Human Services Guide
Hawaii

Social Work Licensure in Hawaii

  • Find Education Requirements in Hawaii for one of the following:

Situated in the tropical region of the Pacific Ocean, Hawaii is unique among the states. A chain of tropical islands known for their majestic beaches, beautiful forest, active volcanoes and surfing few states can rival Hawaii for sheer beauty. If you enjoy warm weather and beautiful beaches then Hawaii is a great state to start a career as a Licensed Social Worker. It is important to check in with each state’s Social Work board to get accurate and up to date information on the states licensing process. Here is the website for the State of Hawaii:

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Licensed Bachelor Social Worker (LBSW)

To earn the title Licensed Bachelor Social Work (LBSW) in Hawaii, you will need to take the following steps:

  • You must first get a Bachelor’s of Social Work degree from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited university or college..
  • Next, you will need to pay the $60 non-refundable fee and apply with the Hawaii Professional and Vocational license board LBSW application.
  • You will need to submit your transcripts and pass a criminal background check as part of the application process.
  • Next you will need to pay the $230 fee and apply for the Bachelor level exam with the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB). You will be granted three opportunities to pass the exam before you re-apply and pay the fee again so be sure you study before the exam.
  • Once you pass all the requirements above you will be granted your LBSW.

Licensed Social Worker (LSW)

You will need to complete the following steps to become a Licensed Social Worker (LSW) in Hawaii.

  • You will first need to complete your degree in either a Master or Doctorate of Social Work degree from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited university or college. You may also hold a Doctorate of Social Work from a program that is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges or a comparable accreditation agency.
  • Next, pay the $260 fee and sign up for the Intermediate, Advanced or Clinical level exam from the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) which you can find at the link here. You will be granted three opportunities to pass the exam before you re-apply and pay the fee again so be sure you study before the exam.
  • Once you have passed the exam, you will need to pay the $60 non-refundable fee and apply with the Hawaii Professional and Vocational license board with the online application.
  • Pay the full $314 licensing fees and then you will receive your LSW license.

Social Worker (LCSW)

If you wish to hold the title of Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) in Hawaii you will need to complete the following steps:

  • You will first need to earn your Master or Doctorate of Social Work degree from a Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) accredited university or college.
  • You must also provide verification of a minimum of 3000 hours of post-graduate clinical social work experience supervised by a qualified supervisor per the Board’s requirements. The 3000 hours must be completed in more than 2 and less than 5 years. The 3000 hours must include:
    • At least 2000 hours of assessment, psychotherapy and clinical diagnosis. --No more than 900 hours may be client-centered advocacy, evaluation or consultation.
    • At least 100 hours must be in the form of direct face-to-face supervision.
    • You will need to provide proof of this by completing the form for supervision which you can find here.
  • Alternately you can apply for your LCSW if you possess a qualified clinical social worker (QCSW) or a diplomate in clinical social work (DCSW) credential issued by the National Alliance of Social Workers (NASW) or a board certified diplomate (BCD) issued by the American Board of Examiners in Clinical Social Work (ABE).
  • Next, pay the $260 fee and sign up for the Clinical level exam from the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) which you can find at the link here. You will be granted three opportunities to pass the exam before you re-apply and pay the fee again so be sure you study before the exam.
  • Pay the $418 fee and apply for your license apply with the Hawaii Professional and Vocational license board with the application for LCSW found by clicking here.
  • By following the above steps you will be eligible to hold the title of Licensed Clinical Social Worker in the state of Hawaii.
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