Kentucky Licensed Social Worker (LSW) Guide - 2024

AKA: Kentucky LSW License

Social Worker License

by Social Worker License Staff

Updated: April 24th, 2023

Kentucky Licensed Social Worker (LSW) Licensure Process

An LSW is an entry-level licensure for anyone seeking to practice social work in Kentucky. Non-clinical services can be issued without supervision. As an LSW, you can:

  • Identify individuals and communities in need of assistance
  • Research and advocate for community resources
  • Maintain case files and records

Education Requirements

A BSW from a Council of Social Work Education (CSWE) approved program is required to obtain an LSW in Kentucky. You may also earn a degree in a program other than social work and receive your license by completing equivalent coursework. The courses can be in human behavior with a psychosocial emphasis, economics, political science, and any educational practicum the Board approves.

Find all schools offering social work degree programs in Kentucky.

Application Process

Once you have met the education requirements, you can apply for an LSW license by completing and submitting the Social Work Licensure Application with the appropriate application fee. Your official college or university transcript must also be sent along with three references to confirm your social work performance. Once the Board reviews your application, they will determine if you are eligible to take the exam. If approved, you can apply for a temporary, non-renewable license that permits you to practice for 240 days before your permanent license is issued. Your permanent license is dependent on whether or not you pass the exam. If you do not, you will not be allowed to perform any social work services until you receive a passing score.

Background Check

You must pass a criminal background check to be eligible for licensure. There is a section on the application that asks if you have any felony convictions. If so, you are required to attach a written document explaining the conviction and certified copies of the disciplinary and criminal records. These include a copy of the police report or grand jury indictment, the Judgement of Conviction, and the Judgement or Sentencing Order. The Board will examine the information and make a determination regarding licensure.

Examination Requirements

The Board will inform you via email once you are able to take the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) Bachelor’s Exam. The test consists of 170 multiple-choice questions, of which 150 will be scored. There is an exam fee associated with the test. Once completed, you’ll be given an unofficial score report, and this document must be sent along with the license fee to the Board. You will then be issued an LSW license to begin practicing non-clinical social work.