A degree in Mental and Social Health Services allows you to work closely with both children and adults to help them overcome difficult mental or emotion stress and maintain a healthy and happy life.
Mental and Social Health Services professionals work with patients to diagnose and treat mental illness, manage emotional disorders, deal with life stresses, and change behavioral issues. You will take classes in psychology, social work, substance abuse, public health, counseling, physiology, and human services to gain the skills to work with others and prepare to earn an advanced degree.
Some specific areas of this field that you may be interested in concentrating on are Addiction Counseling, Mental Health Services Technician, Clinical Social Work, Community Health Services, Marriage and Family Counseling, Clinical Pastoral Counseling, Psychoanalysis and Psychotherapy, and Genetic Counseling, among others.
Our 2023 Best Mental & Social Health Services Schools ranking analyzes 573 of these schools to determine the best overall colleges for mental and social health services students. Continue reading to check out one of our many unbiased rankings of mental health services programs later in this article.
Learn about start dates, transferring credits, availability of financial aid, and more by contacting the universities below.
A degree in Mental and Social Health Services leads to a career working with others, usually one on one. This places a strong emphasis on interpersonal communication, and listening skills. You must be able to listen to what patients are telling you in order to understand their stressors and help them. You must also be compassionate and understand patients may feel insecure, uncomfortable, or scared. Since you will have access to patient files along with the information they share, it is extremely important to be trustworthy and maintain patient-doctor confidentiality.
Graduates with a degree in this field have full time jobs working in hospitals, schools, doctors' offices, and with social services. Some professionals set their own hours, but keep night and weekend hours to accommodate patients' schedules.
In order to practice in the Mental and Social Health Services field, students must earn at least a master's degree, or in some cases, a Ph.D. or Psy.D. may be required along with state certification.
mental and social health services degree applicants generally need have finished high school or their GED. Many schools may also have GPA and SAT/ACT score minimums that must be met. Once you obtain your degree, additional mental health services certifications required to pursue a career in this field.
There are various different levels of mental health services degrees. Mental & Social Health Services programs offered by schools range from a to a , which is the highest mental health services degree you can get. Depending on the mental and social health services degree you choose, obtaining your diploma can take anwhere from 1 to 4+ years.
|Degree||Credit Requirements||Typical Program Length|
|Associate Degree||60-70 credits||2 years|
|Bachelor’s Degree||120 credits||4 years|
|Master’s Degree||50-70 credits||1-3 years|
|Doctorate||Program required coursework including thesis or dissertation||At least 4 years|
A master's degree is the most common level of education achieved by those in careers related to mental health services, with approximately 42.2% of workers getting one. People currently working in careers related to mental health services tend obtained the following education levels.
|Level of Education||Percentage of Workers|
|High School Diploma||9.0%|
|Associate’s Degree (or other 2-year degree)||6.7%|
This of course varies depending on which mental health services career you choose.
Mental and Social Health Services graduates work in a variety of locations from hospitals and medical clinics to social service offices. Depending on your specialization, you may work with adults, children and families with different types of mental and social disorders or issues. Graduates can find jobs in a multitude of locations, or can open their own practice and have their own patients.
Want a job when you graduate with your mental health services degree? Mental & Social Health Services careers are expected to grow 15.7% between 2016 and 2026.
The following options are some of the most in-demand careers related to mental and social health services.
|Occupation Name||Projected Jobs||Expected Growth|
|Healthcare Social Workers||212,000||20.1%|
|Mental Health Counselors||194,200||23.1%|
|Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists||168,500||14.2%|
|Substance Abuse Social Workers||147,900||19.4%|
Mental & Social Health Services graduates between 2017-2019 reported earning an average of $39,112 in the 2019-2020 timeframe. Earnings can range from as low as $14,576 to as high as $79,795. As you might expect, salaries for mental health services graduates vary depending on the level of education that was acquired.
Salaries for mental and social health services graduates can vary widely by the occupation you choose as well. The following table shows the top highest paying careers mental health services grads often go into.
|Occupation Name||Median Average Salary|
|Clinical, Counseling, and School Psychologists||$85,340|
|Social Work Professors||$77,520|
|Healthcare Social Workers||$58,470|
With over 1,960 different mental health services degree programs to choose from, finding the best fit for you can be a challenge. Fortunately you have come to the right place. We have analyzed all of these schools to come up with hundreds of unbiased mental health services school rankings to help you with this.
Learn about other programs related to Mental & Social Health Services that might interest you.
Mental & Social Health Services is one of 30 different types of Health Professions programs to choose from.
|Mental Health Counseling/Counselor||7,609|
|Substance Abuse/Addiction Counseling||5,433|
|Other Mental and Social Health Services and Allied Professions||4,069|
|Marriage and Family Therapy/Counseling||3,405|
|Psychiatric/Mental Health Services Technician||2,779|
|Related Major||Annual Graduates|
|Health & Medical Administrative Services||89,359|
|Allied Health & Medical Assisting Services||84,492|
|Practical Nursing & Nursing Assistants||84,274|
|Allied Health Professions||82,308|
More about our data sources and methodologies.