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Arkansas Social Work Licensure

How to become a Social Worker in Arkansas

Below are basic guidelines for those wishing to earn their social work licensure in Arkansas. Most procedures and requirements remain constant over the years; however, it is wise to contact the Arkansas Social Work Licensing Board at (501) 372-5071 to make sure you are on the right track.

Follow the steps to earn your Arkansas Social Work License:

Step One:

First you will need to decide which social work license is right for you. The state of Arkansas licenses three levels of social workers.

Licensed Social Worker (LSW) - a bachelors degree is needed from an approved school. Find various specialties of psychology bachelor degree programs.

Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) requires a masters or doctors degree in social work.

Licensed Certified Social Worker (LCSW) needs a masters or doctors degree in social work as well but also requires post-graduate work.

Request information from schools offering social work degree programs or learn more about accredited social work programs offered in Arkansas on the Council for Social Work Education website.

Step Two:

In order to become a LSW or LMSW, post-degree supervised experience is not required in order to apply for licensure.

However, once you have received licensure, you should always practice under supervision. An LCSW needs to fulfill 4000 hours of supervised work experience in two years. One hour per week needs to be with direct supervision. You will have 60 days from the beginning of your work experience to agree on a supervision plan with your supervisor. More details can be found by downloading the Arkansas Social Work Regulations from the following Arkansas Social Work Licensing webpage.

Step Three:

If applying for the Arkansas Licensed Social Work licensure or Licensed Master Social Work Licensure, you will need to download, complete and send in an application. You can download an application from the following Arkansas Social Work Licensing webpage.

Once you have submitted your application for a LSW or LMSW, the board can issue a provisional license to practice social work until you have passed the exam and received full licensure. This temporary license will only be issued once and lasts only one year. You can contact the board to see if you qualify for a provisional license by calling the Arkansas Social Work Licensing Board (501) 372-5071 or by emailing to swlb@arkansas.gov.

Step Four:

After you have completed all of your supervised work experience you can download and submit your application to become an Arkansas Licensed Clinical Social Worker. You can download the application here.

Once the application for any levels of certification have been approved, the final step is to take and pass the designated examination. The Arkansas board accepts the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) exams. You can learn more about this examination, such as test dates, content and locations, at the following ASWB webpage.

Arkansas Social Work Schools & Colleges
Note: This list contains online and campus schools that accept students from Arkansas.
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            5 Program(s) Found
            • 95% alumni satisfaction rate.
            • Currently holds more than 500 professional alliances, including 19 of the top Fortune 100 companies.
            • Courses are taught by expert faculty, with 86% of professors possessing a doctoral degree.
            • Offers credit for prior experience and learning, as well as scholarships, accelerated programs, and several other ways to help reduce tuition costs.
            • Regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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            1 Program(s) Found
            • Provides students the opportunity to train at home in their spare time to get their high school diploma, train for a new career, or enhance current skills.
            • Offers programs in psychology/social work, business management, medical billing, criminal justice, and more.
            • Member of the United States Distance Learning Association (USDLA), the Canadian Network for Innovation in Education (CNIE), and the International Council for Open and Distance Education (ICDE).
            • Features a fully flexible schedule with no classes to attend, leaving the study pace up to the student.
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            • Online Courses
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            • Ranked #11 in the 2015 Best Graduate Schools in Social Work by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Offers more specialization opportunities than any other social work program, with 10 concentrations and sub-concentrations and 8 dual-degree programs.
            • The first elite researching university to offer a Master of Social Work degree online.
            • Has 4,000 field internship opportunities that give students real-world experience.
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            • Online Courses
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            • Offers 46 credits for military experience (plus credit for CLEP & DSST)
            • Offers undergraduate and graduate degrees, certificates, teaching credentials and extended education programs online and at campuses throughout California and Washington.
            • Has a network of 26 campuses, 6 military base locations and online options
            • Part of the Chapman University System
            • Online Courses
            5 Program(s) Found
            • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • Lets undergrad students try classes before paying any tuition.
            • Has an average class sizes of 18 for undergraduate and 13 for graduate-level courses.
            • Offers numerous scholarship opportunities that can help students save up to $750 per term on their tuition.
            • Tends to educate degree-seeking online and campus-based students who are adult learners with families and students who work while pursuing higher education.
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            • Ranked 33rd among the Best Grad Schools for Social Work in 2015 by U.S. News and World Report.
            • Founded in 1904 as the nation’s first institute of higher learning to offer training for clinical social workers.
            • Provides a rigorous education, including a nationally accredited Master of Social Work (MSW) Program and PhD in Social Work.  
            • Offers inventive programs with hands-on experience.  
            • Incorporates social justice values and multicultural perspectives into curriculum. 
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            • Online Courses
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            • Ranked among top Regional Universities in the South by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
            • Ranked 37th among the Best Colleges for Veterans by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
            • Stands as the largest private, nonprofit university in the nation with 100,000+ students.
            • Offers over 230 programs online, from the certificate to the doctoral level.
            • Has a student-faculty ratio of 25:1, and 42.3% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
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            Regent University prepares students with the knowledge to excel and the faith to live with purpose. Our 20,000 alumni, from more than 110 countries, are changing the world as accomplished professionals. Named a top-15 school nationally for online bachelor's programs (U.S. News & World Report, 2015), Regent is among the most affordable undergraduate Christian colleges (CCCU 2015). Fully accredited, challenging programs are available online and on campus. New classes begin every eight weeks.

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            • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
            • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
            • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
            • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
            • Features a competency-based MBA program that allows students to test out of subjects based on prior professional experience.
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            • Online Courses
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            • Each year since 2004, The Princeton Review has included California University in its Best in the Northeast listing, recognizing Cal U as one of the best regional universities in the northeastern United States.
            • Ranked #35 in Best Online Graduate Education Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
            • Offers private school amenities at a public school cost.
            • Grants students in its Global Online program the same diploma as graduates from Cal U’s traditional degree programs.
            • Has an student-to-teacher ratio of 20:1.
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