MSW Programs

A Master of Social Work, or MSW, may be a good degree choice for those interested in helping others deal with a variety of life problems in a professional capacity. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), individuals with this degree often go on to become licensed clinical social workers, where they might work in settings like hospitals and clinics, private practices, state and local governments, and schools. Graduates of MSW programs often specialize in a specific area, such as child and family services, hospice and palliative care, mental health, and school social work.

Why complete an MSW program?

The BLS reports that MSW programs may be particularly helpful when it comes to obtaining advanced job opportunities or working in some areas such as in schools or health care, and it’s required to become a licensed clinical social worker. MSW degrees generally take two years to complete, depending on class scheduling and student aptitude, and require the completion of on-the-job experience through internships or field education before graduation (BLS.gov, 2012). Whether working with disabled veterans in a group home, or foster children in need of unique services, students who gain this supervised experience should slowly build their understanding of how to best accomplish their professional social work goals.

MSW programs: What to expect?

General coursework in MSW programs might include research and practice, psychopathology, ethical foundations, child welfare and more. Some degree programs may offer concentrations such as child and family services, health services, and management and planning.

Upon completing their MSW, students can choose to pursue their Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW) certification. Typically, the LCSW requires two years or 3,000 hours of supervised clinical hours beyond those already completed through an MSW program (BLS.gov, 2012). Other LCSW requirements could include passing a state-administered exam or one offered by the Association of Social Work Boards, and possibly having prior Licensed Social Worker (LSW) certification.

National career and salary outlook for social workers

The BLS projects employment for social workers could grow by up to 25 percent nationally between 2010 and 2020, which is better than the national average growth for all occupations (14 percent). Demand is predicted to be even higher in two social work fields: health care as well as mental health and substance abuse. According to the BLS, the national median salary in 2011 for child, family and school social workers was $40,680, with the top ten percent earning up to $70,050 in 2011 and the lowest 10 percent earning up to $26,190 nationally in 2011.

Those interested in learning more about the field, including new legislation, resources, and professional development, can look for further information through the American Clinical Social Work Association, the Association of Social Work Boards and the National Association of Social Workers. Detailed salary and employment data can be found through the BLS Occupational Employment Statistics program.

Articles

USC Online Social Work MSW Program

By Admin | September 15th, 2011

The University of Southern California School of Social Work is breaking new ground for a traditional private university with its online Master of Social Work (MSW) which launched in the fall semester of 2010. An important component of any MSW program is the field work, which is a term for...

10 Undergraduate Social Work Degrees Online

By Admin | August 3rd, 2011

If youre thinking about getting your social work degree online, its important to know what schools offer what youre looking for. You can attend class from home, and you dont have to move to study through a faraway school. Plus, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the social work...

MSW Schools

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5 Program(s) Found
  • Features 43 degree programs and more than 142 specializations.
  • Offers several ways to save on tuition, including multiple grant and scholarship opportunities, low-cost credits, accelerated programs, and more.
  • Reduced tuition, transfer credits, and other benefits are available for all military service members and veterans.
  • Allows students to preview a free, one-week mini course to give an accurate impression of the student experience.
  • Accredited by The Higher Learning Commission (HLC) of the North Central Association (NCA).
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• With 100,000+ students, it's the largest private, nonprofit university in the nation.
• Since 1971, its mission has been to develop Christ-centered men and women with the values, knowledge, and skills essential for impacting tomorrow’s world.
• Offers over 230 programs online, from the certificate to the doctoral level.
• The student-faculty ratio is 25:1, and 42.3% of its classes have fewer than 20 students.
• The average freshman retention rate, an indicator of student satisfaction, is 76.5%.

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  • The first elite research university to offer a Master of Social Work degree online.
  • Ranked #11 in U.S. News & World Report's listing of top graduate schools in Social Work.
  • Community field internships and local networking opportunities are available.
  • Multiple program start dates.
  • The National Health Service Corps State Loan Repayment Program will repay student loans in exchange for 2-4 years spent serving communities in need. 
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  • According to a Walden-sponsored study, 88.2% of graduates are very satisfied or satisfied with their education and more than 85% of students are likely or very likely to recommend the school to others.
  • In that same study, 88% of graduates said their education helped them enhance their professional performance.
  • Students can save 15% on tuition over the lifetime of their program if they are active-duty military, a veteran, or an employee of the Veteran’s Administration.
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Argosy University , Online (campus option available)
Welcome to Argosy University

Argosy University offers doctoral, master's, and bachelor's degree programs to students through its seven colleges: Psychology and Behavioral Sciences, Business, Education, Health Sciences, Undergraduate Studies, The Art Institute of California and Western State College of Law as well as certificate programs in many areas.
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