Social Work MA
Develop the confidence and competence to challenge inequality and safeguard the most vulnerable in society. Joining us, you’ll prepare to work in this rewarding profession and gain eligibility to register as a qualified social worker with Social Work England.
Ready to change lives for the better? If you’re a graduate from a relevant discipline and want to commit to a career in social work, this course is the perfect match for you.
Our MA Social Work degree, delivered with support from our partners in the Cheshire & Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership, combines perspectives from social care, health, education and other relevant disciplines.
Benefit from hands-on experience in work placements. Make the most of the knowledge and experience of academics, practitioners, employers, policy makers, service users and carers. Their backgrounds are in social care, social work, health education and other disciplines, so they have a lot to teach you.
Our social work course is approved by Social Work England (SWE). This means on successful completion of this course you’ll gain eligibility to apply for registration with SWE as a qualified social worker.
Professional practice placements
What you'll study
Our MA Social Work degree is underpinned by the national requirements for social work education and training as agreed by Social Work England and The College of Social Work. Studying with us, you’ll develop skills and expertise in:
- human growth, development, mental health and disability
- assessment, planning, intervention and review
- communication skills with children, adults and those with specific communication needs
- social work law and policy
- partnership-working and information-sharing across professional disciplines and agencies
- working with conflict
In Year 1, you’ll examine the historical and contemporary functions of social work in society. You’ll consider the legal and social policy frameworks within social work practice. At the same time, we’ll help you sharpen your communication and interviewing skills. When you successfully complete an assessment exercise, you’ll complete a practice placement.
Year 2 is designed to develop your competency to practice in specialist social work contexts and to build on your research skills. You’ll have the opportunity to do another practice placement and complete a dissertation.
We expect you to take control of your studies with extra reading and research outside lectures and tutorials. There is plenty of extra support available for developing your academic skills too.
Throughout the course, you’ll also take part in skill-based days to support your professional development and prepare you for your future in this field.
Compulsory modules:Expand all
Contemporary Social Work Practice
Module code: SWP4000
Module code: SWP4009
Module code: SWP4007
Module code: SWP4008
Research and Practice
Module code: SWP4001
Social Work Law and Policy
Module code: SWP4005
Social Work Theory and Methods
Module code: SWP4003
Specialist Social Work Practice with Adults
Module code: SWP4004
Specialist Social Work Practice with Children, Young People, Families and Carers
Module code: SWP4002
How you'll study
Academic-based learning will be delivered through lectures, tutorials, seminars and workshops.
You will spend 170 days in practice learning placements supported by 30 days of assessed social work practice skills across the programme. These placements are organised and monitored by the University. You will be responsible for travel and parking costs while on placement, where you will also undertake supervised and assessed work, all of which will contribute to the outcome of your degree.
As practice education is arranged in collaboration with the Cheshire and Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership, most placements will be drawn from the partnership’s geographical footprint across Greater Merseyside, Cheshire West and Chester, and West Lancashire.
How you'll be assessed
The programme is assessed through a combination of essays, presentations, text analysis, group work, portfolios, carers’ assessments, video/audio diaries, role plays and examinations. Practice learning will also be assessed, using a range of techniques.
Who will be teaching you
Social work education at Edge Hill University is provided in collaboration with the Cheshire and Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership. The teaching partnership comprises of four universities, eight local authorities, two community NHS trusts and one voluntary sector organisation.
You can expect input from staff with expertise and knowledge of a range of health and social services settings, together with high quality and emergent research profiles. Contributors to the programme also include people who have direct experience of services, expert practitioners, magistrates, politicians, senior managers and policy makers.
You should have a degree equivalent to UK first-class or upper second-class honours (2:1 or above) in a relevant subject, such as social sciences, psychology, criminology, or health and social care. GCSE English Language at Grade C or Grade 4 or above (or equivalent) is also required.
You must have relevant paid or voluntary work experience and be able to relate this to the skills and values of social work. An interview, written exercise and group-based task form part of the selection process.
Social work is a regulated profession and you will be required to adhere to the standards set out by the regulator regarding Conduct & Ethics and Health & Character, while also adhering to other codes of professional conduct.
If you accept an offer of a place from Edge Hill University, you will be required to complete a Declaration of Suitability for Social Work. This is a Social Work England requirement where you must demonstrate fitness to practise in relation to your conduct, health and character. It includes applying for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure indicating that you meet the mandatory criteria of ‘Clearance to Work with Children and/or Vulnerable Adults’. Further information will be sent to you after you have firmly accepted an offer.
English language requirements
International students require IELTS 7.0, with a score no lower than 6.5 in each individual component, or an equivalent English language qualification.
If your current level of English is half a band lower, either overall or in one or two elements, our Pre-Sessional English course might be for you.
How to apply
There is an online application process for this course.
Please choose the application form for your preferred intake date and mode of study.
Please see our international student pages for further information about how to apply as a prospective international student.
Should you accept an offer of a place to study with us and formally enrol as a student, you will be subject to the provisions of the regulations, rules, codes, conditions and policies which apply to our students. These are available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/studentterms.
If you join a full time undergraduate degree at Edge Hill University, we will guarantee you the offer of a room in our halls of residence for the first year of your course.Discover our accommodation
The Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine offers outstanding facilities for the education and training of health and social care professionals.
The contemporary teaching and learning resources include leading edge clinical skills facilities, an 860-seat lecture theatre, and a variety of teaching rooms and social learning spaces.
Where you'll study
Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine
Tuition fees for students joining this course in academic year 2023/24 are still to be announced. We will update this information as soon as it is available.
EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.
Please view the relevant Money Matters guide for comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining postgraduate courses at Edge Hill University.
EU/EEA and Swiss students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals can ordinarily apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI). If you are an EU student who does not have settled or pre-settled status, or are an international student from a non-EU country, please see our international student finance pages.
Your future career
On successful completion of our Masters in Social Work, you’ll also be eligible to apply for registration with Social Work England. Our strong connections with employers and partners, who contribute to the delivery of our course, means you’ll be fully prepared for social work practice when you graduate. There’s no wonder that 100% of our social work students are in employment or further study 15 months after graduation (Graduate Outcomes 2019/20).
Once you graduate, you’ll have the flexibility to choose from a variety of social work fields to begin your career. This could be working with children, adults and communities in the statutory, voluntary, private and charitable sectors both nationally and internationally. It’s up to you whether you decide to specialise in one area or try your hand in different areas of social work. Perhaps you’ll start in child protection then change to adult social work, learning difficulties, or even social justice.
As social work is a regulated profession, you’ll be expected to adhere to the standards set out by the professional regulator, as well as other profession-specific organisations and agencies, such as the British Association of Social Workers.
Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of this information, however our courses are subject to ongoing review and development. Changing circumstances may necessitate alteration to, or the cancellation of, courses.
Changes may be necessary to comply with the requirements of professional bodies, revisions to subject benchmarks statements, to keep courses updated and contemporary, or as a result of student feedback. We reserve the right to make variations if we consider such action to be necessary or in the best interests of students.
Track changes to this course
Clarification of Entry Requirements - 31 October 2022
Information updated about medical fitness and DBS Enhanced Disclosure to highlight the need to complete a Declaration of Suitability for Social Work if you are offered a place. This is a Social Work England requirement where you must demonstrate fitness to practise through good health and good character. It includes applying for a Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) Enhanced Disclosure indicating that you meet the mandatory criteria of ‘Clearance to Work with Children and/or Vulnerable Adults’. Further information will be sent to all applicants who firmly accept an offer.