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BA (Hons) Social Work

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Codes:

College C58

UCAS L500

Course Length:

3 Years Full Time

Entry Requirements and Fees

2020/21 UK fee: £9,250

2020/21 International fee: £13,500

For further details about fees, please see our Tuition Fee page.

Typical Offer (individual offers may vary):

  • UCAS Tariff points: 96 - 112 (A levels or combination with AS / EPQ / BTEC/ Cambridge Technical)
  • A levels: CCC - BBC
  • BTEC/Cambridge Technical: DMM - MMM
  • Access to HE Diploma: Pass with at least 12 Distinctions and 15 Merits
  • GCSEs: English language and mathematics (C or above)
  • International Baccalaureate: 28 points 
  • IELTS 6.0 overall with no element lower than 5.5
  • Interview, enhanced DBS and health checks required
  • Applicants must have some relevant social work or social care experience

Student view

Peter Burrows
The course is driven by a warm and experience team, with an abundance of lived and worked experience in their specific fields. In addition, their creativity towards the subjects we are learning is hugely stimulating and challenging. The lecturers are always open with their suggestions and there has never been a moment when they are not there to give support and advice for those difficult times. Not to forget the advantage of a truly approachable administration team who are an integral part of the department, and knowing there are always available with additional support for all those other challenges is vastly reassuring. Speaking from the heart, the course would have to be described as life changing and an essential component towards gaining a greater understanding and compassion in relation to our own communities and fellow human beings.

Course content

The course begins with a carefully structured induction programme. This is designed to prepare you for the wide range of experiences and learning opportunities that you will encounter during the degree. At every level of the course there is a module to develop personal and professional skills. You will be supported by a structured tutorial programme; linking campus-based learning to the key roles of a social worker.

Why this Course?

The course combines a professional qualification with an academic degree

  • An excellent rating in the national student satisfaction survey
  • We are small enough to ensure personal contact and large enough to provide good services and support
  • An excellent record of providing a wide range of settings for practice experience
  • A well-established reputation for teaching Social Work to degree level and beyond
  • Experienced and qualified social workers trained to act as practice educators
  • Mature students welcome with nonstandard qualifications
  • Careers advice

Social Work England

Social work is a regulated profession. As a social work student you will be expected to register with Social Work England, the profession's regulator, and adhere to the standards set out in the Code of Practice for Social Workers. 

Bursaries

Please note that students who are accepted on the BA Social Work (Hons) may be able to apply for a bursary from the NHS Business Services Authority for part of the programme of study. 

There is no guarantee that a bursary will be available to every student as the overall number available is capped.   

Further information on social work bursaries, including the eligibility criteria, can be obtained from their website or download their leaflet.

Our facilities

We pride ourselves on being able to offer a quality learning environment for our students.

At the Bishop Otter campus where this course is based, there is an integrated approach to the provision of learning resources and support.  We offer a substantial collection of books, journals and other materials to help you further your research. A range of study areas for group and quiet study including Wi-Fi areas for laptop use are available, or you can use our open access PC and Mac areas.  We use an electronic learning environment with an expanding portfolio of online library resources from anywhere at any time.



The Learning Resource Centre is the hub of the learning environment.  It has two upper floors of library resources, one for silent study and one for quiet study. On the ground floor, you’ll find the Support and Information Zone, Media Centre, The Careers Centre, Costa Coffee and a variety of IT resources.

The Bishop Otter LRC also offers:

130 open access PC workstations

45 Apple iMacs

Ample printing facilities

Netbooks available on loan

Professional editing suites

Media loans counter

Wi-Fi and plug points throughout

Work placements

From the beginning of your course to your final year there are modules available to develop your personal and professional skills. You will have the opportunity to carry out key social work roles within practice placements totalling 170 days. 

For the first (70 day) placement in your second year, you could gain experience in organisations such as West Sussex and Hampshire County Councils, Homestart, Stonepillow, Aldingbourne Trust, Barnardos and Citizens Advice. We also have opportunities in schools who have units for pupils with additional needs. These include Front Lawn Primary and Felpham Community College. There are similar opportunities in hospital teams and other support organisations such as Motiv8, My Sister House, Cornerhouse Mental Health Resource Centre and Chang, Grow, Live.

