What Can You Do with a Bachelor’s in Social Work?

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There are many jobs you can do with a Bachelor’s in Social Work (BSW) and there is a need for Social Workers in many human service sectors. According to the May 2021 BLS report there are 715,600 social workers in the US alone. And the BLS expects employment to increase by 12% from 2020 through 2030.

Social workers are professionals with extensive training. A Bachelors in Social Work (BSW) degree from an accredited college or university is an entry-level education. Many colleges offering the BSW degree have accreditation from the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).

Courses in the BSW degree program may include human behavior in social environments, ethical issues in professional human services, sociology, policy and advocacy, diversity and multiculturalism, and also understanding chemical dependency in addiction.

Once a student graduates from their BSW degree, they will be ready for any entry-level social worker position. To learn more about BSW degree programs, check out this list of the Top 10 Online Schools for Bachelor’s in Social Work.

The Duties of a Social Worker

Social Workers learn to identify who in the community needs assistance, assess their client’s specific needs, advocate for community resources, and respond to any crisis situations such as child abuse or mental health cases.

They may also develop programs or services throughout communities and make follow-ups with clients to determine if their situations have improved after receiving help. Social workers work along with community organizations, policymakers, and human service groups to develop and improve services, policies, and social conditions. 

Where are Social Workers Employed?

For those looking for a meaningful and rewarding career, then the field of social work is the right path to follow. Social work focuses on the need to help people and gives a sense of reason to make a difference in people’s lives.

There are different types of social work environments and concentrations within the field. For instance, some focus on child psychology, working as a school psychologist. Other positions in social work may include caseworker, family service worker, mental health assistant, and case manager.

What Degree Do Social Workers Need?

Some positions in social work only require a BSW degree. However, if students desire to add a concentration or specialty, then a master’s degree may be a better choice. Many clinical positions within the social work field may require a master’s degree.

Due to recent conditions with social distancing intact, many social workers are working from home to assist clients and patients by using videoconferencing or mobile technology to provide the support they need. 

Job Opportunities for Social Workers

The job options for social workers are very broad. In today’s growing market, there are many positions open for individuals who have earned a bachelor’s in social work. According to the BLS, the median annual wage for earners with a Bachelor’s in Social Work, or BSW, is around $50,390

Here is a list of jobs for social workers and the many important roles that students can achieve success in as social workers. Many of the below lists are perfect for entry-level social worker candidates.  


Most work in government agencies and nonprofit organizations. However, they also work one-on-one as advocates for those going through crises, conflicts, or recovery. Some may work in hospitals; to work with patients and their families to help with the financial burden and plan for after-care once the patient leaves the hospital. 

Mean annual wage: $54,880

Mental Health Worker

They often work directly under the supervision of medical staff. These professionals help to care for mentally disabled and also emotionally ill individuals. Mental health workers improve the quality of life of patients by incorporating ADL concepts and also coping skills. Sometimes they are called substance abuse workers or behavioral counselors. 

Mean annual wage: $57,800

Rehabilitation Specialist

Rehabilitation specialists work along with healthcare and mental health subcategories. They also provide services to the mentally disabled, help their clients learn social skills, and teach clients how to live independently. Rehabilitation specialists may spend short periods of time working one-on-one with many clients. Or, they may work within caregiving facilities, helping patients throughout every day.

Mean annual wage: $62,310

Salary Outlook for Social Workers

The salaries of social workers will depend strongly on the concentration or specialty taken during the graduate’s BSW degree. For example, Community health workers can make around $48,860 annually, according to the medium pay on the BLS. Another common position is mental health workers, which can earn about $57,800 per year.

Finally, a social worker who works as a social service assistant may earn $37,610 annually. Each career position is entry-level. However, some positions may require social workers to earn a master’s degree in social work with a concentration of choice. 


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