Dordt announces master’s degree in social work

Dordt's MSW program now accepting applications

Dordt University’s Master of Social Work (MSW) program is now accepting applications for the fall 2020 semester. The MSW program was approved by the Higher Learning Commission in late October. To apply, please visit

“There is a real need for well-trained, competent Christian social workers in the social work field today,” says Dr. Erin Olson, a social work professor at Dordt. “I am excited about teaching the MSW program from a Christian perspective and encouraging student to consider what it means to be a Christian in social work practice.”

“The MSW is a great fit for Dordt because of the university’s popular and well-established undergraduate program in social work, and of course the worldview, faith, and service components integrated into every program at Dordt,” says Dr. Steve Holtrop, director of graduate studies at Dordt.

Dordt’s MSW program offers a Christ-centered social work education with courses that are 100% online.

“The MSW program is affordable, and the pacing works well for both full-time and part-time students,” says Dr. Leah Zuidema, vice president for online and graduate programs. “A student who is prepared at the BSW level and qualifies for advanced standing can complete Dordt’s online MSW in three semesters. Dordt’s program also has a regular standing track; students who do not have a BSW but meet other standards for application are eligible to apply.”

In addition to foundational and advanced courses, the program offers three tracks: clinical, community practice and administration, and generalist. The clinical specialization prepares students for a clinical mental health setting and is a great fit for students interested in working in direct practice with individuals, families, or groups in a counseling or mental health setting. The community practice and administration specialization will prepare students to work in public or non-profit organizations, communities, and faith-based agencies at the administrative or community level. The generalist specialization is a great fit for students who are open to a career path in direct or indirect practice.

“When students graduate, they will have a wide range of career paths available to them including clinical counseling, medical or hospital social work, school social work, administration, community development, and advocacy,” says Olson. “They will also be eligible for licensure, which could ultimately allow them to enter clinical mental health private practice.”

Dordt now offers a variety of master’s programs. Dordt’s Master of Education Program provides eight tracks, including Sport Leadership and School Leadership. Equipping students with management and leadership skills needed to thrive in public or nonprofit institutions, Dordt’s Master of Public Administration Program offers emphases in police administration and nonprofit administration; it will launch in fall 2020. Dordt also received approval from the Higher Learning Commission for a Master of Science in Applied Statistics Program.

As an institution of higher education committed to the Reformed Christian perspective, Dordt University equips students, faculty, alumni, and the broader community to work toward Christ-centered renewal in all aspects of contemporary life. Dordt, located in Sioux Center, Iowa, is a comprehensive university named to the best college lists by U.S. News and World Report,, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Monthly, and Princeton Review. To learn more, visit