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 Apply by: 11/30/21      Start in: January

Prepare for the next step in your career.

Online Social Work Degrees & Certificates


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Become an Innovative Leader and Advocate in the Field of Social Work

EKU’s 100% online social work degrees provide students with the strong foundation needed to become ethical, culturally inclusive leaders ready to build on human and social assets in a changing world. Social workers are employed in a variety of settings including government, healthcare, social services, and private practice. Social work skills are versatile and in demand. EKU’s social work programs are real-world focused, providing the skills needed to strengthen your community and positively impact the lives of individuals and families.

Industries Hiring Social Work Graduates:

  • Child, Family and School Services
  • Medicine
  • Mental Health and Substance Abuse
  • Criminal Justice System
  • Military and Veterans Affairs Agencies
  • Administration and Community

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Samantha O'Leary

With EKU Online, there is no requirement to log on at a certain time, which leaves me able to schedule my week on my terms. I can complete my coursework when needed and still be involved in all the things my family enjoys doing.

Samantha O'LearyEKU Online Graduate
Sample Courses

Benefits of EKU Online

Learn essential skills for today’s work environment. EKU’s online social work curriculum prepares students for a variety of rewarding career options that will positively impact the lives of individuals and communities.

Program benefits include:

  • Accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) since 1977
  • Accelerated 8-week terms
  • Courses begin 6 times per year
  • Free textbooks for undergraduate students
  • Reduced tuition for active duty military members
  • Personalized graduation plan
  • No campus visits required
  • Free online tutoring and career services assistance
  • Generous credit transfer policy
  • Expert faculty who provide interactive feedback and a collaborative approach to learning
  • Opportunities for practicum experiences to help you discover your calling and network with other professionals

Career Opportunities

Social work is a versatile, purpose-driven profession that prepares you to positively impact the lives of individuals and families, as well as the performance of groups and organizations. A degree in social work can open doors to new job opportunities that can strengthen our communities.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, overall employment of social workers is projected to grow 11 percent through 2028, much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment growth and compensation will be driven by increased demand for healthcare and social services. Relative to a number of factors within a community, the most competitive employers include hospitals, government agencies, and educational institutions based in urban areas.

Find your career

For a full list of course descriptions, see section 7 of the University undergraduate catalog.

SWK 310 – Social Welfare Policy History (3)
History of social welfare policy; its role and relationship with other social institutions; structure and function of U.S. system compared to other national systems; inequitable distribution of resources; and its contribution to an oppressive environment.

SWK 350 – Social Work Practice I (3)
Theoretical base for social work practice from a generalist perspective. Focuses on the social work process: problem identification; data collection and synthesis; assessment; planning and intervention; termination; and evaluation. Emphasis on multidimensional assessment and practice ethics.

 SWK 365 – Crisis Intervention (3)
This course will examine current theories pertaining to crisis intervention, assessment strategies, key public policy issues, and the treatment system. This course uses on-line discussion, presentations, and videos to facilitate learning.

SWK 440 – Addictions (3)
This course will examine how to assess, intervene, and treat individuals, families, and groups with substance abuse and other addictions. The course will examine addictions from a strengths perspective.


For a full list of course descriptions, see section 7 of the University graduate catalog.

SWK 860 – Integrative Micro Practice (3)
Opportunity to observe and engage in the delivery of ethical, culturally inclusive advanced generalist micro practice that is informed by social work theory and applied research.

SWK 870 – Integrative Mezzo Practice (3)
Opportunity to observe and engage in the delivery of ethical, culturally inclusive advanced generalist mezzo practice that is informed by social work theory and applied research.

SWK 880 – Integrative Macro Practice (3)
Opportunity to observe and engage in the delivery of ethical, culturally inclusive advanced generalist macro practice that is informed by social work theory and applied research.

Online Social Work Degrees & Certificates

BSW Social Work

EKU’s 100% online bachelor of social work (BSW) provides students with a strong academic foundation to become ethical leaders who advocate for social and economic justice. This versatile degree opens the door to a variety of career options and builds the critical skills needed to help you advance in the field. EKU’s social work program is real-world focused, providing the opportunity to fulfill your passion for helping others and make a positive impact in your community.

MSW Social Work

EKU’s 100% online master of social work (MSW) is designed with your success in mind. The program provides students with the advanced skills needed to become adaptable, innovative leaders and advocates. The MSW program offers maximum flexibility in course of study with employer-based field placements and few prerequisites. EKU’s MSW program provides the opportunity to gain direct experience and offers full-time and part-time options so you can take courses at your own pace. MSW graduates are prepared to serve as integrative advanced generalist social workers and are positioned to take on leadership roles within a variety of agencies and organizations.

Certificate in Addictions Intervention

EKU’s 100% online addiction intervention certificate provides students with the knowledge and skill set required to act as a non-clinical intermediary and assist individuals with addiction services. Completers will be prepared to connect people to programs and professionals providing prevention and treatment in the fight against addiction. This certificate will prepare you for key positions in careers focused on recovery and to make a positive impact on the lives of others.

Certificate in Child and Family Services

EKU’s 100% online child and family services certificate allows you to leverage your interests and experience while providing the skills needed to work with children and families in educational, institutional, and human service settings. This program examines awareness of social and child welfare services, impact of public policies, and interventions to support children and families.

Certificate in Leadership and Management

EKU’s 100% online leadership and management certificate provides students with the practical skills needed for leading social change and making forward-thinking, ethical business decisions. This program examines leadership skills within the justice field, focusing on political, ethical and emotional intelligence to positively impact the profession. Completers are prepared to fill key positions as social and human service leaders.

Certificate in Mental Health

EKU’s 100% online mental health certificate provides students with in-depth knowledge needed to work with individuals, families or groups with mental/behavioral health conditions. This program covers concepts and principles of human behavior, techniques of behavior change, crisis intervention, and best practices for treatment of mental illness and substance abuse disorders. Completers are prepared to make a difference in the lives of others and to take on key roles within social and human service agencies.

Certificate in Social Advocacy and Justice

EKU’s 100% online social advocacy and justice certificate allows you to leverage your passions and gain the skills needed to create meaningful change and positively impact the lives of others. This program examines leadership within the justice field, focusing on three competencies essential for effective, just leadership: political, ethical, and emotional intelligence. Students will analyze biological, psychological, sociological, and environmental influences on behavior, explore social policy at administrative, judicial and legislative levels, and gain an understanding of gender based violence.

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About Our University

Eastern Kentucky University is consistently recognized as being one of the best online colleges in the nation.

Eastern Kentucky University is a nationally recognized public university located in Richmond, Kentucky. Established in 1874, EKU strives to make quality education available to everyone. A brick-and-mortar accredited institution, EKU began offering online degrees in 2006 and continues to service all students with our on-campus offerings.

The University offers more than 50 online programs in various areas of study, designed for adult learners who want to earn a college degree or certificate while working full-time or juggling other life priorities. Online programs are available through the College of Letters, Arts and Social Sciences, College of Business, College of Sciences, College of Education, College of Health Sciences, and College of Justice, Safety and Military Affairs.