Delivery Method and Program Length

How long are the programs?

Accelerated Hybrid Program: 55-unit, 16-month program in four straight trimesters without a summer break. The curriculum is cohort-based and full-time with significant embedded experiential learning and inter-professional education opportunities.

Advanced Standing Program: 32-unit, 12-month Advanced Standing Program in three trimesters for students with a bachelor of social work degree from a program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.


What will my weekly schedule look like if I become a student? 

Review a sample schedule (pdf)


Cost and Financial Aid

How much does it cost to attend Pacific's MSW program?

Visit Tuition and Fees to see current costs.


What kind of financial aid is available?

Financial aid packages at Pacific are tailored to each individual's qualifications and program of study. Students will receive financial aid information once they are admitted and have accepted admission to the program. For answers to specific financial aid questions, applicants can contact the Office of Financial Aid at 916.739.7158 or


Do you offer teaching assistantships or graduate assistantships?

At the present time, the program does not offer teaching or graduate assistantships.


Are student loans available?

Graduate students who are U.S. citizens or eligible non-citizens may apply for federal student loans. Please contact the Office of Financial Aid at for more information about financing options.


Are scholarships available?

Scholarships available vary from year to year in up to amounts of $25,000.  To learn more, register to attend an info session here, and follow our Instagram account here.

Students residing in the Stockton area may qualify as Abbott Fund Scholars and receive a scholarship for up to 50% of tuition. For more information, click here.


General Application

Is it possible for me to visit the campus and talk with an advisor?

A faculty member is available to talk with you to provide more information about the program and to help you assess your fit with the program. Our program also offers online and in-person information sessions throughout the year to help answer prospective students' questions and tour our facilities. Sign up for an information session.


What if I do not meet the GPA requirements?

If you received your baccalaureate degree at least 5 years ago and do not meet the GPA requirements based on your last 60 semester units, admissions may still be considered using other components of your application taking into consideration your professional and academic experience.


Do you offer admission in the spring?

16-month Accelerated Hybrid Program admission students are only accepted to begin the program in the fall trimester. Students in the 12-month Advanced Standing Program will begin the program in the spring trimester. Both programs are cohort-based with all students moving through the course sequence together.


Do I need to submit official transcripts to SLATE and Pacific when I apply?

During the application process, you will need to submit official transcripts to SLATE. Please do not send official transcripts to the university. After you are admitted to the program and you accept the offer of admission, remaining transcripts should be sent directly to the university.


Are prerequisites required for admission to the program?

As of the application cycle for Fall 2024, there are no required prerequisite courses needed.


Can I transfer MSW credits from another university? 

To be able to transfer MSW credits from another university, it will require review by the program and the registrar after admissions. The credits must have been completed at a CSWE-accredited university and be an MSW course with a grade of B+ or better. We do not accept completed field hours; the course must be graded, not a pass/fail. If approved, you will be able to transfer a maximum of 9 units.  



Where do I go to access the SLATE application?

The SLATE application can be accessed here.


What if my recommender doesn't want to fill out his/her letter of recommendation online?

SLATE requires that all letters of recommendation be completed online. If your recommender does not want to complete the recommendation online, we suggest that you find another recommender. Do not use the recommendation forms that can be found on the university's Graduate School webpage. These forms will not be accepted by SLATE or the MSW program.


Can I submit more letters of recommendation than required?

Accelerated Hybrid (16-month) Applicants:

  • Three letters of recommendation are required. The three letters should be from current or former work supervisors and/or college/university faculty members who were your instructors.
  • Applicants may also submit an optional fourth letter of recommendation.

Advanced Standing (12-month) Applicants:

  • Three letters of recommendation are required. The three letters should be from current or former work supervisors and/or college/university faculty members who were your instructors.
  • Applicants may also submit an optional fourth letter of recommendation. 


What is the prompt and length requirement for the personal statement?

