What’s the Average Salary with a Masters in Social Work?

By getting a masters degree in social work, you can earn more in this field. In fact, many of the top jobs in social work are open only to those who have at least a masters degree. What kind of salary can you expect in this field? Let’s check out the average salary for workers in this industry and how you can make more money no matter what your job title.

Base Salary for Social Workers

According to Payscale.com, those in the social work field who have a master’s degree make, on average, between $35,000 and $85,000 per year depending on your job title. Some of the specific salary ranges in the social work field (by position) are as follows:

  • Licensed Clinical Social Worker: $42,384 – $59,142
  • Clinical Therapist: $36,694 – $48,958
  • Medical and Public Health Social Worker: $36,174 – $52,540
  • Child, Family, or School Social Worker: $42,935 – $60,096
  • Non-Profit Organization Executive Director: $55,000 – $84,160

Your specific education will determine the jobs for which you’ll qualify after you graduate, so before you apply for a masters in social work program, take some time to think about your future career goals. The more specialized your education, the more qualified you’ll be for specific jobs after you graduate with your master’s degree.

Other Factors Affecting Social Worker Salary

Of course, the more experience you have, the more money you’ll make in the social work field; this is common in every industry. With less than a year of experience, workers with a masters in social work make an average of around $36,000 annually. On the other hand, workers with the same level of education who have 20+ years of experience average over $60,000 annually. Other factors that affect social worker salary may not be as apparent. Location, employer size and type, certification, specialty, and industry can all also change the salary amount you can expect as a worker in this field.


In addition to your salary, social work jobs typically come attached to benefits packages including such perks as paid vacation days, tuition reimbursement programs, health/dental coverage, and retirement plans. Some social workers also receive year-end bonuses, which can boost your salary significantly, so definitely consider these things when you’re comparing jobs in the social work field.

Top Social Work and Public Management Masters Degrees

A social worker is one who helps others in some capacity, whether it be issues involving family, disabilities, social problems, housing, unemployment, substance abuse, or some other issue. There are many different types of social worker, some of whom are even certified by the state as a licensed clinical social worker. A bachelor's degree is the minimum requirement for entering social work or public administration, but more often than not a Master of Social Work (MSW) or master's degree in a related field is required for upper-level positions.

Earn a Master of Social Work online from top-ranked USC Suzanne Dworak-Peck School of Social Work. This CSWE-accredited program features live, online classes and hands-on field experiences near your community. GRE scores are not required to apply, and you can complete your degree in two years or less. .
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The MPA program at Kaplan University prepares student to become leaders with the education to make a difference within their organization. The classes this program offers will help you make educated decisions that have a positive effect on social and ethical issues. The classes prepare you for careers in social work, public administration, and public management.
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At Walden, we believe that knowledge is most valuable when put to use in organizations, communities, and families. We offer over 75 online degree programs with more than 345 specializations and concentrations, all designed to help professionals gain the knowledge they need to have a real impact in their lives and the lives of others.
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The Master of Public Administration with an emphasis in Health Care Management prepares students for careers in the public sector, specifically in the healthcare industry. The program is targeted at individuals who desire to have an impact in the area of healthcare delivery and management at the federal, state and local level.
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