+ Reply to Thread
Page 1 of 2 12 LastLast
Results 1 to 10 of 14
  1. #1
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,426
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked
    30
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 posts

    Default Difference between social worker and a counsellor

    So after many many years being a stay at home, my youngest is off to prep so now I'm thinking of what to do.
    I have been thinking a a social worker or counsellor. Eg the people like at lifeline.
    I'm definitely not smart enough for medical jobs like psychology.
    What's the main difference between social workers and counsellors.
    Where to study?

    I've never thought of this as a career. It happened as I was helping a friend go through a rough time in her life and she said I would be good at helping people emotionally. So it got me thinking 🤔

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Location
    Melbourne
    Posts
    3,708
    Thanks
    893
    Thanked
    2,784
    Reviews
    1
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    Quote Originally Posted by onelasttime View Post
    So after many many years being a stay at home, my youngest is off to prep so now I'm thinking of what to do.
    I have been thinking a a social worker or counsellor. Eg the people like at lifeline.
    I'm definitely not smart enough for medical jobs like psychology.
    What's the main difference between social workers and counsellors.
    Where to study?

    I've never thought of this as a career. It happened as I was helping a friend go through a rough time in her life and she said I would be good at helping people emotionally. So it got me thinking 🤔
    Social work is a uni degree, 4 years I think. Psychology isn't medical, it's allied health and also a uni degree, 3 years plus another 2 to be able to practise. Counselling depends on what you want. You can do a diploma in counseling through TAFE or something like a cert 4 in drug and alcohol counseling or youth work if you're interested in those areas specifically. Either way, you'll need a tertiary qualification and to get into either uni or TAFE you'll need to price your ability to study at tertiary level (usually a test known as the STAT unless you've studied in the last decade).

    Don't write psychology off. I did it as an undergraduate degree and while there's definitely some study of anatomy (the brain in the neuropsych unit) it's really mostly based around theory and the study of behaviour. There's a lot of statistics though which I found hard, but that's because I didn't study.

    I'm sure other hubbers will have more accurate info as well. This is just based on people I know who are counsellors, psychs and social workers.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    2,221
    Thanks
    2,062
    Thanked
    1,926
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    I've just started a Bachelor of Human Services through USQ. Its 3 years full time and is offered both on campus and online. To work as a social worker you need the degree, but to be a community services worker you can get a certificate level qualification. The difference is the level of responsibility and pay scale.

    To be a counsellor you need a degree level qual as well (so I've heard). But you can get entry level positions on the certificates. Again, difference in responsibility and pay.

    A good idea is to have a look on Seek at jobs that you'd like to do and see what qualification is that they ask for. Also, contact your local uni and ask to speak a career counsellor.

    Good luck!

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    590
    Thanks
    184
    Thanked
    376
    Reviews
    2
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 posts

    Default Difference between social worker and a counsellor

    To work as a psychologist you actually need a four year degree plus two years working under supervision or a masters degree, however I think they are phasing out the 4+2 pathway so you would have to get a masters qualification before you can practice. So six years study all up. I'm not 100% on this as I'm not a supervisor and don't work with other psychs under supervision so I'm not up to date on what's a happening there, but I have heard that's what will probably be happening in future.

    To work as a counsellor there's no specific qualification you need (although most jobs would generally require some kind of qualification to hire you) but there are a lot of certificate level courses you could do, either at TAFE or through another RTO.

    You could always look into volunteering for lifeline to see what the work is like before committing to a course? Info is here: https://www.lifeline.org.au/Support-...e/default.aspx
    They do provide training, although I'm not sure what their minimum requests are for volunteering. Says on the page to contact you local lifeline centre directly for more specific info.

  5. The Following User Says Thank You to besha For This Useful Post:

    PomPoms  (02-12-2015)

  6. #5
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    2,221
    Thanks
    2,062
    Thanked
    1,926
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    Quote Originally Posted by besha View Post
    To work as a counsellor there's no specific qualification you need (although most jobs would generally require some kind of qualification to hire you) but there are a lot of certificate level courses you could do, either at TAFE or through another RTO.
    Just on this point - my Mum is a counsellor. She started off by just doing a diploma of counselling, but then found it impossible to get a job actually doing counselling as they all requested a degree level qualification. She did volunteer work with charities while studying the diploma, so had some experience, but still couldn't get a job in the field until she had her degree.

    That was just her experience. But as mentioned earlier, having a look on Seek at the types of jobs you'd like to see what quals they want might give you a good idea of the type/level of study to do

  7. #6
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Posts
    2,612
    Thanks
    2,724
    Thanked
    864
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    Quote Originally Posted by besha View Post
    To work as a psychologist you actually need a four year degree plus two years working under supervision or a masters degree, however I think they are phasing out the 4+2 pathway so you would have to get a masters qualification before you can practice. So six years study all up. I'm not 100% on this as I'm not a supervisor and don't work with other psychs under supervision so I'm not up to date on what's a happening there, but I have heard that's what will probably be happening in future.

