Master of Social Work-Master of Public Health: Grace Abbott School of Social Work, College of Public Affairs & Community Service; College of Public Health, University of Nebraska Medical Center


Vision Statement

The dual degree program in MSW/MPH prepares highly skilled professionals with competence in both social work practice (health and mental health) and in public health. Graduates will have the knowledge and skills to engage in a variety of administrative tasks necessary to the promotion of community health and mental health:  policy analysis, assessment of community needs, program development and administration, personnel management, grant writing, developing community capacity, training, and program implementation and evaluation. In addition, graduates will also be able to engage in practice across the continuum of care with health and mental health problems, including prevention, crisis intervention, clinical intervention, and rehabilitation services, especially with populations at risk.

Program Contact Information:

(Social Work)

Dr. Kerry Beldin, Graduate Program Chair (GPC) Fall 2013

College of Public Affairs & Community Service (CB) 206C


Dr. Peter Szto, Graduate Program Chair (GPC) Spring 2014

College of Public Affairs & Community Service (CB) 205


(Public Health)

College of Public Health Dean's Office
University of Nebraska Medical Center
984355 Nebraska Medical Center
Omaha, NE 68198-4355
Phone: 402-559-4960

Program Website:


Application Deadlines:

  • Fall: January 15
  • Spring: NA
  • Summer: NA
  • The MPH application is completed online through the College of Public Health at the University of Nebraska Medical Center: see website for application deadline.

Application Requirements:

  • Online Application
  • One official copy of transcripts for ALL institutions previously attended
  • Application Fee
  • If English is not the language of nurture, official test scores from the TOEFL, IELTS, or PTE exam are required
    • 500 on the written TOEFL
    • 173 on the computer-based TOEFL
    • 61 on the internet-based TOEFL
    • 5.5 on the IELTS
    • 44 on the PTE
  • Undergraduate GPA of at least 3.0 in courses related to proposed major

Program-Specific Requirements:

  • Three (3) Letters of Recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose
    • Please answer the following statements/questions in a total of five (5) double-spaced, typewritten pages (12 point font). Your application is considered incomplete if these instructions are not followed.
      • A brief autobiographical statement that discusses who you are and the experiences that led you to social work. Trace the development of your interest in social work. Why have you chosen social work as a profession? Describe the key motivating figure(s), role model(s), or experience(s) important to your decision to become involved in social work.
      • Discuss your career objectives as a professional social worker as you now conceive them. What do you see yourself doing immediately after receiving your MSW degree?
      • Discuss a contemporary social problem. Include possible causes and potential solutions in your response. What contribution do you want to make to the pursuit of social and economic justice?
      • In the School’s criteria for admission, we assert our commitment in having students representing diverse backgrounds. Diversity is defined by virtue of: personal characteristics such as race, gender, age, sexual orientation, disability, and geography, as well as life experiences such as career history, experience dealing with a significant personal challenge, belonging to or working in or among another culture, economic disadvantage, knowledge of more than one language, and/or deep broad life experiences. What evidence can you present to demonstrate your capacity to work with human diversity.
      • Please review the Social Work admission requirements for additional information and details regarding the essay requirement.
  • Resume

MSW-MPH Degree Requirements

Completion of these prerequisite courses is required before entry into the program:

An undergraduate human biology course or equivalent

An undergraduate research methods course

An undergraduate statistics course

MSW-MPH Required Courses:

Foundation Program Requirements (24 hours):

Students admitted to the dual degree program who do not have a BSW must start the program at the Social Work graduate foundation level, which consists of the following 24 hours, thus bringing the total hours required for these students to 81.

SOWK 8070Human Behavior and the Social Environment I

3 credits

SOWK 8080Human Behavior and Social Environment II

3 credits

SOWK 8090Social Welfare Policy

3 credits

SOWK 8110Institutional Oppression

3 credits

SOWK 8130Generalist Practice I

3 credits

SOWK 8150Generalist Practice II

3 credits

SOWK 8160Generalist SOWK Practicum I - Agency

3 credits

SOWK 8170Generalist SOWK Practicum II- Agency

3 credits

Waiver examinations are available for SOWK 8070 and 8090.  See Academic Policies & Standards for more information on deficiencies, waivers, and transfers of credit:

Required Courses (57 hours):

CPH 500Foundations of Public Health


CPH 501Health Behavior


CPH 502Health Services Administration


CPH 503Public Health, Environment, & Society


CPH 504Epidemiology in Public Health


CPH 506Biostatistics I


CPH 565Health Care Finance


CPH 566Health Care Policy


SOWK 8190Research & Computer Applications

3 credits

SOWK 8220Clinical Social Work with Individuals

3 credits

SOWK 8230Clinical Social Work with Groups

3 credits

SOWK 8270Social Work Practice with Sexual Concerns

3 credits

SOWK 8290Social Work Practice in Health and Mental Health

3 credits

SOWK 8510Supervision and Personnel Administration

3 credits

SOWK 8540Social Welfare Planning

3 credits

SOWK 8686/COUN 8686Medical and Psychosocial Aspects of Alcohol/Drug Use and Addiction

3 credits

SOWK 8940Evaluation of Social Programs

3 credits

SOWK 8400Advanced SOWK Practicum I - Agency

3 credits

SOWK 8410Advanced SOWK Practicum II - Agency

3 credits

MSW-MPH Exit Requirements:


Comprehensive Examination

    • The comprehensive examination is offered twice each academic year, during the Fall and Spring semesters.  It is recommended that students take comprehensive examinations during the semester of graduation, but they may take it earlier provided no more than 12 semester hours are remaining to complete the degree after the semester in which the comprehensive examination is taken.
    • Students must enroll in a minimum of two courses (6 hours) per semester, excluding summer semesters.
    • Students must seek prior approval from the director of the Grace Abbott School of Social Work if they wish to take more than 12 hours of coursework in a single semester.
    • Program requirements must be completed within six years.  Exceptions can be requested from the Director.


Academic Policies and Standards

A student must maintain a cumulative grade point average (GPA) of 3.0 or higher in all graduate work taken as part of a master’s program, including courses taken for a certificate.  Additionally, a student must receive a grade of B or higher in social work practicum courses (SOWK 8160, 8170, 8410, and 8420).


A student whose cumulative GPA drops below 3.0 or who receives a grade of C+ (2.33 on a 4.0 scale) or below in nine or more hours will be considered in academic difficulty and will receive a Student Review.  If a student receives a grade in a practicum that is lower than a B, he or she will receive a Level 2 or 3 Review, depending on whether the student has had a previous Review.  If a student is on academic probation and receives a grade of B- or lower, the School will recommend that the Office of Graduate Studies dismiss the student from the program.  (Probation means that a grade of B [3.0 on a 4.0 scale] or higher is required for all courses taken.)


When a student is dismissed from the MSW program by the UNO Graduate Office, a student may request reinstatement if he or she was “in good standing” prior to the incident preceding the dismissal.


The Academic Policies & Standards can be found at:


MSW-MPH-Other Program-Related Information:

The Master of Social Work (MSW) program prepares students for advanced social work practice.  Master’s-level social workers are employed in public and private agencies, including medical settings, schools, residential treatment centers, court and correctional agencies, and community planning and development agencies.  Their activities and interventions are designed to promote a more effective-functioning society as it struggles to “provide for the general welfare,” as well as to help people, families, groups, and institutions within the society achieve self-fulfillment.


The MSW degree at the Grace Abbott School of Social Work is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the national accrediting body for all social work education.


Information on certification and licensure is available on the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services’ website: