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Five Great Reasons to Earn Your Doctor of Social Work

From career advancement to higher earning potential, a DSW degree offers several benefits for students wanting to improve their practice and learn new leadership skills.

Social workers are social change agents who improve lives and communities by responding to crisis situations, assessing needs, and helping people solve and manage problems—especially during difficult or stressful times.

In other words, they are some of society’s most valuable helpers.


While professional social workers need a bachelor’s or master’s degree in social work, many decide to continue their education by pursuing an online doctoral degree.

Here are five reasons to earn your Doctor of Social Work (DSW) degree:

  1. Career advancement – Armed with a DSW degree, you will become a leader in the field and an authoritative advocate for social justice. Walden University’s online Doctor of Social Work program prepares students for advanced practitioner roles, as well as high-level management jobs where they can create, launch, and assess social welfare programs and policies.
  2. Field specialization – DSW degree specializations can deepen your knowledge in a particular area and help you build a stronger foundation for a successful social work career. Walden University offers degree specializations to help meet your personal and professional goals, including Advanced Clinical Practice and Supervision, Impact Leadership in Social Work Administration, and Social Work Education.
  3. Academic residency – Many DSW programs offer academic residencies—face-to-face or virtual learning experiences that enhance students’ skill development, scholarship, and professional practice. At Walden University, the four-day DSW academic residency can improve students’ clinical work, critical thinking, research, and scholarly writing skills while presenting opportunities to network and socialize with peers and faculty members.
  4. Job security – Opportunities for social work professionals are expected to grow by 12% from 2020 to 2030—faster than the average for all other occupations.1 Prospects are especially good for clinical social workers compared to social workers who do not offer treatment services.1
  5. Higher earning potential – While social work salaries vary, students who earn a doctorate in social work can earn $20,000 to $25,000 more than students who earn a Master of Social Work (MSW) degree.2

Pursuing a Doctor of Social Work Degree at Walden University

At Walden University, an accredited online university, doctoral social work students can choose between an online PhD in Social Work or an online Doctor of Social Work (DSW) program. The Doctor of Social Work program is ideal for students wishing to pursue a professional career in the field and learn key leadership skills to improve their practice.

With a DSW degree, you can make a significant impact on public welfare in a range of settings, including schools, government agencies, and mental health organizations.

Walden University’s Doctor of Social Work (DSW) program allows you to expand your career options and earn your degree in a convenient, flexible format that fits your busy life.


Walden University is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission,