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New York Social Work Licensure

How to become a Social Worker in New York

Below are basic guidelines for those wishing to earn their social work licensure in New York. Most procedures and requirements remain constant over the years; however, it is wise to contact the New York State Board for Social Work at (518)-474-3817 to make sure you are on the right track.

Follow the steps to earn your New York Social Work License:

Step One:

Education requirements for New York Social Work licensure:

  • Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) licensure requires a masters degree in social work from an accredited school.
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) licensure requires a current LMSW license and therefore will need a masters degree in social work from an accredited school as well.

Request information from schools offering social work degree programs.

Step Two:

Work experience requirements for associated licensures:

  • Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW) - none is required prior to licensure.
  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) - A LCSW will need 3 years of supervised work experience following the masters degree. Details about the hourly requirements and qualifying supervisors can be found on the New York Office of the Professions website.

Step Three:

Both licensure levels require candidates to download a New York social work license application and will then need to submit the application to the New York State Education Department. In addition, you will need to include all other supporting documents and fees.

You may download the application off the following New York Office of the Professions webpages: LMSW application and LCSW application

Step Four:

Once your application has been evaluated and approved, the New York Education Department will notify you and the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) of your eligibility to sit for the exam. You will then need to register directly with the ASWB.

  • A LMSW will need to take the Masters level examination.
  • A LCSW will need to take the Clinical level examination.

Information about both exams can be found on the ASWB website.

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

New York Social Work Schools & Colleges
Note: This list contains online and campus schools that accept students from New York.
 
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