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1 SOCIAL WORK SCHOOL OF HEALTH, COMMUNITY AND EDUCATION STUDIES

2 socialwork What is Social Work? Social Work is an established professional discipline with a distinctive part to play in promoting and securing the wellbeing of children, adults, families and communities. Social work is concerned with the personal, practical, psychological and social aspects of people s lives and it makes a particular contribution in situations where there are high levels of complexity and conflicts of interest. As a vocational subject, students will obtain a professional qualification and an academic degree or Masters at the end of successful study. This means successful students will fulfil the learning outcomes required by the Health and Care Professions Council in order to apply for registration at the end of their programme. Why study Social Work at Northumbria? Northumbria University provides a range of programmes that are highly rated by students: Our social work team are justly proud of their league table rankings in The Times, The Independent and The Guardian, which place Northumbria s social work courses as being the highest ranked in the North East. The Social Care Institute for Excellence s practice benchmarking study 2012, ranked Northumbria third overall for the range of programme areas that service users and carers in social work education at qualifying and post-qualifying levels are involved in, and fourth of all HEIs for the number of service users and carers that are involved in the process. The BSc (Hons) Social Work is a well established and much admired programme that received commendation from the professional body of social work describing it as rigorous and challenging yet empowering and enabling. The 2013 Complete University Guide puts Northumbria in the top 20 with social work as the highest ranking of any qualifying social work programmes in the North East. It also confirms students will have excellent job prospects. In the National Students Survey (2011) 99% of social work students said their communication skills have improved and 97% said staff are good at explaining things, the course helped to present themselves with confidence, and as a result of the course they feel confident in tackling unfamiliar problems. As well as academic study, students will undertake two practice placements in social work settings and have the opportunity to demonstrate they are able to meet the required standards and professional capabilities for social work. Students can study to become a qualified Social Worker at either Honours degree or postgraduate level. Both programmes produce skilled graduates with the knowledge and values to work effectively with service users and carers. Extensive engagement of key stakeholders including employers and service users and carers. Excellent quality placement opportunities that are properly supported and managed. The placements have been especially interesting and rewarding 1

3 BSc (Hons) Social Work The information given below is subject to validation and may vary following national changes in regulation and endorsement by the College of Social Work. This three year programme enables students to gain both an Honours degree and a professional social work qualification. Those who have successfully completed this degree are then eligible to apply for registration with the regulatory body, the Health and Social Care Professions Council. This up-to-date and modernised curriculum has been designed to meet all the current requirements and recommendations of both the regulatory body and The College of Social Work and will enable students to develop a range of knowledge, skills and values common to social work across a range of settings with service users and carers. A particular strength of the programme is the quality and range of placements which reflect the strong partnership between the University and its stakeholders, including the statutory, voluntary and independent sectors. There is a strong commitment to service user and carer involvement in the programme which enhances the student learning experience. Modules Year One The focus of the first year is to support students to develop their professional identity and to learn what it means to become a social worker. Students will gain a range of skills in effective communication and develop their understanding of the nature and practice of professional social work, while considering the perspectives of those receiving services. Year Two Students will further develop their critical reflection and analytical skills, as well as their understanding of social work theory, methods and practice. They will have the opportunity to explore a number of contemporary social work issues including diversity, ethics and professional social work leadership. Problem-solving skills related to assessment, planning and intervention will be developed through teaching and learning activities and during an assessed practice placement of 70 days. Year Three Students will consolidate their understanding and application of social work knowledge, skills and values. They will also develop a deeper understanding of assessment processes and management of risk in those areas of practice that involve working within a statutory framework. They will be supported to develop their conceptual and analytical skills in enquiry and evidence-based practice. Students will undertake a 100 day assessed practice placement and must satisfy the formal requirements for qualifying social work training and registration with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). Coursework and assessment There are a wide variety of assessments throughout the programme that will assess the range of knowledge and skills required for social work. Students will be assessed at the end of their first year regarding their readiness for direct practice across all social work capabilities. All modules have a formal assessment attached. Modules will be assessed via assignments, practice, examinations and workbooks. Accreditations Students must complete all three years of study, meeting the standards of proficiency and professional capabilities for a social work graduate. However, students can exit at other points of the programme with an academic award. At the time of publication, the titles of these awards have yet to be confirmed but will contain a title relevant to the area of study. Credits Exit points 120 credits Certificate of Higher Education. 240 credits (120 credits at each Level 4 & 5) Diploma of Higher Education. 300 credits (120 credits from Levels 4 & 5 and 60 credits from Level 6) Pass Degree. 360 credits Honours degree excluding the professional qualification in social work. socialwork 2

