Our Universities and Colleges
The West Midlands Teaching Partnership is partnered with nine higher education institutions. These partners engage with the Teaching Partnership to develop and improve social work teaching and learning.
Becoming qualified is your first step towards a worthwhile career protecting and positively impacting on the lives of vulnerable adults and children. There is a continuing need for qualified and experienced social workers.
To practice as a social worker in the UK you'll need to be educated to at least undergraduate level and in England be registered with Social Work England. There are several ways to gain a social work qualification. Full-time undergraduate degrees take three years to complete and postgraduate courses take two years. On social work programmes, for example, you'll learn about mental health, disabilities, child development, the theory of social work, partnership working, ethics and values, and the legislation relevant to the profession. Programmes are focused on practical learning, so you'll be required to undertake at least two work placements in a social work setting as part of the course.
Birmingham City University have over 45 years’ experience working with social work students, social workers and delivering social work education. Based in the super-diverse and cosmopolitan city of Birmingham, we are one of the largest providers of social workers in the UK and are well known for producing excellent practitioners who go on to work as professional social workers in local authority, voluntary or private social work settings.
The Department of Social Work, based in the new £41 million City South Campus, offers a student-centred environment and an experienced and dedicated staff team. The academic staff have worked in a variety of social work teams and settings including child and adult safeguarding, foster-care, physical and learning difficulties, sensory impairment, and mental health and hospital social work.
All students are offered a named personal tutor, high quality practice placements and access to state-of-the-art facilities, skills labs and learning environments. In addition, students on our pre-qualifying BSc and MSc programmes are offered the opportunity to engage in international exchanges, learning through theatre events and shadowing experiences prior to the first practice placement. All our programmes reflect our deep commitment to pursuing excellence, and advancing human rights, social justice, equality and anti-discriminatory practice.
Social Work at Coventry University is located within the School of Psychological, Social and Behavioural Sciences, based within the Faculty of Health and Life Sciences. Research inspired and practice-led, the school and its staff provide a learning environment that has been specifically designed to engage, inform and excite learners; setting them on a journey of life changing learning and exploration.
The School is committed to developing a better understanding of human behaviour within a social context, looking at how to support people in need, including some of the most vulnerable people within our society. The School comprises of several interrelated subjects such as Psychology, Social Work, Childhood and Youth Studies, Counselling, Criminology, Forensic and Fraud Investigations, and Clinical Psychology.
In 2017 we opened our multi-million pound Science and Health Building, a world-class environment focused on providing facilities for training students in simulated environments relevant to their future employment. These facilities include laboratories forensic and a simulated service user/ patient journey through the health and social care system with fully equipped ambulance, operating theatre, hospital wards, therapy suites and community houses.
Our approach to teaching, learning and assessment is focused on encouraging our students to explore, challenge and investigate the world around them, using innovative approaches, simulated real world scenarios, real life role play and the use of virtual reality and applied technologies. In many cases we involve service users, patients, community partners and industry professionals so that the student experience is immersive and inspiring.
The Faculty has strong partnerships with employers from a range of sectors including Health Education England, NHS trusts, local authority social and education services, scientific industries, prisons and the independent charity, voluntary health and social care sectors. These partnerships mean that the Faculty’s courses reflect the contemporary needs of employers and provide direct routes to employment for our students.
Heart of Worcestershire College has a long standing history of delivering social work training going back to the late 1980s. We have a small and friendly team with a great wealth of experience covering a range of areas of expertise.
We have a small and friendly team with a great wealth of experience covering a range of areas of expertise. We have approximately 25 students in each year group and this enables us to have small teaching groups and offer a high level of tutorial and academic support to students.
Students also benefit from regular sessions presented by service user and carers groups. Service user and carer input to the programme is integral to its design and delivery for which it has been commended. Current social work practitioners assist in the delivery of modules by virtue of the well-established relationship between the college and social work agencies.
Social Work at Keele is located within the School of Primary, Community and Social Care and has over 20 years’ experience of providing social work education and research. This newly created school unites world-leading research experts with experienced teaching staff in order to provide dynamic and pioneering multidisciplinary teaching and research environment. This provides practitioners with the skills and experiences they need to work in increasingly complex health and social care settings. The school has excellent national and international links ensuring that students are able to understand and consider national and global practice.
The academic team enjoy broad practice, academic and research experience. Social work students are offered comprehensive training, with a named personal tutor and learning opportunities to enable them to develop their professional careers in a supportive and friendly environment. The use of state of the art facilities, skills laboratories and innovative teaching, along with international opportunities, provide an excellent opportunity to develop your social work career.
