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.

Closed to further applications for September 2022 entry.

Overview

Course length: 2 years full-time
Start dates: September 2022
September 2023
Location: Edge Hill University
Subject(s): Social Work
Department: Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine
Students sit behind a desk and engage in a group discussion during a seminar in the Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine.

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.

Social Work England logo.
Cheshire & Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership logo.

Course features

  • Professional Accreditation

  • 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
  • safeguarding
  • 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

Dissertation

Placement 1

Placement 2

Research and Practice

Social Work Law and Policy

Social Work Theory and Methods

Specialist Social Work Practice with Adults

Specialist Social Work Practice with Children, Young People, Families and Carers

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.

You can expect to receive your timetable at enrolment. Please note that while we make every effort to ensure that timetables are as student-friendly as possible, scheduled teaching can take place on any day or evening of the week.

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.

Entry criteria

Entry requirements

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.

If you accept an offer from Edge Hill University, you will be required to complete a medical questionnaire. In exceptional circumstances you may need to have a medical examination in order to establish your medical fitness to enter the social work profession. Medical fitness to practice is a mandatory requirement for registration with Social Work England.

Upon accepting an offer of a place, you will also be required to apply 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’.

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 or one band lower, either overall or in one or two elements, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

How to apply

There is an online application process for this course.

Applications for September 2023 entry will open later this year.

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.

Did you know?

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

Facilities

Faculty of Health, Social Care and MedicineThe Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine offers some of the best facilities for the education and training of health and social care professionals in the country.

The outstanding 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

Finance

Tuition fees

UK Full-Time

£6,500

a year

International

£13,500

a year

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.

Financial support

If you are joining MA Social Work in academic year 2022/23, you may be eligible to apply for a Social Work Bursary with a non-income assessed element worth £3,362.50 a year, including an annual placement allowance of £862.50, as well as an income assessed element worth up to £2,721 a year (pro rata for part-time students), and a maximum contribution towards your tuition fees of £4,052 a year. Residency conditions and additional eligibility criteria apply. You should be aware that while all eligible students can expect to receive the placement allowance, universities are allocated a certain number of Social Work Bursary awards and will nominate some of their students to receive one. Receipt of a Social Work Bursary is therefore not guaranteed and there is no right of appeal. You may also be entitled to additional allowances. Please note, if you are awarded a Social Work Bursary, you may no longer be eligible to receive a Postgraduate Loan and will also not qualify for alumni fee remission. 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 should 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 be eligible to apply for registration with Social Work England. Our strong connections with employers and the Cheshire and Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership means you’ll be fully prepared for social work practice when you graduate. Pick from a range of career options working with children, adults and communities in the statutory, voluntary, private and charitable sectors.

It’s up to you whether you decide to specialise or switch roles within a certain area. Perhaps you’ll start in child protection then change to fostering and adoption. Or you could see what it’s like working in different sectors to see what suits you.

See yourself as a future leader? Progressing to an advanced practitioner is a great opportunity for social workers who want to manage their own team.

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.

Course changes

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

Download our course leaflet