Distance Education, Local Impact


The 2+2 Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) Program is a unique and innovative program that has demonstrated a commitment to tribal, rural and metro communities through its successful partnerships with various community colleges and tribal colleges.

  • Since its initial partnership with Flathead Valley Community College in 2010, in 2015, the program began a concerted focus on expansion focused on building collaborative relationships with rural and tribal communities in Montana. We have grown to include five tribal colleges (Blackfeet, Blackfeet Reservation; Stone Child, Rocky Boy Reservation; Aaniiih Nakoda, Fort Belknap Reservation; Fort Peck, Fort Peck Reservation; Chief Dull Knife, Northern Cheyenne Reservation) and two rural colleges (Miles Community College, Miles City; Highlands Tech, Butte). We also partner with two metro areas, Flathead Valley Community College and Helena College.
  • Our blended model ensures that we build and maintain close relationships with everyone we are working with, so we can understand individual community needs, connect with faculty and practicum agencies, and spend quality time and practice skills with students both at UM and at their local college. 
  • The School of Social Work and UM host students for Foundations Days prior to getting started in their coursework. This is a summer orientation to help with a successful transition into the University of Montana, and to prepare them for online learning and writing expectations. They also visit UM once a semester for a couple of days to practice skills, connect with their cohort, faculty, and other School of Social Work students. We also do one visit a semester to our partnering colleges. These visits are essential to the experience.
  • The positions being filled by our graduates include dually licensed Addictions Counselors (BSW/LAC), integrated healthcare workers, tribal court advocates, child and family services (BIA and State), community organizers, program managers and policy workers.

Program Details

The Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) 2+2 Program caters to students who are working on or have finished their Associate’s Degree from one of our partnering colleges. Students who meet the requirements can finish their Bachelor’s Degree through the University of Montana – Missoula with a cohort of their peers all across the state.

The curriculum is the same as the on-campus program, including the 450 hours (10 credits) of practicum experience, but all classes are offered online so students can stay in their own community while earning their degree. The program is partially blended and requires some campus visits.

Program Application

Admission to the BSW 2+2 Program is every Autumn semester, with the next cohort starting Autumn 2021. The program occurs over four academic semesters (fall/spring) for two years. The application due date is April 30th, 2021. Before applying for the 2+2 Distance Learning Program, applicants should have met with their community or tribal college academic advisor or have been in contact with a professional academic advisor from the UM School of Social Work. Contact paige.furniss@mso.umt.edu for more information.

2+2 Application Steps:
  • Check that pre-requisite course requirements are met with your unique college pre-advising sheet from the partnering colleges page.
  • Apply to the University of Montana with the general application as a distance student, declaring Social Work as your major. 
  • Apply to the School of Social Work with the 2+2 BSW Application:  2+2 BSW Application
    • Note: Download Fillable PDF (2+2 BSW Application link above) THEN open it and fill it out. If you fill it out first before you download or fill it out from the web link it will not save your work.

Note: Applications are due by April 30th, 2021. Grades for Spring or Summer semesters, 2021, will need to be sent to Paige Furniss as soon as they are available, for final admission consideration. Be sure to note classes that will be completed during these semesters on your application.


Campus visits are encouraged! Let us know if you plan on a visit so we can schedule time to meet with your and connect you with resources to support your application process.

Learn more about the BSW 2+2 Program by exploring the pages of this web site or calling 406.243.5554.