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International Applicants

The Department of Social Work encourages qualified applicants from other countries to apply to the MSW program.

Faculty teaching in classroomIf you are a non-resident alien of the United States, you will be required to submit additional documents beyond those described in our Application Process section.

Please contact our office for additional assistance on this process at 612-330-1101

Applicants with a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree or those that intend to complete a BSW prior to starting the MSW program are considered advanced standing students and begin the MSW program at Augsburg in May.

Applicants who plan to enter the Augsburg MSW program with a bachelor’s degree in something other than social work (BSW) are considered generalist students and begin the MSW in September.

Before You Apply

  • Attend an Information Session – The best way to learn more about our program is to attend an on-campus information session or one of our off-campus sessions held at local restaurants and places-of-interest around the Twin Cities. View our list of upcoming events and register for an information session. Another option is to schedule a one-on-one appointment with an admissions counselor to address your questions and learn more about the program details, including cost, schedule and time commitment.
  • Request Information – Tell us more about your interests by completing our MSW Interest form. We’ll e-mail you more information and invite you to upcoming information sessions.

Application Components

All MSW applicants must complete and submit an admission file that includes:

  • Completed online application form
  • Official transcripts from Bachelor’s Degree granting institution and any post-baccalaureate coursework completed. *Degrees obtained at a university outside the U.S. will likely require a foreign credential evaluation. See details below under the transcripts heading.
  • Two letters of recommendation (follow the recommendation instructions on the application)
  • Resume
  • Typed personal statement (and GPA explanation if your cumulative GPA is below 3.0)

Certificate of Finances

In order to process your Form I-20, the following documents must be received:

  • Completed Augsburg Certification of Finances form *document may be obtained by contacting Augsburg Admissions at
  • Proof of funding as demonstrated by supporting financial documents (such as bank statements – current within three months; Government Support Letter; etc…)
  • Copy of the first page your passport

Students with current F-1 status through another university in the United States: You will need to have your SEVIS record transferred from your current institution to Augsburg. The SEVIS Transfer form must be completed by you and your Designated School Official. You will need to present your Augsburg letter of admissions to the DSO when submitting your transfer request. This form may be returned to Augsburg by e-mail.

Application Deadline

MSW applications are reviewed once a year. Our priority application deadline is December 1st.  After January 15th, we accept applications on a rolling basis, provided there are spots available in the program.  International students are encouraged to apply early to ensure there is time to complete additional requirements and make a smooth transition to starting school.

Admission Requirements

In order to be considered for MSW admission, applicants must have:

• a bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university;

• completed liberal arts courses in the social sciences (4 classes) and humanities (3 classes).

In addition, we recommended applicants have a cumulative GPA of 3.0 or higher. Although experience is not a requirement, we give strong preference to applicants with prior human service experience, either work or volunteer.

Admission with Advanced Standing

Advanced standing is an application category open to those who have earned a bachelor’s degree in social work that is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), CASWE, or an internationally-earned ISWDRES-evaluated degree comparable to a baccalaureate social work degree. Advanced standing applicants are waived a maximum of six MSW courses and the generalist field internship. Advanced standing students will be able to complete the MSW in a 13-month, full-time format. If all six courses and the generalist internship are waived, advanced standing students will begin their MSW program in the summer (May).  Applicants who completed their BSW over 15 years from the program start may be required to complete additional generalist coursework. Candidates will also be asked to share a brief statement about how they have stayed connected to emerging social work practices and standards since graduates when submitting their application.


First, we recommend you start your application process by filling out the online application. If you discover you are lacking more than two liberal arts prerequisite courses, you will need to complete one or more prior to application. It is permissible, however, to have two courses pending at the time of application. Next, we suggest you request your transcripts and your recommendations, as these are difficult for you to control in terms of timeliness. Lastly, write your personal statement. You’ll want to give yourself plenty of time for this task so you can compose thoughtful answers and write to the best of your ability.


Applicants must submit an official transcript(s) from the regionally-accredited institution granting the Bachelor’s degree and the most recently attended institution, if not the same. Military veterans are required to submit all official transcripts from previously attended institutions to qualify for military benefits. In the case where prerequisite requirements exist or transfer credits or waivers are sought, official transcripts are required from institutions at which the prerequisites or equivalents were completed. The Program Director may ask for additional transcripts if determined to be necessary. If prompted by your institution to provide an e-mail address to which e-transcripts can be sent, please send to Transcripts sent via mail should be sent to: Graduate Admissions, 2211 Riverside Ave, Campus Box 65. Minneapolis, MN 55454.

International Transcript Evaluations

Augsburg requires an evaluation of credentials for any transcript(s) from an institution outside of the United States.

