A social work resume has some unique features specific to the field. For basic guidelines, refer to the general resume section.

  • Length

    1 page but no more than 2 pages.

  • Professional Interests

    Place at the beginning of your resume. It serves as a quick snapshot, and should be only 2-3 key points. Anything longer, and the reader could lose interest.

    Examples include:

    • Clinical social work with individuals dual diagnosed with mental illness and alcohol/drug addiction.
    • Create, facilitate, and lead group therapy sessions.
    • Macro social worker with an emphasis in program development and research methodology. Focus on children, adolescents, and families.
  • Describing Your Experience

    Use Action Verb phrases, Not Complete Sentences

    (See below for the list of social work related skills ). Omit personal pronouns and, “a,”, “an,” and “the” to achieve a concise style that will be easier and faster for employers to read.

    Use Keywords and Details Appropriate to Your Audience

    For Clinical Positions – emphasize your clinical skills.
    • Include details about your client population such as diagnoses or presenting issues, age (children vs. adults vs. older adults), ethnicity, and socioeconomic status.
    • Other details may include the number of clients seen individually or in groups, and the length of the type of treatment.
    For Macro-Level Positions
    Stress your experience in:
    • supervising others
    • program development
    • community organizing
    • fundraising
    • grant writing
    • teamwork
    • budget management.
    Include details such as the number of people you’ve supervised or amount of money raised.


    Know When It's Appropriate to Edit

    • For less relevant experience, list it towards the end of your resume.
    • In some cases, you can condense or even omit it.
    • Consult a career counselor for more direction

  • Social-Work Related Skills


    Clinical Work with:

    Individuals/Groups Families Couples
    Children/Teens Homeless Populations Aging Populations
    Ethnic Populations Victims of Domestic Violence Abused and Neglected Children
    Incarcerated Individuals Clients with Eating Disorders Clients with Development Disabilities
    Clients with Mental Disorders Cognitive Mapping Collaboration
    Community Organizing/Support Building Conducting Connecting
    Coordinating Counseling Court Reporting
    Crisis Intervention Diagnosis Discharge Planning
    Documenting Educating Evaluating
    Facilitating (workshops) Follow Up Fundraising
    Goal Setting Grant Writing Home visits
    Hospital Social Work Implementing Initiating Projects
    Interagency Liaison Job Designing Leading Others
    Listening (active) Lobbying Managing
    Marketing Mediating Mirroring
    Modeling Motivating Negotiating
    Neighborhood Development Persuading Personnel Recruitment and Selection
    Play Therapy Policy Development Presenting
    Program Design/Development/Management Public Relations Public Speaking
    Recruiting Referrals Reframing
    Reinforcing Research Reviewing
    School Social Work Supervising Structuring
    Summarizing Teaching Training
    Treatment Plans (Development of) Visual Imagery Writing