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Master of Applied Social Work

  • Masters (Coursework)

If you want to become a registered social worker, but don't have a bachelor's degree in social work, then this programme is for you. The Master of Applied Social Work is designed for those with relevant practice experience, or a bachelor's degree in a related discipline.

Key details

Degree Type
Masters (Coursework)
Duration
2 years full-time
Study Mode
In person, Online

About this course

If you want to become a registered social worker, but don't have a bachelor's degree in social work, then this programme is for you.

The Master of Applied Social Work is designed for those with relevant practice experience, or a bachelor's degree in a related discipline. That could include psychology, education, law, medicine, nursing, sociology, anthropology, theology or case management.

This programme will prepare you for practice and registration as a social worker in New Zealand and most other countries.

Entry requirements

The Master of Applied Social Work is a selected entry programme. This means there are a number of extra requirements you must meet.

To enter the Master of Applied Social Work you will:

  • have been awarded or qualified for an undergraduate degree, either in the social sciences (such as social and cultural studies, psychology, human development) or an alternative degree with substantial relevant experience in a social or community setting
  • hold a driver's licence that is valid in New Zealand unless otherwise exempted
  • be selected into the programme on the basis of a process which includes:
    • providing a personal statement explaining why you wish to enter the social work programme and profession
    • providing two character referees - these must not be family or friends
    • providing a curriculum vitae that includes academic and work history
    • undertaking an interview.

You will provide verified copies of all academic transcripts for studies taken at all universities other than Massey University.

Once you are successful at gaining a place in the Master of Applied Social Work programme, you will also need to complete further tasks. These are to meet the requirements set down by the Social Workers Registration Act 2003 for registration as a social worker in New Zealand (to ensure you are a "fit and proper person to practise social work"). You will need to:

  • complete the vetting service request and consent form for a New Zealand Police check
  • provide a current police certificate from any overseas countries you have lived in for 12 months or more in the last 10 years.

If English, Maori or New Zealand sign language is not your first language, you will need to provide official evidence of your English language competency in the form of:

  • an IELTS test with an overall academic score of at least 6.5, with no band score less than 6.5, taken within the preceding two years, or
  • a TOEFL internet-based test (IBT) score of 85 or higher with a writing score of 22, or
  • at least two years of successful study in a New Zealand secondary school, with at least 10 Level 2 NCEA credits in literacy (five reading and five writing), or equivalent.

Study locations

Auckland

Online

Career pathways

A social work degree means you can work in many different areas. You could be a field operator working in the community or you could be a professional adviser in a hospital or a district health board. You might choose to be a policy expert working with government. Or, you could travel overseas to the jungles of Papua New Guinea to work within a village setting. The options are endless - and endlessly meaningful.

Social workers make a difference in many areas around the world including:

  • hospitals and primary health care
  • mental health and addictions
  • voluntary and community organisations and government organisations
  • child protection
  • youth justice
  • housing
  • offenders
  • residential care
  • management and supervision
  • tertiary education
  • community work and community development
  • refugees and migrants
  • schools.

Credit for prior study or work

For information on prior learning, exemptions and transfer of credit or other questions:

  • review the Recognition of Prior Learning regulations
  • contact us through the Enquire button on this page.