4 modules will be assessed via assignments, practice, examinations and workbooks Work-Based Learning Route BSc (Hons) Social Work (Work-Based Learning) socialwork This route is subject to review and changes at the time of publication. Please contact Admissions for the latest information. This Work-Based Learning (WBL) Route allows students to undertake Year One on a flexible basis using work-based and current social work learning. It is aimed at applicants currently employed in a social work setting. After Year One, students will join the rest of the student group on the BSc (Hons) Social Work. The degree produces skilled graduates with the knowledge, skills and values to work effectively with users and carers in social work agencies. Modules In Year One students will study a range of modules that are specifically designed in recognition of students experience and practice opportunities in employment. There are a variety of modes of learning and activities that will promote the acquisition and development of the required knowledge and skills. There is a specific module, Identifying and Managing Own Learning in Social Work, which enables the student to identify and structure their own learning. Coursework and assessment Modules will be assessed via assignments, practice, examinations and workbooks. An enquiry-based approach to learning is being developed that will seek to promote the student s motivation and commitment. Students will be able to relate elements of learning to the workplace, providing the opportunity to put new skills into practice immediately. 3

5 Admissions information Most social work students whose home address is in England or Wales may be eligible for a bursary. At the time of publication, social work bursaries are under review so please check on socialwork 4

6 Victoria Watson BSc (Hons) Social Work Why did you decide to study Social Work? I had over ten years of experience working with young people and felt I had the right set of skills and values to become a social worker, but it wasn t until my third year of employment working alongside social workers in a Looked After Children s Team where I decided I really wanted to pursue a career in the field. What has been your best experience of the course so far? I like the social aspects and I know it s a bit of a cliché but I have met so many new friends and learnt so much from other people which has allowed me to extend my knowledge. undertake the Post-Registration Award at some point and who knows, someday I could be the Practice Educator for some of the students on this course. studentprofile What do you like about the course? I gave up full-time employment to come to University and was a bit apprehensive at first but have never looked back, the staff are really approachable and take time to listen to and support the students. I have really enjoyed the course so far and the variety of modules I have studied as well as the practical experience I have gained from my placements. What has been your most challenging moment so far? Having been out of education for some time starting the course was a challenge. I was worried about being a mature student but that hasn t been an issue at all, in fact my previous experience has been a really valuable asset. Where do you see your career in five years time? Hopefully I will be settled into my new career as a social worker but I would like to come back to Northumbria to What piece of advice would you give to students thinking about coming onto your course? I have two pieces of advice if you don t already have any relevant experience you should get some, either paid or voluntary as this will be of real benefit to you, and enjoy your time at university and make the most of the opportunity as it goes over so quickly! 5

7 What our students have said about social work at Northumbria Put your heart and soul into it and you might just surprise yourself I applied to Northumbria University as I was informed that it had a great reputation. It was also one of the few UK universities that offered the new social work degree. Being a social worker is a truly exciting and challenging career option. We really work in partnership with our students enabling them to help people reach the potential that is in everyone. It is inspiring to be part of such a diverse and skilled team of academics most of whom are qualified social workers with many years of practice experience. Educating students to make a real difference in people s lives I can t imagine a more worthwhile or fulfilling job! As I am studying social work, I consider being a mature student a real advantage and my life experiences are particularly useful. I wanted a new challenge, something interesting and the opportunity to study for something that would make a difference in people s lives so I applied to join the social work degree and I m really enjoying it. You get to think and put your own views across whilst expanding your knowledge by learning from others. I ve had very different placements, ranging from working with young offenders to older people with dementia, and I feel I have learnt something from all of them. As I enter the third year I m really looking forward to the six-month placement we undertake and getting my teeth into the work! socialwork 6

