dcsimg

Social Service Assistant

Job Duties

Social service assistants provide clients with direct and indirect services that help them attain a higher level of everyday functioning in society. They are typically supervised by different professionals, such as those in nursing, psychiatry, psychology, rehabilitative or physical therapy, or social work. Their responsibilities and level of supervision varies greatly from job to job. Some work under close supervision, while others work independently. They determine their clients' eligibility for government benefits, such as food stamps, Medicaid, or welfare. They arrange for transportation and give their clients emotional support. They keep detailed records of each client's case and report progress to their supervisors.

Social service assistants perform many different types of duties, depending on their specific job. Some organize group activities or trips. Others run food banks or emergency fuel programs. Others work in halfway houses, group homes, and government-supported housing programs. Those who work in hospitals, rehabilitation programs, and outpatient clinics work closely with professionals such as psychiatrists, psychologists, and social workers, helping clients communicate more effectively and live more fully.

Job Skills

Those types of people who tend to succeed in social service assistant jobs generally enjoy helping other people and working hard. They tend to be emotionally stable and responsible. They are passionate about their work and their clients, and they usually have a pleasant and optimistic personality. They also need to be honest, tactful, and discreet.

Income

In 2002, social service assistants earned a median annual salary of $23,370. Earnings ranged from the lowest 10%, who earned less than $15,420, to the highest 10%, who earned more than $37,550. The following shows the median hourly wages in the industries employing the largest numbers of social service assistants:

  • State government: $31,280
  • Local government: $26,570
  • Individual and family services: $22,210
  • Community food and housing services: $21,840
  • Residential retardation, mental health, and substance abuse facilities: $20,010

Training and Education

Most employers of social service assistants look for applicants who have education beyond the high school level as well as work experience in the field. A bachelor's degree is usually not required, and certificates or associate degrees in social work, human services, gerontology, or behavioral science will usually be enough to qualify applicants. A few jobs, such as those involving counseling, rehabilitation, and social work, may require a bachelor's or a master's degree. In human serve degree programs, students learn to observe patients and record information, conduct patient interviews, implement treatment plans, employ problem-solving techniques, handle crisis intervention matters, and use proper case management and referral procedures. In order to advance in the occupation, employees are almost always required to have formal education, such as a bachelor's or master's degree. You can explore more about training for social service assistant careers by clicking on this link for schools offering human services degrees.

Employment

In 2002, social service assistants held about 305,000 jobs.

Job Outlook

Between 2002 and 2012, employment of social service assistants is expected to increase faster than the average. In fact, it is one of the most rapidly growing occupations in the country. Jobs in urban areas will be more competitive than in rural areas. However, even in the cities, applicants with the proper qualifications should have little trouble finding employment. Opportunities will be best for those who have related postsecondary education.


Social Service Assistant Training

Refine School Matches
Hide filters
  • SUBJECT Clear All

  • DEGREE

    See More

  • PROGRAM TYPE

  • START TIME

    LOCATION
    Please enter valid US or Canada Zip.
            Results open in new window

            Searching Searching ...

            Matching School Ads
            BA/Social Science - No Concentration
            • Provides an exclusive Ashford Mobile app to keep students connected to the online classroom on the go.
            • Offers a business program in partnership and collaboration with Forbes magazine.
            • Offers several credit transfer and previous experience options for students who qualify.
            • Dedicated to fostering intellectual and personal growth since 1918.
            • Offers associate’s, bachelor’s, and master’s degree programs in business, health, education, and more.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            B.A. in Digital Design with an Emphasis in Web Design
            • Why Earn Your Degree from GCU?
            • Options: Choose from a variety of undergraduate and graduate degree programs in Business, Nursing, Psychology, Education & more!
            • Convenience: Complete courses online, on campus, or a combination of both!
            • Earlier Graduation: Our 4-credit courses allow you to complete your degree program in less time.
            • Transfer Friendly: We will request your transcripts, evaluate your graduate coursework, and determine your anticipated graduation date within 24 hours.
            • Quality: Grand Canyon University was founded in 1949 and is regionally accredited. Learn more today!
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            MA: Interdisciplinary Studies
            • Liberty University's online programs ranked in the top 5 of more than 2,100 online colleges and universities for academic quality, affordability, and accessibility*
            • 100% online programs at associate, bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral level**
            • No standardized testing if you meet admission requirements
            • Transfer up to 90 credits into an undergraduate degree program
            • Up to 50% of your master’s degree can be transferred in to help you get the most out of your hard work and maximize the credit you previously earned
            Show more [+]
            • Accredited
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Master of Arts in Psychology

