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Minnesota Social Work Licensure

How to become a Social Worker in Minnesota...

Below are basic guidelines for those wishing to earn their social work licensure in Minnesota. Most procedures and requirements remain constant over the years; however, it is wise to contact the Minnesota Board of Social Work at (612) 617-2100 to make sure you are on the right track.

Follow the steps to earn your Minnesota Social Work License:

Step One:

Complete education requirements for Minnesota social work licensure:

  • Licensed Social Worker (LSW) requires a bachelors degree in social work from an accredited school.
  • Licensed Graduate Social Worker (LGSW), Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW), and Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) licensure candidates require at least a masters degree in social work from an accredited school.

Request information from schools offering social work degree programs.

Step Two:

Work experience requirements:

  • Licensed Social Worker (LSW) - no experience is required.
  • Licensed Graduate Social Worker (LGSW) - no experience is required.
  • LISW candidates need to earn 4000 hours of work experience prior to licensure with at least 75 hours of direct supervision.
  • LICSW candidates will need 4000 hours of work experience after receiving their degree with at least 75 hours of direct supervision.

More details about supervision and work experience can be found on the Minnesota Board of Social Work website.

Step Three:

Now you can complete a Minnesota social work license application online and submit the application along with all supporting documents and fees to the State of Minnesota Board of Social Work.

You can download the application here.

Step Four:

Once the Board has evaluated and approved your application, you can take the appropriate level exam administered by the Association of Social Work Boards.

  • Licensed Social Worker (LSW) applicants will need to pass the Bachelor's Examination.
  • Licensed Graduate Social Worker (LGSW) applicants will need to pass the Masters Examination.
  • Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) applicants will need to pass the Advanced Generalist Examination.
  • Licensed Independent Clinical Social Worker (LICSW) applicants will need to pass the Clinical Examination.

Information about all of the Minnesota social work licensure exams can be found on the ASWB website.

Step Five:

On August 1, 2011, the State of Minnesota Board of Social Work will be changing some of the licensing and continuing education requirements. Make sure to check the new 2007 Legislation statutes to see if they apply to you.

This process can take some time, so being aware of deadlines and keeping your Minnesota Social Worker license active is important.

Minnesota Social Work Schools & Colleges
Note: This list also contains online schools that accept students from Minnesota.

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Cardinal Stritch University , Online (campus option available)
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