8 MA Social Work socialwork The MA Social Work is a postgraduate programme designed to enable students to gain both a Masters degree and professional qualification. On successful completion, graduates can apply for social work status with the Health and Care Professions Council. This up-to-date and modernised curriculum has been designed to meet all the current requirements and recommendations of both the regulatory body and The College of Social Work and will enable students to develop a range of knowledge, skills and values common to social work across a range of settings with service users and carers. Students will undertake two practice placements totalling 170 days of assessed practice learning. Successful students will achieve Qualified Social Worker status with the Masters award in 22 months. A Postgraduate Certificate and Diploma in Social Welfare represents an academic exit award for candidates who choose not to complete the qualifying programme. This programme is for graduates wishing to qualify as professional social workers eligible for registration with the General Social Care Council or the equivalent regulatory body. The programme runs in partnership with local agencies providing social work services and users and carers, and with a strong focus on practice. The programme aims to develop research informed and critical practitioners who are prepared to meet the challenge of social work in the twentyfirst century. Northumbria University has over 25 years of experience in running successful qualifying and post-qualifying social work programmes. You will study with an experienced and enthusiastic teaching team, many of whom are registered social workers, with a wide variety of research and subject expertise. Close partnerships with service users, carers, and local employers will be built upon in the programme. The target audience for this programme are candidates who have already demonstrated a high level of academic achievement. The programme has been developed in response to a strong demand from graduates, who wish to gain this professional qualification with good employment prospects. Course structure This MA programme offers graduates a full time 22 month route, to the recognised professional social work qualification. Students study six modules which include a range of academic and practice areas including: law, social policy, introduction to social work and its value base, evidence based practice and practice placements. On successful completion, students will have met the standards of proficiency required by the Social Work regulatory body, Health and Care Professions Council and professional capabilities for qualifying social workers. Entry requirements Academic Students accepted on to the course would usually have at least an Upper Second Class Honours degree in a relevant social sciences or related subject area. GCSE Maths and English at grade C. Work experience The equivalent of six months full-time work or voluntary experience in a social care, healthcare or related voluntary setting is usually, but not always, required. Undertaking a caring role in a personal capacity for a minimum of six months may be accepted as relevant experience. Other To be accepted onto the programme students are required to undergo an enhanced disclosure check with the Criminal Records Bureau and to make a satisfactory health declaration. 7

9 Matthew Scovell MA Social Work What appealed to you about Northumbria University? I am from the North East and studied at Northumbria University for my BSc degree. I enjoyed studying for my first degree at Northumbria so when I decided to return to study it was my first choice. Why did you choose the Social Work MA? Having worked for Northumbria Police for a couple of years, I wanted to pursue social work in order to have more contact with families and children to try and make a positive difference to their lives. What do you like most about the course? I like the fact that it is a two-year intensive course so it is a quicker route to qualification. It allows me to get back into a career quicker. Can you give an example of a piece of work you ve been involved with? I have recently undertaken an assessed interview with a service user. I had to prepare and plan from a case study and assessment. The interview was challenging but provided an invaluable learning experience in which I learnt a lot about myself. Do you have the opportunity for any work placements during your course? I have two six-month placements. What would you like to do when you graduate? When I graduate I wish to pursue a career in social work, working with children and families. I also aim to work within youth offending at some point in my career. How do you get on with your tutors? The tutors are very friendly, approachable and dedicated. They always find time to address any needs that you may have. What three words would you use to summarise your time here? Intense, interesting and worthwhile. the tutors are very friendly, approachable and dedicated studentprofile 8

