Students sit in a circle around a lecturer who is kneeling on the floor making notes on a flip chart.

BA (Hons) Social Work

Gain eligibility to register as a qualified social worker with Social Work England as you discover how to support and promote the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities.

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    Overview

    Covid-19 - Social Work Essential Information

    View essential information and videos about the changes to teaching and learning and campus facilities from September 2020

    UCAS Code: L500
    Course Length: 3 Years Full-Time
    Start Dates: September 2021
    Subjects: Social Work
    Location: Edge Hill University
    Example Offers: BBB (A Level) or DDM (BTEC)
    View full entry criteria

    Cheshire & Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership logo

    A career in social work is demanding, but hugely rewarding. Delivered alongside our partners in the Cheshire & Merseyside Social Work Teaching Partnership, this degree provides the knowledge, skills and expertise to practice successfully in any field of social work, whether with children and families or in the varied field of adult social work, including mental health. It highlights the importance of interaction with a range of agencies to ensure graduates can work effectively in the multidisciplinary environment of contemporary social work and emphasises the application of theory in real-world settings. You will develop the values and skills required to engage meaningfully with the realities of contemporary social work and be taught by staff with extensive experience of professional practice. Upon graduation you will be eligible to apply for registration with Social Work England.

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    In Depth

    What will I study?

    The programme is underpinned by Social Work England’s standards for social work education and training and by reference to the British Association of Social Work’s Code of Ethics and other requirements. The degree requires you to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of a range of issues including:

    • Psychosocial perspectives on human growth and development;
    • The relevance of law and policy and the interface with professional practice;
    • Working with children, young people and their families;
    • Working with vulnerable adults, their families and carers;
    • The importance of effective assessment, planning, intervention and review;
    • Communication skills with children, adults and those with particular communication needs;
    • The importance and challenges of inter-professional practice;
    • The importance of research in the context of professional practice.

    In Year 1 you will examine the historical and contemporary function of social work in society and consider the legal and social policy frameworks that inform social work practice. You will be introduced to a range of sociological and psychological theories and the social policy background to understand some of the social problems and issues individuals, families and communities face, including those relating to social exclusion. There is an emphasis on core social work skills and methods and you will need to demonstrate you meet the required standards for practice.

    Year 2 of the programme will help you to develop your competency to practice in a range of social work settings and contexts, focusing on children and their families, mental health and work with vulnerable adults. You will look at the importance of thinking creatively and critically about social work while undertaking a 70-day practice learning placement. You will also undertake study relating to social research and methods of inquiry.

    During Year 3 you will undertake 100 days of practice learning and have the opportunity to further develop your knowledge and skills in relation to practice with children and/or adults and write a dissertation on a relevant topic of your choice.

    Across the three years of study, you will also undertake 30 skills development days which take place within the university and focus upon skills for practice.

    How will I study?

    Academic-based learning will be delivered through lectures, tutorials, seminars and workshops.

    The programme incorporates a minimum of 200 days of practice-based learning, including at least 170 days spent on placements and an additional 30 skills development days on campus.

    All placements are organised and monitored by the University, with both academic work and practice placements contributing to the overall outcome of your degree. You will be responsible for travel and parking costs while on placement.

    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 will I be assessed?

    The programme utilises a range of assessment methods which emulate the demands of real-life practice. These include writing essays and reports, delivering presentations, undertaking text analysis, working in small groups/teams, preparing a portfolio of evidence, completing assessment documents, using video/audio diaries, engaging in role plays and sitting exams. Appropriately registered and qualified professionals, in conjunction with university staff, assess your practice learning.

    Who will be teaching me?

    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 social work, social care and interprofessional interventions, perspectives and settings. Contributors to the programme also include people who have direct experience of services, experienced and expert practitioners, service users and carers, senior managers and policy makers.

    A Great Study Environment

    A Social Work student speaks to a tutor in a classroom.The Faculty of Health, Social Care and Medicine is one of the leading providers of education and training for health and social care professionals in the North West of England.

    Offering some of the best facilities for health, social care and medicine students 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.

    Edge Hill University has excellent relationships with a range of stakeholders and agencies in the statutory, voluntary, independent and private sector, as well as with NHS hospital and community trusts, enabling us to offer a wide range of practice-based learning opportunities in Merseyside, Cheshire and Lancashire.

