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Social Work

Social work requires a skilled, knowledgeable, creative approach to support and protect some of the most vulnerable people in society at all stages of their lives.

Our three year, full-time degree course in social work is approved by the regulatory body for the profession, the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and is endorsed by The College of Social Work (TCSW).

Why Social Work?

The teaching of social work is long-established at the university with taught sessions taking place on the main campus, centrally located in the historic, bustling city of Canterbury. Social work is one of the core professional pathways in the organisation of inter-professional learning. One module in each of the three years is undertaken with health and social care students in order to promote the goals of collaborative practice, preparing students for future work with a range of professionals.

Information for Applicants

What will I study?

The course is planned in accordance with the professional capabilities framework of The College of Social Work, designed to ensure that by the end of the degree students can practise effectively using a range of knowledge, a strong commitment to social justice, application of professional values and recognition of the diverse needs of members of society. Skills of assessment and intervention will be developed and taught throughout the course, in the classroom and through practice learning, comprising 30 skills days, 70 days practice placement in year 2 and 100 days practice placement in year 3. Placement experience includes work with at least two service user groups, e.g., children /young people and their families; people with mental health needs; vulnerable adults. Development of professionalism, the ability to apply critical reflection and analysis and the flexibility to work in changing contexts and organisations are key areas of achievement required for successful completion of the degree.

The knowledge base of the social work programme is organised around several themes: human growth and development, social policy and law, values and ethics, theories underpinning assessment and intervention and core knowledge relating to mental health, disability, substance misuse and safeguarding of children and adults. The social work team has developed successful relationships with regional-based practice educators and placement providers in order to offer students a wide range of placement opportunities to promote capability and confidence in developing and applying knowledge for effective practice.  

Learning and Teaching

Teaching in the university takes place in lectures, seminars, skills labs and tutorials, and you will also work with other students in small groups. In addition you will undertake individual study activities which will help you to learn and develop your understanding and promote self directedness. The Professional Development modules and tutorial sessions are geared towards supporting you with developing the skills for professional and academic learning. During your practice placements your learning will be supported and facilitated by practitioners in the practice settings, through a variety of learning opportunities and activities.


You will be assessed in the university in a number of ways, including presentations, essays, portfolios, an exam, case studies and reflective accounts. You will also be assessed in your practice placements, for example through observation, discussion, reflective writing, written work and feedback from service users and practitioners. All the assessments are designed to help you learning and assessment at university and in practice. Feedback is given in a supportive way to help you develop your knowledge and skills. All assessments are set in line with the Undergraduate Academic framework and IPL Scheme protocols. 

What can I do next?

On successful completion of the course students will be eligible to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). There are excellent employment opportunities for registered social workers. The programme is a generic course enabling graduates to work in a full range of settings - social services departments of local authorities, health and social care multi-professional teams and many services in the voluntary and independent sector providing community, day care and residential services.

Social work is an inspiring, challenging profession which requires commitment and resilience and brings many rewards for those who wish to make a difference. 

Fees and Bursaries

University tuition fees apply.

A non means-tested NHS bursary (£4575 per year in 2013-14) is available for students in years 2 and 3 of the degree, subject to eligibility requirements and bursary numbers agreed for the university by the Department of Health. (Please note that this information may be subject to change by the Department of Health and you are advised to seek current information at the time of your application) 

To find out about bursary entitlements for students studying Social Work programmes visit our Financial Information page.

> Faculty of Health and Social Care
> Department of Health, Wellbeing and Family

About the course

BA single honours


3 years full-time



Typical entry requirements

260 UCAS points including BCC at A2 Level, or equivalent (see here)

Additional entry requirements

GCSE English and Mathematics at grade C, or above, or an acceptable equivalent, are also required

How to apply


How will I be assessed?

Coursework, examination, continual assessment, presentations, practice assessment, case studies, critical incident analyses, portfolio of practice competence  


Telephone: +44 (0)1227 767700 Prospectus: +44 (0)1227 782900
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