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Human Services

Human Services

Career Possibilities

Some possible jobs within this career area are:


Depending on your personal career path, you might need to get licensed to start work. Counselors, for example, need special training. There are also many professional organizations related to human services careers. While your degree might qualify you for employment, membership to a national association could give you the credentials you need to get promoted or advance your career. Some certifications related to human services careers include:
  • Bachelor's Degree
  • Master's Degree


Human services careers are steadfast in the job market. Human resource professionals help companies grow and also help to recruit talented workers. Non-profit organizations provide services to people in need or crisis. Whether it’s a guidance counselor in high school or a marriage counselor in adulthood, chances are good that we’ll encounter someone who devotes their life to a career in human services.


Human services careers follow traditional education patterns, which means that you could earn an associate’s degree in 2 years and a bachelor’s degree in 4 years. Your career, however, could need additional certification, licensing, or training. Consult a career counselor to make sure you’re doing all you need to start your career.

Human Services Degree Programs

The "human services" area of study encompasses a variety of fields, each of which touches the lives of members of the community. Human service workers are counselors, psychologists, social workers, non-profit workers, volunteer coordinators, sociologists, and human resources workers. If you like working with the public and get satisfaction from helping people, a career in the human services might be best for you.

Check out these basics if you are passionate about human services degrees and related careers:

How long does it take to complete a human services program?

The length of time it takes to complete a degree or certification program in the human services arena depends on your personal career track. For the most part, students who want to work in human services select either bachelor or Master's programs, which means they'll be in school for 4 years, and then 2 to 3 additional years for supplemental certification.

However, many human service workers enter the job market after receiving their 2-year associate's degree (AA). It's your choice how far you want to take your education and how advanced you want to start in your field.

Where could a degree in human services take me?

Human services careers may be ideal for people who like to work with, and help, other people. This means you could become an executive who works in human resources and develops recruiting plans to help your company grow, a child psychologist who counsels children through their parents' divorce, a non-profit worker who services the poor, or a social worker who helps at-risk youth.

Human services professionals select majors in fields such as psychology, sociology, social work, human resources, or counseling. Jobs may be plentiful, particularly in urban areas where there are more programs for people in need. You could find yourself working in a corporate office or in a neighborhood community center.

What types of human services degrees are available?

Human services is a very diverse and dynamic area of study, and students are fortunate that they can focus on many different degree programs. Many people who are interested in this field select a psychology major, and then specialize after graduation by getting certification or a master's degree. Some colleges and universities offer specialized programs in human resources, social work, or counseling.

Graduates of human services degree programs, many of them offered online, are specially trained for careers in social work, counseling, advocacy, rehabilitation, psychology, human relations, sociology, and more. The work is both challenging and rewarding.

Among the degree and credentialing programs offered for human services-related majors are:

  • Career-specific Licensing: Counselors and social workers often need special licensing from a state or local agency.
  • Associate's degree: This 2-year degree could teach you the basics in a human services field such as psychology.
  • Bachelor's degree: This 4-year degree gives students a broad education in a specialized area such as social work or human resources.
  • Master's degree: This 2- or 3-year supplemental degree lets students study intensively in a particular area. Many social workers earn master's degrees.
  • PhD: Intended for students who want to be an expert in their field, PhDs may potentially rise to the top of their companies or devote their lives to education.

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