Quad Cities MSW Program

Mary Newcomb“Part-time non-traditional students are incredibly insightful, passionate and committed.  It is a privilege to work with them as they prepare for their next steps in our amazing profession.” -- Mary Newcomb


Since 1968, The University of Iowa, School of Social Work has offered a part-time program in the Quad Cities. It is administered by the School of Social Work in cooperation with the Division of Continuing Education. The program is fully accredited by the Council on Social Work Education and is structured so that a cohort of about 30 students is admitted once every three years.  The next cohort will begin in 2019.

Courses are taught by tenure track, clinical and adjunct faculty and visiting scholars on site and via CONNECT, a web based interactive communication system that allows long distance learners to participate in classrooms across the state.

Students register for an average of two courses each semester, including summers, and complete the degree in three years. Scheduling is structured to assist working students with most courses offered after 4:30 pm or through intensive formats. Students may take up to 12 hours of electives prior to admission with permission. All classes needed for the MSW degree are available locally.

The Quad Cities has an extensive social work community that is supportive of the School and which provides a sizable pool of social workers who can serve as practicum and course instructors.

Students from diverse academic and experiential backgrounds are valued and actively recruited by the program. Previous experiences in human services and cross cultural perspectives are desirable. Those admitted to the MSW program are eligible to apply for diversity scholarships that provide support for four consecutive semesters.

Classes are held at Scott Community College, 500 Belmont, in Bettendorf, IA. For a map of campus and parking, click here. The office address is: The University of Iowa School of Social Work-Quad Cities, Scott Community College, 1108B, 500 Belmont Rd, Bettendorf, IA 52722

Here is what some recent graduates have to say about the program:

  • “My favorite part about the Quad Cities MSW Program is the cohort bonding and the classes, Jeanne Saunders was my favorite teacher,” said Delveau, “Right away this program has helped keep me employed, opened doors for the future, and has given me the opportunity to work in hospice.” -- Kimberly Delveau
  • “My favorite part about the Quad Cities MSW Program is my classmates, there is a great group dynamic in the classroom and I would love to work with any of my classmates,” said Barnes, “I’m glad the Quad Cities MSW Program is mostly in person with just some online. The full time University of Iowa structure is really good, the adjunct professors are good overall, and all course management sites work well. This program made it possible for me to hold onto my current job as well as explore more opportunities such as the possibility of pursuing a PHD in social work.” -- Patrick Barnes
  • “My favorite part about the Quad Cities MSW Program is the fellowship of the students. We are a very diverse group, which brings a different perspective to the coursework,” said Blair-Dick, “Overall the Quad Cities MSW program has met my needs, it is very flexible and I like a majority of the professors. I am doing my practicum right now, which I like because it will give me opportunities in the future. I absolutely loved Lily French, she made Advanced Social Policy more enjoyable. Bob Jackson really broadened my knowledge on therapeutic models. Jeanne Saunders made my research experience more enjoyable. She is a very dynamic instructor.” -- Joan Blair-Dick
  • My favorite part has been the Discrimination, Oppression, and Diversity class with Motier Haskins and Advanced Social Policy with Lily French, her experience and ability to apply theory to class work was inspiring,” said Stone, “This program will help me find a job in the field of social work. I have gained skills that will make me a better employee and have met people that have been very inspirational. In the future the network that I have developed through this program will be to my advantage because I hope to acquire a supervisorial role in the future. Some advice that I have for future students is that you get out of it what you put into it. For the most part professors are really there to help you have a great experience, but you have to show initiative.” -- Miryam Stone



We are always interested in talking to prospective students for the next cohort starting in 2019. Please contact Mary Newcomb, Adjunct Instructor & Practicum Administrator, for further information: 
mary-newcomb@uiowa.edu, 563-441-4036.


* When could I join the program?

The current cohort began in 2016.  Recruitment will begin soon for the next cohort starting in 2019.  For more information on applying, or the kinds of preparations you might want to do, go to Admission page.

Contact Mary Newcomb for more information about the Quad Cities MSW program: mary-newcomb@uiowa.edu.  You may contact the School's Admissions Coordinator Tomeka Petersen: tomeka-petersen@uiowa.edu for further information about the online application process.

* Are there any classes I can take now?

Yes. You can take courses for graduate credit that can be applied to the elective requirements in our program. Up to 12 credits can be taken with us before you are admitted to the program as long as you are being advised by School of Social Work faculty or staff. You can take electives on-site with us, and Guided Independent Study (GIS) and Online courses through the University of Iowa’s Division of Continuing Education see their website for more info.

You can also take courses from area colleges and universities and transfer them to the University of Iowa, applying them toward your elective requirements. Just be sure the courses are for graduate credit, and that they will be less than ten years old by your graduation date. For example, students graduating in 2019 from our MSW program could transfer in up to ten credits (up to nine GIS credits) if they were earned in 2009 or later. The electives need to be relevant to your course of study, so a course in aging would be acceptable, but a course in Entomology (insect science) probably would not be. Please note that courses taken at other institutions would be at their tuition rates.  Please contact us if you're interested in this oportunity.

* If I take electives, will that shorten the program when I join?

No. Required courses are sequenced such that you cannot accelerate when you receive your MSW. For example, if you are accepted into the 2016 cohort and transfer in elective credits, you will not graduate any earlier than May 2019. However, what you can do is spread out the cost of graduate school, enhance your practice with new learning while waiting to do required courses, get a taste of what graduate school is like, ease your stress by reducing your course load during the three year program, and let us get to know you as a student, which can increase your chances of being accepted into the program.

* Where are your classes held?

Classes utilizing on-site instructors are taught at Scott Community College, 500 Belmont Rd. in Bettendorf, IA. We increasingly use Internet and World Wide Web resources and tools to enhance our teaching. More courses are “blended,” involving a mix of in-person and online sessions (in real-time or asynchronously). Some courses, particularly electives, are available completely online. MSW students experience a blend of in-person and online approaches, allowing for both one-on-one contact with instructors and linkage to other University of Iowa School of Social Work program sites and professors, including those in Des Moines, Iowa City, and Sioux City.

* When are your classes held?

Face-to-face and real-time online classes are usually held at night or on weekends. The schedule is created to be as accommodating as possible to students with work and/or family obligations.

* I don’t have a Bachelor’s degree in Social Work (BSW). Can I get a Master’s degree in Social Work (MSW)?                        

Yes.  Many people enter the MSW program without a BSW. People with BSWs complete 48 credit hours to get their MSWs. People without BSWs complete a 60-hour program.