            Pepperdine University offers its Master of Arts in Psychology program online, enabling students across the country to receive a Pepperdine graduate education without attending classes on campus. The online master’s in psychology program provides a comprehensive overview of psychology and allows students to develop the skills needed to assess personality and intelligence and treat mental and emotional disorders.

            To earn their degree, students attend weekly online classes taught by Pepperdine faculty with diverse clinical expertise, complete intensive online course work accessible through an online campus, and gain in-person experience volunteering at an agency near their community. The curriculum introduces a range of psychotherapy techniques and offers insight into topics such as multicultural counseling and career development.

            • Online Courses
            Psychology - BA
            • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor's Programs in 2014 by U.S. News & World Report.
            • Implements a one-to-one teaching model, partnering one student with one faculty member in each course.
            • 100% of faculty members hold doctoral degrees.
            • No physical residency requirements, allowing students to pursue their degree online.
            • Committed to innovation, diversity, excellence, and accountability since its founding in 1996.
            • Offers several programs in business, education, psychology, and more.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Master of Liberal Arts

            Founded in 1876, Johns Hopkins University, a top tier research university with campus locations in Maryland and Washington, DC, and online has been dedicated to educating its students and cultivating their capacity for life-long learning, to foster independent and original research, and to bring the benefits of discovery to the world.

            • Online Courses
            B.A. in Psychology
            • Ranked among the Best Online Bachelor’s Programs by U.S. News and World Report in 2015.
            • Founded in 1890, it has a campus in Waterbury, CT and offers online degree program in eight-week modules, six times a year.
            • About 800 students are enrolled at the main campus, and about half of them commute.
            • Online courses help make it possible for students to earn a bachelor’s degree in as little as 24 months and a master’s degree in 12-18 months.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Accelerated Programs
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Psychology (BA) (Online)
            • Designated as a 2015 Military Friendly® School by Victory Media, publishers of G.I. Jobs®.
            • Each program is designed to instill the knowledge, ethical values, and interpersonal skills of professional practice and to foster values of social responsibility.
            • Offers several flexible learning options, including a blended format that combines campus and online learning.
            • Several scholarship opportunities are available for students who qualify.
            • Features a competency-based MBA program that allows students to test out of subjects based on prior professional experience.
            Show more [+]
            • Online Courses
            • Flexible Scheduling
            • Financial Aid
            • Transferable Credits
            Masters in Social Work

            There is no more exciting time to be part of the renowned Tulane School of Social Work or of the intriguing city of New Orleans than at this moment. Fully accredited by the Council of Social Work Education and ranked in the top 20 schools of social work in the country, Tulane School of Social Work offers a "clinical-community" curriculum based on relationship-centered practice. 

            • Online Courses
            Master of Social Work (MSW) Degree

            Our Lady of the Lake University is a private, Catholic university with a deep connection to the history and community of San Antonio. Founded in 1895 by the Congregation of Divine Providence, we have developed a reputation for our personal teaching style. Since 2011, OLLU has been named to the President's Higher Education Community Service Honor Roll. We are a university that helps students develop their full potential in an environment that's encouraging and stimulating.

            Our online degree programs prepare professionals to provide leadership and make scholarly contributions to the advancement of knowledge in their fields, apply the most current information and technology to decision making and problem solving, work collaboratively, productively and ethically in culturally diverse settings, and contribute to the mission of the University by serving the needs of their communities.


            • Online Courses