Top Schools for Master’s in Social Work in Canada
For students who are interested in furthering their education in the field of social work, the possibilities are endless. Social work allows people to directly influence the lives of others through community service, private practice, consulting, policy development, research and political policies. Not only can social workers help people take action on an individual level, but these professionals can empower social institutions, organisations and communities to make critical changes as well. Some of the best universities in Canada and across the nation offer Master’s degree programs in Social Work to students who want to integrate their knowledge of human interactions with real-life situations. Social workers can make the world a better place by finding solutions to problems that affect society as a whole.
What is a Master’s Program in Social Work?
Scholars who enroll in a Master’s program can expect to receive a higher level of education than they achieved while working toward their Bachelor’s degree. Depending on which university the student chooses to attend, social work programs may specialise in different areas of interest. Universities also vary in the courses that are offered based on the specific curriculum used at that school. There is, however, a general overview of the skills that students will learn throughout the duration of the program. These include:
- Evaluate various factors of human behavior and apply it to the social environment.
- Engage in research to gain a better understanding of society as a whole.
- Learn how to use research findings to better the practice of social work.
- Display advanced communication skills.
Social work can be generalized over several groups of people or industries, or narrowed down to focus on one specific group and how the people of that group interact with one another. In addition to identifying and understanding how people interact and influence one another, social workers often attempt to find remedies to societal problems, such as domestic violence, hunger, hate crimes, drug abuse, poverty and unemployment.
What Are the Benefits of Getting a Master’s in Social Work?
An upper-level degree in social work can open more doors to rewarding careers than simply receiving a Bachelor’s degree. Esteemed universities in Canada that offer this valued program have many options for students who are working, have families and/or are experiencing financial limitations. A number of institutions offer online courses in combination with on-site classes so that students can complete the program while fulfilling the needs of their everyday lives. Furthermore, some educational institutes may have financial assistance programs available, including grants, student loans, scholarships and financial payment plans.
Students who graduate with a Master’s degree in Social Work emerge with essential skills that are not only important for the field of social work, but that can also be applied to everyday life situations. During the program, prospective social workers learn the art of active listening, empathy, persuasion, social perception, communication and critical thinking. These professionals can evaluate peoples’ interpersonal skills and help to foster change in the community.
Social Workers who hold a post graduate degree can earn a higher salary that those with undergraduate degrees. Pay rates for social workers often vary, however, depending on the area that they specialise in, as well as the geographic location of the position.
What Kind of Career Can You Expect with a Master’s in Social Work?
Obtaining a Master’s in Social Work can help pave the way to a wide variety of career opportunities in family counseling, mental health, community advocacy, substance abuse and military work, just to name a few. Social work professionals can often find a career in human services management, clinical social work, case management, community organising and social policy development. Careers in advocating human rights, as well as group rights can also be categorised into the field of social work.
Postgraduate social workers may be included as part of an interdisciplinary team of professionals. For example, social workers can work in the field of medicine, education, philosophy, economics, business, government or even psychology.
Healthcare social workers can work in hospitals, helping anyone from cancer patients to children with rare diseases deal with difficult life situations. They may also work for a family planning organisation or at a veteran’s hospital.
With so many options in the field of social work, you can clearly see why getting your Master’s degree in Social Work is the first step on the track to your career.