Is Obtaining a Master of Social Work (MSW) Degree Worthwhile?


A Master of Social Work (MSW) degree is perfect for those that love to cater to people and do something for humanity. It also allows students to pursue an array of careers like being an NGO worker or a social helper at a clinic.

The best part is that the degree can also be completed from the comfort of your home by opting for online MSW programs New York. Degree holders are able to get state licensure right after. This allows them to pursue social work professionally and get paid. Social workers can work individually, as part of a community, or even in groups. If this sounds exciting, then you may be wondering whether an MSW degree is worth it.

What Is a Master of Social Work (MSW) Degree?

An MSW degree is an advanced program that accepts applicants that already have a Bachelor’s degree. Most students opting for an MSW mostly have a BSW (Bachelor of Social Work) degree already. A BSW is not necessary and any other bachelor’s degree in a relevant field can also suffice for admission. Students may also have majors in several subjects before they eventually opt for an MSW program.

Some universities may offer combined programs with both the MSW and BSW. This shortens the duration so that qualification can be achieved in only five years. The different types of MSW programs include:

  • Regular
  • Dual
  • Advanced Standing
  • Clinical
  • Accelerated

Advantages of Opting for an MSW Degree Program

Now that you know what an MSW degree is, it is time to look at the major benefits of opting for the program:

Demand and Passion

There are quite some people that wish to help others in various aspects of life. Obtaining a Master’s degree in social work turns this dream into reality. Individuals with a degree can help people in overcoming several obstacles like mental health issues, poverty, disability, abuse, and unemployment. Social workers are taught kindness, equality, and justice which plays a huge part in helping them practice these values professionally.

A social worker could be paid or may work without asking for any incentives. Their love to train with others, willingness to learn, work as a community, coexist, and a positive approach towards everything allows them to help those in challenging and difficult situations.

The need for social workers is constantly rising. The U.S. Bureau of Labour Statistics deduced that 680,000 social workers were practicing in 2016. This number has been estimated to rise by nearly 16% by 2026.

Even Social Services Europe reported a similar trend by stating that vacancies for social workers were nearly 10% to 19% of all employment opportunities across France, Germany, Denmark, Finland, and Belgium. Social worker jobs have continually increased over the years due to:

  • Increased life expectancy
  • Growth in the aging population
  • Increased number of diseases/illnesses

A Wide Variety of Options

Opting for a career in social work allows students to specialize in various ways. There are three main categories and each requires a different degree and skills that students can pick based on their preference:

Clinical Social Worker

A clinical social worker will need an MSW degree. Working in the healthcare sector requires a social worker to have proper knowledge and techniques.This is necessary to diagnose patients, and treat addiction, drug abuse, and other mental health problems. Students are required to complete thousands of hours of practical work under licensed individuals to qualify for the job.

Macro Social Worker

These social workers do not work directly with patients. They instead work with government departments, NGOs, or public and private facilities to implement new programs and policies.

Direct Practice Social Worker

Social workers who wish to practice directly can start even with a BSW degree. These individuals cater to communities, families, children, and individuals. They can apply for jobs in the education, child safety, and healthcare fields.

Affordable and Flexible

The tuition fee can range from $30,000 to $120,000 U.S.. Pick a program that lies within your range but does not compromise on quality. You can also consider opting for an online program so you can work part time or full time on the side.

Occupations That an MSW Degree Holder Can Opt For


If you wish to serve others, this degree is surely for you.


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