Social Work and Psychology degrees prepare students for entry-level roles in human services or to continue their education with graduate studies.
Is Social Work a Good Career?
The primary objective of a social worker is to enhance their client’s quality of life. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, there are approximately 708,100 social workers in the US. It is also a growing profession and the BLS estimates it will grow 9% from 2020 to 2030. This growth rate is faster than the average for all other occupations.
What is Social Work?
Social work involves the provision of therapy and education, counseling, and connecting clients to relevant private and public resources. A social worker works with groups of people, families, and individuals to help them cope with the problems or challenges they are facing.
Social workers often act as liaisons between patients and other health professionals or institutions to help their clients. They also take part in researching and advocating for policies that lead to improved services. A social worker also prepares case reports and maintains history records.
This post seeks to address the questions students who are thinking of venturing into a career in social work may have. These may include:-
- What can I do with a social work degree?
- Is social work a good career?
- Is psychology a good career choice?
What Education Do I Need for a Psychology or Social Work Career?
Most people who want to pursue a career in psychology or social work are required to have a degree in human services or social work. After completing a graduate degree program, social workers must complete a few hours of supervised work before they obtain their license.
The different types of psychology degrees include:-
- Counseling psychology degrees
- Clinical psychology degrees
- Substance abuse counseling degree
- School psychology degree
- Organizational psychology degree
- Social work degree
Students pursuing a career in social work or psychology may obtain an associate degree, a bachelor’s degree, a master’s degree, or a PH.D.
What Jobs Require a Psychology Degree?
Some of the most common career paths for people with a psychology degree include:-
- Career counselors
- Childcare workers
- Probation and parole officer
- Social service specialists
- Rehabilitation specialists
- Psychiatric technicians
There are other things you can do with a degree in psychology. These include becoming a life coach, a career adviser, an education consultant, a chaplain, a mediator, or a psychotherapist.
Psychology Career Opportunities
A psychologist studies and evaluates human behavior as well as mental processes. Unlike social workers, psychologists focus on clinical work. That is, they help patients with psychological or mental issues they could be having. Careers in psychology involve a lot of research on existing theories and new philosophies. Below are some of the most common career opportunities in psychology.
- Organizational psychologists – in this case, the employee works in a business, organizational, or industrial setting. They may help in such areas as the human resource department, marketing, recruitment process, and management.
- Clinical psychologists – this is the most predominant career in psychology. Clinical psychologists can work in an office or private practice.
- Counseling psychology – is a field that’s closely related to clinical psychology. However, these people do not work in private practice but work in a non-profit, hospital, or educational institution.
You may want to look up psychologist jobs near me to discover what psychologist jobs are demanding in your locality.
Social Work Career Opportunities
Careers in social work include:
- Child welfare social workers – such a worker mostly deals with issues of child abuse, neglect, or both. This is a very demanding profession with heavy caseloads and limited resources.
- Direct-service social workers – these people may work with organizations that deal with such issues as abused women, homeless persons, child welfare, and local community development agencies, among others.
- Palliative and hospice care social workers – these workers focus on clients requiring end-of-life care. Their job is to try to prevent or relieve pain in people suffering from chronic or terminal illnesses.
- Veterans and military social workers – military personnel, returning from war have mental and psychological issues that make it challenging for them to transition back and blend with society. Military social workers work with them by counseling them.
- Substance abuse social workers – these workers mostly work in facilities that treat people with substance abuse patterns and disorders. They may also work in foster care facilities, community service agencies, and prisons.
Social Work and Psychology Degrees
- Top 10 Online Schools for Bachelor’s in Social Work
- 10 Online Master’s in Social Work (MSW) Programs
- Top 10 Online Schools Psychology Bachelor’s Degrees
- 10 Psychology Master’s Online Schools
- Top 10 Counseling Master’s Online Schools
How Much Can You Make in Psychology and Social Work?
While earning potential is not the primary reason why one may choose a career path in any of the two fields, it is still a consideration. The average salary of a social worker is $49,470, while a licensed clinical social worker’s salary averages $60,000.
What is the Average Psychologist’s Salary?
A psychologist earns an average salary of $79,010. However, alternative careers for psychology majors may pay much more. While psychologists and social workers are professions that involve helping people with their problems, the two are different, especially in education, job duties, skills acquired, and salaries. Psychologists study human behavior and evaluate how the human mind works. On the other hand, social workers treat a person’s mental, behavioral, and emotional issues.