    To work as a counsellor there's no specific qualification you need (although most jobs would generally require some kind of qualification to hire you) but there are a lot of certificate level courses you could do, either at TAFE or through another RTO.

    You could always look into volunteering for lifeline to see what the work is like before committing to a course? Info is here: https://www.lifeline.org.au/Support-...e/default.aspx
    They do provide training, although I'm not sure what their minimum requests are for volunteering. Says on the page to contact you local lifeline centre directly for more specific info.
    I agree with this. I'm a 3rd year psych student and this is correct, and supervised positions that fulfill AHPRAs criteria seem to be an issue at the moment (I have heard).

    You can do a Bachelor of Counselling if you want to do a tertiary qualification.

    I'm considering doing a Masters in Social Work at the end of my degree and working as a social worker. If I could have had my time again I would have done a social work degree straight off. By the time I had realised this I was over half way through my current degree.

    To call yourself a counsellor....there are no minimum qualifications.
    To call yourself a social worker you have to have completed the relevant qualifications are and eligible to become a member of the Association of Australian Social Workers and provided you fulfill the criteria can apply for a medicare provider number.

  8. #7
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    2,221
    Thanks
    2,062
    Thanked
    1,926
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    Quote Originally Posted by PomPoms View Post
    I'm considering doing a Masters in Social Work at the end of my degree and working as a social worker. If I could have had my time again I would have done a social work degree straight off. By the time I had realised this I was over half way through my current degree.
    Sorry to hijack - can I ask why you have decided to become a social worker instead? Just asking as I've recently been thinking of changing my degree from human services to psychology...

  9. #8
    Join Date
    Oct 2005
    Posts
    1,426
    Thanks
    4
    Thanked
    30
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 posts
    Thank you for your help
    I was up last night looking online.
    I'm thinking counsellor or social worker.
    But I'm 36 yrs old and think I'm too late to study a Uni degree. I'll be 40 when I finish.
    I looked on seek and there are jobs for counsellors that need a tertiary degree so I presume the tafe course would be fine.
    But that hard part is every job is looking for a "experienced" person.
    I wouldn't have experience straight after the course

  10. #9
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    1,427
    Thanks
    497
    Thanked
    1,588
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 posts
    You are not too old 😊.

    Im a Social Worker and just finished supervising a final year student who was in her 40's, she was wonderful and will make a great practitioner. S/W is an area that attracts many nature age students.

    PP have already mentioned the difference between S/W and jobs titled counsellor, although obviously counselling is a major part of most S/W jobs.

    I think doing the Lifeline volunteer course and volunteering for a bit is a great way to see if that type of work is for you.

    Probably one thing to be aware of is the S/W degree involves 1000 hours of practicum. It's a big commitment that takes some juggling depending on what your other commitments are.

    Good Luck with your decision OP

  11. #10
    Join Date
    Apr 2015
    Posts
    2,221
    Thanks
    2,062
    Thanked
    1,926
    Reviews
    0
    Achievements:Topaz Star - 500 postsAmber Star - 2,000 posts
    You're not too old! My mum started her studies at 51!

    I'm just starting mine, part time so it take 6ish years, and I'm 34

    The best thing to do to gain experience is to volunteer while studying. Check out volunteer.org and there are heaps of positions for volunteering in youth centres, womens refuges, etc.

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to Frankenmum For This Useful Post:

    TheGooch  (03-12-2015)


 

Similar Threads

  1. what social media do you use? and how much?
    By BH-KatiesMum in forum General Chat
    Replies: 41
    Last Post: 23-03-2016, 12:28
  2. Any Social Workers out there?
    By bubbasmum in forum Hubbers who are studying
    Replies: 21
    Last Post: 11-08-2015, 12:06
  3. The problem with social
    By stroodle77 in forum General Parenting Tips, Advice & Chat
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 03-01-2015, 04:10

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
free weekly newsletters | sign up now!
who are these people who write great posts? meet our hubbub authors!
Learn how you can contribute to the hubbub!

reviews
learn how you can become a reviewer!

competitions

forum - chatting now
christmas gift guidesee all Red Stocking
Springfree Trampoline
Give the Ultimate Christmas Gift Springfree Trampoline
The World's Safest Trampoline™ is now also the world's first Smart Trampoline™. Sensors on the mat detect your every move and your jumps control fun, educational and active games on tablet. Secure the Ultimate Christmas Gift today!
sales & new stuffsee all
True Fairies
True Fairies is the first interactive website where children can engage and speak with a real fairy through the unique webcam fairy portal. Each session is tailored to the child, and is filled with enchantment and magic.
Visit website to find out more!
featured supporter
Wendys Music School
Wendy’s Music School. Experience, Quality and great service! For qualifying students we will get you playing or singing your favourite music in 90 days GUARANTEED! Book a free assessment online now!
gotcha
X

Pregnant for the first-time?

Not sure where to start? We can help!

Our Insider Programs for pregnancy first-timers will lead you step-by-step through the 14 Pregnancy Must Dos!