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Continuing Education

 
Social work continuing education (CE) is education and training to maintain, improve, and enhance competent social work practice. CE is required for social work licensure under Minnesota Statutes section 148E.130.
 
  • CE is an ongoing license requirement
  • CE is completed during each license renewal term and must be reported when you renew your license 
  • CE is required if you hold an active social work license, even if you are not currently in a social work position
 

Watch: Continuing Education Requirements Video

 

CE Hours Required

For every two-year license renewal term, ALL LICENSEES must complete: 

  • 40 total hours, including
    • 2 hours in social work ethics
    • 4 hours in cultural responsiveness
    • Up to half (50%) of the 40 total hours may be completed through independent learning which includes activities like: 
      • Online activities without live interaction 
      • Research for publication, presentations, or professional development
 

For LICSWs, 40 hours must include:

  • 12 hours clinical content (decreased from 24 hours effective August 1, 2020)
 

For LICENSING SUPERVISORS, providing licensing supervision, 40 hours must include:

  • 6 hours supervision content
 

Acceptable CE Content & Activities

  • The Board approves CE Providers, not specific CE activities
  • CE activities are automatically accepted if completed through: 
    • A Board approved CE Provider, or 
    • A CE provider or program approved by the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) or National Association of Social Workers (NASW)
  • Pre-approval is not required for CE to meet requirements for license renewal
    • You are responsible for reviewing the following criteria for CE content and activities to determine if a CE activity is acceptable
 

Acceptable CE Content:

To apply to license requirements, a CE activity must:
  1. Promote the standards of practice found in Minnesota Statutes sections 148E.195 to 148E.240, and;
  2. Contribute to the practice of social work as defined in Minnesota Statutes section 148E.010
 
To apply to the requirement for social work ethics, a CE activity must include one or more of the following topics:
  • History and evolution of values and ethics in social work, including cultural awareness and social diversity
  • Ethics theories
  • Professional standards of social work practice, as specified in the ethical codes of the National Association of Social Workers, the Association of Canadian Social Workers, the Clinical Social Work Federation, and the Council on Social Work Education
  • Legal requirements and other considerations for each jurisdiction that registers, certifies, or licenses social workers
  • Ethical decision-making process
 
To apply to the requirement for cultural responsiveness, a CE activity must adhere to the following definition:
    "Cultural Responsiveness means increasing the knowledge, understanding, self-awareness, and practice skills that enable a social     worker to serve clients from diverse socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds including:
  • understanding culture, its functions, and strengths that exist in varied cultures;
  • understanding clients' cultures and differences among and between cultural groups;
  • understanding the nature of social diversity and oppression; and
  • understanding cultural humility."
 
To apply to the clinical content requirement for LICSWs, a CE activity must include one or more of the following six clinical content areas:
  • Differential diagnosis and biopsychosocial assessment, including normative development and psychopathology across the life span 
  • Assessment-based clinical treatment planning with measurable goals 
  • Clinical intervention methods informed by research and current standards of practice 
  • Evaluation methodologies 
  • Social work values and ethics, including cultural context, diversity, and social policy 
  • Culturally specific clinical assessment and intervention
 
To apply to the licensing supervisor requirement for supervision content, a CE activity must include material that promotes:
  • Evaluation and direction of a supervisee’s social work practice 
  • Continued development of a supervisee’s knowledge, skills, and abilities to practice social work in an ethical and competent manner
 

Acceptable CE Activities:

  • Academic coursework completed after you are licensed (1 semester credit = 15 CE hours)
  • Educational workshops, seminars, conferences, or live webinars 
  • Staff training from an employer 
  • CE independent learning (up to half of required CE hours allowed), which includes activities like: 
    • Online activities without live interaction 
    • Research for publication, presentations, or professional development
 

Reporting & Documenting CE Hours

At license renewal:

  • Attest to completion of required CE hours on your license renewal application
  • You are not required to submit CE records with your license renewal application
  • If you have not completed your CE requirement at the time of license renewal, you may request an extension on your license renewal application
 

For one year following license renewal:

  • Keep acceptable forms of CE documentation outlined below for one year following your renewal date to submit if your CE hours are audited by the Board
 

Acceptable forms of CE documentation: 

Educational workshops, seminars, conferences, or live webinars
  • Documentation of attendance must be issued by the presenter or sponsor and must include:
    • Name of the sponsor
    • Title and date of the activity
    • Number of clock hours
    • Names of presenters
Employer’s staff training
  • Documentation of attendance must be issued by your employer’s and must include:
    • Name of the employer
    • Title of the training
    • Date of the training
    • Number of clock hours completed
CE independent learning
  • Written summary of the activity conducted must include:
    • Topics covered
    • Applicability of the activity to your social work practice
    • Titles and authors or presenters of materials reviewed
    • Dates you conducted the activity
    • Number of clock hours completed
 Academic coursework from an institution of higher learning
  • Transcript must include:
    • Name of the institution
    • Title of the course
    • Dates of the course
    • Number of credits completed or audited

Continuing Education FAQs

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