    The faculty is home to a thriving research culture which includes a series of staff and student conference programmes, guest lectures and seminars, as well as active research groups.

    Modules

    Expand All

    Year 1

    SWP1015Life Course Development (20 credits)

    Life Course Development enables you to consider the implications for social work as it engages with people across the life course. The module offers an overview of human growth and development and its application when working to support individuals, families, groups and communities. The need to develop an understanding of human growth and development, which encompasses the whole life course, is a central element of student social work education and practice. This module provides you with the notion of a life course, rather than perceiving ‘stages’ of life as unconnected to what has gone before and what is yet to come.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP1016Social Work Law, Policy and Practice (20 credits)

    Social Work Law, Policy and Practice introduces you to the legal and social policy frameworks within which social work practice is located. The module allows you to examine some of the tensions and contradictions in the relationship between social work, the law and social policy. It also provides you with opportunities to engage with the impact of statutes, judicial decisions and policy frameworks.


    Assessment: Written Exam(s): 60%, Practical(s): 40%.

    SWP1019Theory and Methods (30 credits)

    Theory and Methods examines a range of theories, methods, approaches and concepts central to social work in order to equip you with the foundational knowledge, skills and values necessary to provide an effective social work service to individuals, families, carers, groups and communities.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP1020Engagement, Relationships and Interaction in Professional Practice (30 credits)

    Engagement, Relationships and Interaction in Professional Practice recognises that an ability to build and sustain relationships through effective communication, engagement and interaction within the complexity and diversity of the practice environment is integral to professional development. This module is designed to help you develop the capacity to critically explore the notion that communication is interactive and always takes place within a relationship, but that communication shapes and is shaped by context. The module will enable you to explore not only the context of practice, and the role of communication in this, but also the need to develop a sense of awareness in the application of knowledge, skills and values when engaging and interacting with service users/carers and other professionals.


    Assessment: Coursework: 50%, Practical(s): 50%.

    SWP1021Social Work and Society (20 credits)

    Social Work and Society introduces you to social work as a concept and as a contested activity and locates it within both historical and contemporary frameworks. Core sociological and psychological concepts underpinning the practice of social work are discussed as a means of providing both theoretical and conceptual frameworks within which to locate practice. You will develop knowledge and understanding of the settings and contexts within which practice takes place and explore the relevance and impact of sociological and psychological constructs. The module introduces you to issues relating to social justice, anti-discriminatory and anti-oppressive practice, the importance of values and ethics, the nature of society and the range of practices undertaken by social workers and other professionals in identifying and responding to social need. You will also consider some of the dilemmas and conflicts inherent within these areas.


    Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Practical(s): 40%.

    In addition to the above modules, you will undertake 15 mandatory skills development days during Year 1. These skills development days are a professional/regulatory body training requirement which must be successfully completed in order to progress to Year 2.

    Year 2

    SWP2018Social Research and Methods of Inquiry (20 credits)

    Social Research and Methods of Inquiry enables you to develop and demonstrate research-mindedness and evidence-based knowledge relevant to current social work practice. The module will enhance your awareness of the relevance of research to practice. You will learn how to develop a research proposal, conduct and critique research, and implement, review and write-up a research project. Relevant paradigmatic considerations, design considerations and ethical issues will also be examined.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP2023Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Children, Young People and Families (30 credits)

    Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Children, Young People and Families provides you with the opportunity to develop a foundational subject-specific knowledge and a range of critical abilities to be able to deal confidently and effectively with the complexities of multi-agency practice with children, young people and their families. You will develop a holistic approach to understanding, analysis and practice through the exploration of a range of topic areas pertinent to working with this diverse group. In doing so, you will consider the range of ethical and other dilemmas faced by practitioners operating within this arena, often characterised by uncertainty and risk. A case-study approach will be used throughout the module as a means of enabling you to work with ‘real-life’ scenarios, supplemented with small group activities, role-play and problem-based learning.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP2024Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Adults (30 credits)

    Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Adults provides you with the opportunity to develop a foundational subject specific knowledge and a range of critical abilities to be able to deal confidently and competently with the complexities of multi-agency practice with adults. You will develop a holistic approach to understanding, analysis and practice via the exploration of a range of topic areas pertinent to working with this diverse group. In doing so, you will consider the range of ethical and other dilemmas faced by practitioners operating within this arena, often characterised by uncertainty and risk. A case-study approach will be used throughout the module as a means of enabling you to work with ‘real-life’ scenarios, supplemented with small group activities, role-play and problem-based learning.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP2025Practice Learning 1: Applying Theory, Methods and Research (20 credits)

    Practice Learning 1: Applying Theory, Methods and Research takes place in an external agency (statutory or private, voluntary and independent sector). The placement is full-time over 70 days and allows you to apply your learning in direct practice, under the supervision of a Practice Educator who will support your learning and development.


