The main aim of the MA in Social Work is to produce competent, reflective, analytical and research-minded social workers, who are vocationally qualified, with advanced knowledge and skills to bring about innovations through collaborative practice and continuous learning.
The course was accredited by the General Social Care Council (GSCC) in August 2010. It was developed in consultation with Social Care Service Users and Stakeholders, who are also actively involved in delivery of the programme. The degree is full-time for 24 months.
Successful completion leads to the University Award of MA Social Work and eligibility for entry to the GSCC Register of Social Workers.
Why choose this subject?
· Choose this subject if you want to make a difference to people’s lives and feel passionate and committed to social justice.
· Our students say: “The MA in Social Work delivered at Hope gives prospective Social Workers an opportunity to engage with what I have found to be a unique blend of traditional, mainstream and radical ideas on Social Work which is also underpinned by current and critical and cutting edge teaching and research” (David Christie, MA student).
· The student intake each year is limited to 25 students – you will get to know the teaching team well and also have the opportunity to develop excellent peer group support.
· The Social Work teaching and support team includes qualified and experienced practitioners and active researchers in the fields of social work, social policy and social justice.
· The course leads to a professional qualification and career in Social Work.
· The Masters qualification is highly regarded by employers.
Year 1 teaching provides grounding in social work law, ethics and methods. This study of law and methods is located within a wider theoretical context which allows students to understand the roots and origins of differing approaches and focuses on key social divisions and their impact on people’s ‘life-chances’.
· Law and Ethics (20 credits)
· Framing Social Problems (20 credits)
· Methods and Theories of Social Work Interventions (20 credits)
· Practice Learning Opportunity – 100 days
In Year 2 you will engage with the ‘Grand Narrative’ traditions and with the debates surrounding professionalism, partnership working, power and responsibility. Contemporary issues in Social Work are explored with local practitioners from a range of statutory and voluntary sector agencies in the Merseyside region.
· Theoretical Approaches to Social Work (20 credits)
· Critical Themes and Issues Influencing Contemporary Practice (20 credits)
· Power, Partnership and Professionalism (20 credits)
· Practice Learning Opportunity – 100 days
· Dissertation (60 credits)
Practice Learning - You must be available to work full-time during the 100 day placements from January to June each year.
Practice learning placements are organised by the Department. There is a wide variety of learning opportunities, including opportunities to contribute to statutory work. Furthermore, you have the option of spending 50 days of your first placement overseas. For example, in 2012 two students were in placement in Cyprus and two in India. Complementary placements in the UK for the second 50 days give student the opportunity for cross-national comparison.
Dissertation Preparation - is tailored to suit your learning needs and research interests. It begins during the second half of Year 1 and continues throughout Year 2 through a combination of lectures, seminars, group and individual tutorials.
Academic assessment is through a combination of methods including: essays, case study work, presentations, book/journal paper reviews and seminar work. The pass mark on all courses is 40 per cent (at Masters Level) and you must pass each and every element of assessment on all courses to proceed and gain their degree and qualification.
Practice capability is assessed by service user feedback, observation, and practice portfolio work. You will be assessed by a practice educator during your placements and your portfolio is examined by a Practice Assessment Panel comprising academic and agency staff. You must pass your practice placement and portfolio.
The degree is full-time for 24 months commencing in the first year in the third week of September with induction and preparation for practice. Teaching is full-time then until Christmas. All academic assignments must be completed before going out on placement. Placements start in January and normally finish by early June. You then return to the University in late June for dissertation preparation. The second year follows a similar pattern except that the year begins in September with further dissertation preparation. The dissertation must be submitted by the end of August the following year.
Course Fees: £3,200 per year (2 year course)
Applicants will require the following:
· First degree (normally 2.1 or above, relevant degree an advantage)
· GCSE Grade C or above in Mathematics and English or equivalent before application
· Appropriate and relevant experience
· CRB clearance
· All candidates subject to interview and satisfactory health check.
Practising social care professionals ensure teaching is relevant to the cutting edge of today’s social work agenda and teaching methods facilitate participative learning. The Department has an active research base framed within the spheres of social justice and radical social work and prides itself on a policy oriented approach. The MA is taught within this ethos and students are encouraged to consider questions about inequalities in social work policy and practice and how they might be countered.
The Social Work team are all research active and contribute regularly to relevant social work journals. The team has expertise in children and family social work, theorising childhood, racism and anti-racist social work, mental health and mental health user movements, youth justice, radical social work histories, community engagement and international social work
Social Work is a large and growing sector which provides a wide variety of career opportunities. About half of social workers are involved in some way with supporting children, families and young people.
However, if you prefer to work mainly with adults, there are many specialist areas in which to develop your skills and your career, such as working with people using mental health services or enabling people with a learning disability to live independent lives. For more information, see the ‘Careers in social work booklet’ on the Department of Health’s social work website. (http://www.socialworkcareers.co.uk/)