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Working as a Psychiatric Social Worker

Psychiatric social worker's responsibilities and client populations will vary significantly depending on their work setting and the teams to which they are assigned at their place of employment. They sometimes work in inpatient hospital settings and complete many tasks to support patients suffering through mental health issues. This is a highly rewarding profession that also offers a range of employment opportunities.

The tasks and responsibilities that they fulfill in this capacity include, but are not limited to, attending to patients suffering complex and hard-to-manage conditions who are in deep emotional stress and/or could be a danger to themselves or others. Others include psychosocial and risk assessments, individualized and group psychotherapy, crisis intervention and support, care coordination, and discharge planning services. Psychiatric social workers are employed in a variety of settings, ranging from intensive inpatient wards to outpatient psychiatric clinics. Qualifications include graduate-level training in clinical social work methods. A master's degree in social work would be advantageous.

The average hourly salary for the position is $30.22, which amounts to $62,853 annually. The career is projected to grow substantially and create new opportunities all across the United States.

There is more than meets the eye when it comes to being a psychiatric social worker. For example, did you know that they make an average of $30.22 an hour? That's $62,853 a year!

Between 2018 and 2028, the career is expected to grow 11% and produce 81,200 job opportunities across the U.S.

What Does a Psychiatric Social Worker Do

There are certain skills that many psychiatric social workers have in order to accomplish their responsibilities. By taking a look through resumes, we were able to narrow down the most common skills for a person in this position. We discovered that a lot of resumes listed communication skills, emotional skills and interpersonal skills.

When it comes to the most important skills required to be a psychiatric social worker, we found that a lot of resumes listed 13.6% of psychiatric social workers included treatment plans, while 10.6% of resumes included crisis intervention, and 10.1% of resumes included mental health. Hard skills like these are helpful to have when it comes to performing essential job responsibilities.

When it comes to searching for a job, many search for a key term or phrase. Instead, it might be more helpful to search by industry, as you might be missing jobs that you never thought about in industries that you didn't even think offered positions related to the psychiatric social worker job title. But what industry to start with? Most psychiatric social workers actually find jobs in the health care and non profits industries.

How To Become a Psychiatric Social Worker

If you're interested in becoming a psychiatric social worker, one of the first things to consider is how much education you need. We've determined that 8.6% of psychiatric social workers have a bachelor's degree. In terms of higher education levels, we found that 82.2% of psychiatric social workers have master's degrees. Even though most psychiatric social workers have a college degree, it's impossible to become one with only a high school degree or GED.

Choosing the right major is always an important step when researching how to become a psychiatric social worker. When we researched the most common majors for a psychiatric social worker, we found that they most commonly earn master's degree degrees or bachelor's degree degrees. Other degrees that we often see on psychiatric social worker resumes include doctoral degree degrees or associate degree degrees.

You may find that experience in other jobs will help you become a psychiatric social worker. In fact, many psychiatric social worker jobs require experience in a role such as social worker. Meanwhile, many psychiatric social workers also have previous career experience in roles such as social work internship or internship.

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Average Salary$62,853
Job Growth Rate11%

Psychiatric Social Worker Career Paths

Top Careers Before Psychiatric Social Worker

Top Careers After Psychiatric Social Worker

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Average Salary for a Psychiatric Social Worker

Psychiatric Social Workers in America make an average salary of $62,853 per year or $30 per hour. The top 10 percent makes over $75,000 per year, while the bottom 10 percent under $52,000 per year.
Average Salary
$62,853

Best Paying Cities

City
Average Salary
Santa Cruz, CA
Salary Range75k - 112k$92k$92,234
Norwich, CT
Salary Range57k - 93k$73k$73,046
Salem, OR
Salary Range59k - 75k$67k$67,209
Olympia, WA
Salary Range59k - 73k$66k$66,495
Phoenix, AZ
Salary Range49k - 76k$61k$61,488
Portland, ME
Salary Range48k - 74k$60k$60,010
$36k
$112k

Recently Added Salaries

Job TitleCompanyCompanyStart DateSalary
Dshs WSH Psychiatric Social Worker
Dshs WSH Psychiatric Social Worker
Washington State
Washington State
01/07/2021
01/07/2021
$70,30801/07/2021
$70,308
Outpatient Therapist-Psychiatric Social Worker
Outpatient Therapist-Psychiatric Social Worker
Washington County, Wi
Washington County, Wi
12/28/2020
12/28/2020
$63,27012/28/2020
$63,270
Dshs WSH Psychiatric Social Worker
Dshs WSH Psychiatric Social Worker
Washington State
Washington State
12/22/2020
12/22/2020
$79,52412/22/2020
$79,524
Psychiatric Social Worker/Marriage & Family Therapist I/II (Open & Promotional)
Psychiatric Social Worker/Marriage & Family Therapist I/II (Open & Promotional)
The County of San Mateo
The County of San Mateo
12/22/2020
12/22/2020
$89,66912/22/2020
$89,669
Supervising Psychiatric Social Worker I, CF
Supervising Psychiatric Social Worker I, CF
California Prison Health Care System
California Prison Health Care System
12/04/2020
12/04/2020
$95,54412/04/2020
$95,544
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Psychiatric Social Worker Resumes

Designing and figuring out what to include on your resume can be tough, not to mention time-consuming. That's why we put together a guide that is designed to help you craft the perfect resume for becoming a Psychiatric Social Worker. If you're needing extra inspiration, take a look through our selection of templates that are specific to your job.

