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In the global social work track of Dominican’s MSW program, you’ll train to work with immigrant, refugee and Indigenous populations in the United States and around the world. Your coursework will take you through areas such as resettlement, policy initiatives, trauma-informed services and other issues related to the unique needs of this population.

From climate change and conflict to economic adversity and political instability, a multitude of forces are generating unprecedented levels of migration of all types. This population, including the forcibly displaced and those exposed to trauma, has tremendous, complex needs. Social workers play an important role in directly serving this population and advocating on its behalf.

The Dominican MSW global track offers you a pathway to serving this population and understanding the global forces shaping migration. You’ll develop a deep understanding of culturally responsive approaches and how to apply a human rights and social justice framework to your clinical practice.

  • Gain hands-on experience through field placements, in the Chicago area and around the globe
  • Courses taught by leading faculty with real-world experience

Start advancing your career today. Request information today


In our core Master of Social Work curriculum, you’ll gain a global perspective in both classroom study and fieldwork alongside expert faculty, with numerous opportunities for local, national and international field placements. In the global track, you’ll go further, focusing your studies on working with transnational populations, with a specific emphasis on trauma-exposed immigrants and refugees.

You’ll study the process of migration, resettlement, displacement, cultural imperialism and transnationalism, as well as the implications for mental health and well-being. And you’ll examine social welfare policy, its influence on communities and how to advocate for changes that promote social justice and human rights for immigrants and refugees.

Because practitioners working with populations exposed to trauma can experience forms of distress and vicarious trauma of their own, you’ll also learn strategies for self-care.

All courses are taught on campus and online by leading faculty who have real-world experience. Read detailed course descriptions

Required Courses

Students in the global social work track are required to take the following courses in addition to the general MSW curriculum:

  • International Social Work Seminar (SWK 665)
  • Anti-Oppressive Practice with Immigrants and Refugees (SWK 667)
Gain Hands-On Social Work Skills through Field Placements

Optional 10-week international field placements offer you the chance to work in countries such as Ecuador, India, Ireland, Latvia, Mexico and South Africa. Our director of field placement will work with you to explore your options.

Explore more international field placement options


The Dominican University experience is one that embraces unique viewpoints, values hands-on learning and fosters collaborative relationships—among faculty, students and the communities that we hope to influence through our values-centered degree programs. When you study for your Master of Social Work here, you’ll get the benefit of modern learning designed for working professionals as well as a relationship-focused atmosphere that will help you become a stronger leader in your field.


Along with opportunities for financial aid through loans and grants, the School of Social Work offers a variety of departmental scholarships for outstanding academic achievement and graduate assistantships for those who wish to work with faculty while pursuing their degree. Contact our Office of Financial Aid to learn more. We can be reached at (708) 524-6809 or


 What can I do with an MSW in the global social work track?

Your graduate-level studies in Dominican’s MSW global track will qualify you to work with some of the most vulnerable populations in the U.S. and abroad. With a deep understanding of global issues, you’ll also be prepared to effectively advocate for human rights and social justice in policies and systems affecting immigrants, refugees and Indigenous populations.

 What are the different roles of social workers working with refugees and immigrants?

Social work professionals dedicated to serving the needs of migrants operate on many different levels. You can provide clinical social work services to those dealing with the trauma of conflict, exploitation, trafficking and poverty. Because of the global nature of this specialty, such work can be performed locally, nationally and internationally. Beyond clinical roles, social workers with a global focus can serve as important agents of systemic change, pushing for civil and human rights, and humane and effective policy in areas like immigration and asylum cases.

Ready to take the next step? Apply now online


Request information today