Mental & Social Health Services
Types of Degrees Mental & Social Health Services Majors Are Getting
The following table lists how many mental and social health services graduations there were in 2018-2019 for each degree level.
|Education Level||Number of Grads|
What Mental & Social Health Services Majors Need to Know
O*NET surveyed people in occupations related to mental health services and asked them what knowledge areas, skills, and abilities were important for their jobs. The responses were rated on a scale of 1 to 5 with 5 being most important.
Knowledge Areas for Mental Health Services Majors
Mental Health Services majors often go into careers in which the following knowledge areas are important:
- Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
- Therapy and Counseling - Knowledge of principles, methods, and procedures for diagnosis, treatment, and rehabilitation of physical and mental dysfunctions, and for career counseling and guidance.
- English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
- Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
- Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Skills for Mental Health Services Majors
When studying mental health services, you’ll learn many skills that will help you be successful in a wide range of jobs - even those that do not require a degree in the field. The following is a list of some of the most common skills needed for careers associated with this major:
- Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
- Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.
- Social Perceptiveness - Being aware of others’ reactions and understanding why they react as they do.
- Reading Comprehension - Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.
- Critical Thinking - Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.
Abilities for Mental Health Services Majors
A major in mental health services will prepare for your careers in which the following abilities are important:
- Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
- Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
- Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
- Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
- Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
What Can You Do With a Mental & Social Health Services Major?
People with a mental health services degree often go into the following careers:
|Job Title||Job Growth Rate||Median Salary|
|Community Health Workers||17.9%||$39,540|
|Healthcare Social Workers||20.1%||$56,200|
|Marriage and Family Therapists||23.4%||$50,090|
|Mental Health and Substance Abuse Social Workers||19.4%||$44,840|
|Mental Health Counselors||23.1%||NA|
|Social Work Professors||9.4%||$68,300|
|Substance Abuse and Behavioral Disorder Counselors||23.2%||NA|
Who Is Getting a Master’s Degree in Mental & Social Health Services?
At the countrywide level, the racial-ethnic distribution of mental health services majors is as follows:
|Race/Ethnicity||Number of Grads|
|Black or African American||2,350|
|Hispanic or Latino||1,871|
Students from other countries are interested in Mental Health Services, too. About 1.9% of those with this major are international students. The most popular countries for students from outside the country are:
- Saudi Arabia
- South Korea
How Much Do Mental & Social Health Services Majors Make?
Master’s Degree Starting Salary
The median starting salary of students who graduated in 2015-2017 with a master’s degree in mental health services was $40,100 per year. These stats come from the U.S. Department of Education. During this timeframe, most salaries fell between $37,150 (25th percentile) and $42,475 (75th percentile).
It’s important to note that just because the people reporting these salaries have a degree in mental health services, it does not mean that they are working in a job related to their degree.
Salaries According to BLS
Mental Health Services majors often go into careers where salaries can range from $47,740 to $77,520 (25th to 75th percentile). This range includes all degree levels, so you may expect those with a more advanced degree to make more while those with less advanced degrees will typically make less.
To put that into context, according to BLS data from the first quarter of 2020, the typical high school graduate makes between $30,000 and $57,900 a year (25th through 75th percentile). The average person with a bachelor’s degree (any field) makes between $45,600 and $99,000. Advanced degree holders make the most with salaries between $55,600 and $125,400.
Amount of Education Required for Careers Related to Mental & Social Health Services
Some degrees associated with mental health services may require an advanced degree, while others may not even require a bachelor’s in the field. Whatever the case may be, pursuing more education usually means that more career options will be available to you.
Find out what the typical degree level is for mental health services careers below.
|Education Level||Percentage of Workers|
|Less than a High School Diploma||0.1%|
|High School Diploma - or the equivalent (for example, GED)||9.0%|
|Post-Secondary Certificate - awarded for training completed after high school (for example, in agriculture or natural resources, computer services, personal or culinary services, engineering technologies, healthcare, construction trades, mechanic and repair technologies, or precision production)||0.9%|
|Some College Courses||2.3%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||6.7%|
|Post-Baccalaureate Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Baccalaureate degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees carrying the title of Master.||2.2%|
|Post-Master’s Certificate - awarded for completion of an organized program of study; designed for people who have completed a Master’s degree but do not meet the requirements of academic degrees at the doctoral level.||4.1%|
|First Professional Degree - awarded for completion of a program that: requires at least 2 years of college work before entrance into the program, includes a total of at least 6 academic years of work to complete, and provides all remaining academic requirements to begin practice in a profession.||2.3%|
Online Mental & Social Health Services Programs
In 2018-2019, 882 schools offered a mental health services program of some type. The following table lists the number of programs by degree level, along with how many schools offered online courses in the field.
|Degree Level||Colleges Offering Programs||Colleges Offering Online Classes|
|Certificate (Less Than 1 Year)||281||35|
|Certificate (1-2 years)||221||24|
|Certificate (2-4 Years)||5||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Research)||49||9|
|Doctor’s Degree (Professional Practice)||12||0|
|Doctor’s Degree (Other)||0||0|
Is a Degree in Mental & Social Health Services Worth It?
The median salary for a mental health services grad is $54,150 per year. This is based on the weighted average of the most common careers associated with the major.
This is 36% more than the average salary for an individual holding a high school degree. This adds up to a gain of about $285,000 after 20 years!
Explore Major by State
Majors Related to Mental & Social Health Services
You may also be interested in one of the following majors related to mental health services.
- College Factual
- College Scorecard
- National Center for Education Statistics
- O*NET Online
- U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
- Usual Weekly Earnings of Wage and Salary Workers First Quarter 2020
More about our data sources and methodologies.
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