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Master’s Degree Programs in Social and Community Services Overview

Majors Overview November 24, 2015

Those with an interest in assessing, managing, and implementing community and social services programs should look into master’s degree programs in social work. This article talks about these type of programs and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master’s Programs in Social and Community Services

The focus of Master of Science in Social Work (M.S.S.W.) and Master of Social Work (M.S.W.) degree programs is on the theoretical ideas and practical skills underlying the provision of community services to underserved peoples. Students take about two years to complete these programs though students with bachelor’s degrees in social work may complete some within a year.

Specializations are available in either macro or clinical social work, with respective emphases on group services and individual care. There is a more direct relation between macro social work courses and community services; however, enrollees in both programs are taught necessary skills in leadership, research, and administration.

Students can expect to become an expert in evaluating the effectiveness of social service programs, influencing public policy, administering community services, and working with specific populations. Enrollees in most programs are allowed to gain hands-on training through field experiences.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to MSSW and MSW programs to hold undergraduate degrees in a social sciences or liberal arts field. A course in statistics is also a requirement. Admission criteria also require the submission by students of a resume, letters of reference, and a statement of purpose.

Coursework

Program coursework in MSSW and MSW programs is devised to make students adept in assisting diverse populations. The emphasis of coursework is on statistical and research skills, program implementation, social policy, and administration strategies. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•Family intervention
•Working with multicultural populations
•Organizational leadership
•Community building theory
•Strategic community partnerships

Career Choices

Students who complete an MSSW or MSW program can seek positions with non-profit organizations, the government, or private advocacy groups. They can seek jobs as consultants, supervisors, or policy advisors. They may choose from possible job positions such as:

•Community development consultant
•Community service program administrator
•Social service policymaker

Job and Wage Outlook

Social and community service managers are expected to see a faster than the average 21% job growth during the 2012 – 2022 decade. In May 2014, these professionals brought in an average annual wage of $67,730 (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics).

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates who seek continuing education may pursue doctorate programs that emphasize theoretical skills and research; those who complete these programs may pursue careers in program assessment and academia. Graduates may often seek careers as theorists, professors, or policymakers.

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  • Designated a 2015 Military Friendly School by Victory Media for the 4th consecutive year.
  • Listed on the President’s Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll in 2013, for the sixth consecutive year
  • Links students to hundreds of training opportunities (beyond their traditional internships and practicum) at their many “partner agencies” in each of their local communities.
  • Accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WUSCUC).
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  • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
  • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
  • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
  • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
Good for Working Adults
  • Online Courses
  • Flexible Scheduling
  • Financial Aid
  • Transferable Credits
  • Education Connection is a 100% Free College Matching Service used by 50,000 People Daily.
  • Get Matched to Psychology, Counseling, Human Services, Organizational, and Clinical Psychology Degree Programs and MORE.
  • View Bachelor's, Master's, Doctorate and Graduate Certificate Degree Programs in Psychology and Human Services Near YOU!
  • Accredited and Flexible Psychology Degree Programs to Fit Your Time and Budget. Use Our Matching Service - It's Easy and FREE!
  • Online Courses
  • Average class size is 25, allowing for more one-on-one time with instructors.
  • Has a 97% employment rate among available graduates.
  • All  graduates receive Lifetime Employment  Assistance—free and forever.
  • Michigan's largest independent college.
  • Most instructors are working professionals in the fields they teach.
  • Programs are continuously updated to ensure classes are career-relevant and in sync with what's needed in the industry
Show more [+]
  • Accredited
  • Online Courses
  • Accelerated Programs
  • Financial Aid

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