FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS - Admissions
After reviewing the information posted on the FSW Admissions website and in the Admissions Viewbook, if you require further assistance, please send an email to the confidential FSW Admissions email address: firstname.lastname@example.org
Applying to one of our MSW programs is a two part process.
PART ONE: THE ONLINE APPLICATION. Complete the online application through the Ontario University Application Centre (OUAC) by the applicable MSW program deadline date. A $125.00 application fee is required when the online application is completed.
PART TWO: THE MSW APPLICATION CHECKLIST. Assemble and mail the additional application material located in the MSW application checklist to the Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work by the applicable MSW program deadline date
**The online portion of the application process (Step 1) will be due on the deadline date no matter when it occurs.**
If the application package (Step 2) is being dropped off it is due the following business day (Monday) during regular business hours, 8:30am-4:30pm.
If the application package (Step 2) is being mailed, it must be clearly post-marked the following business day (Monday).
THIS ONLY APPLIES TO MSW and/or PhD PROGRAM DEADLINE DATES THAT OCCUR ON THE WEEKEND.
Please use the following mailing address: Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University, 120 Duke St., W., Kitchener, ON N2H 3W8, Attn: ADMISSIONS
NOTE: Mailed application packages do not need to be in the office on the deadline date but they must be clearly post-marked on or before the deadline date of the program an applicant is applying too. Mailed application packages received after the deadline date will be checked for a post mark. Application packages post marked AFTER the deadline date will be returned.
Although we recommend mailing your package in a traceable format, DO NOT request a signature on delivery as it will be returned if staff are not available at time of delivery.
**Do not put your application in a binder, duotang, portfolio or page protector.
Application packages can be dropped off at the FSW Reception area located on the 1st floor at the Kitchener campus during office hours.
Address: Faculty of Social Work, 120 Duke St., W., Kitchener, ON N2H 3W8
Office Hours: Monday-Friday 8:30 am - 4:30 pm
Please note: There is NO outside drop box at the Faculty of Social Work
**Do not put your application in a binder, duotang, portfolio or page protectors.
Applicants are only able to check the status of their references online. We will acknowledge receipt of your application package using the email address provided, within two weeks after the deadline date. Note, email is the primary form of communication during the file reading process, be sure to check it regularly. We recommend you make copies of all application materials for your record. Please review when decisions will be made at the following link: When will decisions on Offers of Admission be made?
Due to the online application and online reference submission, you must complete the application process in its entirety, including references and transcripts. The application fee is also required.
Applicants can apply to more than one MSW program by the program deadline date. An application fee will be required for each program application; however, only one set of transcripts and references will be required. Students are not permitted to transfer from one program to another. In order to be considered for admission to a program you must apply to that program. No late applications will be accepted for any MSW program.
We require three references: one (1) academic reference and two (2) professional references. A professional reference is someone who can speak to your work and/or volunteer experience in human services. If you have not attended university in the last five (5) years, we do not require an academic reference; however, you will need to include a third professional reference
An additional academic reference can be submitted as one of the professional references (eg. two (2) academic, one (1) professional). Although not required, a practicum/placement supervisor is considered an excellent professional reference.
Occasionally, referee's are no longer at the
institution/company/organization for which they are providing your
reference or they have retired. The referee will still be considered a
Do not include personal references from family, friends or anyone associated with you in a client/patient based relationship.
The online application system facilitates the online submission of reference forms. Detailed instructions are provided within the system.
The online application system facilitates the online submission of reference letters. Detailed instructions are provided within the system. You will be asked to provide contact information for your referees, including a valid email address. A valid institutional/organizational email address is preferred, however generic email address will be accepted.
Please use the following link to Graduate Studies website for information on the online submission of Reference letter and the referee process.
Referee's need to respond to the questions provided in the Reference Form template sent to them directly by the online application system once you have confirmed your application by proceeding to payment. Where is the Reference Form located?
Occasionally, referee's are no longer at the institution/company/organization for which they are providing your reference or they have retired. The referee will still be considered a suitable reference. We ask that they provide a brief explanation when completing the online reference form.
We ask that you plan ahead, and communicate with your referees well in advance of submitting your online application to confirm contact information AND ensure they are willing and able to submit the completed reference by the deadline date. Please note: A late reference form MUST be received by our office within two weeks after the deadline date for the program you are applying to, in order for your application to be considered.