This evaluation should include the following:

    1. Analysis of credentials to determine if your degree is equivalent to an accredited U.S. bachelor’s degree.
    2. Course by course evaluation to show your complete course listing with credit values and grades received for each course.
    3. Calculation of grade point average to demonstrate your cumulative grade point average using the standard U.S. grading system, i.e., A=4.0, B=3.0, C=2.0, D=1.0, F=0.0.
    4. Translation to English (if applicable)

Evaluations can be accepted from World Education Services, SpanTran Pathways – Augsburg University, Educational Credential Evaluators, or any NACES accredited organization. Learn more about NACES and find a list of accredited evaluators at

United States Transcripts

If you attended university in the United States, you will need to submit an official transcript from each college/university you attended.  If prompted by your institution to provide an e-mail address to which e-transcripts can be sent, please send to Transcripts sent via mail should be sent to: Graduate Admissions, 2211 Riverside Ave, Campus Box 65. Minneapolis, MN 55454.

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As part of the online application, candidates are asked to provide (2) references that can speak to their preparedness for graduate education and/or ability to engage in ethical social work practice. Only professional, community or academic references will be considered.  Personal references are not accepted.

Letter 1: At least one academic reference from a faculty member is highly preferred.  If you are unable to provide an academic reference, you will be asked to include a brief statement explaining why you are unable to submit a faculty reference. In this event, we also ask that your first reference is from someone who has had direct supervisory oversight of your work in a professional or volunteer capacity.

Letter 2: This reference should ideally be from a supervisor, but could include a mentor, colleague, or volunteer partner.  Select an individual who can speak to your abilities, professional competence, and commitment to social justice.

References will receive a request to write a letter addressing the following:

  • In what capacity have you known the applicant and for how long?

  • Do you have personal knowledge of any experience the applicant has had in the broad areas of social service?

  • Indicate the nature of this experience and your assessment of the applicant’s performance.

  • How has the candidate demonstrated a commitment to working toward solving social problems?

  • Share details of any additional strengths the applicant has demonstrated.

Personal Statement

Within the online application, you will be prompted to write a personal statement that responds to each of the following questions.

  • The mission statement of the Augsburg social work department is: “We strive to prepare exceptional social work professionals for anti-racist and anti-oppressive advanced social work practice that promotes intersectional racial and social justice in a diverse and global society.” In relation to our mission statement, why have you chosen the Augsburg MSW program?
  • What principles and values would guide your social work practice?
  • Identify a current event related to a social injustice. What are possible social work responses to it?
  • Think about your education, employment, and/or volunteer experience. Describe one skill or interest you have developed from these experiences. Explain how this skill or interest is relevant to the study of social work.

Tips: Your Personal Statement should be well-written. It should be comprehensive yet concise. Editing suggestions and feedback from another person can be helpful, but the ideas and writing should be your own.

Explanation of GPA

Students with a GPA below a 3.0 can still be considered for admission. If your GPA is below 3.0, please include a brief explanation by responding to one or both of these questions:

  • Were there extenuating circumstances contributing to the GPA? If so, have those circumstances been resolved?
  • Were there limitations that affected your GPA that still remain today? If so, what is your plan to address these limitations?

Pending Bachelor’s Degree

We accept applications for prospective students with a pending Bachelor’s degree, provided your degree has been received and conferred at the time you matriculate into the MSW program at Augsburg. Submit an official transcript at the time of application and a second official transcript once your final grades are posted and the degree has been awarded. Admission decisions will be made based on the initial transcript submitted with a condition to successfully complete your undergraduate degree of study prior to starting classes at Augsburg University.

English Language Proficiency

To meet Augsburg University admission requirements, applicants must provide evidence of a sufficient command of both written and spoken English to study graduate level coursework conducted entirely in English. The following is a list of the tests and programs Augsburg University accepts as evidence for English proficiency.

  • TOEFL: Minimum score of 80 on the Internet Based TOEFL (iBT) with a sub score of 20 on the written and 20 on the speaking sections.
  • TOEFL Essentials: Minimum score of 8.5
  • IELTS: Minimum score of score report of 6.5.
  • Duolingo English Test: 105 (For tests taken on or after July 15, 2019)
  • Successful completion of a previous undergraduate or graduate degree at an accredited college or university in the US, the United Kingdom, Ireland, English-speaking Canada, New Zealand or Australia

Prerequisite Coursework

We value applicants’ undergraduate coursework in the areas of social sciences and humanities and appreciate having at least 3-4 courses in each area.

Social science courses can be drawn from the following disciplines: anthropology, sociology, psychology, social welfare, social work, economics, political science, geography, or history.

Humanities courses can be drawn from the following disciplines: philosophy, ethics, jurisprudence, modern or classic languages, linguistics, comparative religion, literature, folklore, archaeology, cultural histories, ethnic studies, poetry, art, music, theatre.


Send application materials to

Graduate Admissions Office, CB 65
Augsburg University
2211 Riverside Avenue
Minneapolis, MN 55454