Evolving societal, community and individual needs bring about heightened expectations of contemporary social workers, from both clients and employers.

To meet these challenges of the new era, leaders in the social services sector are required to play a vital role in guiding and grooming fellow social workers as well as to possess a wealth of knowledge in a specific field. This programme offers the key to satisfying this new role.

The Graduate Diploma and Master of Social Work Programme is a practice-based programme, designed to prepare social workers aspiring to take up leadership positions in the social service sector. The programme aims to equip graduates with clinical social work skills, administration skills and supervision skills to function at management positions in the sector.

The Graduate Diploma and Master of Social Work is specially designed both for graduates with a social work degree and those with other degrees. For graduates without prior social work training, pre-requisite courses will equip you with the basic social work knowledge and skills so as to ease you into the Master programme.

Graduates from this programme will be recognised social work professionals with administrative and supervisory abilities as well as domain specialists, as accepted by the Singapore Association of Social Workers (SASW) and the main employers of social workers namely the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), Ministry of Culture, Community and Youth (MCCY) and the National Council of Social Service (NCSS).

Programme Structure

Master of Social Work
Students are required to complete a total of 60 credit units (cu) with a minimum CGPA of 3.0 to graduate. The breakdown of the cu to be completed is:

  • 30 cu of Core courses
  • 20 cu of Electives courses1
  • 10 cu of Applied Research Project2

1The electives included in the programme are identified to enhance the expertise of social work professionals by allowing for specialisation in specific settings and with specific client groups.
2The applied research project may be substituted for two other elective courses.

Graduate Diploma in Social Work
Students are required to complete a total of 30 credit units (cu) with a minimum CGPA of 2.5 to graduate.

  • 30 cu of Core courses

Master of Social Work with Couple and Family Therapy specialisation
Students are required to complete a total of 60 credit units (cu) with a minimum CGPA of 3.0 to graduate. The breakdown of the cu to be completed is:

  • 30 cu of Social Work Core courses
  • 20 cu of CFT Core courses
  • 10 cu of CFT Elective courses

Pre-requisite courses (for students without social work degree)
Three pre-requisite courses are designed to prepare the non-social work degree holders for entry into the Master programme. A supervised practicum (400 hours) is also required for graduates to apply their knowledge in an actual social service setting.

Core Modules

  • SWK501 Human Lifespan and Social Ecology
  • SWK503 Social Policy Analysis and Development
  • SWK505 Social Administration and Planning
  • SWK507 Theories and Principles of Supervision for Social Work
  • SWK509 Social Research and Programme Evaluation
  • SWK511 Contemporary Social Work Issues and Practice


  • HDS501 Qualitative Research Methods and Analysis
  • RSS503 Statistics and Data Analysis
  • SWK551 Advanced Clinical Practice I: Working with Individuals
  • SWK553 Advanced Clinical Practice II: Family Intervention
  • SWK555 Addiction Intervention I: Substance Abuse
  • SWK557 Addiction Intervention II: Behavioural Addictions
  • SWK559 Theory and Practice of Gerontological Social Work
  • SWK561 Mental Health and Illness
  • SWK563 Strategies for School Social Work
  • SWK565 Professional and Personal Development and Resilience
  • SWK569 Theory and Practice of Youthwork
  • SWK571 International Social Welfare
  • SWK573 Independent Study in Social Welfare
  • SWK577 Rehabilitation and Protection of Individuals and Families
  • SWK688 Applied Research Project in Social Work
Admission Requirements

Applicants must possess an undergraduate degree or an equivalent qualification from a recognised institution.

For SUSS graduate programmes that are conducted in the English Language, you must meet the English Language Proficiency Requirement (ELPR)* if your undergraduate degree is not awarded by an English-medium university, or your undergraduate degree is awarded by an English-medium university but the language of instruction was not English.

* at least an IELTS (Academic) score of 6.5, or a TOEFL score of 580 (paper-based) or 85 (internet-based), or a PTE Academic score of 58, or C1 Advanced score of 180 [score must be obtained within the last 2 years at point of application].

Applicants with an undergraduate degree that was conducted in English but awarded by a non-English medium university must produce an official letter from the university to certify as such in order to seek waiver of the ELPR requirement.

For Couple and Family Therapy specialisation track, applicants should have good individual counselling skills, with at least one year of working experience with couples and families.

In the event of overwhelming demand and limited vacancy, priority will be given to eligible applicants who applied early. You are encouraged to submit your application early to avoid disappointment.

This programme is currently unable to take in international students, i.e., you must be a Singapore citizen, permanent resident or a resident in Singapore (e.g., Employment Pass holder) in order to apply for admission.

Dates & Fees

For more information on Application Dates, click here.

For more information on Fee, Scholarships and Finance matters, click here.

Contact Details

Singapore University of Social Sciences
463 Clementi Road
Singapore 599494

Tel: +65 6248 9777