Students pursuing social work concentrations in public policy and public administration will find themselves qualified for a number of careers, including leadership in private sector companies, government agencies, and research organizations. Throughout the in-person or online social work program, they’ll learn how to approach large, obdurate social problems both locally and globally. Both in-person and online social work programs in public policy and public administration also provide students with a thorough understanding of bureaucratic structures from a broader perspective that helps them better assess policy alternatives with the benefit of the population in mind. These social work specializations typically include courses on subjects like wealth and poverty, crime prevention, labor studies, social movements and mobilization, ethics, and decision analysis.
Advanced standing allows students studying social work at a graduate level to receive extra credits for their previous university credits or work experience. While it might not be as specialized as other social work concentrations, it allows students to complete their master’s degree faster so they can get a jump start on their careers. In these social work specializations, students still have to complete core requirements for the in-person or online social work degree, including field placements, internships, and mandatory seminars. When choosing to enroll in these kinds of in-person or online social work programs, students give themselves the chance to focus less on generalized social work classes and more on the subjects that interest them the most.
Social work specializations that focus on children and families give social workers the tools they need to work directly with struggling parents, children, and other familial groups. Most often, students who graduate in these social work concentrations obtain careers in child protective services, public or private child welfare agencies, or the juvenile and family court systems. During their studies in in-person or online social work programs, students will learn how to help people care for themselves and their children, including how to restore social functioning and encourage self-sufficiency in parents. Typical topics covered in an in-person or online social work program include psychology, public health, sociology, and child abuse.
Students choosing to pursue social work concentrations on a clinical track will focus more on familial, psychiatric, and interpersonal problems among individuals, couples, families, and children. Graduates in these social work specializations often find careers working in juvenile and family courts, schools, outpatient therapy practices, or hospitals. Unlike other in-person and online social work programs, students wishing to become a licensed clinical social worker will tackle the mental and emotional aspects of a person’s well-being, much in the way that a therapist or psychologist does. During their studies in an in-person or online social work program, students may take classes in subjects like spousal abuse, child abuse reporting, human sexuality, and aging and long-term care.
Social work specializations in community health are a popular choice for social workers, as they give students the tools they need to identify and discuss health-related issues affecting the community at large. After collecting data and assessing the situation, those in social work concentrations that focus on community health can report their findings to decision makers and health educators to improve the outlook of the population. After earning an in-person or online social work degree, many social workers with this specialization find employment with universities, private corporations, doctor’s offices, hospitals, and government agencies. To prepare them for these careers, in-person and online social work programs cover topics like health promotion, nutrition, cultural awareness, and community health education.
For students interested in caring for the mental health of community members, these social work concentrations provide them with the necessary skills. With this in-person or online social work degree, graduates will be qualified to assist individuals with their emotional and mental problems, such as family drama, relationship issues, or unhealthy patterns of thought. These social work specializations prepare students to work in a number of sectors, including outpatient psychotherapy services, psychiatric inpatient services, case management services, and child and family services. During these in-person or online social work programs, students may take classes on topics like psychopathology, traumatic stress, cognitive-behavioral therapy, and drug and alcohol abuse.
As the rate of drug and alcohol abuse continues to rise, the need for social work specializations in substance abuse is more urgent than ever. Students pursuing this in-person or online social work degree will assist individuals who have been addicted to legal or illegal substances, such as alcohol, heroin, prescription painkillers, or cocaine. Through the skills they learn in social work concentrations in substance abuse, students can one day teach clients how to cope with addiction, helping them along the road to recovery. After completing an in-person or online social work program, graduates will be qualified to work in mental health clinics, psychiatric hospitals, medical hospitals, and substance abuse recovery facilities.