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Located in the mountains of Boone, North Carolina, Appalachian State University opened its doors as a teachers college in 1899. In 1967, the school expanded its programs to other fields, leading to its 1971 union with the University of North Carolina System. Appalachian specializes in visual arts, business, arts and sciences, and education.

Appalachian’s social work department operates under a “framework of social and economic justice” and offers both a bachelor’s program in social work (BSW) and master’s program in social work (MSW). The school is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The social work department’s programs are accredited by the Council of Social Work Education (CSWE).

Featured Programs in Social Work

Social Work Program Overview

Appalachian’s department of social work seeks “to promote the well-being of individuals, families, groups, and communities.” Progressive and politically active, in 2016 the department stood against the state’s House Bill 2 by “affirming the worth and dignity of every individual.” With this in mind, the department aims to graduate culturally and ethically competent social workers who care greatly about all populations they serve. Graduates of Appalachian’s social work programs find employment in correctional facilities, hospitals, mental health centers, and child services.

Online Social Work Programs

Appalachian offers a 33-hour hybrid MSW for applicants who recently earned their BSW degree from a CSWE-accredited university and who maintained a 3.2 GPA in their undergraduate core courses. This “advanced standing” program — which includes 45%-65% online coursework and fieldwork and seminars in Hickory, NC — requires students to concentrate their studies in either individuals and families or community and organization practice.

Appalachian’s BSW program does not include an online option, but the department projects that to change in the fall of 2019.

On-Campus Social Work Programs

Appalachian offers on-campus options for both BSW and MSW degrees. The MSW program largely mirrors its hybrid counterpart, requiring students to complete 60 credits and concentrate in either individuals and families or community and organization practice. The BSW program requires students to complete 122 credits and does not currently include an online or hybrid option.

Appalachian State University Online Social Work Degree Programs

Online Bachelor’s in Social Work

Program Overview

  • Department: Department of Social Work
  • Program Name: Bachelor of Social Work


  • Format: On-campus
  • Instruction Style: Synchronous

Program Requirements

  • Credit Requirements: 122 credits
  • Field Education Requirements: Social work field instruction course

Program Length

  • Program Options: Full-time or part-time
  • Program Length: 4 years
  • Program Start Dates: Fall, spring, summer

Admission Requirements

  • Application Deadline: November 1; February 1
  • Standardized Tests: SAT or ACT

Online Master’s in Social Work

Program Overview

  • Department: Department of Social Work
  • Program Name: Master of Social Work
  • Concentrations: Individuals and families; community and organization practice


  • Format: Hybrid
  • Instruction Style: Asynchronous

Program Requirements

  • Prerequisites: BSW degree
  • Credit Requirements: 33 credits
  • Field Education Requirements: 480 hours of fieldwork, 24-hour field seminar

Program Length

  • Program Options: Full-time only
  • Program Length: 2 years
  • Program Start Dates: Summer II

Admission Requirements

  • Application Deadline: February 1
  • GPA: 3.2 minimum
Read more information about Social Work Degrees and Careers in North Carolina