Wisconsin Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) Guide - 2024

AKA: Wisconsin LCSW License

Social Worker License

by Social Worker License Staff

Updated: April 24th, 2023

Wisconsin Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) Licensure Process

Having an LCSW license allows you to work independently to provide clinical social work services, including psychotherapy.

Educational Requirements

Either an MSW or a doctorate in social work is required to become a licensed clinical social worker in Wisconsin. On top of that, the program should include supervised clinical social work experience. Here you can find all schools offering social work degree programs in Wisconsin.

You need to complete 1,500 hours of clinical social work practice with supervision. Five hundred of those hours should be face-to-face sessions with clients. The hours earned should be done with a CAPSW or CISW credential.

Work Experience Requirement

You need to earn over 3,000 hours of supervised clinical social work as a CAPSW or CISW for at least two years. A thousand of those hours should be face-to-face contact with clients, including training in diagnosis and treatment. Individual supervision per week of at least an hour from a licensed psychologist, psychiatrist, or LCSW is also mandatory.

Application Requirements

If the above requirements are satisfied and you’ve completed the required work experience, you can now submit an LCSW application to the DSPS board. Supplementary documents should accompany your application. These include documentation of your field placement, clinical coursework form, and documentation of post-graduate clinical experience from those who supervised you. A transcript of your school records is also required to be submitted directly to the board.

Examination Requirements

All social worker applicants need to take and pass the state law exam as part of the requirements. It is done online and can be open-book. The purpose is to gauge your knowledge of the rules, regulations, and standards of social workers in the state. If you took the exam in the previous five years and got a passing grade, you do not need to repeat it.

You also need to pass the ASWB Clinical Exam. It covers the practice of clinical social work. Before taking the exam, you should wait for the DSPS board to notify you. The board will need to assess your credentials first.

Once the board receives all the required documents and you pass both exams, you’ll secure your LCSW license. It is at this point you can practice as one in the state.