What you will study
This module is delivered over eight months and has a practice placement experience running alongside academic study. The module will start at the end of January and finish in September. Prior to the start of your placement you will need to complete 10 days of verified practice experience in your normal workplace and pass an assessment of ‘Readiness for direct practice’.
After successfully completing this module you will:
- have acquired the necessary professional skills to enable you to work in partnership with service users and carers and other professionals to foster dignity, choice and independence, and effect change; and be able to evaluate the changes and your own contribution to change
- be equipped to engage in critical and reflective professional practice according to the Standards for social work education and Codes of Practice and Conduct relating to the nation of the UK in which you practise
- be able to think critically about the complex social, cultural, legal, economic and political contexts in which social work practice is located.
- have the knowledge and understanding to analytically appraise and use evidence and research in decision-making, and to use professional judgement about practice and in the evaluation of outcomes
- have developed key skills appropriate for the academic level in the areas of digital and information literacy, academic, professional and reflective writing.
During this module you will study five blocks: Foundations for Social Work Practice; Communication and Interpersonal Skills; Social Divisions and Diversity; Human Growth and Development; and one from Social Work Practice with Children and Families, or Social Work with Adults. For the last block you will be able to choose either the children and families option or the adult option alongside your placement to support your practice learning. Relevant teaching of law, digital and information literacy, values and ethics, safeguarding practices, theories and approaches in social work intervention, research methods and evidence-based practice has been threaded through the module blocks as appropriate.
The learning materials include a range of module-directed multi-media activities for you to engage in to support your learning about social work. You will access the learning guides and activities online through the module website and will be supported through additional readings and books in print. Likewise, you will also engage with video and audio resources, draw upon a range of online tools that suit your study needs, and take part in activities with other students at online learning events.
In addition to module-directed activities within the learning materials, there are opportunities to engage in independent learning. The design of the module is informed by the fact that when you become a qualified social worker, you will be expected to be able to address complex situations, think for yourself, collaborate with other professionals and be accountable for your actions. Both academically and in your practice you will increasingly be called on to make your own decisions and evaluations.
This module will help you to develop knowledge and skills in these areas through these regular opportunities for independent learning that will enable you to relate your study closely to your own practice context and to your particular learning needs.
The module has three main learning components:
- practice learning (10 days of verified practice experience in your normal workplace preparation for ‘Readiness for direct practice’, followed by a practice placement of 80 days)
- a residential school and three practice skills workshops – these are typically held face-to-face but online alternatives will be provided for events and activities we’re currently unable to offer face-to-face due to public health restrictions
- five blocks of study, which you will study online.
You will be expected to critically apply relevant knowledge, skills and values in a practice setting to a professional standard. This will entail demonstrating your analytical use of module concepts and research findings, showing a critical appreciation of a range of social work theories and methods, and evidencing your ability to apply them appropriately to practice.
It is a professional requirement for you to engage in practice skills development, which will take place in the residential school and three practice skills workshops. These events are usually held face-to-face, but where this is not possible due to public health restrictions, online alternatives will be provided. You will be told in advance of any changes. The practice skills workshops will form an essential component for skills development.
You will be required to demonstrate your ‘Readiness for direct practice’ before you undertake your first practice placement. Readiness for direct practice will be assessed by attending online learning events, undertaking 10 days of verified practice in your normal workplace and completing a tutor-marked assignment. This is a regulatory requirement which you will need to evidence; and if you do not pass the assessment of Readiness for direct practice you will be de-registered from the module.
You will learn
This module has been designed to support students to begin the journey of becoming confident, critical, analytical and reflective practitioners who can work with other people to help meet the often complex needs of those who require social work support. This also entails being able to provide professional authority and leadership as qualified social workers.