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Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work

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Institution C58


Bishop Otter campus (Chichester)

18 months Full Time

Top 30
UK University
Top 25
best university in the UK
Social Work comes 6th for overall satisfaction in the UK
1. Guardian University Guide 2021 | 2. National Student Survey 2021 | 3. National Student Survey 2020

Entry Requirements and Fees

Typical Offer (individual offers may vary):

The Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work programme provides a flexible and accessible framework for those with a:

  • An honours degree at 2:2 or high in a related discipline, normally in a social science subject
  • Social work or social care experience of up to six months or equivalent part-time (paid or voluntary)​
  • GSCE English Language at grade C or above or equivalent
  • You will be required to attend an interview
  • Satisfactory health and enhanced DBS check
  • If English is not your first language then English language proficiency required is IELTS 7.0 on each component


2021/22 UK fee: £10,700

2021/22 International fee: £21,700

University of Chichester alumni receive a 20% fee discount for 2021 entry.

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

For further details about international scholarships, please see our Scholarships page.

Social Work students can apply for a possible bursary from the NHS. Visit their website for more information

Course content

6th for overall satisfaction in the UK

6th out of 79 institutions for overall satisfaction for our Social Work programmes (National Student Survey 2020) 

Course overview

This course will allow you to become a qualified social worker. A career in this field is a chance to make a difference in a person’s life and the community they live in. Social Workers tackle serious social matters and encourage the best solutions to support people through difficult times. It is a challenging, interesting and rewarding profession to enter.

Why study this course?

Our Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work will allow you to apply for registration as a qualified social worker with Social Work England

The course has many good features including:

  • A welcome to students of all ages and non-standard qualifications.
  • Small student groups to ensure personal contact.
  • Excellent student services and support systems.
  • Good quality practice placements supported by experienced and social work qualified practice educators
  • An exceptional record for graduates gaining professional employment.


The University has a well-established, nationally recognised reputation for providing undergraduate and postgraduate social work courses which combine a professional qualification with an academic degree.  This is a critical part of the programme to ensure you build your confidence in the workplace. You will be allocated a personal tutor and a structured tutorial programme is provided to help you link campus-based learning to your practice placements.

Social Work England

Social work is a regulated profession. As a social work student, you will be expected to adhere to professional standards set by Social Work England and follow the code of ethics owned by the British Association of Social Workers.

Social Work England logo

Course start date

This course starts in September.

Take a look at our Social Work brochure.

Our facilities

We’ve developed both of our campuses to have the best facilities available for your degree. We pride ourselves on the quality of the learning environment we can offer our students.

Learning Resource Centre

Learning Resource Centre facilities

Our Learning Resource Centre is at the heart of the campus.  It hosts:

  • A modern library service with areas for quiet and silent study on both floors 
  • A range of study areas for group study
  • Over 80 open access PC and Mac stations
  • Wi-Fi areas for laptop use
  • A substantial collection of books, journals and other materials to help you further your research
  • Online library resources you can access from anywhere at any time
  • Costa Coffee
  • Also situated in the Learning Resource Centre is the Support and Information Zone (SIZ) to help with any enquiries while at university
  • At SIZ, there's an equipment loans centre offerings laptops, tablets and other electronic devices for short and long-term loans

The local area

The local area surrounding the University of Chichester's main Campus including Chichester Cathedral, Chichester Town Centre, The South Downs and West Wittering Beach

It’s important to love where you live and study and the local area surrounding the University has so much to offer. With the seaside town, historic city, rolling countryside and stunning beaches, there’s plenty to explore

Indicative modules

Year One

Introduction to the Social Work Profession           

This module seeks to support your development in a number of ways. The first is to introduce you to the University and Social Work as a discipline and profession. The module will provide you with opportunities to examine 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.

Human Development and Psychology Across the Lifespan          

An introduction to human growth and development, which will draw on developmental psychology as well as the social context of development. It will also explore difficulties in physiological, psychological and social development, including attachment theory, mental health and wellbeing. It will consider cultural and gender perspectives in relation to development. The effects of social problems on development and socialisation will also be critically examined.     

