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 and a critical literature review or service improvement project, which will be self-funded
  • The Department of Education funds this course through local authorities including Bournemouth, Christchurch & Poole Council, Dorset County 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.

Please note that although this course is delivered by Bournemouth University with the Step-Up to Social Work partnership and future anticipated start dates are specified, the course is funded by the Department for Education (DfE) and can only go ahead if funding is secured from the DfE.  

In order to take advantage of new approaches to learning and teaching, as well as developments in practice to benefit our students we regularly review all of our courses. This course is currently going through this process, and we will update this page to give you full information about what we will be offering once the review process has concluded. These changes will come into effect for all new students from January 2025 entry. Applicants will be notified by our admissions team of any changes.

Social Work England approved

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 2024


Bournemouth University, Lansdowne Campus


14 months to complete the PG Dip, 20 months to complete the MA

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 2:2 level 6 degree qualification, for example, an honours degree or a graduate certificate
  • 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 ​