Exploring Services: Human Services vs. Social Services
- A desire to serve humanity. This is the main motivation for all human services professionals. They seek to help others and must therefore have a deep respect for their fellow humans. This enables them to empathize with individuals from all walks of life and to treat them with dignity.
- A recognition of the value of human worth. Human services professionals should value all human life as important and be free of prejudice. They must put aside internal biases to provide equitable support.
- Integrity and honesty. A commitment to fair treatment for all requires integrity and honesty. Human services workers must also hold others accountable to high levels of integrity, for instance, when advocating for their clients’ rights and acting as intermediaries between their clients and gatekeepers.
- Commitment to social justice. The idea that all deserve equal treatment regardless of race, ethnicity, class, sex/gender, sexual orientation, and social standing is at the core of effective human services delivery. Actively pursuing nondiscrimination deepens human services workers’ awareness of those truly in need of help.
What Is Social Services?
- Oral and written communication skills. Social services providers must interact with individuals from diverse backgrounds. They may spend the morning working with homeless communities, for instance, and the afternoon speaking at a city council panel on helping chronically ill homeless populations.
- Ethics and values. Social services means working closely with other people. Boundaries must be set to maintain professionalism. Social services providers must always put their clients’ best interests first, and solid ethics ensures that they don’t take advantage of the vulnerable people they’re meant to assist.
- Organizational ability. Prioritization of work is critical to a social services provider’s job. Organizational skills help them manage multiple cases and clients at once. They must keep records in order and stay abreast of each client’s progress to determine how to best provide aid.
- Empathy. Social service providers are driven by empathy for their fellow human beings. This helps them to understand situations from their clients’ perspectives and to understand clients’ behavior without judgment. With this knowledge, they can figure out how to best provide support and resources.
Job Outlook: Human Services vs. Social Services
The Role of a B.A. in Sociology
- Social Class in Society. This course examines social theories related to inequality. It further considers what impacts class divisions in society and how these influence human behavior and attitudes.
- Mental Illness and Society. This course analyzes how mental illness impacts societal institutions. It studies various illnesses and their symptoms as well as methodologies that can address problems related to mental illness in society.
- Race, Ethnicity, and Crime. This course looks at race and ethnicity in the criminal justice system. It examines topics such as criminal victimization and offending and reoffending. The topics covered range from racial profiling to hate crimes and wrongful convictions.