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Social Work FAQs

Browse through frequently asked questions about the the social work profession. Plus learn more about earning your BSW or MSW at UMass Global.

As a social worker, you can make a true difference in the lives of so many people. Explore this rewarding profession and programs with our robust resource page that can help get you where you want to be. Plus, get answers to some of the most common questions asked by aspiring social workers.
  • In the United States and Canada, the requirements to become a licensed social worker vary by state, province, and territory. However, a common prerequisite is obtaining a degree in social work from an accredited institution. Typically, a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) is the minimum requirement for entry-level positions, while a Master of Social Work (MSW) is often necessary for advanced clinical roles.

    According to the Association of Social Work Boards (ASWB), licensure requirements can differ significantly depending on your location. You can find specific licensing requirements by state or province on their website: ASWB Licensing Requirements.

    For further insight into the requirements and pathways to becoming a social worker, you can refer to the article: Social Worker Requirements: What You Will Need. This article may provide additional details and considerations for individuals pursuing a career in social work.

  • Social worker licensure requirements vary by state. Typically, obtaining your licensure includes achieving a minimum level of education, reaching a required amount of supervised practice time and completing an application. There are also optional and advanced licensures for specific social worker careers. You can learn more about requirements here.
  • It usually takes between four to six years to become a social worker. Aspiring social workers must earn their bachelor’s degree, and many continue on to earn a master’s degree as well.
  • Social workers can help military clients address difficulties such as PTSD, depression or anxiety, unemployment, financial hardship and more through individual or family counseling. Social workers support military personnel and their loved ones by developing community programs and initiatives that can improve their lives. Learn more about military social work
  • All social workers will work with our military population in some capacity, but some choose to specialize in serving those in specific stages including civilians, active-duty personnel and veterans. Each segment has unique resources such as community centers, military bases, and VA support. Read more about these career paths.
  • Simply put, an MSW — Master of Social Work — is a degree path. Conversely, an LCSW is a licensed clinical social worker. The latter is a social work professional who has obtained licensure after earning their master’s degree in the field. Find out more.
  • As an LCSW you can administer therapy services to individuals, families, and couples. You can help clients change problematic behavior or cope with challenging circumstances such as addiction, trauma, illness, injury, mental health disorders, and social challenges. Get more info about this profession
  • Social workers are employed in a variety of environments including child protective services agencies, schools, long-term care facilities, human rights advocacy organizations as well in local, state and federal agencies. Read on or explore the top 5 career options for grads.

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