The Basics of a Masters of Social Work Program
Today, masters of social work (or MSW) online degree programs online are offered in 50 primary states. So if you’ve been thinking of going back to college and getting a reputable degree that will give you an excellent chance to market yourself to employers, a masters in social work is a great option.
A masters in social work can be completed in as little as 12-months for full time students, and 24 months for part time students, on an online or traditional campus basis.
1. Classroom work
As a student, class work involved in a masters of social work education teaches students with theory and methods they will need to eventually practice social work values. The exact skills you will learn include:
- Community development
- Active listening
- Creative problem solving
- Social policies and practices
- Techniques in crisis intervention
- Research evaluation
- Ethical thought
2. Social work internship
In addition to classroom work, most masters in social work students are expected to complete 900 supervised hours, or internship, to earn their degree. The purpose of this on-hand field education allows students to practice and integrate what they’ve already learned in the classroom. Most students complete their internships in hospitals, child welfare agencies, community groups, government organizations, mental health organizations, and municipalities.
3. Seeking work
Upon graduation with a masters in social work from an accredited university, you can work in a multitude of social work settings, such as:
- Hospitals or medical: Help patients make informed decisions about their options. Many also help patients dealing with chronic conditions (i.e., cancer, AIDS/HIV, etc.).
- Schools or colleges/universities: School social workers guide students with in school and post-graduate problems and goals.
- Psychiatric settings: Provide a bridge between psychiatric patients, doctors, and families as they re-enter the community.
- Employee assistance program: Or EPA social works are hired by companies to provide a variety of counselling to employees (i.e., stress, conflict, substance abuse, depression, etc.).