Social work is a profession that helps individuals, families, and groups change behaviors, emotions, attitudes, relationships, and social conditions to restore and enhance their capacity to meet their personal and social needs.
Social workers are trained to provide a variety of services, ranging from psychotherapy to the administration of health and welfare programs. They work with human development and behavior, including the social, economic, and cultural systems in which people function.
The Licensed Clinical Social Worker may provide all social work services, including clinical services such as the diagnosis of mental, emotional, behavioral, developmental, and addictive disorders, the development of treatment plans, and the provision of psychotherapy.
The practice of licensed clinical social work and the use of the title "Licensed Clinical Social Worker" and the designation of "LCSW" requires licensure as a licensed clinical social worker, unless otherwise exempt under the law.
To meet the professional education requirement for licensure as an LCSW, you must present satisfactory evidence of having received a masters degree in social work, or its equivalent, through completion of a satisfactory graduate program in social work which includes two years of full-time study (at least 60 semester hours, or the equivalent). No more than half of the total hours for the program may be advanced standing credit granted for social work study at the baccalaureate level.
The clinical coursework must be offered by an acceptable two-year graduate social work program, such as one registered by the Department as licensure-qualifying for the LCSW. Coursework may be completed either as part of the M.S.W. degree program or after completion of the program to remedy deficiencies in clinical content. Continuing education is not acceptable for the graduate social work education.
In addition to the professional education requirement, every applicant for LCSW licensure or a limited permit must complete coursework or training in the identification and reporting of child abuse in accordance with Section 6507(3)(a) of the Education Law.
To meet the experience requirement for licensure as an LCSW, you must have completed 2000 client contact hours over a continuous period of at least 36 months (three years) and not to exceed 6 calendar years of supervised experience in diagnosis, psychotherapy and assessment-based treatment planning, as defined in Section 7704 of the Education Law after receipt of the Master of Social Work Degree.