Pennsylvania Licensure Requirements

Master's Degree or Doctoral Degree

1 Examination

2 Years of Experience

3 Hours of Continuing Education 

$90.00 Initial Fee

$95.00 Renewal Fee

A social worker who holds a clinical license and has special knowledge of social resources, human personality and capabilities, and therapeutic techniques and how they can be used to help people achieve adequate and productive personal, interpersonal and social adjustments in their individual lives, in their families and in their community.

Degree Requirement: 

Master's Degree or Doctoral Degree
An applicant for licensure is required to hold a master's degree in social work or social welfare or a doctoral degree in social work from a school accredited by the Council on Social Work Education.

Examination Requirement:

 1 Examination
An applicant must pass the Association of Social Work Boards - Clinical Examination.


 2 years
An applicant must complete at least 3,000 hours of supervised clinical experience after completion of the master's degree in social work. The supervised clinical experience shall be completed in no less than 2 years.

Continuing Education: 

3 Hours (for initial licensure) 

Applicants must complete 3 hours of Board-approved continuing education in child abuse recognition and reporting for initial licensure. 


30 Hours for Each Biennial Renewal Period (when renewing license)

Licensees must complete 30 hours of continuing education in acceptable courses and programs in social work offered by approved providers.  The 30 hours shall include 2 hours of the mandated Act 31 Child Abuse Reporter Training, 3 hours in ethics and 1 hour in suicide prevention.  

Initial Licensing Fee:


Licensure Renewal Fee: 

Biennial renewal of license.

Licensure by Endorsement & Licensure by Act 41:

Endorsement, an individual must satisfy the general requirements for licensure and provide a letter from the other jurisdiction registration boards where the licensed clinical social worker is licensed and practicing, certifying licensure, and reporting any violations, and meet the educational, supervised clinical experience and examination requirements as required by the board.  Please note: You must hold a current clinical social work license in another state in good standing.

Act 41 allows for portability of out-of-state professional licensees coming to work in Pennsylvania. Act 41 does this by granting all boards and commissions within the Commonwealth the authority to endorse licensees from other states, territories or jurisdictions (with substantially equivalent licensing requirements) who are active, in good standing and without discipline against their license or criminal conviction and who have been actively engaged in the practice for 2 of the last 5 years.