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+7% Overall Growth
Social Work

Overall employment of social workers is projected to grow 7 percent from 2022 to 2032, much faster than the average for all occupations. Employment growth will vary by specialization.

Stat Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Social Workers

Social Workers Median Annual Wages, May 2022 #

Social workers
Counselors, social workers, and other community and social service
Total, all occupations

All Occupations includes all occupations in the U.S. Economy.

Chart Source: Occupational Outlook Handbook, Social Workers, Job Pay

Employment Growth #

Social Work job prospects are noted to be “very good, particularly for clinical social workers.” Popular employment environments are in alignment with areas of projected growth increases.

Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers
Healthcare Social Workers
Child, Family, and School Social Workers
All Other Social Workers

Source: Job Outlook, and Work Environment, US Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Possibilities #

Social Work is a profession devoted to helping people function at their best in their environment.

Social work can involve providing services or therapy directly to people or working for change to improve social conditions.

Compare and contrast occupations with similar job roles and responsibilities to those of social workers.

Similar Occupations

Source: National Association of Social Workers – Types of Social Work

The U.S. population is aging. We live in a country where people over 65 outnumber teenagers. This translates into a tremendous need-and a variety of opportunities-for social work with older persons and their families

Related Areas

  • Advocacy and Intervention
  • Home Health Care
  • Geriatric Case Management
  • Public Policy
  • Adult Day Care
  • Family Services

Child welfare social workers are advocates for American’s most silent minority; out nation’s youth.

Related Areas

  • Family Preservation
  • Child Day Care
  • Child Protection Family
  • Foster Care
  • Group Care Adoption
  • Advocacy and Intervention

Public welfare provides income and support services to society’s most vulnerable people-children, the ill, the elderly, and the disabled. Although some of these people will always need services, traditional thinking about how to help is changing as the nation debates welfare reform. How to foster self-sufficiency and move people into the mainstream is today’s challenges complicated by an increase in social problems and general decrease in funds.

Related Areas

  • Income Maintenance
  • Adult Protective Services
  • Housing Services/Management
  • Administration
  • Public Policy
  • Research

Corrections and justice is a field in which a social work can focus on rehabilitation and the constructive use of authority.

Related Areas

  • Corrections
  • Probation
  • Forensics
  • Youth Services
  • Parole

People with developmental disabilities may at some time seek out social services.

Related Areas

  • Case Management
  • Planning Research
  • Policy Program Evaluation

Employment and occupational social workers help workers with problems that affect their job performance and satisfaction. Employee assistance programs is a growing practice area.

Related Areas

  • Clinical Social Work
  • Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Treatment
  • Health and Wellness Education
  • Grass Roots Organizing

Social workers are needed in hospitals, clinics and other medical and health care settings to facilitate medical and emotional treatment. They are vital members of the health care team, working in concert with doctors, nurses and other health professionals.

Related Areas

  • Hospital Social Work
  • AIDS Counseling/Education
  • Hospice
  • Counseling/Management
  • Home Health Care
  • Case Management
  • Maternal and Child Health
  • Physical Rehabilitation
  • Chemical Dependency

Many people at times in their lives need mental health services to get the most out of life. Clinical social workers are the largest group of professionally trained mental health providers in the United States, supplying more than half of counseling and therapy services. These mental health professionals help people find solutions to problems ranging from inability to cope with stress to severe mental illness.

Related Areas

  • Alcohol and Other Drug Abuse Treatment
  • Individual and Family Psychotherapy and Counseling
  • Grief Counseling
  • Victim Service
  • Group Therapy

To be a social worker, requires a degree in social work from a college or university program accredited by the Council on Social Work Education. The undergraduate degree is the Bachelor of Social Work. Graduate degrees include the Master of Social Work and the Doctorate in Social Work. A Master of Social Work is required to provide therapy.

Degree programs involve classroom study as well as practical field experience. The bachelor’s degree prepares graduates for entry-level work. The master of Social Work is required for more advanced practice. A Doctorate is required for doing research or teaching at the university level.

Related Areas

  • Community Organization
  • International Social Work
  • Management/Administration
  • Policy and Planning
  • Politics
  • Research

Social and community service managers coordinate and supervise programs and organizations that support public well-being.

Social and community service managers work for nonprofit organizations, for-profit social service companies, and government agencies. Most work full-time.

Related Areas

  • Medical and Health Services Managers
  • Health Education Specialists
  • Probation Officers and Correctional Treatment Specialists
  • School and Career Counselors and Advisors
  • Social Workers

School counselors work in public and private schools. Career counselors and advisors are employed primarily in colleges and universities but also work in career centers and private practice. Both types of counselors usually work full time.

Related Areas

  • High School Teachers
  • Kindergarten and Elementary School Teachers
  • Training and Development
  • Middle School Teachers
  • Marriage and Family Therapists

The functions of social work in international development are diverse. They include direct services in communities, refugee camps, orphanages, hospitals, and schools, as well as supporting the efforts of national governments, intergovernmental organizations, and non-governmental organizations to enhance social well-being.

Related Areas

  • Direct Services
  • Humanitarian Aid and Crisis Response
  • Advocacy and Capacity Building
  • Community Development
  • Cross-Culture Understanding and Integration
  • Capacity Enhancement
  • Policy Development and Implementation

Social workers analyze policies, programs, and regulations to see what is most effective. They identify social problems, study needs and related issues, conduct research, propose legislation, and suggest alternative approaches or new programs. They may foster coalitions of groups with similar interests and develop organizational networks.

Related Areas

  • Policy Analysis and Evaluation
  • Assessment and Research
  • Legislative Advocacy
  • Development of Alternative Approaches
  • Community Building and Coalition Development
  • Organizational Networking
  • Policy Implementation and Monitoring

Administrative services and facilities managers plan, direct, and coordinate activities that help an organization run efficiently. Social work administrators are proactive leaders in public and private agencies that provide services to clients. Many elements of this area of social work practice are common to administration in other organizations. However, administration and management also require knowledge about social policy and the delivery of social services, vision for future planning, an understanding of human behavior, and commitment to social work ethics and values.

  • Compensation and Benefits Managers
  • Cost Estimators
  • Human Resources
  • Management Analysts
  • Top Executives