College of Letters & Sciences
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Social Work

Contact Information

Sarah Hessenauer
MSW Program Coordinator &  Professor
Phone: 262-472-1203
Location: Laurentide Hall 5201
Deanna Guthrie
BSW Program Coordinator & Associate Professor
Phone: 262-472-1881
Location: Laurentide Hall 5205
Susan Morris
Academic Department Associate 
Phone: 262-472-1137
Location: Laurentide Hall 5201

Licensing & Credentialing

Federal regulations require full disclosure of licensure requirements for professional licensure programs (34 CFR Sec. 668.43; section C). Per the new rules, institutions are required to determine the states in which a student and prospective student is located for the purpose of disclosing state-specific professional licensure information to students based on the state in which a student is located. Professional licensure requirements for the state of WI can be found here (LINK). If seeking licensure outside the state of WI, contact information for state agencies can be found on the NC SARA Professional Licensure Directory

The information below includes all of the steps necessary for licensing in the state of Wisconsin. Licensure steps for Illinois can be found here.  If you are interested in obtaining your license in another state, this interactive map allows you to click on any state to get state-specific information on how to become a social worker. This document lists the names and websites of the licensing board in each state. In Wisconsin, the process for BSW graduates to obtain CSW certification and for MSW graduates to obtain CAPSW certification are nearly identical. The only difference is which national test is taken. We've outlined the steps for certification in Wisconsin below.

Wisconsin's CSW and CAPSW Process Video

Licensing Video StillDr. Sarah Hessenauer walks you through the steps for licensing in Wisconsin in this video  (duration: 9:16). A UWW login is required to view the video. All information from the video can also be found in the outline below.

Wisconsin's CSW and CAPSW Process Outline

1. Apply for Certification ($165.00)

Downloand and fill out the application Form 1992 The completed application and fee can be mailed or faxed:

  • Mail the application and fee (with any other required documentation specified on the application) to: WI Department of Safety and Professional Services (WDSPS), P.O. Box 8935, Madison, WI 53708-8935
  • Download the “Fax Payment Form” Form 3071. Complete it, and fax it with your application and any other required documentation to 608-251-3036.

Note: If you have been convicted of a crime or have criminal charges pending against you, download the “Convictions and Pending Charges” Form 2252 and return it with your application, application fee, and an additional $8.00 conviction review fee.

You may check the status of your application here.

2. Verify Your Degree 

Download the Certificate of Professional Education Form 1978. Complete only the Applicant box at the top of Form 1978. Submit this partially completed form to the UW-Whitewater Registrar's Office one of the four following ways:

  • Scan and email it to
  • Fax it to 262-472-1370
  • Drop it off in person at 2032 Roseman Hall on the UW-Whitewater campus
  • Mail it to UW-Whitewater, Attn: Registrar's Office, 800 W. Main Street, Whitewater, WI 53190

Once your degree posts, the Registrar's Office will complete your form and mail it directly to DSPS.

3. Pass the State Open-Book Exam

You will receive your exam name, password, and applicant ID which you will use as your student ID to take this test after you submit your application. The exam content is drawn from applicable state statutes and administrative code chapters specific to the profession. The purpose of the exam is to familiarize yourself with locating the statutes and administrative code that regulate the practice of the profession. More information can be found here.

4. Sit for the ASWB National Exam ($230.00 for Bachelors, $260.00 for Masters)

DSPS will issue approval with examination instructions when all requirements have been met. The ASWB examinations are administered year round at specific sites within the state. After receipt of approval, contact ASWB at 1-888-579-3926 for the dates and further instructions. You can register for the exam and purchase exam materials including the ASWB Guide to the Social Work Exams ($20) and an online practice test ($85) here. The examination for CSW certification is called the ASWB Bachelors examination (formerly Basic Level exam), and the examination for CAPSW certification is called the ASWB Masters examination.

See a timeline and overview of the certification process here.

Updated 9/22/2017