Learn How To Write a Psychiatric Social Worker Resume

At Zippia, we went through countless Psychiatric Social Worker resumes and compiled some information about how best to optimize them. Here are some suggestions based on what we found, divided by the individual sections of the resume itself.

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Psychiatric Social Worker Demographics

Gender

female

69.1 %

male

25.7 %

unknown

5.1 %

Ethnicity

White

65.8 %

Black or African American

17.4 %

Hispanic or Latino

11.3 %

Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

63.2 %

French

6.4 %

Chinese

4.8 %
See More Demographics

Psychiatric Social Worker Education

Majors

Degrees

Masters

82.2 %

Bachelors

8.6 %

Certificate

3.7 %

Top Colleges for Psychiatric Social Workers

1. University of Pennsylvania

Philadelphia, PA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,584
Enrollment
10,764

2. University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Chapel Hill, NC • Public

In-State Tuition
$8,987
Enrollment
18,946

3. University of Southern California

Los Angeles, CA • Private

In-State Tuition
$56,225
Enrollment
19,548

4. California State University - Long Beach

Long Beach, CA • Public

In-State Tuition
$6,798
Enrollment
31,503

5. Boston College

Chestnut Hill, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$55,464
Enrollment
9,639

6. San Diego State University

San Diego, CA • Public

In-State Tuition
$7,488
Enrollment
30,018

7. Florida State University

Tallahassee, FL • Public

In-State Tuition
$5,656
Enrollment
32,072

8. Hunter College of the City University of New York

New York, NY • Public

In-State Tuition
$7,182
Enrollment
16,205

9. Case Western Reserve University

Cleveland, OH • Private

In-State Tuition
$49,042
Enrollment
5,131

10. Boston University

Boston, MA • Private

In-State Tuition
$53,948
Enrollment
17,238
See More Education Info
Job type you want
Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Top Skills For a Psychiatric Social Worker

The skills section on your resume can be almost as important as the experience section, so you want it to be an accurate portrayal of what you can do. Luckily, we've found all of the skills you'll need so even if you don't have these skills yet, you know what you need to work on. Out of all the resumes we looked through, 13.6% of psychiatric social workers listed treatment plans on their resume, but soft skills such as communication skills and emotional skills are important as well.

Best States For a Psychiatric Social Worker

Some places are better than others when it comes to starting a career as a psychiatric social worker. The best states for people in this position are California, Nevada, Connecticut, and Oregon. Psychiatric social workers make the most in California with an average salary of $89,017. Whereas in Nevada and Connecticut, they would average $74,467 and $72,110, respectively. While psychiatric social workers would only make an average of $67,232 in Oregon, you would still make more there than in the rest of the country. We determined these as the best states based on job availability and pay. By finding the median salary, cost of living, and using the Bureau of Labor Statistics' Location Quotient, we narrowed down our list of states to these four.

1. Nevada

Total Psychiatric Social Worker Jobs:
100
Highest 10% Earn:
$109,000
Location Quotient:
1.79
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

2. California

Total Psychiatric Social Worker Jobs:
1,161
Highest 10% Earn:
$131,000
Location Quotient:
1.15
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here

3. Connecticut

Total Psychiatric Social Worker Jobs:
129
Highest 10% Earn:
$114,000
Location Quotient:
1.3
Location Quotient is a measure used by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) to determine how concentrated a certain industry is in a single state compared to the nation as a whole. You can read more about how BLS calculates location quotients here
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Top Psychiatric Social Worker Employers

1. Kaiser Permanente
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$59,732
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
36+
2. Los Angeles Unified School District
4.6
Avg. Salary: 
$56,618
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
16+
3. Arizona State Hospital
3.6
Avg. Salary: 
$66,486
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
14+
4. Westmed Medical Group
4.8
Avg. Salary: 
$57,205
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
14+
5. Puerto Rican Family Institute
3.4
Avg. Salary: 
$63,319
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
11+
6. Children's Health
4.7
Avg. Salary: 
$55,444
Psychiatric Social Workers Hired: 
10+

Psychiatric Social Worker Videos

Updated October 2, 2020