Social work can be a complicated field, and many students have questions. Below are some of the more frequently asked questions about social work and the MSW in particular. Review the most commonly asked questions about the MSW degree:
- What is the difference between a MSW and MSSW?
- What is the difference between a MSW and LCSW?
- What is Micro, Mezzo, and Macro Social Work?
- What is an Advanced Generalist MSW Degree?
- What is Online Asynchronous Instruction?
- Are there MSW Degrees with No GRE Requirement for Entry?
- What is a Clinical MSW Degree?
What are micro, mezzo, macro social work?
The field of social work is so broad and inclusive, it requires different categories depending on the type of work you plan to do as a professional. Our team has detailed the differences between micro, mezzo, and macro social work below for you to review.
- What is Micro Social Work?
When you first think of social work and what it entails, you are most likely thinking of micro social work. Micro social work is the most common type of social work, since this field in general focuses on the individual and their environment. Micro social work involves working one-on-one with individuals or even in small groups such as families to help solve difficult life-related dilemmas. When you choose this branch of social work to engage in, you can learn about different therapeutic techniques that are effective for smaller groups, as well as the different resources that are available to them. Micro social work is all about improving the smaller parts of the whole to make a greater difference over time. Careers at this level could include general social work for children’s services, healthcare, mental health, or even family services.
- What is Mezzo Social Work?
Located right in the middle of micro and macro social work, mezzo social work focuses on the needs of small groups within society. The influence of communities and social networks on individuals could be a primary concern for individuals working at this level, since they are more concerned with bigger factors of change than micro social work professionals. Some professions that are common at this level include educational research and development, community program planning and implementation, support group organization, or substance abuse facility management. If you are interested in making a bigger difference on the community in which you live, this may be the sector to choose for your career.
- What is Macro Social Work?
Macro social work is more concerned with the big picture and how it has an effect on the smaller parts of society. Professionals within this realm may investigate how different policies are effective or ineffective in promoting social change, work hard to implement strategy and change into healthcare reform, or even influence laws surrounding social services and social programs. This area of social work is responsible for providing resources for the mezzo and micro social workers to pull from. Without influence at this level, it would be tedious and difficult for micro social workers to advocate for their clients. Some example macro social work titles include social policy activists, social service directors, and social law makers.
What is an advanced generalist online MSW program?
As you may have learned through researching our guides, there are many different specializations and directions that you can choose with a MSW. For some students, having too much direction can hold them back from their desires to make the biggest impact on society. One degree program in particular that encourages students to play a part in micro, mezzo, and macro social work is the Advanced Generalist Online MSW program.
Like most other MSW programs, the AG-MSW online program can be completed in 1-3 years depending on your previous educational experiences. This program consists of 30-40 credit hours for students that have completed a BSW and 40-60 for students from other degree programs. Universities that offer this program often use the same instructors for both specialized MSW programs and AG-MSWs. The online program may consist of standard writing assignments, research projects, and even a supervised work experience.
The Advanced Generalist Online MSW program takes into consideration the need for versatility in the field of social work. Students that want to blend their experience of working directly with the public with their desire to play a role in the influence of social policy are a great fit for this degree program. Advanced Generalist programs offer students instruction in all 3 realms, allowing them to gain expertise within each designation.
Even having the Generalist tag on its degree program, the Advanced Generalist MSW program has different concentrations in which students can focus their studies. If you are more interested in applying your knowledge to educational social work and policy, you can choose to take your degree in that direction. There are more concentrations that focus on different sectors of society, but students are not required to choose a specialization at most universities offering this degree program.
The online option for this degree program gives students the opportunity of having a flexible learning opportunity in which they can thrive. Online degrees are great for self-starters and independent learners, due to the innovative nature of the program. This online MSW program can introduce students into topics that include all aspects of social work programs, such as individual treatment and assessment, the development of helpful community or social programs, and influencing policy change in social work.
What is asynchronous instruction?
If you have spent any time researching online degree programs, you have probably ran into the term ‘asynchronous’ more than a few times. This term has gained popularity over the last few years, since online degree programs are more popular now than ever. Students are drawn to these types of courses due to their relevance for busy professionals and flexibility in the educational setting.
Asynchronous refers to the type of classes that are common within online degree programs. Classes taken online can be completed at your own pace, with due dates given at the beginning of a course for you to refer back to. In standard educational settings, students are usually assigned homework each night and expected to take part in group assignments or discussion during an assigned time during the class period. Asynchronous courses may recommend that students complete course discussions or assignments – usually before the end of the week.
Asynchronous courses have changed the way that students approach their college education. Unlike synchronous programs that have a specific time and timeframe for you to conduct your course, these innovative courses give students the freedom to make their own schedule and work around important family activities and work schedules. If students are forced to work full-time and only have time for homework on the weekend – that’s not a problem! Courses that are designed to be asynchronous allow for flexibility for even the busiest students.