The BA (Hons) Social Work and the MA Social Work are both accredited by Social Work England. Students who successfully complete these courses are eligible to apply to join the register as a Social Worker. The programmes embrace the social sciences, ethics and the law as they relate to Social Work theory and practice, as well as benefiting from practitioners and service users and carers input at all stages of the programmes.
In addition to the qualifying programmes we offer a Practice Educator module giving Social Workers with more than two years’ experience the opportunity to get involved in training the next generation of social workers.
Whether you’re considering a foundation course or an undergraduate degree, a master's or a PhD, Keele is a place where students thrive - we're proud to be joint No.1 in England for Course Satisfaction in the Guardian University League Table 2019, in addition to having been ranked No.1 in England for student satisfaction in the 2018 National Student Survey, of broad-based universities. We were also awarded Gold in the recent Teaching Excellence Framework.
Keele University is set in the north Staffordshire countryside offering a beautiful environment against which to study in a close-knit campus community. The site covers over 600 acres and has shops, restaurants, a sports centre and more. The library, which is open 24/7 during term time, has plenty of quiet study space and offers access to books and journals, both electronic and hard copy.
Social Work at Staffordshire University: Make a difference to individuals, families, and communities’ lives with a qualification in social work. Social Workers support individuals and families to achieve positive change in their lives. This degree prepares you for a profession with human rights and social justice at its core.
Our course is regulated by Social Work England, and will prepare you for a career in social work in a diverse range of social welfare settings. The content of your studies will equip you for employment in both children’s and adults’ social work, in areas such as safeguarding, community and therapeutic services.
Staffordshire is the Connected University. We’re connected to the needs of our students, to business and to society. Our city campus in Stoke-on-Trent is the University’s nerve centre. We deliver world class healthcare education at our specialist Centres of Excellence in Stafford and Shrewsbury.
Our partnership and employer connections and emphasis on experience make our graduates among the most employable in the UK. An key feature of the social work course is skills development, the use of simulation, role play and case studies along with practice-based learning through placements.
Our gold award in the 2019 Teaching Excellence Framework recognises excellent standards of learning and teaching, while 78 per cent of our research is world leading or of international importance (Research Excellence Framework 2014).
The Department of Social Work and Social Care at the University of Birmingham is a multi-disciplinary academic team committed to improving the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities, and addressing inequalities and discrimination. We achieve our aims through original and relevant research of social issues and models of support, quality learning throughout professional and practice careers, and international collaborations in the field of social work and social care.
Our commitment the education of social workers stems back to 1908 when we were one of the first professional courses run by a University. We are rated the 5th best course for Social Work (The Complete University Guide 2020), 85% of our students were in a professional or managerial job six months after completing the course (UNISTATS 2016-17), and 91% of our students were satisfied with the teaching on the course (NSS 2019). We have run well-regarded post-qualifying education opportunities for many years for social workers and others looking to develop specialist professional skills. We are a founding member of the Centre for Leadership in Health & Social Care at the University of Birmingham. This provides a number of developmental opportunities for leaders in practice and/or management.
As a Russell Group University, we undertake world-leading research regarding social work and social care. We are a core member of the leading School for Social Care Research group and provide social care research leadership within the recently launched Applied Research Collaboration in the West Midlands. This five-year £9 million programme will undertake applied health and social care research across the region from October 2019. Students at the University of Birmingham have opportunity to engage with the latest evidence through direct teaching by our researchers, departmental seminars and other research based events.
We have institutional relationships with other research-intensive universities across the world through our membership of the Universitas 21 network. Students have opportunity to engage with peers in other countries through our annual International Exchange Week, and (subject to approval by Social Work England) there will be an opportunity to study for a year abroad from 2019/2020. The department also regularly hosts international scholars and practice leaders.
Warwick is one of the UK's leading universities, with an acknowledged reputation for excellence in research and teaching, for innovation, and for links with business and industry.
Warwick University is a world-leading university with the highest academic and research standards. But we’re not letting the story end there.
That’s because we’re a place of possibility. We’re always looking for new ways to make things happen. Whether you’re a dedicated student, an innovative lecturer or an ambitious company, Warwick provides a tireless yet supportive environment in which you can make an impact.
And our students, alumni and staff are consistently making an impact - the kind that changes lives, whether close to home or on a global scale. It’s the achievements of our people that help explain why our levels of research excellence and scholarship are recognised internationally. It’s a prime attraction for some of the biggest names in worldwide business and industry.
It’s why we’re ranked highly in the lists of great UK and world universities.
All of this contributes to a compelling story, one that’s little more than 50 years old. But who said youth should hold you back from changing the world?
