Master of Social Services Programs

Social services can be closely tied to social work – an area of study and practice that aims to improve the quality of life of an individual, group, or community of scale through research, and policy. There are few different degrees students can pursue in this field. A Master of Arts in human services takes a hybrid approach, including elements of non-clinical counseling with key components of the study of social work and policy implementation.

In some cases, these programs require students to have a bachelor’s degree prior to admission and may be completed in as little as 18 months. Areas of concentration include organizational studies, marriage and family, health and wellness, communication studies, and executive leadership, among others. Relevant coursework may include the study of group dynamics, health policy and ethics, multicultural issues in human services, communication theory, communication and conflict, and organizational behavior, among others.

Careers for masters in social services graduates:

  • Healthcare social worker
  • Child, family, school social worker
  • Mental health/substance abuse social worker
  • Other areas of social work

Earnings for masters in social services graduates:

  • Healthcare social worker: $47,230 (median annual)
  • Child, family, school social worker: $40,210 (median annual)
  • Mental health/substance abuse social worker: $38,600 (median annual)
  • Other areas of social work: $51,500 (median annual)
  • Overall career outlook: 25 percent growth through 2020 (faster than average)

Most Popular MSW and MPA Degrees

Completing your Master's in social work or public administration can be very rewarding for getting ahead in the social work field. Online Master's degrees are perfect for working professionals or people with families to complete course work at their own convenience. Please see our colleges below that offer online class for MSW degrees.

University of Southern California — To become a successful social worker, one need look no further than the University of Southern California Master of Social Work program. The curriculum will both develop your leadership skills and enable you to influence the world around you for the betterment of your local and global community.

Walden University — The Walden University MS in psychology - social psychology provides the chance to gain real world experience as a social worker. These experiences can be gained from a community agency, a healthcare setting, an educational agency, or a social services agency.

Our Lady of the Lake University — Our Lady of the Lake is a private, Catholic college located near San Antonio and is one of the few colleges offering an online program for a Master of Social Work degree. This program focuses on social services leadership and advance direct practice with an emphasis on service to Hispanic families and communities.

Capella University — The MPH in Social & Behavioral Sciences from Capella University features a dynamic public health curriculum. Graduates are prepared for positions in social work, public health or social welfare organizations. A MS in Social & Community Services furthers your ability to influence positive change in your community.

Saint Leo University — With Saint Leo University's Masters of Social Work online program, students can quickly advance their careers from the convenience of their home. This program can be completed in two years and is an inexpensive choice for working students. Saint Leo's online programs are accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

Kaplan University — The MPA program at Kaplan University offers a curriculum whose classes will help you create a positive effect on social and ethical issues. Through interactions with staff, faculty, and your peers, the degree will prepare you for careers in social work, public administration, and public management.

Post University — The Masters of Public Administration program from Post University focuses on the private and military sectors in addition to the public sector usually covered by other MPA programs. While students interested in social work will learn the administrative and organizational skills needed for their career, this broad focus can help improve their versatility and even job prospects.

Click here to learn about more Master of Social Work colleges.

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