The second (100 day) placement in your third year include local authorities like West Sussex and Hampshire County Council within teams such as: family support and protection, looked after children, fostering, disabilities, older persons, youth offending, children’s asylum and mental health.

 

Course accreditations

Social Work England logo

This course is accredited by Social Work England.

Indicative modules

Year One

Induction

(Module information to come)

Diversity, Difference and Society

The module will use a range of approaches to learning and teaching, which will include problem - based learning, small workshops, and the use of multimedia materials plus appropriate external guest practitioners and/or service users. This will encourage you to develop skills in gaining information relevant to the social identity of those with whom you are working. You will be expected to actively participate and share your own knowledge and experience, reflecting on this in the light of current research and theory. You will undertake small group tasks where you will be expected to inquire into aspects of diversity of which you have limited understanding. You will share with other students the process and content of your learning. Theoretical frameworks such as Neil Thompson’s widely used personal, cultural and structural (PCS) model (Thompson, 2011) will be located within a critical understanding of real-lived experiences plus as a way of examining levels of discrimination of oppressed groups. Cultural competence frameworks (Maclean & Caffrey,2009), Darlymple & Burke (1995) Practice ADP model, Howell’s reflective model of ADP development, plus Kolb’s learning cycle (1984) will be explored as frameworks for understanding and challenging discrimination.

Skills 1

This module aims to develop the intellectual and practical skills that will be of value in a variety of situation and will include the development of self-awareness, problem solving, reflection and reflexive skills. It will prepare you to communicate effectively with a range of people in a complex and diverse society and enable you to identify existing skills and knowledge and to take responsibility for developing and using these skills in a competent way. The module will introduce you to the ethical issues and professional codes of practice in relation to intervening in the lives of others

Introduction to Social Work

The aims of this module are to introduce you to social work roles, tasks and settings. There will be opportunities to provide you with a grounding in the historical and social context of social work practice, which will enable you to understand a framework of theories, values, ethics and research mindedness as a foundation for good practice and study throughout the course. This module will help to develop your ability to think critically and reflectively

Adult & Child Development Across the Life Course

This module will introduce you to theories of physiological, social, cognitive and psychological development in relation to the development of children and adults throughout the life course. It will also explore difficulties in physiological, psychological and social development and consider cultural, class and gender perspectives in relation to development. The effects of social problems on development and socialisation will also be examined.

Linked Tutorial L4

(Module information to come)

Disability and Social Work

This module will start by considering historical, social and cross-cultural perspectives on disability and learning difficulties. The resulting welfare responses to disability will be explored with a particular focus on personalisation. Disability will be considered across the life course. Drawing upon dominant perspectives and the biopsychosocial model. The notion of ‘care’ and its impact on the lived experience of disability will be explored. Central to the module will be ethical issues, such as, the potentially competing rights of carers and service users, and risk versus choice and empowerment. Anti-oppressive practice will be a theme throughout the module, with particular attention to simultaneous oppression, social exclusion and hate crimes.

Introduction to Legal and Policy Frameworks

The overall aim of this module is to introduce you, as a social work student to the legal and policy frameworks that underpin professional practice. The module will outline the relationship and key differences between legislation and policy. It will help you to appreciate the differing ideological approaches to social policy and how these may find expression in welfare practice and its underlying legal framework. The aims of the module are to: Provide a broad overview of the history of the welfare state in Britain, the development of social policy and its associated legal frameworks.

Provide an introduction to the English legal system, its processes and procedures.

Introduce you to the key areas of social policy and legislation that are of particular relevance to professional practice.

Explain some of the key terms, concepts, theories and debates in contemporary social policy

It will address the relevant PCF practice requirements and the threshold requirements for entry into social work (Standards of Proficiency for Qualifying Social Workers HCPC, 2012).