10 Continuing Professional Development: Postgraduate Post Qualifying Social Work 9socialwork At the time of publication major changes are anticipated in relation to the Continuing Professional Development of qualified Social Workers. Northumbria University offers flexible modular awards which have been developed with local employers to enhance the ability of social workers to deal with increasingly complex and specialist work. Qualified but wanting to boost your career prospects? The awards allow candidates to develop their knowledge and skills from the point of being a newly qualified social worker taking up their first post in social work employment to Principal Social Work status. The awards are aligned to the Social Work Professional Capabilities Framework and will support career development, enabling candidates to focus their study on relevant aspects of specialist study. Undertaking the awards will contribute to maintaining and developing core standards for reregistration set by the Health and Care Professions Council. Entry requirements Current registration with a professional body. A minimum of two years practice experience in Mental Health professional practice. This programme is for Mental Health practitioners who want to develop knowledge, skills and values in their Key features for all post-qualifying social work awards at Northumbria University: The assessment of each module will vary but can include presentations, assignments and portfolios. Delivery in an accessible, flexible and modular basis. Use of Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) or Accreditation of Experiential Learning (APEL) is available for some modules. Use of your practice work experience to inform learning. Support of a practice educator (your employer would normally provide this), if appropriate, can verify your practice against required standards. Service users and carers are involved in programme design and delivery. Modules There are a range of modules available for study that will enable Social Workers professional practice. The Postgraduate Certificate provides the required training for the statutory role of an Approved Mental Health Professional. The Postgraduate Diploma and Masters offer an academic programme of study for experienced Mental Health practitioners to further develop their knowledge and skills relevant to practice. This will include single modules that are related to specific roles and tasks in social work practice. Practice Education: Northumbria has two modules that meet the required stages and standards in the Practice Educator Framework. Best Interests Assessor: This module aims to prepare students to practice as Best Interests Assessors within the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (Mental Capacity Act 2005). The learning and teaching involved seeks to develop understanding of and reflection upon the specialist knowledge and skills needed to work with service users, who may lack the capacity to make decisions about their care or treatment and who may be deprived of their liberty in hospital or care homes. Mental Health Professional Practice PG Cert/Dip/MSc (incorporating Approved Mental Health Professional status) Duration: 1 5 years to progress from the statutory Mental Health role at Postgraduate Certificate level and develop their professional practice with a range of module options and a subject specific dissertation.

11 Chris Hodgson Giving up my previous career and going to university at the age of 40 has been one of the best decisions of my life. With all the usual living costs, I had wondered whether I would be able to manage financially. A small bursary and acceptance for a student loan swayed me into taking the plunge. I particularly enjoy the excellent social aspects of attending university and meeting dozens of new people who often have a similar tale to tell. Those people are also a source of encouragement and support when tackling assignments and doing research. As I am studying social work, I consider being a mature student a real advantage and my life experiences are particularly useful. My first year at Northumbria, I feel, has been a case of laying the groundwork for the rest of the course. The placements have been especially interesting and rewarding. Having been out of education for a long time, I am glad I prepared for this course by studying at evening classes. It enabled me to learn again how to study and how to manage my time well. I also appreciated the support offered to mature students by the University, who organised a day aimed at giving tips to those of us who had not attended school for quite some time. Since becoming a student I have been able to earn some money by acting as a student rep at Open Days, and also by agreeing to take part in a photo shoot for a University publication. Well, everyone makes mistakes, even at university! studentprofile 10

12 Living and studying in Newcastle At the time of publication all curricula is being reviewed and updated and therefore information given in this brochure is therefore subject to validation requirements. All Social Work programmes in 2013 will meet the proposed national requirements and standards for social work as recommended by the Social Work Reform Board Newcastle is a fantastic city to live and study in it s a great place to be a student! One of the most vibrant, exciting and friendly cities in the UK, Newcastle is fast becoming an internationally renowned centre of culture and science. From its world-famous nightlife and fascinating heritage, to its awe-inspiring buildings and fun-loving character, it truly is an amazing place to live, study and work. How to apply Applications for BSc (Hons) Social Work and BSc (Hons) Social Work (Work-Based Learning) should be made through the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) Applications for our Post-Qualifying Social Work Awards and our Masters degree should be made direct to the University. Tel: For course enquiries: Tel: Fax: International Students Not only is Northumbria University the largest university in the North East of England, but we are also a truly international university with students from all over the world studying on our programmes, The University has a Meet and Greet service and dedicated support for international students, which can give help and advice on welfare, careers and study skills during your time with us Further information is available at international enquiries: Tel: +44 (0) Fax: +44 ( northumbria.ac.uk Further information is available at International Admissions: Tel: +44 (0) Fax: +44 (0) northumbria.ac.uk Return to Learning We welcome applications from mature students and will consider on an individual basis, those who do not meet traditional entry criteria but have an appropriate level of relevant experience. We are supportive of the University s Access to HE course, the HEFC, which provides an excellent basis for preparing adult students for entry into Higher Education. More details are available from the Return to Learning Service. There has never been a better time to experience student life in Newcastle. Already renowned for its unparalleled nightlife, it s bursting with energy and personality and offers world class culture, fantastic shopping and award-winning architecture. Gerry Rice, Associate Dean for Social Work, Northumbria University SM_03/12 Coach Lane Campus socialwork Newcastle Gateshead Quayside

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