $7,296 St. Leo
# University of Central Florida $28,657 Orlando (and 7 others)
# University of South Florida - Sarasota-Manatee $20,737 Sarasota
# University of South Florida Online $21,126 Tampa
# The University of West Florida $24,894 Pensacola

Online MSWs in Florida

In Florida, there are three institutions that offer highly-regarded online master’s of social work degree (MSW) programs – Florida State University, the University of South Florida, and the University of Central Florida.

By earning an online master’s from one of the three universities with accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education, graduates can work as social workers in a variety of social work settings, including local and state government, communities, hospitals and clinics, and other organizations. There are also two social work certifications that master’s degree recipients may pursue in Florida: Certified Master Social Worker (CMSW) and Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW).



A master’s degree is required for those seeking licensure as a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) or Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW).

While bachelor’s degree recipients in social work can obtain a Licensed Baccalaureate Social Worker (LBSW) license, a master’s degree is required for those seeking licensure as a Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) or Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). Upon earning their graduate degree, students must pass the respective licensure exam from the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) and apply with Florida’s Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy and Mental Health Counseling. Lastly, individuals seeking certification beyond the LBSW level are required to complete a set number of practicum hours and over 1,500 hours of supervised work in social work.

In this guide to online MSW programs in Florida, we provide essential information to help you make your decision as to whether or not an online MSW meets your professional ambitions. Additionally, you’ll find OnlineU’s rankings of Florida MSW degree programs.

Can You Get an MSW Online in Florida?

Yes, there are three Florida institutions offering online master’s degree programs in social work: Florida State University, the University of Central Florida, and the University of South Florida.

Enrolling in an online degree program provides students with a number of benefits, including flexibility in terms of the number of credit hours students can take each term. It also allows working professionals to effectively balance professional and personal commitments while attending school.

To learn about online msw programs and social worker requirements in other states, explore our list of CSWE-accredited online MSW programs by state below.

How Do I Prepare for an MSW Program?

Succeeding in an MSW program begins with thoroughly researching which college or university hosts the online master’s program that best aligns with your professional goals in terms of your career in social work, program tuition, the length of time to degree completion, and which program provides you with the best personal and professional life balance that fits your individual needs.

Here are some basic steps to help you prepare for an MSW program in Florida:

1

Earn a bachelor’s degree in social work or a related field.

2

Research online master’s degree programs in social work.

3

Apply to the programs you would attend if admitted.

4

Spend time reviewing your undergraduate social work coursework.

5

Once admitted, find out about any orientation programs.

6

Complete the FAFSA and any other financial aid and scholarship applications.

7

Commit to getting the very most out of the experience.

8

Be sure and connect with peers and professors even though courses are online.

9

Never miss a lecture, quiz, exam, assignment, or anything else.

Admission Requirements

Each institution is unique in terms of its admissions requirements. However, most of Florida’s online MSW programs require that applicants have earned a bachelor’s degree in social work, or a related field, and an undergraduate GPA between 2.5 and 3.0. Admissions tests, such as the GRE, are usually only required in cases where a student’s GPA falls below the minimum requirements.

Additionally, it’s important to mention that financial aid and scholarship opportunities exist at the master’s level.

MSW Careers in Florida

Florida offers many career opportunities for MSW degree recipients, including careers working in hospitals, clinics, and other healthcare settings; mental health services; elementary and secondary schools; communities; nonprofit organizations; and more. The type of social work master’s degree that a student chooses to pursue will help steer their career options.

Licensure in Florida

A student in their last term of an online master’s degree program may begin their desired licensure exam application with the ASWB, as mentioned above. Upon earning a master’s degree in social work, completing the required hours of experience and successfully passing a licensure exam, a student may begin the licensure application through the Florida Board of Clinical Social Work, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling.

Before sitting for the exam, Florida master’s of social work graduates looking to become an LCSWs must complete a separate Laws & Rules Course and HIV/AIDS Course. In addition, within six months of certification, an applicant must complete a two-hour domestic violence course from a board-approved provider.

Social Work License Reciprocity in Florida

To transfer a social work license from another state, licensees can apply for a license by endorsement. Applicants must verify their current license and provide the supplemental documentation requirements for either the CMSW or LCSW license, including their certification exam scores and transcripts.

When applying for the LCSW license, applicants also need to complete required courses on Laws and Rules, HIV/AIDS and an approved two-hour domestic violence course. However, the domestic violence course may be completed within six months of certification.

Resources

The resource links below can provide prospective master’s students with expert insights and information on different professional organizations as well as additional information from the Florida Board of Clinical Social Workers, Marriage and Family Therapy, and Mental Health Counseling

National Association of Social Workers (NASW)

National Association of Social Workers (NASW) - Florida Chapter

Council on Social Work Education (CSWE)

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