    Assessment: Practical(s): 100%.

    SWP2026Practice Critique (20 credits)

    Practice Critique recognises that social workers need to be able to provide credible, critical and reflective analyses of the practice, performance and conduct of both themselves and others. This module is linked to your first practice placement and enables you to reflect on your personal and professional development and evidence your learning, including direct observations of your practice and critical analyses of practice. You will evaluate and analyse the nature of relationships with service users/carers and professionals as encountered during the placement and consider how these related to service delivery in that placement setting. You will also describe and evaluate the main features of relationship-based social work and identify, describe and apply a range of theories relevant to the practice learning experience.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    In addition to the above modules, you will undertake 10 mandatory skills development days during Year 2. These skills development days are a professional/regulatory body training requirement which must be successfully completed in order to progress to Year 3.

    Year 3

    SWP3013Dissertation (40 credits)

    Dissertation enables you to enhance your knowledge, skills and understanding while developing and demonstrating research mindedness and evidence-informed knowledge relevant to current social work practice. You will focus on a specialist area of social work theory and practice and work independently to develop advanced understanding of the role of research in this discipline. The module allows you to engage in either primary or secondary-based research, subject to appropriate ethical approvals where required.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP3016Practice Learning 2: Applying Theory, Methods and Research (40 credits)

    Practice Learning 2: Applying Theory, Methods and Research takes place in an external agency (statutory or private, voluntary and independent sector). The placement is full-time over 100 days and enables you to apply your learning in direct practice, under the supervision of a Practice Educator. You will produce a portfolio to evidence your learning, including direct observations of your practice and critical analyses of practice. Assessment will be against Social Work England’s Standards and of Proficiency (SOPs) and The British Association of Social Workers’ (BASW) Professional Capabilities Framework.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    You will select two of the following modules:

    HEA3065Negotiated Learning Shell (20 credits)

    Negotiated Learning Shell offers an opportunity for you to study a topic or work related issue at degree level. It involves you identifying the chosen area for study, developing and negotiating a learning contract (which will outline the what, how, when, where and why of the study period), as well as the means of assessment to showcase the acquired learning.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    SWP3014Specialist Social Work with Children, Young People and Families (20 credits)

    Specialist Social Work with Children, Young People and Families equips you with a range of critical abilities to enable you to deal confidently and competently with the complexity of decision-making of multi-agency practice with children, young people and their families. Exploring a range of topics pertinent to working with this diverse group, you will consider the range of ethical and other dilemmas, often characterised by uncertainty and risk, which are faced by practitioners. Inclusion of Action Learning Sets will help you to gain confidence and professional judgment as you develop the skills and knowledge base required to function effectively within the children’s service arena. A problem-based approach will underpin the module, with case-study material enabling you to work with ‘real-life’ scenarios.


    Assessment: Coursework: 60%, Practical(s): 40%.

    SWP3015Specialist Practice with Adults (20 credits)

    Specialist Practice with Adults enables you to enhance the subject specific knowledge and range of critical abilities that are required to deal confidently and competently with the complexities of social work practice with adults within and across a diverse range of situations, settings and contexts. You will develop a holistic approach to understanding, analysis and practice via the exploration of a range of topic areas pertinent to working with this diverse group. In doing so, you will consider the range of ethical and other dilemmas, often characterised by uncertainty and risk, that are faced by practitioners operating within this arena. A problem-based learning approach will be used throughout the module, underpinned by ‘real-life’ scenarios, encouraging an autonomous, reflective approach to critical decision-making in contexts of uncertainty. Small group activities and role-play augment the use of case studies.


    Assessment: Coursework: 100%.

    In addition to the above modules, you will undertake five mandatory skills development days during Year 3. These skills development days are a professional/regulatory body training requirement which must be successfully completed.

