Piggy bank on books

How To Pay for Your Education

Developing a plan to pay for your education will help set you up for success while in the program and as a social work professional. This page contains an overview of tuition, financial aid options, and whom to contact for help. Contact Scholarship Programs and Financial Aid for more information

Setting Expectations: Thanks to the generosity of our donors and support of the Dean, the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work awarded more than $3 million dollars in scholarships that students do not need to repay. More than 80% of incoming MSW students received a scholarship from the school. Scholarships do not cover the full cost of attendance; a majority of students use a combination of scholarships, loans, and personal savings to fund their education. Please note that funding is limited and scholarships are never guaranteed.

Tuition and Fees

Enrolled students are charged tuition and fees each semester. Tuition charges vary each semester based on the number of units you are enrolled in. Tuition and fees are subject to change each year and historically increase every year.

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Tuition 2020-2021 academic year

For the 2020-2021 academic year, tuition for one semester is:

  • $29,630 for students enrolled in 15-18 units
  • $1,995 per unit for students enrolled in 1-14 units


The estimated total tuition* for each program is below:

  • 4 Semester Traditional MSW Program: $115,120
  • 6 Semester MSW Program: $119,700
  • 3 Semester Advanced Standing Program: $73,212

* Based on 2020-2021 tuition rate.

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2020-2021 Tuition Chart

Traditional MSW Full-Time Tuition Chart (4 Semesters)

Semester

Units

Estimated Tuition**

Calculation

1

15

$29,630

Flat rate 

2

17

$29,630

Flat rate

3

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit

4

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit

 

Total Units: 60

$115,120

 

 

Traditional MSW Part-Time Tuition Chart (6 semesters)
 

Semester

Units

Estimated Tuition**

Calculation

1

6

$11,970

6 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

2

6

$11,970

6 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

3

6

$11,970

6 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

4

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

5

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

6

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

 

Total Units: 60

$119,700

 

Advanced Standing MSW Program Tuition Chart (3 Semesters)

Semester

Units

Estimated Tuition**

Calculation

1

9

$17,955

9 x $1,928 per unit rate for 14 units or less 

2

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

3

14

$27,930

14 x $1,995 per unit rate for 14 units or less

 

Total Units: 37

$73,212

 

  • Your cost of attendance will be determined by the USC Financial Aid Office and will reflect tuition, all mandatory fees and, in some cases, certain allowances for living expenses. Published rates for 2021 have not yet been announced and subject to change.
  • You must apply for federal loans and work study through the USC Financial Aid Office. You can apply for USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work scholarships and stipends through the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work. USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work scholarships and stipends will be determined separately from the USC FAO and may not be included on your initial financial aid award letter from the USC FAO.
  • All financial aid amounts are subject to change.

 

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2020-2021 Mandatory Fee Charges

Charges

Fall

Spring

Graduate New Student Fee

$55
one-time charge; first-year students

N/A

Student Health Service

$407

$406

Student Programming

$43

$43

Norman Topping Student Aid Fund

$8

$8

Student Health Insurance

$753
waived with proof of health insurance

$1,363 ("")

Total

$1,255.00

$1,820.00


Note: All units and fees are charged per semester. Mandatory fees do not include books or housing.

Possible Funding Sources

Funding may be available from a wide variety of sources including Program Scholarships, Outside Assistance, Loans, Stipend Programs, Military Benefits and other methods.

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Program Scholarships

MSW Merit Scholarship

  • Applicants are automatically considered for this scholarship based on the academic merit described in their admissions application. No additional application is required.
  • This scholarship award is extremely competitive and award amounts vary from $10,000 to $40,000 (Divided evenly over the 4 semesters) for 4-semester students and up to $6,000 for 6-semester students.
  • Students selected for this scholarship will be notified shortly after receiving their admissions decision.


Endowed and Philanthropic Scholarships

  • Thanks to the generosity of our donors, we are able to offer several scholarships based on scholastic achievement, leadership qualities, and financial need. These scholarships are awarded to students who meet the specific criteria of each donor fund.
  • These scholarship awards are competitive and never guaranteed.
  • Award amounts vary by donor fund.
  • Admitted students will be notified when the Endowed and Philanthropic Scholarship Application becomes available in the Spring.
  • Please make sure you meet the guidelines prior to applying. As noted in the application, some scholarships are specific to the program (MSW, @MSW (VAC), MSN, and DSW.
  • Only students awarded will be notified, no denial emails will be sent.
  • The scholarship application may only be completed once per academic year. 
  • All scholarship applications will stay on file for a full academic year and students may be awarded at any time throughout the academic year.
  • If you are selected for an award, we cannot guarantee you will receive it again in the future as these scholarships are subject to availability and donor requirements.
  • If selected, you will be expected to send the Donor a Thank You letter through our Scholarship Programs office. 


For more information, contact:

Scholarship Programs Office
213-740-1726

Office of Admissions
213-740-2013

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Loans & Stipend Programs

Loans
Often scholarships do not cover the full cost of attendance. The majority of incoming students are self-funded with Federal Stafford (up to $20,500 per year) and Graduate Plus loans. Loans need to be paid back and accrue interest over time. To be considered for federal financial aid, you will need to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid.

For more information, contact:
USC Financial Aid Office
213-740-4444


Stipend Programs

The workforce development and stipend programs at the USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work offer MSW students the opportunity to specialize in an area of practice where there is a high need for qualified social workers. Students can apply to a stipend program(s) from an area(s) of focus based on their interests. Stipend programs differ in length, funding, requirements, and competitive application processes. Read below for a brief description of each stipend program, including corresponding information sheets.

Stipend Program List, Applications and Contacts

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Military Benefits & Other Methods

Military Benefits
Eligible veterans may be able to use their education benefits at USC. Additionally, veterans entitled to the 100% Post 9/11 benefit rate may be eligible for the Yellow Ribbon G.I. Education Enhancement Program.

For more information, contact:

USC Veterans Certification Office 
213-740-4619


Other Methods
USC accepts a variety of forms of payment, including: Online payments from a checking account or credit card, wire transfers, payment plans, and employer reimbursement.

For more information, contact:
Student Financial Services
213-740-4077