people consulting

Profession: Social Worker

Qualification and registration requirements

Social workers are university qualified health professionals who complete an undergraduate or graduate entry course in social work.

A social worker must be eligible for full membership with the Australian Association of Social Workers (AASW).  There are currently no registration requirements.

What is a Social Worker?

The social work profession promotes social change, problem solving in human relationships and the empowerment and liberation of people to enhance wellbeing. (International Federation of Social Workers and International Association of Schools of Social Work in 2001).

Social Workers assist people to overcome a wide range of issues, including psychological, financial, health, relationship, substance abuse problems and life crises by providing counselling, support, information and referral.  Social workers use a holistic approach in their assessment and intervention with clients to enhance well-being.

The social work profession is based on the principles of human rights and social justice.

The study of social work consists of theories of human behaviour, sociology, psychology and social systems.

Social workers work in a variety of different settings including hospitals, community health centres, government and non-government agencies, management, private practice, research and training.

What does a Social Worker do?

Professional interventions performed include:

  • Psychosocial assessments
  • Counselling
  • Psychotherapy
  • Research
  • Advocacy
  • Case management
  • Problem solving
  • Group work
  • Referrals to appropriate services
  • Discharge planning
  • Community development
  • Health promotion
  • Policy development

Related links

For information on how to gain recognition of Allied Health qualifications obtained overseas, please contact the relevant professional association as per web links above.