Skip to Main Content

Career Services: Social Work

A guide to the resources Heritage offers our students to plan their post-college careers.

Levels of social work education

A Bachelor's Degree in social work usually takes four years of undergraduate school to finish. This is the basic credential; a bachelor's in social work is a qualification for some kinds of social work practice, though it is not enough to be a clinical social worker. It is also commonly earned by students who plan to go on to earn a more advanced social work degree, such as a master's.

A Master's Degree in social work takes an additional two years; expect to be in school six years in total. Clinical social workers must have a master's degree,

There are two kinds of Doctoral social work degrees. The Doctorate of Social Work, or DSW, is pursued by practicing social workers who want a greater understanding of the discipline, and is fairly rare. A Ph.D. in social work is an academic degree; if you want to teach social work at the college level, or conduct research in the field of social work or policy, you will need a Ph.D. in social work.

Social Work

The most obvious career choice for a social work major is, of course, social work. Even here, however, there is variety. Most social workers specialize in a particular population, aspect of life, or type of client.

Social workers can work in the public or private sector. Some social workers work with children, others with recovering substance abusers, still others with specific at-risk populations. Many more specialities exist.

Professional Organizations

Here are links to some professional organizations for this career. These are useful for a variety of reasons: they connect you to other, more experienced practitioners, they provide information and news to members, and many of them have networks in place to help members find work.

Advice from the Catalog

Subject Guide

Profile Photo
Daniel Liestman