Social workers help people solve and cope with problems in their everyday lives. One group of social workers, clinical social workers, also diagnose and treat mental, behavioral, and emotional issues.
Social workers are employed in a variety of settings, including mental health clinics, schools, child welfare and human service agencies, hospitals, and private practices. They generally work full time and may need to work evenings, weekends, and holidays.
Although most social workers need a bachelor's degree in social work, clinical social workers must have a master's degree and two years of post-master experience in a supervised clinical setting. Clinical social workers must also be licensed in the state in which they practice.
The median annual wage for social workers was $44,200 in May 2012.
Employment of social workers is projected to grow 19 percent from 2012 to 2022, faster than the average for all occupations. Employment growth will be driven by increased demand for health care and social services, but will vary by specialty.