Social Work

School of Social Work


What is Social Work?

The goal of social work is to better society by improving the conditions of those living in it. Our program will teach you how to help all sorts of people. You'll learn how to assist people who are suffering from poverty, unemployment, substance abuse, and mental illness. In this major, you'll gain skills to work with people with disabilities as well as people with chronic illnesses. Social work students also learn how to help those who have experienced abuse such as domestic violence or sexual assault. Our program offers a valuable close-knit academic community. Students have the opportunity to engage with other units across the campus, community, and nation. 

We also offer a two-year program, Social Work iBSW, which is available to junior-level transfer students. This Council on Social Work Education-accredited program allows students with 60 hours of college credit to earn their Bachelor of Social Work degree 100% online through a combination of online courses and in-person field placements based on their location. Graduates can seamlessly transition into our one-year advanced standing master's program.

Career Options

  • Administration
  • Child welfare
  • Corrections
  • Counseling
  • Education
  • Government
  • Health care
  • Human resources
  • Nonprofit work
  • Rehabilitation
  • Therapy

Post-Graduation Success1

93% employed or continuing education

22% employed after graduation

70% attending graduate school

1% volunteering

$31,530 average starting annual income

Sample employer destinations: Carle Foundation Hospital, Rosecrance Substance Abuse & Mental Health Treatment, Champaign-Urbana Public Health Department View All

Sample grad school destinations: University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, University of Illinois at Chicago, Washington University in St. Louis View All

Review Criteria

First-Year Major-Specific Criteria

  • Interest in helping people, being a change agent, and making a difference with organizations and communities
  • Understanding of the major and social work values
  • Volunteer experience and commitment to activities

View All Review Criteria

Transfer Criteria

Transfer Guide

Graduation & Retention2

3.9 years to degree

90% first-year retention rate

Four-year graduation rate: N/A

Six-year graduation rate: N/A

Annual Program Costs3

Illinois Resident

  • Tuition: $12,712
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,222
  • Total: $35,862


  • Tuition: $31,832
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses:$18,562
  • Total: $55,322


  • Tuition: $32,780
  • Fees: $4,928
  • Expenses: $18,562
  • Total: $56,270