    Optional modules provide an element of choice within the programme curriculum. The availability of optional modules may vary from year to year and will be subject to minimum student numbers being achieved. This means that the availability of specific optional modules cannot be guaranteed. Optional module selection may also be affected by timetabling requirements.

    Timetables

    Timetables are normally available one month prior to 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 of the week. Wednesday afternoons are normally reserved for sports and cultural activities.

    It is important to note that teaching in Year 3 will begin at the start of September.

    Disclaimer

    Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of our published course information, however our programmes 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 accrediting 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.

    Entry Criteria

    Entry Requirements

    Typical offer 120 UCAS Tariff points, plus GCSE English Language and Mathematics at Grade C or Grade 4 or above (or equivalent). No specific subjects are required but it is desirable to have studied Psychology or Sociology.

    Eligible candidates must provide evidence of study within the three years prior to application. Alternatively, you should have some relevant paid or unpaid experience and be able both to evidence this and relate it to social work as an activity with due regard for appropriate values, and an understanding of the nature of social work in contemporary society. You should recognise the perspective of people who use services, their families and carers and have a clear commitment to becoming a social worker.

    An interview, presentation, group discussion and written test 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 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.

    If you accept 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’. Further information will be sent to you after you have firmly accepted an offer.

    Example Offers

    Some examples of how you can achieve 120 UCAS Tariff points are detailed below.

    • A Level: BBB;
    • BTEC Extended Diploma (or combination of BTEC QCF qualifications): Distinction, Distinction, Merit (DDM);
    • International Baccalaureate (IB): We are happy to accept IB qualifications which achieve the required number of UCAS Tariff points;
    • Access to Higher Education Diploma: 45 credits at Level 3, for example 24 credits at Distinction and 21 credits at Merit. The required total can be attained from various credit combinations.

    Please note, the above examples may differ from actual offers made. A combination of A Level and BTEC awards may also be accepted.

    As long as you have a minimum of two A Levels (or equivalent), there is no maximum number of qualifications that we will accept UCAS points from. This includes additional qualifications such as the Welsh Baccalaureate and Extended Project Qualification (EPQ), AS Levels that haven’t been continued to A Level, and General Studies AS or A Level awards.

    For further information on how you can meet the entry requirements, including details of alternative qualifications, please visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/offers.

    EU students can get country-specific information about the University’s entry requirements and equivalent national qualifications at www.edgehill.ac.uk/eu.

    International students should visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/international for information on the entry criteria for overseas applicants.

    English Language Requirements

    International students require IELTS 6.0, with a score no lower than 5.5 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, you may want to consider our Pre-Sessional English course.

    Recognition of Prior Learning

    Edge Hill University recognises learning gained elsewhere, whether through academic credit and qualifications acquired from other relevant courses of study or through recognition of an individual’s professional and employment experience (also referred to as ‘experiential learning’). This may include credit or learning undertaken at another university.

    Previous learning that is recognised in this way may be used towards meeting the entry requirements for a programme and/or for exemption from part of a programme. It is your responsibility to make a claim for recognition of prior learning. For guidance, please consult the University’s academic regulations (sections C7 and F3.1) or contact the faculty in which you are interested in studying.

    Career Prospects

    What are my career prospects?

    A Social Work degree presents you with a range of career opportunities working with children, adults and their communities. You will be able to apply to work within the statutory, voluntary, private and independent sectors.

    Upon successful completion of the programme, you will gain eligibility to apply for registration with Social Work England as a qualified social worker. As social work is a regulated profession, you will 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. The regulator also monitors the performance of social work courses at universities, the reports of which are in the public domain.

    Finance

    Tuition Fees

    If you are a prospective UK student who will be joining this undergraduate degree in academic year 2021/22, the tuition fee will be £9,250 per annum (subject to final Government approval).

    Tuition fees for international students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2021/22 are £12,500 per annum. Exemptions apply for EU students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme, as well as Irish nationals, who may be eligible for the UK tuition fee rate.

    The University may administer a small inflationary rise in tuition fees, in line with Government policy, in subsequent academic years as you progress through the course.

    Financial Support

    Subject to eligibility, UK students joining this undergraduate degree can apply for a Tuition Fee Loan from the Government to cover the full cost of tuition fees. UK students enrolling on the programme may also be eligible to apply for additional funding to help with living costs.

