Normally a minimum Upper Second class Honours degree (2:1); GCSE Mathematics and GCSE English grade C or above, or equivalent, at the time of application; Applicants must have sufficient recent experience (in employment, as a volunteer, as a service user or carer) in a social care, health care or related voluntary setting to be able to demonstrate an understanding of the capabilities of a social worker as indicated at the entry level of the Professional Capabilities Framework. As a guideline, this period of experience is unlikely to be less than six months.
Applicants for whom English is not a first language will be required to demonstrate evidence of English Language Competence equivalent to IELTS 7 with no element less than 6.5.
You will also be required to: attend an interview*; demonstrate fitness to undergo social work training.
- a. At interview stage you are asked to declare any health conditions or disabilities that may affect your ability to undertake a practice placement safely and effectively.
- b. Upon acceptance of a firm offer on the course, you are asked to complete an occupational health screening in line with national guidelines agreed with relevant professional bodies.
- c. Provide evidence that you do not have a criminal record that might restrict your opportunities to work with children or vulnerable adults. Candidates will be required as a condition of admission to undertake, or provide evidence of, a current DBS check.
- *Candidates who are based overseas and cannot attend an interview in person may be interviewed remotely and should contact the admissions secretary if necessary to seek advice.
The Admissions Tutor gives equal consideration to all applications received before the UCAS January deadline, in accordance with UCAS regulations and University policy. However, we start assessing applications and interviewing from November onwards, in order to meet the required timescales. It is, therefore, advisable to make an early application.
Months of entry
The Durham MSW is a 21 month programme engaging students with the knowledge, skills and values that underpin social work practice with individuals, groups and communities. Academic study is complemented by two practice placements with different service user groups. Practice experience of statutory interventions with children and families or ‘vulnerable adults’ is complemented by opportunities for innovative practice in the voluntary and independent sectors in areas such as family justice, homelessness, substance use, domestic violence, sexual exploitation, community interventions and self-advocacy. With strong involvement of service users, carers and practice partners throughout the programme, the MSW provides strong foundations for practice in any field of social work.
Local and global perspectives
Our approach to social work education reflects the connections between individuals, their families and communities. We offer you a broad foundation for social work practice underpinned by the global definition of social work and emphasise the connections between local and global issues in social work. Shared learning alongside postgraduate students studying International Social Work and Community Development, and Community and Youth Work, provides valuable opportunities for the exchange of ideas and experiences.
Excellent employment prospects
There is very strong demand for Durham MSW graduates by employers in local authorities and non-government organisations regionally, nationally and internationally. Durham MSW graduates have been able to transfer their registration to other countries including Australia, Canada, Scotland and the USA.
The MSW is structured around seven modules designed to meet the academic and practice learning requirements for a degree in social work.
- Social Work in Practice (40 credits): Understanding perspectives of service users and carers; social exclusion; social policy and law for social work
- Social Work in Context (40 credits): Human growth and development through the life course, disability and mental health; social work theories and methods; working in organisations
- Professional and Personal Development (30 credits): Principles, values and ethics; critical thinking and evidence-based practice; skills development; Interprofessional working
- Social Work Practice 1 (50 credits): 70-day practice placement in a partner agency.
- Research in Professional Practice (45 credits): Research and evaluation design and methods; ethical issues in social welfare research; dissertation
- Advanced Social Work (30 credits): Advanced application of theories and methods; critical analysis of social work policy; protection and empowerment of vulnerable children, young people and adults
- Social Work Practice 2 (70 credits): 100-day practice placement.
Information for international students
English Language requirements Please check requirements for your subject and level of study.
Fees and funding
Qualification and course duration
Course contact details
- School of Applied Social Sciences
- (0)191 334 1473