University of Pittsburgh School of Education

Masters in Social Work with Teaching Certificate

Masters in Social Work with a Certificate of Advanced Study in Teaching in Secondary Education

The Masters in Social Work with a Certificate of Advanced Study in Teaching in Secondary Education (MSW/CAST) combined program is designed to cultivate more well-rounded teachers who will have a rich understanding of working with vulnerable adolescents and families. Graduates will be trained not only to design and administer creative programmatic responses to the changing needs of children in schools in urban communities, but also to enhance classroom teaching and student learning through their specialized expertise. The curriculum design incorporates the theoretically driven framework for appropriate socio-cultural assessments and evidence based learning methods for urban education.

The program is designed for completion in two calendar years (including summers, totaling five to six semesters), and has two distinct components. First, the teaching certification portion in the School of Education is a one-year full-time program, preparing students to be secondary education content area teachers in grades 7-12 in the disciplines of English, mathematics, science, social studies, or foreign language. Then starting in the summer of year two, the MSW degree experience prepares students for leadership roles in urban education in high need communities. By combining courses of study in the School of Education and School of Social Work, graduates will:

  • Understand the learning environment of students in the urban context
  • Be prepared to implement subject-specific research-based instruction to promote academic growth of adolescents
  • Understand schools as organizations; and
  • Know how to direct intervention programs and student support services that focus on the social and emotional development of students.

Graduates will be well prepared and certified to serve as both a classroom teacher and a school social worker. Graduates bring therapeutic and family-relations perspectives that will uniquely equip them to build positive relations and supports for students in particularly challenging contexts. More broadly, a teacher with a social work education will be able to construct and deliver instruction more effectively to impact change and understanding amongst his/her clients, colleagues, and staff.