Degrees that Get you a Social Worker Job

Degrees that Get you a Social Worker Job

Are you a person who wants to make a change in your community? Do you want to help people improve their life? Then a career in social work might be the ideal option for you. 

A social worker is a person who works with people to make their lives better. It is someone who advocates for vulnerable people who cannot stand up for themselves. Whether it be working with children in the clinical setting or working with patients suffering from any addiction, a social worker makes a positive impact on many individuals. It is a rewarding career that enables you to make a difference in people’s lives. But the question is, what college degree can get you a job in this field? Different degrees in social work entail different benefits, so keep reading to learn more about what social work degree you should consider.

Required Research:

Doing thorough research on any career is the first step when considering a particular profession. Becoming a social worker is a decision that requires contemplation because the profession requires commitment. You must complete the education and training requirements before getting a job. Along with that, many states require a Master of Social Work (MSW) for a license in social work. You can complete your Master of Social Work (MSW) degree either with a full-time or a part-time course. You can also enroll in MSW online to get your master’s faster and conveniently. Every student has a different visions of their future. Your degree choice will depend on what you want to achieve in social work. The following degrees will help you achieve your dream of becoming a social worker. 

Associate in Social Work (ASW):

Not everyone can have a bachelor’s degree under their belt when starting their career in social work. Associate Degree in Social Work (ASW) is designed for people who do not have the time or means to commit to a four-year bachelor’s degree. ASW is a two-year degree program that helps people build foundational knowledge in the field of social work. There are many community colleges and traditional colleges that offer ASW courses. Some universities offer associate courses in social work too. An associate degree in social work is usually cheaper than a four-year bachelor’s degree. It is a viable option if you are concerned about your tuition fees.  

The only drawback of an associate degree is that it will not qualify you for a license in social work. As mentioned before, a bachelor’s or master’s degree is required to become a licensed social worker. 

With an ASW degree, you can work in various assistant roles. You can work as a social service assistant or a health aide in different organizations, but management roles usually require higher education.  

Bachelor’s in Social Work (BSW):

Bachelor’s degree in Social Work (BSW) is a four-year course offered by several universities. A BSW degree will open many doors for you in the field of social work. Whether you want to pursue further education to enter the professional field, a bachelor’s degree in social work will aid you in accomplishing that. Some common courses that students cover may include; 

  • Introduction to Social Work 
  • Introduction to Sociology
  • Social Welfare Policy 
  • Social Work Practice
  • Applied Research in Social Work 

In addition, students will also be required to complete a specific training period. During this, the students have to get field training which helps them in gaining real-world experience. 

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Social Work is a rapidly growing field. By 2031, the overall employment of social workers is expected to increase by 9 percent. So, now is a great time to consider pursuing a career in Social Work. 

Students who have graduated with BSW can apply for different job positions, including;

  • A marriage counselor
  • A health educator
  • A school social worker

Master’s in Social Work (MSW):

A Master’s in Social Work (MSW) will help you get better career opportunities in this field, and it will also help you in qualifying for a license. A Master’s in Social Work is a two-year course that helps you expand upon the knowledge learned in BSW through theory-based elements. Many students specialize in a certain area of interest. Social workers do that so they can work in more clinical settings moving on, like childcare services or healthcare policies.

If you are planning on doing a Master’s in Social Work, you will have some options to choose from. You can pursue a full-time or part-time degree or enroll in an online course. It all comes down to your convenience. But keep in mind that there are different timeframes for each degree. For example, the normal master’s degree takes up to 2 years to complete, while the part-time course for a master’s degree will take about 3 to 4 years. 

Courses will vary according to different specializations; like bachelor’s, the students will be required to complete a specific field-training period. This will give them the relevant clinical experience to help them apply for a job.

Some job opportunities available to students who have completed their MSW include Mental Health Counselors, Healthcare Workers, Addiction Counselors, and Gerontological Social Workers. 

Doctorate in Social Work (DSW):

A doctorate in Social Work (DSW) will prepare you for an advanced role in your profession. DSW specializes in expanding the implementation of social work. It is a five-year course that focuses on completing the degree in your specialized area of social work and finishing your dissertation. 

Many health workers or counselors in the mental health field do not have a doctorate. But, if you want to become a researcher or teach as a professor, you will need a Doctorate In Social Work. 


Choosing a career like social work needs dedication and patience. While working in a higher position will require a Master’s in Social Work, you can start working as a social worker at any point in your educational career. You can secure a job even if you have an Associate Degree in Social Work. Your choice of degree will depend on the path you want to take in your field. The higher your qualifications are, the more opportunities you will get. However, you may have specific circumstances which will need consideration too. Therefore, decide accordingly.  


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