Social Work

Prepare for an Alabama Social Work Career

Prepare for an Alabama Social Work Career
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Noodle Staff February 7, 2018

Looking to pursure a career in Social Work in Alabama? Noodle provides the information necessary to achieve your goals.

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Alabama Social Worker License

Every state has their own set of laws in order for people holding a degree in social work to become a licensed clinical social worker. Alabama’s licensure path is pretty straight forward and follows a lot of the same laws that many other states do.

One of the first things necessary is to take an exam to determine if you understand what being a social worker entails. This is a test that you must pay for on your own, and you can take it as many times as you want until you pass. If you pass the exam, the Board of Social Work assigns you a license number and after you have work hours under your belt, you are good to go! It seems easy, but can be a long road from school, studying, taking the test, and receiving your license.

There are different skill levels, and depending on your level of education, there are several paths you can take once you become a licensed social worker. There are also different kinds of licenses, from licenses for people holding bachelor degrees, to licenses for people who want to open their own private practice. If you are interested in finding out more about becoming a licensed social worker, you have come to the right place.

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Path to Alabama social work licensure

Obtain a Bachelor in Social Work

With a bachelor’s degree in social work from one of the accredited colleges in Alabama, you can become a generalist social worker. A generalist social worker is a person who specializes in human behavior. You can also begin your career as a caseworker or community project manager, but this is going to be supervised. You will have to gain experience in order to become unsupervised, and you will also need to work toward taking your exam for licensure. This is a good way to get your foot in the door with social work, but you may want to consider the opportunities that will open up for you if you decide to get your master’s degree.

Obtain a Masters in Social Work

With a master’s in social work, the career pool opens up quite a bit. You will begin your career as a generalist social worker, but you will also have training in areas that are more specific to the area that you want to work in. From child, family, and school social workers to military social workers, there is something for everyone in this career field. With a master’s degree, you are able to get licensed in the state of Alabama, you can become a licensed graduate social worker, or a licensed certified social worker, and you can even open up your own practice. Each licensure path takes time, effort, and has a slightly different outcome, but nevertheless, you will be on your way to a wonderful career.If you are interested in the steps to take in order to obtain licensure at a master’s level for a licensed graduate social worker, take a peek at what it takes under the bachelor’s degree licensure path. It’s almost the same, except you don’t have to undergo supervised work.

To obtain licensure as a licensed certified social worker, you will follow the same path as if you were obtaining licensure for a licensed graduate social worker. The only difference with a master’s degree is that you are able to open your own practice, which could be an incredible journey for many people!

Types of Alabama social work licensure

Licensed Bachelor Social Worker in Alabama

You must have a Bachelor’s in Social work from a CSWE-accredited school.

Application Process: You can apply to become a licensed bachelor social worker here. The fee for the LBSW is around $79, and then you must wait to find out if the Board of Social Workers accepts your application. If it does get accepted, you must then take the exam.

Requirements: You’ll have to register here and pay close to $250 dollars in order to take the exam. You’ll have to submit more paperwork after you receive the results of your exam, which includes the Supervision Statement Understanding for LBSW’s. After this, you will need to log hours of supervised work, 96 hours in total. After the 96 hours are up, you can now do unsupervised work, and you are licensed in the state of Alabama.

Examination: Exams are multiple choice, designed to measure competency in four different categories of practice. Throughout the test, there are 20 questions that are not scored, but the exam taker does not know which ones these are. They are pretest questions that determine their effectiveness for future exams. Exam takers are able to take the test with in the four-hour time frame, in order to schedule a time to take the test, you must head to this site.

Licensed Graduate Social Worker in Alabama

You must have completed a MSW from a BSWE-approved school, no supervised work experience is required for this licensure path.

Application Process: You can apply to become a Licensed Graduate Social Worker, which can be found here. The fee for the LGSW is around $79, and then you must wait to find out if the Board of Social Workers accepts your application. If it does get accepted, you must then take the exam.

Requirements: You’ll have to register and pay close to $250 dollars in order to take the exam. You have up to a year to complete the exam after you have registered.

Examination: Exams are multiple choice, designed to measure competency in four different categories of practice. Throughout the test, there are 20 questions that are not scored, but the exam taker does not know which ones these are. They are pretest questions that determine their effectiveness for future exams. Exam takers are able to take the test with in the four-hour time frame, in order to schedule a time to take the test, you must head to this site.

Licensed Certified Social Worker in Alabama

In order to become a licensed certified social worker, you must have a MSW, and also become a licensed graduate social worker. You will also have to have supervised work experience before you can become a LCSW.

Application Process: You can apply to become a Licensed Certified Social Worker, which can be found here. The fee for the LGSW is around $79, and then you must wait to find out if the Board of Social Workers accepts your application. If it does get accepted, you must then take the exam.

Requirements: You’ll have to register and pay close to $250 dollars in order to take the exam. You have up to a year to complete the exam after you have registered.

Examination: Exams are multiple choice, designed to measure competency in four different categories of practice. Throughout the test, there are 20 questions that are not scored, but the exam taker does not know which ones these are. They are pretest questions that determine their effectiveness for future exams. Exam takers are able to take the test with in the four-hour time frame, in order to schedule a time to take the test, you must head to this site.

Private Independent Practice Certification in Alabama

In order to obtain a private independent practice certification, you must have an active LCSW license.

Application Process: Go to this site in order to apply.

Requirements: You must have certain experience from the Board, this experience includes three years of full time, or five years of part time post-graduate experience after receiving your MSW, or one year experience after receiving your LCSW.

Examination: Exams are multiple choice, designed to measure competency in four different categories of practice. Throughout the test, there are 20 questions that are not scored, but the exam taker does not know which ones these are. They are pretest questions that determine their effectiveness for future exams. Exam takers are able to take the test with in the four-hour time frame, in order to schedule a time to take the test, you must head to.

Which states share social work licensure reciprocity with Alabama?

There are no states that currently have Social Work Licensure Reciprocity with Alabama; in fact, it’s hard to find a state that has one with any other state in the country. Unfortunately, if you move and want to become licensed in the new state that you live in, you are going to have to retake the exam for the state (Association of Social Work Boards, 2017). If you would like to see what steps to take in order to do this, check this website out.

Alabama Board of Social Work

In order to become license eligible in Alabama, all you have to do is make sure that you fill out the forms provided earlier and complete them on time. Once you receive confirmation that you have been approved, then you can start taking your exam. The exam is given five days a week, depending on the site in which you apply to take it. When test day comes, you will have four hours to take the test, and you will also have a year from the day that you receive your approved licensure to take the exam. Good luck!

Works Cited
Alabama State Board of Social Work Examiners. (2017). Licensing FAQ. Retrieved January 28, 2018, from https://socialwork.alabama.gov/licensees/frequently-asked-questions/

Association of Social Work Boards. (2017). Which states have reciprocity? Retrieved from https://www.aswb.org/licenses/how-to-get-a-license/getting-licensed-in-another-state-or-province/
Social Work Guide. (2018).

Social Work License Requirements in Alabama. Retrieved February 8, 2018 from https://socialwork.alabama.gov/

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Tom Meltzer spent over 20 years writing and teaching for The Princeton Review, where he was lead author of the company's popular guide to colleges, before joining Noodle.

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