To make a positive difference in the community, becoming a social worker is the best choice for anyone. Social workers do not only build a healthy relationship with the clients but also with their family members. They also work closely with the organizations like local authority departments, police, probation service, and schools. Now the question arises what qualifications do you need to be a social worker?
What Qualifications Do I Need To Be A Social Worker?
You need to have a 2 year P.G. degree in the social work or 3 year undergraduate degree. The degree should be approved by the health and care professions council. You need to pass some background checks by the disclosure and barring service.
Some employers also accept the bachelor’s degree in some other subject like psychology. It takes 4 years to complete this undergraduate program. Below mentioned is the list of some typical courses in this program:
- Principles and practice in social work
- Introduction to social welfare and human services
- Human behavior theory
- Social work practice in research
- Issues in social welfare
- Statistics for social work research.
For the masters program which is earned in the span of two years, required for many positions. If you want to provide a therapy, masters are must. Students at this level take more advanced courses according to their choice. Like:
- Social work with children and adolescents
- Child abuse and neglect
- Practice in community and home settings with older adults
To teach students about the social work program, you need to have a doctorate in the social work program. This Ph.D. program takes around 4 years. These programs are basically clinical based and focus on the area of research. They are trained in such a way to become leaders in their specific areas. With the classroom education, it also consist of field education which is a training period. Students also participate in the internships which help them in applying the theories of the classroom in their work settings.
How To Get Into These Programs:
There are many programs in bachelors in social work which do not admit the student if they have not completed the core curriculum of that particular college or even if they cannot transfer the credits of their coursework from another school. If a student want to take admission in the Fordham University Baccalaureate Program in social work course, he or she needs to complete approx 50 credits and most of the basics or fundamentals. Requirements are the same in many universities which offer social work course. For more details you can go to the website of the desired organization and check the exact requirements.
To get an advanced degree in the same, you need to take the admission in the master’s program. It is pretty obvious that you need to have a bachelor’s degree in order to pursue a post graduate one. If you want to pursue a doctorate program you should have a master’s degree in the same field. Before getting admitted in the Ph.D. program, students go through an interview round. To enter in any of the programs in the graduate school, you need to take a graduate record exam basically termed as GRE.
After The Graduation:
With a proper degree from a certified institute, you need a license too. This license is very vital for a social worker if he/she want to work anywhere in the U.S. Requirements for the jobs vary from state to state but mostly the experience is everything. To get this license, you may have to give the written test also.
You can check with the licensing agencies in that state which are interested in. There is a National association of social workers which maintains a list of agencies on their website. In some states, you get the different type of licensing which depends on the way you want to practice like mental health or some other departments.
Whom Do They Work With?
They specialize in either children’s or adult services.
Children or young people services: These services include roles which keep the families together, manage the foster and adoption process. It provides support to younger people who are at risk or need care. They also help the children who are suffering from any kind of issue in school or facing any kind of difficulty due to family problems.
Adult Services: In this, they deal with the people who have mental health problems. Also learn the difficulties that are facing in residential care. Adult services also take care of the people who are dealing with the AIDS. Work with the older people and help in their home related problems like benefits and health.
Some social workers also take further training to work as a high intensity therapist. It helps them in improving their access to psychological therapies.
In most of the offices, you work on standard office hours which includes some night shifts too but this is kind of 24 hour service. As a social worker, you can also work as part time or job sharing basis. With an office, you need to work on other locations also like residential centers, users homes, health care and hospitals.
In the beginning, the salary will range up to 19,500 USD to 25,000 USD a year. If you will get more experience in this particular field you can get a rise to 26,000 USD to 40,000 USD. These are just estimated numbers based on some of the reports. Salary system depends on various factors like location and experience. It also depends on the policies of the company.
I have listed out some of the skills, qualities and interests which you will need in the long run. Like:
- The ability to gain the trust and relate to the people of all background and ages
- Excellent communication skills
- Patience, tact, and empathy
- Flexible and practical approach to work
- Non-judgmental attitude
- Understanding of the desired needs of the different client groups
- Ability to control the situations by taking proper actions
- Teamwork ability
- Leadership qualities
- Computer literacy
- Good time management
- Organizational skills
- Administrative skills
So, these were some of the qualities you need to pursue if you want to become a social worker. You also understood what qualifications do you need to be a social worker? If you are interested in this area, try building a career in this.