Wyoming credentials social workers at the bachelor’s and master’s levels. There are two permanent credentials, Certified Social Worker (CSW) and Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW). Both are dependent on education and examination; the LCSW license also carries a pre-licensure supervised practice requirement.
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Master’s graduates hold Provisional Licensed Clinical Social Worker status while working toward meeting requirements for full LCSW status.
Social workers with any of these licenses may practice clinical social work as defined in Wyoming code and under the conditions described. However, only LCSWs practice independently. Those without LCSW status provide restricted services when under two types of supervision: administrative and clinical.
Different states, notably, may define clinical social work differently than Wyoming does.Certified Social Worker Requirements
A prospective CSW will need to complete a Social Work bachelor’s program that is accredited by the Council on Social Work Education, or CSWE. The individual can be licensed on the basis of the bachelor’s or master’s examination. The licensing agency notes that other examinations may be approved on an individual basis.
Social workers at the CSW level provide clinical services only under supervision. They will need an approved supervision agreement on file with the Board. The supervisor will be a professional with Designated Qualified Clinical Supervisor (DQCS) status.
The DQCS will review individual cases as well as discuss general issues such as professional responsibility.
The expected ratio is an hour of clinical supervision for 20 hours of direct clinical services. Supervision requirements are delineated in Chapter 18 of Board rule (https://sites.google.com/a/wyo.gov/wyoming-mental-health-professions-licensing-board/rules-and-regulations).
Licensed Clinical Social Worker Requirements
The prospective LCSW will need to complete a master’s in Social Work program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (Master’s in Social Work programs in Wyoming). He or she will accrue 3,000 hours of supervised post-graduate clinical work experience and training. Direct client contact will comprise no fewer than 1,200 hours. The individual will hold Provisional Clinical Social Worker credentialing while working toward this status.
The provisional licensee will need at least 100 hours of supervision over the course of the post-graduate supervision period. The supervisee will have a Designated Qualified Clinical Supervisor. The individual will need to have a supervision agreement on file at the onset.
Supervision will be individual or triadic. The Board may credit individual supervision carried out through electronic means.
Wyoming can accept either the Clinical Examination or Advanced Generalist Examination for licensure at the LCSW level. Again, examinations are those of the Association of Social Work Boards.
Provisional status is granted for three years and may be extended for cause upon request. A licensee who asks for an extension will be expected to have completed at least one of the following: 1) experience and supervision hours or 2) examination. Extensions granted for completion of supervised practice are considerably longer than those granted for the purpose of passing the examination.
The supervision report will be due soon after completion of supervision.
The Application Process
Application forms can be found on the website of the Wyoming Mental Health Professions Licensing Board (https://sites.google.com/a/wyo.gov/wyoming-mental-health-professions-licensing-board/professionals-1/Provisional-Applications). Applicants will select the correct packet, based on the license sought and whether they are applying by examination or reciprocity. There is an application packet for provisional licensees who are completing LCSW requirements.
Prospective licensees submit their applications before examination. New graduates may be authorized to begin practice before all requirements have been met but are directed to wait for notification of their eligibility.
Approved candidates register with the ASWB for examination. Ultimately, they are responsible for scheduling their own testing sessions. Exams are computerized and are available through Pearson VUE. The candidate can test outside Wyoming if another location is more convenient.
The applicant will provide a copy of the professional disclosure statement that he or she intends to use.
The licensing agency will need three recent professional references. They are to be submitted directly to the Board.
The prospective licensee should make a copy of a document that establishes his or her legal residency in the United States.
Applicants may be required to provide official verification if they have held professional licensure in other states, even in the license was in a discipline other than social work. Verification is to come directly from the other state. However, the applicant will likely be directed to wait for notification before sending a form to other licensing agencies; he or she will follow the directions in the application packet.
A CSW applicant will pay $300 to the Wyoming Board. An LCSW applicant will pay a total of $350 by the time he or she seeks full licensure. (A professional who is meeting first-time requirements in Wyoming will pay $150 at the provisional stage and another $200 when completing provisional.) The candidate will also need to pay examination fees to the ASWB. Examinations that qualify a person for the Wyoming CSW cost $230; those that correspond to the LCSW cost $260.
Licenses are subject to biennial renewal.
Wyoming social workers are licensed by the Wyoming Mental Health Professions Licensing Board. The Board can be reached by phone at (307) 777-3628 or by email at ‘WyoMHPLB at wyo.gov’.
Rules change periodically. Current rules and proposed rule changes are posted on the Board website (https://sites.google.com/a/wyo.gov/wyoming-mental-health-professions-licensing-board/rules-and-regulations).