We require only ONE (1) copy of your transcript from each institution attended, including college transcripts. Transcript requests can be made:
1. Through the OUAC online portion of the application process for an additional fee. If choosing this option, the electronic transcript will come automatically to the FSW Admissions Office. OR
2. Request a transcript directly from each institution attended. You can request your transcript/s to be mailed back to you in a sealed envelope and include with your application package. If choosing this option you need to ensure sufficient time as the application package must be mailed on or before the application deadline date. OR, you can have the transcript/s be mailed directly to: Lyle S. Hallman Faculty of Social Work, Wilfrid Laurier University, 120 Duke St., W., Kitchener, ON N2H 3W8 Attn: ADMISSIONS
If a transcript is going to be late, submit your application by the deadline with a note explaining that a transcript from (university) will be forwarded as soon as it is received. Please note: A late transcript must be received by our office within two weeks after the deadline date for the program you are applying to, in order for your application to be considered.
Eligibility is determined on the basis of your last completed academic year (equivalent to 10 half-year courses) at the time of application. A minimum B (73%) standing in the final academic year is required, however a competitive applicant will have a strong B+ (79%) or higher final year GPA. These calculations are not restricted to course work in your major. For more information click here .
Social sciences would include, but not limited to; anthropology, child/youth/family studies, criminology, economics, environmental studies, global studies, history, political science, psychology, social justice and peace, sociology, thanatology, women’s studies, etc. We will also accept your university’s definition of a social science. There are many new programs and courses that would fall under the category of social science even though it may not be listed.
It is a priority of the Faculty of Social Work to encourage applicants who are committed to equity and social justice issues and who may also reflect the diversity of our community. We believe that this will enrich the educational climate of the entire program of graduate studies in social work. To this end, we are asking applicants to provide information pertaining to personal identity and professional experience with diverse populations. There are two distinct ways this information is used. For details, visit Valuing Diversity at Laurier.
The Faculty of Graduate Studies will defer offers of admission in exceptional circumstances only. Deferral of an Offer of Admission
All applicants who receive an offer of admission who are full-time graduate students will automatically be evaluated for eligibility for an Entrance Scholarship. The Faculty of Social Work has limited funding available through Entrance Scholarships and they are awarded to selected candidates with an offer of admission.
Laurier's Accessible Learning Centre is committed to assisting students with disabilities in reaching their full academic potential. Visit Accessible Learning Centre for information regarding its services and resources.
In 2014, we had approximately 160 applications for 28 full-time positions. Most successful applicants had a solid A- average in the last completed academic year, as well as the equivalent of over three years experience in human service organizations. All applicants will be notified of decision by the end of February. There are approximately 30 offers of wait list positions. The wait list is not ranked initially, and although there is normally some movement from the wait list, we cannot predict your chances of an offer.
In 2014, we had approximately 600 applicants for 90 full-time positions. Most successful applicants had a solid A- average in their last completed academic year, as well as the equivalent of over 3500 hours paid and/or volunteer experience in human service organizations (one year = 1750 hrs). All applicants will be notified of a decision on or before April 30th. There are approximately 40 offers of wait list positions. The wait list is not ranked initially, and although there is normally some movement from the wait list, we cannot predict your chances of an offer.
The joint Seminary and FSW program at Laurier: the MDiv-MSW degree is offered for those seeking ordination but can also be taken by those who are not seeking ordination. Please contact the Seminary for further details in regards to the MDiv program requirements.
Students in the joint program take courses from both departments (the Seminary on WLU main campus and the FSW building downtown Kitchener) each term, including through Spring terms, until the degrees are completed. Therefore the degrees are completed concurrently. Our joint program students relay that they enjoy the variety of taking courses from different departments, but note that it requires exceptional organizing skills, and the ability to handle a very heavy load, as the joint program is completed full-time only. (The degrees can each be completed part-time if done individually). It's an exciting program for those with aptitudes in both social work and theology, and want to create either a career that will combine both interests, or a career in one field only, with the other field studied for personal interest only.
The FSW receives approx 60 applications for 25 positions in the part-time program. The program is very structured in design. If you are unable to participate in an employment-based practicum do not secure your own placement. Once in the program, you will work with the practicum office to make these arrangements. All applicants to part-time studies will be notified of a final decision no later than June 30th. There will be a number of wait list positions offered; however, we cannot predict your chances of an offer from the wait list.
A class of 20 students will be admitted to the MSW Aboriginal field of study for both the full-time and part-time cohorts. Admission requirements to this program include an admissions interview. All applicants to the Aboriginal program will be notified of a final decision no later than July 1st. A number of wait list positions will be offered; however, we cannot predict the possibility of an offer from the wait list.
When calculating GPA, we use the last ten half credits on your transcript at the time of application. Your degree does not have to be complete when applying. You must have a minimum B average at the time of application in order to be eligible.
You can also apply if you are missing some social science courses or your research method. If you were to receive an offer it would be conditional upon completion of these courses by the time you begin our program.