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Education beyond MSW


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Hi all. A bit of a backstory before I ask my question... I received my MSW in May 14 and was offered a F/T job since before graduation and have been at it ever since. I have had a lot of emotions throughout the year -- I have had a few clients pass away (one of which I found), a client who sent me pictures of his private parts, sexually voyeuristic clients, and much more. It's been a rollercoaster with very little agency support. I am pretty close to completely my LCSW hours and will be able to sit for my exam in not too long. 


I've been thinking about options and have considered getting a 2nd Masters or even getting my PhD. I'm flirting with both these ideas because I don't feel challenged, don't feel marketable, and love research. And I've recently (this month) been published with first authorship and I love it. The one thing holding me back from a PhD is the GRE as I am a horrific test taker but a phenomenal student.


Any advice?

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If the GRE is truly the only thing holding you back from applying for a PhD, then I say get some study materials and do your best. The GRE score is only one part of your application package. 

What would the 2nd masters be?

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I would argue that you need more of a reason to get a PhD than not feeling challenged or marketable where you are.  Entering a doctoral program is training in scholarship and research for a career in academia (though I suppose there are people who intend to do other work, though I haven't met many of them).  I've been in my program for 3 weeks, and it is extremely difficult.  The material is difficult and dense, the hours are long, the money is bad, the RA can be tedious, and I constantly feel confused and/or lost and/or inadequate.  What keeps me motivated is knowing that this is the career path I want and that I don't believe I would be happy doing something else.

So, I wouldn't choose a PhD unless you are certain you want to do academia or research as your career.  Just my advice.

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