Community Project

(Module information to come)

Skills 2

Build on basic communication and relationship skills in order to prepare for social work practice. Enable students to develop understanding of the wider community in which social work takes place. Opportunities to introduce you to the perspectives of service users, carers, and the organisations with which social workers liaise and operate.

Year Two

Methods of Intervention and Assessment

• Social work methods and skills in the processes of assessment, planning, intervention and review • Risk assessment, intervention and management skills • Key signs and symptoms of child and adult abuse • Managing disclosures of child abuse, adult abuse and domestic violence • Application of safeguarding legislation policies and procedures • Multi-disciplinary working in risk and safeguarding • Ethical implications of intervention (including service user perspectives)

Ethics and Dilemmas

(Module information to come)

Law in Social Work

There is an expectation that you will consider the role of the social worker within the legal system and explore the difference between legal rules and rights and the ethical dilemmas that arise, in a context of applying the law to promote human rights, equality and social justice. Practice implications will be discussed and the power of the legal framework explored. You will also be expected to visit a court and to reflect on the impact of that experience. The major statutory responsibilities of social work agencies will be examined and evaluated and linked to the major relevant pieces of legislation. In particular attention will be paid to legislation relating to children and adults, issues of safeguarding and empowerment. You will also gain an understanding of how the law inter-connects, for example, how child protection may also raise issues of domestic violence and mental health. Agency roles and procedures will be placed within the context of the legal framework. There is an expectation that you will be critically aware of the value conflicts that use of the law manifests and to think in a service user centred manner of the meaning and impact of these conflicts. Use of the law as a means of either oppression or empowerment will be discussed and placed within the wider context of anti-oppressive practice.

Research Methods

The content of this module will include the following areas of study and investigation. Application of qualitative, quantitative, statistical and mixed methods to social work practice. Key terminology, concepts and ideas. Ethics, values and bias. Research approaches such as thematic analysis, ethnography, evaluation and grounded theory; Research design and instruments such as observation, interviews and questionnaires, focus groups and surveys. Data collection and analysis. Basic statistics, populations, samples and representativeness. Concepts of validity and reliability. Research ideas, questions, designs, instruments and outputs.

There will be an emphasis on applying research to social work, social care and multi-disciplinary settings. With a view to discovering that research does matter to social work, and that developing research mindedness is crucial to both our professional standing and to the work we undertake in partnership with other professionals and with service users and carers

Mental Health

This module explores key dominate themes within contemporary mental health practice. Particular emphasis will be placed developing on understanding the bio-psychosocial conceptual framework model) alongside other mental health models, to utilise these models as a way of informing students in terms of their future understanding and social work practice interventions within the field of mental health. It will identify what factors both enhance and debilitate mental health and the ways in which professionals may respond and work together to support them. Central to the module will be consideration of how practitioners can combat the stigma, oppression and social exclusion often faced by people with mental health problems.

Safeguarding

The module will consider safeguarding adults, child protection and domestic violence as inter- related rather than in isolation. The notion of safeguarding children within a context of need and risk and will explore key concepts that impact on this. These will be explored with particular reference to the concepts of ‘significant harm’ and ‘good enough parenting’. This understanding will be located within a relevant legislative policy and procedural framework e.g. Sects 17, 47 and 20 of the Children Act 1989, Working Together 2010 (which is currently under review) and the Sussex Local Safeguarding Children’s Board (LSCB) Child Protection Procedures (these are only available online at www.westsussex.gov.uk/lscb). Safeguarding adults will be seen to have followed a similar evolution to child protection, however the significance of capacity will be explored in relation to abuse, the legislation and local policy. Anti-oppressive practice in relation to people who have been abused will be a theme which runs throughout the course. You will also explore the signs and symptoms of abuse, issues of disclosure and confidentiality, the use of supervision and the appropriate referral process if child protection safeguarding adults and/or domestic violence issues are involved.

