The programme will enable you to meet the requirements of the Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF) of The British Association of Social Work and the Knowledge and Skills Statements for Social Work which have been designed to ensure that by the end of the programme 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. The programme integrates theoretical and practice learning through modules, skills and practice placements. 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 course.
At the end of the programme both the part-time and full-time route will enable students to gain 180 credits in a range of subject areas alongside practice learning and skills development. This includes the 60 credit research project, an extended module which is introduced early within the programme and continues through the duration of the period of study. Students who do not complete this module may exit the programme with 120 credits, an award of a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work and eligibility to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).
Full-time students study four modules in their first year and three in their second year. The extended research module takes place throughout the two years. Students who do not complete this module may exit the programme with a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work which is an eligible award to apply for registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC).
Part-time students study four modules in Year One, two modules in Year Three and one module in Year Four. The extended research module is started in Year Two and undertaken over three years.
Foundations of Social Work Practice (20 credits)
Working with Individuals, Groups and Communities (10 credits)
Critical Perspectives in Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work (10 credits)
Developing a research proposal (20 credits)
Law, rights and ethics (20 credits)
Safeguarding (20 credits)
Developing critical practice (20 credits)
Dissertation module (40 credits)
Skills and Practice Learning
Skills of assessment and intervention will be developed and taught throughout the programme, in the classroom and through practice placements. Full time students will undertake 30 skills days over the two years of the programme, 70 days practice learning in Year One and 100 days practice learning in Year Two. Part-time students will undertake 30 skills days over the four years, 70 days of practice learning in Year Two, and 100 days across Years Three and Four. Placement experience includes work in at least two settings, working with a variety of service user needs, e.g., children, young people and families, people with mental health needs and vulnerable adults.
The Learning Experience
The Social Work team has developed successful relationships with regional practice based educators and placement providers in order to offer students a wide range of placement opportunities. Qualified practice educators support and assess students on placement to promote their capability and confidence in developing and applying knowledge for effective practice. Teaching of skills is provided through dedicated skills workshops, delivered by academic staff, service users and experienced practitioners.
Classroom teaching takes place through whole group lectures, seminars and small group work and is delivered using resources such as PowerPoint, audiovisual material and case studies. Skills workshops enable students to practice developing skills of assessment, communication and intervention, reviewing their development through learning tools such as video recorded work.
Embedded throughout the programme is a focus on the experiences of those who use services so that students can gain valuable understanding of the impact of distressing circumstances and professional responses on the lives of service users and their carers. Service users contribute to teaching and assessment throughout the programme and are part of the varied teaching and learning approaches of the programme. Core teaching is delivered by academics with substantial practice experience across a range of service user groups and who maintain their knowledge and expertise through research, writing for publication, consultancy and teaching experienced practitioners undertaking postqualifying courses.
Learning is assessed in a variety of ways including written assignments, group and individual presentations and completion of practice portfolios. Prior to starting their first placement, students are required to demonstrate their readiness for practice through shadowing an experienced social worker. In addition to structured teaching sessions, further learning activities are recommended: postgraduate study requires students to be selfdirected in their learning in order to deepen their knowledge and achieve a high level of critical thinking and reflection. There are a range of learning resources available including the substantial library facilities and webbased support.