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Ohio Social Work Licensure

How to become a Social Worker in Ohio...

Below are basic guidelines for those wishing to earn their social work licensure in Ohio. Most procedures and requirements remain constant over the years; however, it is wise to contact the Ohio Counselor, Social Worker and Marriage & Family Therapist Board at (614) 466-0912 to make sure you are on the right track.

Follow the steps to earn your Ohio Social Work License:

Step One:

Complete the education requirements for the particular licensure best fit for you:

  • Social Worker Assistant (SWA) licensure requires you to have at least an associate degree from an accredited school.
  • Licensed Social Worker (LSW) licensure requires at least a bachelor's degree in social work from an accredited school.
  • Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) licensure requires all candidates to have at least a master's degree in social work from an accredited school.

Request information from schools offering social work degree programs.

Step Two:

Work experience requirements for associated Ohio social work licensure:

  • Social Worker Assistant (SWA) - No experience is required
  • Licensed Social Worker (LSW) - No experience is required
  • A Licensed Independent Social Worker (LISW) candidate needs to complete two years of supervised work experience once they have completed a masters degree program and have received the LSW license.

More information about the required work experience and qualifying supervisors can be found by downloading the Laws and Rules off the following Ohio Board's webpage.

Step Three:

To be approved to take the examinations for LSW or LISW, you will need to apply online to the Ohio Board.

You can apply to sit for these examinations by completing the following online application process, click here. A SWA needs to download the application or apply online. Once the Board has reviewed and approved your application, supporting documents, and fees, you will receive licensure as no exam is necessary.

Download the SWA forms here.

Step Four:

When the Board approves your online application the LSW and LISW will be approved to sit for the appropriate examination. A LSW will need to take the Bachelor's Examination while a LISW will need to take either the Clinical or Advanced Generalist Examination.

Both exams are developed by the Association of Social Work Boards and more information can be found on their website.

Step Five:

Once the Board has received all official documents and approved your application, you will be notified of your licensure eligibility.

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

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

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