About the School of Social Work
The nation's first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers
In 1904, Simmons was the nation's first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers. We are proud of our 117-year history of leadership in social work education and our role in shaping the social work profession. Simmons has been a pioneer in social work education and practice.
Our goal is to provide transformative learning experiences through our small, interactive classroom environments, experiential learning opportunities, and strong faculty mentorship. Our BSW, MSW, PhD, and DSW programs share a commitment to preparing graduates to practice social work in a complex, multicultural world. Our programs focus on the development of strong skills, career preparation, and readiness for the field. Our students share a passion for scholarship, a dedication to community, a vision for change, and a commitment to social justice and human rights.
Simmons is comprised of an undergraduate liberal arts education program for women and those of other marginalized gender identities, plus professional graduate schools with masters and doctoral programs for all genders, presenting unique and rich opportunities for interdisciplinary research and collaboration.
Our Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree provides transformative learning experiences through small, interactive classroom environments, experiential learning opportunities, and strong faculty mentorship. Students in our BSW degree program share a passion for scholarship, a dedication to community, a vision for change, and a commitment to social justice and human rights. Our Bachelor of Social Work degree focuses on the development of strong skills, career preparation, and readiness for the field.
Our nationally renowned MSW program continues to lead the way today with its rigorous and innovative clinical social work programs for men, women, and transgender/nonbinary individuals. Our faculty are highly specialized in direct clinical practice—close to 90% of the faculty are engaged in practice within their community, and they take pride in mentoring and teaching students. Simmons offers more hands-on training in the field than any of the other social work schools in the Boston area. Simmons is the only Massachusetts school to use state-of-the art Social Work Simulation Education to engage MSW students in higher level learning. Simmons students excel with their high pass rates on the licensing exam and high rates of employment within 6 months of graduation.
Simmons University's PhD in Social Work program is designed for experienced practitioners to develop scientific research skills so they can advance the evidence base of the field. As the program enters its 40th year, it is leading innovation in PhD education by now offering its program online in order to better meet the needs of students who are balancing work and family responsibilities, live outside of the City of Boston, and who seek a student-oriented doctoral education. Simmons School of Social Work has more than 12 years of online teaching expertise it is bringing to the online PhD program. Faculty teaching in the PhD program are interdisciplinary scholars with experience working in on-ground and online research collaborations and teaching in online platforms.
The Simmons PhD in Social Work honors the practice experience of its students, while challenging them to view social work practice through a scientific lens as they transition to scholars. Our faculty are committed to collaborative and supportive mentoring of PhD doctoral students and encourage them to pursue a career path that is the best fit for their research and scholarly interests. Simmons PhD graduates engage in research that informs real-world practice issues.
The Doctorate of Social Work (DSW) program is designed for practitioners to advance their knowledge in the areas of inclusive leadership, clinical practice, and teaching. We prepare clinicians to lead social work thought, education and research-informed practice via a social justice lens. Students receive one-on-one faculty mentoring and rigorous course work from expert faculty that enables them to orient and accelerate their careers as leaders, advanced clinical practitioners and educators.
The DSW program trains students in advanced leadership, clinical practice, teaching through courses that explore advanced social work competencies, emerging practices, and leadership theory. Students are required to take three courses in each of the three core areas of leadership, practice and teaching. Additional coursework enables students to shape their skills as research-informed practitioners. The DSW Program prepares students to become inclusive leaders, engaged educators and expert clinical practitioners.
- Nationally acclaimed BSW, MSW, DSW & PhD programs
- BSW (On-ground and online) and MSW programs fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education
- The PhD and DSW programs are designed for working professionals
- Clinically focused MSW offered on Boston Campus and Online MSW SocialWork@Simmons
- The nation’s oldest and most comprehensive clinical social work program
- Strong emphasis on BSW and MSW practicum education
- Our MSW students get more hands-on experience in the field than any other program in the Boston area
- Small, accessible campus in the heart of Boston
- Faculty who are noted teachers, practitioners, and researchers
- Personalized, high-quality faculty advising
- Advanced Standing Program for BSW graduates offered on campus and online
- Small student-to-faculty ratio
- Full-time and extended MSW program study options
- High rate of successful job placements and professional opportunities for graduates
- Innovative programs that address clinical challenges and community and cultural contexts
- Dynamic, diverse and involved social work community