Professional Effectiveness

(Module information to come)

Assessed Practice 1

There is an expectation that you will undertake practice learning in line with the Domains set out in the Professional Capabilities Framework:

Domain 1 Professionalism:- Identify and behave as a professional social worker, committed to professional development Domain 2 Values and Ethics: Apply social work ethical principles and values to guide professional practice Domain 3 Diversity: Recognise diversity and apply anti-discriminatory and anti-oppressive principles in practice

Domain 4 Rights, Justice and Economic Wellbeing: Advance human rights and promote social justice and economic well-being Domain 5 Knowledge: Apply knowledge of social sciences, law and social work practice theory Domain 6 Critical reflection and Analysis - Apply critical reflection and analysis to inform and provide a rationale for professional decision-making Domain 7 Intervention and Skills: Use judgement and authority to intervene with individuals, families and communities to promote independence, provide support and prevent harm, neglect and abuse Domain 8 Contexts and organisations: Engage with, inform, and adapt to changing contexts that shape practice. Operate effectively within own organisational frameworks and contribute to the development of services and organisations. Operate effectively within multi-agency and inter-professional partnerships and settings Domain 9 Professional Leadership: Take responsibility for the professional learning and development of others through supervision, mentoring, assessing, research, teaching, leadership and management

Linked Tutorial

(Module information to come)

Year Three

Complexity and Risk

(Module information to come)

Dissertation

This module aims to support you in exploring & applying research in social work as a professional discipline. You will be supported to examine research philosophies and strategies, identifying their strengths and limitations in relation to research questions and how they might be used together to achieve optimum impact. There will be an opportunity undertake a comprehensive review of relevant literature and consider the value of adopting a structured approach to literature searches. You will also be required to examine ethical issues encountered in social work research. The module will also encourage you to demonstrate your research skills utilising library-based, electronic and related media through independent learning, planning and self-management skills.

Assessed Practice 2

There is an expectation that you will undertake practice learning in line with the Professional Capabilities Framework Domains appropriate for the final placement in relation to the following:

Domain 1 Professionalism: Identify and behave as a professional social worker, committed to professional development

Domain 2 Values and Ethics: Apply social work ethical principles and values to guide professional practice. Domain 3 Diversity: Recognise diversity and apply anti-discriminatory and anti-oppressive principles in practice Domain 4 Rights, Justice and Economic Wellbeing: Advance human rights and promote social justice and economic well-being Domain 5 Knowledge: Apply knowledge of social sciences, law and social work practice theory Domain 6 Critical reflection and Analysis: Apply critical reflection and analysis to inform and provide a rationale for professional decision-making Domain 7 Intervention and Skills: Use judgement and authority to intervene with individuals, families and communities to promote independence, provide support and prevent harm, neglect and abuse Domain 8 Contexts and organisations: Engage with, inform, and adapt to changing contexts that shape practice. Operate effectively within own organisational frameworks and contribute to the development of services and organisations. Operate effectively within multi-agency and inter-professional partnerships and settings Domain 9 Professional Leadership: Take responsibility for the professional learning and development of others through supervision, mentoring, assessing, research, teaching, leadership and management

Linked Tutorial

(Module information to come)

International English Studies

Include International English Studies: 

Teaching and assessment

This programme will enable you to qualify as a social worker after the equivalent of 3 years of full-time study.  There are no optional modules.

Teaching strategies

The BA Social Work has been designed in accordance with professional standards and will enable students to meet the entry as well as progression requirements set out within the Professional Capabilities Framework.  This is seen as a continuous professional development pathway for student social workers and includes the move through readiness for direct practice requirements from year 1 to year 2 and finally to meet employer standards for the Assessed Year in Supported Employment (AYSE) at the end of the final year. 

Where appropriate, service users are invited to be involved in the assessment of students both in practice, through feedback to the practice tutor, and occasionally in academic assignments.

Practice Placements

Students are expected to undertake two practice placements, 70 full working days in year 2 and 100 full working days in year 3. The assessment of competence in social work practice is central to the programme. 

Additional Costs

Include Additional Costs: 

Additional Costs

Interviews

The interview is designed to assess the applicant’s suitability for the social work profession.

It is expected that most students will have significant experience of a statutory care agency or voluntary/private organisation providing a social work or social care service.