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PG Dip/MA Social Work (Children and Families)

This fast-track social work course, with a focus on children, young people and their families, enables trainee social workers to build upon their existing knowledge and skills, and develop the expertise required for social work practice.

Why study PG Dip/MA Social Work (Children and Families) at BU?

  • If you already hold an undergraduate degree and are interested in specialising in work with children and young people, this is the ideal social work course option
  • This course is an intensive full-time training programme that could see you start a career as a social worker in just 14 months, whilst receiving a Department for Education bursary in addition to course fees
  • This generic social work qualification covers all aspects of child and family social work and working with adults required to be eligible for registering with Social Work England as a Social Worker
  • You’ll have the option to continue your studies from a Postgraduate Diploma to a Master’s by undertaking a dissertation which will be self-funded
  • The Department of Education funds this course through local authorities including Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Council and Wiltshire Council, with all applications being made directly to them
  • Statutory placements throughout the course mean you will gain lots of relevant experience operating in real-world settings and will develop strong working relationships with those already in the profession.

Find out more about the content of this course.

Course approval

This course is approved by Social Work England, which means you’ll be eligible to apply for registration as a social worker on successful completion of the course.

Key information

Next start date:

January 2022

Location:

Bournemouth University, Lansdowne Campus

Duration:

14 months to complete the PG Dip

Entry requirements:

Essential criteria

You will need:

  • a degree-level qualification in any discipline except social work from a UK higher education institute or an approved overseas equivalent
  • a minimum 2:1 level 6 degree qualification, for example, an honours degree or a graduate certificate, or, a minimum 2:2 honours degree plus a postgraduate qualification (level 7 or above) for example, a master’s degree or a postgraduate certificate/ postgraduate diploma
  • to have GCSEs in English or English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above, or the new grade 4 and above (or an approved equivalent)
  • to have completed your degree, final year students are not eligible to apply
  • to show evidence of your qualifications (such as certificates) and be able to upload this to the application form – this is mandatory for overseas qualifications (please ensure you have relevant electronic versions to hand prior to submitting your application)
  • to have a minimum of 6 months full-time (or equivalent) direct experience of working with vulnerable children, young people and/or families/carers or adults, either in a paid or voluntary capacity
  • to live in England
  • a driving licence and use of a vehicle in some locations, or to confirm that you’ll be able to travel for work if you do not have a vehicle
  • to complete an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check ​

Applications which do not meet all of these criteria will not be assessed.

Course details

This course is an intensive full-time training programme that could see you start a career as a social worker in just 14 months, whilst receiving a Department for Education bursary in addition to course fees.

Although this qualification is in Children and Families Social Work, it qualifies as a generic social work qualification. On this course you will usually be taught by a range of staff with relevant expertise and knowledge appropriate to the content of the unit. This will include senior academic staff, qualified professional practitioners, demonstrators, technicians and research students.

Applicants for this course should apply directly to the Department for Education via their website. Candidates will then be jointly interviewed by local authority representatives and the University.

Download the programme specification (pdf 467kb)

Placements

As part of the course, you’ll undertake two separate work placements of a combined total of 170 days. This will help you gain invaluable hands-on experience of social work, but it is also essential to meet the regulatory requirements of the professional body. During the placement you will be expected to integrate theory and practice and to complete a practice learning portfolio. The practice learning placement will facilitate the development of your social work skills, knowledge, critical analysis and evidence-based application of knowledge.

The wide range of placements include social work teams delivering services to children and families, hospital social work teams, residential and day care settings, drug and alcohol services, mental health services, supported housing and homelessness schemes and projects for young people experiencing home and school difficulties.

Your application

Applicants for this course should apply directly to the Department for Education via their website. Candidates will then be jointly interviewed by local authority representatives and the University.

For Social Work, we are looking for applicants who:

  • Have an awareness of the role of a Social Worker within society
  • Have a non-judgemental attitude, an appreciation of diversity and self-awareness, flexibility and openness to new ideas
  • Can demonstrate relevant skills such as listening, negotiating and advocacy
  • Have life experiences which may have influenced the applicant to think about a career in social work.
  • We particularly encourage applications from male and Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic (BAME) candidates as we aspire to make the programme, and the profile of social work practitioners, more diverse and representative of the children, families and communities they support.

Apply now

Entry requirements

Careers

Employment opportunities include work within Local Authorities' Children and Families teams and all aspects of social work with children, young people and their families.

Course changes

What our students say

Pennie Pinder

All the academics have been very supportive throughout my course and provide detailed feedback on assignments so that you can always improve.

Hear from our staff

Richard Williams

Social Work is not a discipline for the faint-hearted and our students develop personally and professionally; they embrace the learning opportunities and the challenges these opportunities provide and the outcome is high quality practitioners.

Hear from our staff

Jennifer Bigmore

The National Centre for Post-Qualifying Social Work offers a flexible approach to CPD, ensuring that you have the high quality knowledge and skills needed to face the future.

Statistics shown throughout this page are taken from Unistats and BU institutional data unless otherwise stated.