KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – October 10, 2018 – The University of Tennessee College of Social Work is celebrating its 10th year of online Master of Social Work Education. The UTCSW developed one of the first accredited online MSW programs in the country. While other online programs have developed over the past few years, the UT online graduate social work program is unique in that it is taught by the same faculty who teach in the college’s face-to-face programs, provides high level advising and consultation by UTCSW faculty and staff, and constantly evaluates its program and publishes these results,
“We are very excited to achieve this milestone,” Director, MSSW Nashville and MSSW Online Programs, Kate Chaffin, said. “From day one, it was important for our online students to have the same high quality of education and personal interactions with faculty and staff as our traditional students. We recognized the rise of internet-based learning as a standard in education and were fortunate to start building our program early. We wanted a program that was accessible, flexible and provided excellent education. We have been able to reach students across counties in Tennessee that previously had no social workers and across the U.S.
Based on internal research, published in peer-reviewed journals, the College of Social Work has found similar performance in terms of knowledge and skills gains from both its online and traditional programs. In particular, students emerge with the same strong clinical skills regardless of the online or traditional format of their coursework. By having the same faculty and curriculum, the college is able to offer students a similar quality experience. Online students learn through synchronous or asynchronous approaches. In synchronous approaches students and faculty can see, hear and interact with one other live online. Students also meet with one another or in small groups using the same technology to complete projects and further their learning
College of Social Work Interim Dean Dr. David Dupper describes the College of Social Work online master’s Program as a “daring experiment that has paid off tremendously” for students. “The internet has allowed us to reach people in ways we never could have 20 years ago,” he said. “We saw a need to reach students who were removed geographically, or had work and family commitments, or for whatever reason preferred the flexibility of an online program over a traditional classroom environment. Just as an office can be many different things to people today, a classroom can as well. Education looks very different today and we have been very fortunate to stay ahead of the curve.”
Using the same approach to providing high-quality online education with a personal touch, the College of Social Work has plans to launch its new online bachelor’s program next fall.
To learn more about the University of Tennessee’s College of Social Work, visit their website here.