Taught course

Social Work

Durham University · School of Applied Social Sciences

Entry requirements

Good upper second class honours degree or equivalent. GCSE Mathematics and GCSE English grade C or above or equivalent at the time of application. Relevant work experience in a voluntary or employed capacity. In exceptional cases, applicants holding a Lower Second class Honours degree (2:2) may be considered where there is evidence of extensive relevant employed work experience in a social care setting. Applicants are also required to: attend an interview; demonstrate fitness to undergo social work training; provide evidence that you do not have a criminal record; prepare a personal statement.

Months of entry


Course content

The Master of Social Work (MSW) provides a 22 month fast-track social work qualifying programme that prepares postgraduates for professional practice in contemporary society. It is run in partnership with local service providers in the statutory and voluntary sectors that supply practice placements. Successful completion of the MSW entitles students to apply to the General Social Care Council (GSCC) for registration as social workers, a protected title in the UK.

Course Structure

The programme consists of four taught modules, two in each year, and two 100 day practice placements which take place alongside teaching. One of your taught modules in second year includes a Research Dissertation.

Core Modules

  • Foundations of Social Work
  • Preparation for Social Work Practice
  • Advanced Social Work
  • Research in Social Work

Students also undertake two compulsory periods of work placement.

Academic learning is assessed through essays, observation studies, project reports, case studies, group and individual presentations. Knowledge and understanding of social work law is assessed in a take away law exercise. Fitness for practice learning is assessed via a DVD showing your communication skills and a field visit during which you will shadow a qualified social worker. Competence in practice is assessed by a practice assessor and through case studies of work undertaken on placement. Research in social work is assessed through a dissertation proposal and a dissertation.

To apply for this programme, please follow the link to www.ucas.com then click on the tab ‘Postgraduate Study’.

Information for international students

English Language requirements include an IELTS of 7.0 or equivalent with no element less than 6.5

Fees and funding

Currently students are funded by a bursary from the NHSBSA which also provides a maintenance grant. Funding arrangements are subject to change and candidates are encouraged to consult our web pages for updates.

Qualification and course duration


full time
22 months

Course contact details

School of Applied Social Sciences
(0)191 334 1473