To obtain a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) license in California, follow these steps:

  1. Earn a Master's Degree: Complete a master's degree in social work from a CSWE-accredited program.

  2. Accumulate Experience: Gain 3,200 hours (104 weeks) of supervised postgraduate social work experience.

  3. Pass Exams: Pass the California Law and Ethics Exam and the Clinical Social Work Exam administered by the ASWB. (We'll help!)

  4. Application: Submit an application to the California Board of Behavioral Sciences and pay the necessary fees.

  5. Background Check: Undergo a background check.

  6. Licensure: Once approved, you will be granted an LCSW license to practice independently in California.

The BBS's LCSW page provides a deeper dive on much of this.

Step three--pass the California Law & Ethics Exam and ASWB Clinical Exam--is exactly what we're here to help with. We've got a practice test designed to pass both. Get started here (remember to click on "California"!). Good luck!

Not in California? For licensing in other states and at other levels, the process is similar, but not identical. Consult your state licensing board for details. The ASWB exam (but not the CA Law & Ethics) is national. Wherever you're getting your social work licensing, SWTP practice can help.

Wishing you the best as you work toward that "Eureka" moment when you finally have your LCSW license in hand, ready to frame and put to use!

April 7, 2013
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