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Create an account, apply, renew, and pay for your license online using our self-service portal.

The Iowa Board of Social Work  evaluates the qualifications of applicants for licensure and grants licenses to those who qualify.

The board establishes rules and regulations to ensure the integrity and competence of licensed social workers and investigates complaints for unprofessional conduct. The board is the link between the consumer and the licensed social worker and, as such, promotes the public health, welfare and safety.

Licensees are responsible for meeting all licensure requirements and should review the rules carefully and frequently.

  • Complete application
  • Payment of the $123 fee


Official transcript conferring your social work degree. Transcripts must be received directly from the university and can be sent to or via mail to:

Iowa Board of Social Work
6200 Park Avenue
Des Moines, IA 50321


Applicant must pass the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB) national exam.

  • LBSW = Bachelor Exam
  • LMSW = Masters Exam
  • LISW = Clinical Exam

Licensure in Another State 

Applicants that have previously been licensed, registered or certified in another state must provide official verification of licensure for all states in which the applicant has received a license.

The license verification must include the following: 

  • Issue date
  • Expiration date
  • Status of license including a reference to any pending or past disciplinary action.

The verification may be printed from another state licensing board’s website if it contains all of the information noted above. If an online verification is not available, the verification must be sent directly from the licensing board(s) to the Iowa Board of Social Work.

Documentation Required for Licensure

Documentation may be submitted electronically to the board office as follows:


A list of approved LISW supervisors is available here.

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Licensees may renew your license 60 days before the current expiration date.  Multiple renewal notifications will be sent if the license has not yet been renewed. Licensees are encouraged to renew early to avoid a late fee or lapse in licensure.

All continuing education requirements must be completed prior to submitting your application for renewal.

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Laws & Rules

Laws. Laws are enacted by the Iowa Legislature and provide statutory authority to the licensing boards.  Current law is found in the Iowa Code.

Administrative rules. The licensing boards adopt rules to interpret and implement the authority granted in Iowa Code. Administrative rules have the same force and effect of law.

Iowa Practitioner Program

The Iowa Practitioner Program (IPP) is available to licensees across multiple licensing boards in Iowa. The Iowa Practitioner Review Committee (IPRC) reviews self-reports made by licensees to determine eligibility for participation. 

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Exam information at

National Association of Social Workers

Code of Ethics

Model Regulatory Standards for Technology and Social Work Practice

NASW Iowa Chapter
1620 Pleasant Street #250
Des Moines, IA 50314
Phone: 515 277-1117

About the Board of Social Work

We evaluate the qualifications of applicants for licensure and grants licenses to those who qualify.

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