Masters in Social Work Programs

Social work is an area of study and discipline that aims to “intervene” and improve the quality of life of an individual, family, group or other community of scale through research, policy, and educational means. The common Master of Social Work degree (MSW in most cases) includes research in the areas of human development, social policy, public administration, and community development. While the most common Master of Social Work program is the MSW, Master of Science and Master of Arts degree, in social work or with a concentration in social work, are also available.

The typical MSW program will require two full years of study, with an additional two years of internship or field placement experience. Students may also choose a concentration, with such specialties as families and children, mental health or community organization, planning and administration among the possibilities. Once admitted, curriculum will include such areas of study as human behavior and social environment and advance social work courses dealing with families and group settings, among other topics. Generally, undergraduate degrees in a comparable area of study – such as sociology, psychology, or counseling – are required or recommended.

Careers for masters in social work graduates:

  • Healthcare social worker
  • Child, family, school social worker
  • Mental health/substance abuse social worker

Earnings for masters in social work 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)

Other subjects related to social work:

Online 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.

Walden University — The Walden University Master of Social Work 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. Walden also offers several specializations for an MSW degree, like Military Social Work, as well as DSW programs.

Ashford University — A MBA in Public Administration from Ashford University teaches you the methods of public service. A MPA degree will contribute to your understanding of social initiative strategies. Additionally, the MAOM in Public Administration and MA in Education & Public Policy will improve your leadership and managerial skills. Ashford is accredited by WASC Senior College and University Commission, 985 Atlantic Avenue, Ste 100, Alameda, CA 94501, 5107489001,

Rutgers University of New Jersey — The Master of Social Work at Rutgers University of New Jersey boasts a deep network of experienced professionals and faculty. These individuals prepare you for the rigors of a career in social work, public administration, and public management. Your dreams can be achieved at Rutgers.

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

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