Social Work Law and Social Policy

This module seeks to explore primary, secondary and tertiary legislation, case law and social policy which has relevance to social welfare. It seeks to equip you with a critical understanding of how to apply legislation, case law and policy in practise. It will enable you to make the link between legal and policy frameworks, anti-oppressive practice and social justice.

Practice, Research and Dissertation Skills

This module aims to build on your basic communication and relationship skills in order to prepare you for social work practice. It will enable you to develop an understanding of the wider community in which social work takes place. There will be opportunities to introduce you to the perspectives of service users, carers, and the organisations with which social workers liaise and operate.

Social Work Methods of Assessment Intervention, Risk and Safeguarding

The aims of this module are to explore the nature of evidence and knowledge-based practice in relation to methods appropriate to risk and safeguarding. It will enable you to develop an understanding of the implicit and explicit ethical and value base underlying such interventions and approaches.

Values, Dilemmas and Conflict in Social Work Practice

Social work tasks and responsibilities require an understanding of complex situations which are likely to need high-level professional skills. This module will enable you to develop evidence-based knowledge on the multi-faceted factors likely to impact individual interpretation and understanding of dilemmas and conflicts in social work practice.

Assessed Practice 1: 70-Day Practice Placement

This module will enable you to apply evidence and analyse competence in the nine domains of the Professional Capabilities Framework. You will be required to demonstrate your ability to work within the HCPC Guidance on Conduct and Ethics for Students. There will be a range of activities to help you develop skills in critical reflection in relation to your social work practice and be able to apply appropriate social work skills and methods in practice. You will be supported to demonstrate skills in synthesising information and reflecting critically on social work knowledge.           


Year Two

Reflection, Analysis and Decision Making with Children and Adults

This module will support you to reflect on practice requirements and on successful completion of the MA Social Work to meet the aims of threshold requirement for entry into the profession as a registered social worker (Standards of Proficiency, HCPC).

Assessed Practice 2: 100-Day Practice Placement

This module will enable you to apply evidence and analyse competence in the nine domains of the Professional Capabilities Framework at qualifying level. It will help you to demonstrate evidence of your ability to work within the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) Guidance on Conduct and Ethics for Students. It will also support you to develop social work skills in critical reflection and synthesising information. At the point of qualification, you are expected to have also developed analytical techniques and problem-solving skills and be able to demonstrate personal responsibility and decision-making in complex and unpredictable professional situations. This module aims to enable you to demonstrate your readiness in the assessed year in supervised employment (AYSE).

International English Studies

Include International English Studies: 

Teaching and assessment

Teaching strategies

The Post Graduate Diploma in Social Work has been designed following the professional standards and will enable you to meet the entry as well as progression requirements set out within the Professional Capabilities Framework seen as a continuous professional development pathway for student social workers.  This meets the readiness for direct practice requirements from Year 1 to Year 2 and in the final year employer standards for the Assessed Year in Supported Employment (AYSE). 

Where appropriate, service users are involved in interviews, assessments, assignment feedback, teaching and programme board meetings.

Practice Placements

As part of the course, you'll undertake two practice placements.  70 full working days in Year 1 and 100 full working days in Year 2. The assessment of competence in social work practice is central to the programme. 


Most modules are assessed through written assignments or presentations. The practice elements of the course are assessed through portfolio presentation and assessor reports. The course includes a dissertation module.

Additional Costs

Include Additional Costs: 


As a University of Chichester student you will be provided with many things to support you but there may be additional costs which you may encounter whilst studying. A DBS enhanced disclosure check charge of £40 will be required for Social Work (BA, MA and PG Diploma)

Financial help available from the University:

We offer a number of scholarships and bursaries to students who are beginning their studies at Chichester.

Our Finance pages provides details on living costs, budgeting and paying your tuition fees.


Are you interested in this course and would like to learn more? Get in touch with our Admissions Team for more information.