  1. What factors influenced your decision to pursue an MSW degree compared to another helping profession? 
  2. What are your career plans with an MSW degree? How do you plan to commit to social justice and social change?
  3. What skills do you hope to develop while in the program, and why?
  4. Describe your work/ volunteer experience working with diverse and underrepresented populations and how has that influenced your desire to become a social worker?
  5. After reviewing the NASW Code of Ethics, share two values or ethics that align most with your personal values.
  6. Based on the social work values and ethics, how do you anticipate growing as a social worker?
  7. How has your academic, professional, volunteer, and leadership experience contributed to your preparation for an accelerated graduate program?
  8. Explain how you have prepared yourself for the rigors of an accelerated, hybrid graduate program.
  9. Include a brief discussion of the strengths and challenges you anticipate experiencing in an online/hybrid program format.
  10. After reviewing our mission statement, how is University of the Pacific’s MSW program a good fit for your educational and career goals?


What is a priority deadline?

We admit students on a rolling basis (i.e. as they apply). A priority deadline ensures that your application is considered first. Students who apply after the priority deadline (March 31) will be admitted on a space-available basis.


What if my transcripts or letters don't get to SLATE by the March 31 priority deadline?

SLATE will continue to accept items (e.g. transcripts, letters of recommendation, etc.) after the priority deadline. However, applications that are still missing items after March 31 will not be reviewed for priority consideration. The program will continue to review applications and admit students through the final deadline on a space-available basis.



What is the minimum GPA required to apply to Pacific's MSW program?

The minimum GPA required to apply is 2.75 for the Traditional 16-month program. The Advanced Standing Program's minimum GPA is 3.30. 


I have a graduate degree. When I calculate my overall GPA, should I include my graduate course grades?

Yes. The MSW Program will be looking at your last 60 units of study from all postsecondary institutions. This would include post-baccalaureate coursework (if applicable). The program will consider your bachelor's degree GPA as well in a holistic review of each applicant.


GRE Exam

Is the GRE exam required?

The GRE exam is not required for admission. However, an applicant may submit GRE scores in the Academic History section if they have taken the exam. The GRE code is 4609.


Admission Process

When will I find out if I am admitted?

All applicants will receive an admission decision via email from the Program and the Graduate School. A decision letter can be expected within 30 days of completing your application (when your application is submitted and all supplemental materials such as transcripts and letters of recommendation are received). The MSW program's goal is to make admission decisions as soon as possible to provide applicants sufficient time to plan.


If admitted to the program, when will I need to make my decision?

Your decision (to confirm our offer of admission) is due two weeks after the date on your admission letter. In making your decision, you may wish to request a phone contact or personal visit and tour with an MSW faculty member.

What happens if I'm placed on the waiting list?

If you are offered to be placed on the waiting list, you will be asked to confirm if you want to remain on the waiting list in your admission decision letter. The admissions committee will begin notifying students on the waiting list as space becomes available.


Other Frequently Asked Questions

When do classes begin?

Classes typically begin in the middle of August for the fall trimester and in early January for the Spring trimester. See the academic calendar for more information.


Is it possible for me to work my full-time job while in your program?

Since we are a full-time cohort-based program, students are highly recommended not to work full-time while in our MSW program. With a field practicum requirement of 24 hours a week and the accelerated pace, it is very difficult to meet the rigorous curriculum with full-time employment.


No social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience.

The MSW program does not grant social work course credit for life experience or previous work experience. Life and work experience, past or present, cannot be substituted for required field education experience nor any generalist or specialized practice courses.


Field Internships

When does field begin?

Field Internships begin in the spring term and will continue throughout the remainder of the program (including summer).


How many fields will I be expected to complete by the end of the program?

Students will be completing a minimum of 24 hours/week of field practicum beginning the spring term. You will be expected to complete 1004 hours of field by the end of the program.


What types of internships are available? Can I use my current employer as a field placement?

Our internships are often in the fields of behavioral health and healthcare. Students interested in pursuing a job conversation for their field placement will need to work with the field director.