Special Admissions Categories - University of Houston
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Special Admissions Categories

Advanced Standing | Conditional Admission | Social Work Transfer Students 

Advanced Standing

Advanced Standing

Face to Face, Hybrid and Online

Applicants holding a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) degree from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited undergraduate program may request review for Advanced Standing admission.

There is not a separate application for Advanced Standing applicants. They must meet all regular admissions requirements described previously, plus:

  • At least one of your two – three references should be from individuals in your BSW program who can speak to your BSW performance, which could include the program director, a faculty member, or your practicum instructor or coordinator.
  • In addition to achieving a 3.0 for the social work major, the applicant must have achieved a grade point average of 3.0 or better (4.0 scale) for all undergraduate and graduate course work OR a 3.0 in the last 60 hours of coursework completed.

Not everyone who applies for Advanced Standing will be admitted with the advanced standing status; the admissions committee may deny Advanced Standing but still approve admission to the regular program. Students may be denied Advanced Standing if they have multiple C’s or lower in Social Work courses, lack information or evidence they have been successful in their BSW practicum placement or have other deficiencies in their application. 

Applicants with a BSW from a CSWE accredited program who are admitted to the regular (51 SCH) program are not required to take foundation courses if they have covered the content and received a “B” or better in their BSW courses. To be considered for individual course exemptions, applicants must submit syllabi for the courses they believe have similar content to the GCSW foundation courses. The Assistant Dean for Admissions and Student Affairs will review the syllabi and make decisions about granting exemptions. Students seeking credit for Generalist Practicum 1 & 2 must also submit copies of their practicum evaluation/s which the Director of Practicum Education will review. Students with exemptions will replace the foundation course(s) with electives.

Admitted Advanced Standing students receive a waiver for 17 credit hours. They are required to complete 34 credit hours in the student's chosen concentration and electives. Maximum enrollment is 15 semester credit hours for fall and spring and 9 hours for summer.


Early Consideration Application Deadline: January 1  

Early Consideration is offered to Face-to-Face Full-time Advanced Standing applicants seeking to start practicum in the fall semester. All materials must be received by this deadline in order to be eligible for Early Consideration. Applicants admitted under Early Consideration will be able to attend Marketplace in early spring and have access to a wider selection of practicum sites. Early Consideration does not apply to Hybrid or Online Advanced Standing applicants. 

Face-to-Face MSW Program Application Deadline: February 1 

All Face-to-Face Full-time Advanced Standing applicants can also apply by the Face-to-Face MSW Program deadline of February 1. Face-to-Face Full-time program applicants who are not admitted under Early Consideration will be able to start practicum in the spring or summer and will have a more limited selection of practicum sites. 

Hybrid and Online MSW Program Application Deadline: March 1

Hybrid and Online Advanced Standing application deadline is March 1. Hybrid and Online Advanced Standing students begin practicum in their second year of the program. 


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Conditional Admission

Applicants with a grade point average of 3.0 or better (4.0 scale) in all undergraduate and graduate course work will be considered for unconditional admission. If the cumulative GPA is below a 3.0, the last 60 hours GPA may be considered instead. Applicants with grade point averages of less than 3.0 in both cumulative and last 60 hours will be considered for conditional admission. Please address the low GPA in your personal statement.


  • Students holding visas (F1 or J1) are not eligible for conditional admission at the graduate level at this university. 
  • Conditional admission may negatively affect your eligibility for financial aid. 
  • According to GCSW policy, students admitted conditionally must earn a minimum GPA of 3.0 on their first semester of graduate work. Failure to achieve a 3.0 GPA will result in termination from the MSW program. 

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Social Work Transfer Students

Students who transfer to the GCSW from another CSWE accredited MSW program must meet all regular admissions requirements, AND submit: 

  • A Statement of Good Standing from the dean or director of your program 
  • Syllabi for courses completed 

Instructions for uploading these documents will be provided after the application is submitted. 

A maximum of 25 semester credit hours, earned within five years of the student's graduation date at the GCSW, with grades of B or above, can be transferred for credit toward the MSW degree at UH. Credit will be evaluated after admission but prior to enrollment.  

For information on non-MSW credit transfer, see our  Transfer Credit Policy

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