Master of Social Work - Guidelines for Preparing the Personal Statement

Guidelines for Preparing the Personal Statement (~600-800 words)

This statement must be included in your application for admission. The autobiographic statement details your interest in social work, including personal experiences, strengths, values and beliefs that will contribute to your competence as a social worker. The autobiographic statement should be a carefully prepared document that is typed and double-spaced, with 1-inch margins and 10-12 font. Please place your name at the top right hand margin on each page and number pages at the bottom center.

Please address the following: 

  • Describe in detail your personal understanding of social work as a profession. 
  • Discuss your interest in rural/non-urban social work practice 
  • What factors influenced your decision to seek graduate social work education at Jacksonville State University? If you have worked or trained in another field, why are you now considering a career change? 
  • Describe the intellectual and personal qualifications that will enable you to practice social work successfully in non-urban/rural social work, for example collaboration with others, leadership ability, ability to empathize, communication and language skills. What limitations do you see in your work experiences, skills, or other attributes, including your awareness of your personal biases that you want to address to ensure your effectiveness in practicing social work? 
  • How will you balance outside responsibilities with academic responsibilities? 
  • Discuss your notable accomplishments, such as related work experience, military experience, volunteer services, other academic accomplishments, etc.