There are currently 1.7 million people residing in Idaho, and that number is growing steadily. The need for social workers has increased in recent years, and Idaho has responded by paying the workers an annual salary approximately $4,000 above the state’s median household income.
Becoming a social worker requires you to be licensed by Idaho’s licensing body. You must have at least a bachelor’s in social work (BSW) to apply for licensure. The school or program must be accredited by the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE). It typically takes four years to finish the bachelor’s program, and education is split between the classroom and the field. The classes will center around human behavior, practice methods, professional ethics, and social work policy.
If you decide to further your career and become a more advanced social worker, you’ll need a master’s degree in social work (MSW). The program must also be accredited by the CSWE. The curriculum will focus on social work research, social work policy, social welfare, and crisis management and intervention. You’ll have an opportunity to gain real-world experience in the field, and with your BSW, you may qualify for advanced standing in the MSW program. Advanced standing allows you to complete the program in one year instead of two.
If you are a compassionate person who cares deeply for the difficult situations those in your community experience, and making a difference is something you live to do, then you should consider becoming a social worker in Idaho. The need to fill positions is increasing rapidly, and you can put your knowledge and skills to work helping those in need.
Here’s a brief overview of the three licenses available for Idaho social workers.
Licensed Bachelor Social Worker (LBSW): LBSWs can practice general social work such as assessment, advocacy, case management, supportive counseling, and referrals.
Licensed Master Social Worker (LMSW): An LMSW practices advanced non-clinical social work as an independent practitioner. Clinical social work can be practiced while under supervision.
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW): LCSW can practice clinical social work independently and provide psychodiagnostic assessments and treatment. They are also the only licensed social workers allowed to practice privately in Idaho.