    If you are joining BA (Hons) Social Work in academic year 2021/22, you may be eligible to apply for a Social Work Bursary, which includes an annual placement allowance, from Year 2 of the degree. Please note, however, that the availability of Social Work Bursaries for students joining social work degrees in academic year 2021/22 is still to be confirmed by the NHS Business Services Authority. In previous years, residency conditions and additional eligibility criteria have applied, while there has also been a cap on the total number of bursaries that each university has been allocated.

    For comprehensive information about the financial support available to eligible UK students joining this programme in academic year 2021/22, together with details of how to apply for potential funding, please view our Money Matters 2021/22 guide at www.edgehill.ac.uk/undergradfinance2021.

    EU students who have settled or pre-settled status under the EU Settlement Scheme may be eligible to apply for financial support. Irish nationals should apply to Student Universal Support Ireland (SUSI).

    Financial support information for international students can be found at www.edgehill.ac.uk/international/fees.

    Scholarships

    Ten scholarship winners sitting together in a lecture theatre at the Scholarship Awards Evening.Edge Hill University offers a range of scholarships with a competitive application process for prospective full-time undergraduate students.

    These scholarships aren’t linked to academic success and celebrate determination, talent and achievement beyond your coursework, for instance in creativity, enterprise, ICT, performance, sport or volunteering.

    An additional scholarship, which you may qualify to receive, rewards outstanding A Level and BTEC grades.

    To find out more about scholarships, to assess your eligibility, and to meet some of our dedicated scholarship winners, visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/scholarships.

    Apply

    How to Apply

    Apply online through UCAS at www.ucas.com.

    Visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyucas to find out more about the application process.

    Further information for international students about how to apply is available at www.edgehill.ac.uk/applyinternational.

    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.

    Visit Us

    If you are considering applying to study at Edge Hill University, the best way to gain an insight into student life is to discover our stunning campus for yourself by attending an open day. You can view dates and book your place at www.edgehill.ac.uk/opendays.

    Alternatively, if you are unable to attend an open day, you can find out more about our full range of events for prospective students, including campus tours and virtual activities, at www.edgehill.ac.uk/visitus.

    Request a Prospectus

    If you would like to explore our full range of degrees before you apply, you can order an undergraduate prospectus at www.edgehill.ac.uk/undergradprospectus.

    Get in Touch

    If you have any questions about this programme or what it’s like to study at Edge Hill University, please contact:

    International students should visit www.edgehill.ac.uk/international or email international@edgehill.ac.uk with any queries about overseas study.

    Course Changes

    Expand All This page outlines any material changes to course content, programme structure, assessment methods, entry criteria, and modes of study or delivery, implemented in the past two years.

    23rd September 2020 - Change to Entry Requirements

    GCSE English Language and GCSE Mathematics at Grade C or Grade 4 or above, or equivalent, remain part of the entry criteria but Edge Hill equivalency tests can now be sat by those prospective students who do not have GCSEs (or nationally recognised equivalents) in either or both of these subjects at the required grades.

    13th July 2020 - Change of Modules

    SWP2025 Practice Learning 1: Applying Theory, Methods and Research (20 credits) and SWP2026 Practice Critique (20 credits) replace SWP2022 Practice Learning 1: Applying Theory, Methods and Research (40 credits) as compulsory modules in Year 2.

    12th March 2020 - Change of Regulatory Body

    On successful completion of this programme, you will be eligible to apply for registration as a qualified social worker with Social Work England. Accreditation was previously conferred by the Health and Care Professions Council.

    27th August 2019 - Change of Modules

    SWP2023 Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Children, Young People and Families (30 credits) and SWP2024 Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Adults (30 credits) replace SWP2019 Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Children, Young People and Families (20 credits), SWP2020 Theory, Research and Critical Practice with Adults (20 credits) and SWP2021 Theory, Research and Critical Practice in Mental Health (20 credits) as compulsory modules in Year 1.

    Covid-19 - Social Work Essential Information

    Teaching and Learning at Edge Hill University in 2020

    In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, answers your questions and explains how teaching will work when you join us at Edge Hill University in September.


    Campus Facilities at Edge Hill University in 2020

    In this video Pro Vice-Chancellor, Lynda Brady, explains how we’re preparing the campus for your arrival in September and the facilities that will be available.