MSW: Master of Social Work

West Chester University

West Chester Campus

Reynolds Hall
West Chester University
West Chester, PA 19383
Phone: 610-436-2664

PASSHE Center City

701 Market Street, Concourse Level
Philadelphia, PA 19106
Phone: 267-386-3015

Curriculum: Grading

MSW students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 on the university four-point scale throughout their course of study (see WCU Graduate Catalog).

Students whose cumulative grade point average falls below 3.0 will be placed on academic probation. They must raise their GPA to 3.0 by the end of the next semester or full summer term in which they register. An additional probationary semester may be granted at the discretion of the dean of Graduate Studies in consultation with the program director. Students who fail to meet the conditions of academic probation are subject to dismissal. Graduate students earning a cumulative GPA of 2.0 or lower will be dropped from their graduate program without a probationary period. A graduate student earing an F grade in any course will be dismissed from the University. An F earned at West Chester University may not be made up at another institution of higher education for the same course.

Grades earned during summer sessions count the same as grades earned during the academic year. All grades recorded determine the student's academic status, even if a student changes degree programs. Students dropped from a graduate program due to unsatisfactory work will not be permitted to take courses for credit towards a graduate degree in that department beyond the semester in which they are dropped.

To be eligible to receive the master's degree, graduate students must complete all requisite courses and credits with a cumulative GPA of a least 3.0.

Students holding graduate assistantships who fail to maintain a 3.0 cumulative GPA will have their assistantships revoked or will not have them renewed.


Plagiarism is a serious violation of West Chester University's Academic Integrity Policy and can result in both expulsion from the University and the loss of the opportunity to reapply to any WCU graduate program. Students admitted to West Chester University for a master's degree in social work are expected to have a clear understanding of plagiarism, including its consequences and how to avoid it. The concept of plagiarism is addressed during student registration and orientation sessions and reinforced throughout the curriculum.

Any student who does not feel prepared to submit graduate-level work that is properly cited must take the responsibility to become familiar with standards of citation and documentation. Students who are unsure of their understanding of plagiarism may benefit from the following self-assessments:

Students may make appointments to meet with writing tutors at the WCU Writing Center to review their work. The following websites may also be helpful:

Termination from the Program

Students may be terminated from the MSW Program for poor academic performance (see Grading) and violations of WCU policy, including the Code of Conduct, Academic Integrity, and Sexual Misconduct. Students are expected to be familiar with these policies.

The WCU Academic Integrity Policy states that, "under some circumstances, if a student is found to have violated their professional code, that violation may be considered a breach of the Academic Integrity Policy." In social work, the National Association of Social Workers publishes the professional Code of Ethics.

In addition to the NASW Code of Ethics, professional behaviors specific to the MSW Program are outlined under Standards for Professional Behavior. Students are expected to abide by these standards at all times. Failure to abide by these standards may result in termination from the program.