Several basic tiers of social work careers reflect the level of education and amount of social work training one has received. To become a social worker in any state, you are required to have at least a bachelor's degree for entry-level positions. More advanced practitioners need higher levels of education and professional licensure.
Social work licensure requirements vary widely by state, so be sure to read about your state's requirements.
What is Social Work?
Social Work EducationA Bachelor of Social Work is usually the minimum educational requirement for beginning your career as a social worker. Some entry-level positions may also accept candidates with a bachelor's degree in psychology, sociology, or other related fields.
- Undergraduate Social Work Education: States require that social workers hold a Bachelor of Social Work (BSW) from a school approved by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE).
- Graduate Social Work Education: States often require that social workers obtain a Masters in Social Work or a relevant doctoral degree before applying for advanced social work licensure. There are also options for pursuing your Master of Social Work online.