Based at our St John’s Campus, the University of Worcester provides well-established MA and BA (Hons) qualifying programmes in social work, accredited by Social Work England. We are a team of experienced academic staff from a wide range of practice backgrounds.
We have well-developed relationships with our employer partners in both the statutory and independent/private sectors, who are key partners in designing and delivering teaching and assessment within the programme, helping to ensure our curriculum remains relevant and contemporary.
As a team, we bring our passionate belief in the importance of social work practice into the learning environment, using a wide range of teaching methods including lectures, class- room based group work, skills simulation, virtual classrooms and an online learning environment. The university has a strong reputation for student support, and we pride ourselves in getting to know our students and maintaining strong student-tutor relationships throughout their studies. We aim to keep our class sizes manageable, so that we know each student individually.
“What inspires me about teaching at the university is that our courses are continuously evolving to ensure that the student experience is positive. We endeavour to develop students who are ready for practice.” - Diane Asamoah, Senior Lecturer.
Within the team, we also have a dedicated Practice Facilitator who identifies and approves student practice placements with our partners, ensuring we can deliver relevant, high-quality placement experiences for our students. Practitioners from our partner agencies participate in helping to prepare students for placement. Students coming to study with us can usually expect to undertake placements across the counties of Herefordshire and Worcestershire.
Vicky Bailey, a former BA Social work student commented:
"My seventy-day placement in an adult setting offered me a safe environment to develop a deeper knowledge of theories, law and reflective practice. I took part in assessments, reviews, care plans and multi- agency working, and dealt with diverse groups of people. Both supervisors and practice educators provided positive earning, offering experience, support and knowledge while at the same time allowing me the scope to build on my own learning needs and with that the confidence in my own abilities. Team members also provided a great deal of their own knowledge and shadowing opportunities. All in all, my second-year placement was a completely enjoyable experience and I believe it offered me everything that I needed to progress to year three."
Our students have diverse range of backgrounds, ages and experiences but are all successful at interview in demonstrating their motivation and belief in the mission of social work to promote social justice and empower service users to achieve change in their lives. The University has a thriving service user and carer group known as IMPACT, which plays a key role in in the forming and moulding of student values and attitudes from day one of their student experience. The group comprises some 40 individuals with lived experience from across the spectrum of health and social care, this lived experience often having proved transformational to both staff and students.
IMPACT brings an interdisciplinary edge to our social work course and is involved in recruitment, teaching, quality assurance and research. We are committed to co-production and have presented at several national and international conferences as well as jointly producing book chapters and journal articles.
Anne Duddington, a carer and IMPACT member comments:
"It is encouraging that the expertise of service users and carers is being recognised and used, and that in partnership with students, academics and practitioners we are working towards the same goal: to achieve the highest possible standards in health and social care."
University staff are also involved in ongoing research and knowledge development within social work practice. This activity underpins our teaching and supports our ongoing professional development. Current research interests within the team include: technology in social work, international and transcultural social work practice, disability and foster care, young people’s experience in the criminal justice system, use of professional power, empathy and emotion in childcare practice.
Employability for our graduates is very good, with many of our students remaining and gaining employment in the local region. We maintain good relationships with our graduates, and seek to invite them back to share their experiences with our new students each year. We are excited to support ongoing social work practice in the region by ensuring high standards of social work education and training and are proud of our students who graduate each year.
The social work team is pleased to work closely with other HEIs and local authority partners within the West Midlands Regional teaching partnership and is committed to supporting the development of high standards of social work education and training within the region. The University also hosts the Worcestershire Branch of BASW which has a strong student presence. This forum enables students to mix with the practitioners and managers they will be working alongside in placement and practice, as well as introducing them to the key debates in social work at a national level.
Here at the University of Wolverhampton we have been providing students with the opportunities presented by a first class education for over 180 years. Our attractive offering to students from around the world includes 96% graduate employability (Destination of Leavers of Higher Education survey 2017), teaching informed by our world-leading research, strong business links and state-of-the-art facilities.
We’ve been awarded the TEF Silver award (June 2018) based on our high quality teaching and consistently exceeding the rigorous national quality requirements for UK Higher Education.
Social workers are professionally qualified staff who assess the needs of service users and provide care and support to those in need.
Our Social Work courses provide students with the education, training and practical experience to help interpret the problems individuals face and how to support them in finding solutions.
"I look at situations in a different way and the course has made me want to become a social worker more than ever." - Charlotte Chambers, BA (Hons) Social Work student.
"Without dedicated professionals at the University of Wolverhampton, I am not sure I would have stood out at the interview as well and so far I have done well in my first week of work as a Newly Qualified Social Worker (ASYE). Thank you to all the dedicated professionals who got me here!" - Liziwe Rugara, MA Social Work Student