STUDY

Undergraduate

BA (Hons) Social Work

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Institution code: S82
UCAS code: L501
Start date: September 2024
Duration: Three years full-time, four and a half to seven years part-time.
Location: Ipswich
Typical Offer: 120 UCAS Tariff points (or above). BBB (A-level), DDM (BTEC), Merit (T Level)
Institution code: S82
UCAS code: L501
Start date: September 2024
Duration: Three years full-time, four and a half to seven years part-time.
Location: Ipswich
Typical Offer: 120 UCAS Tariff points (or above). BBB (A-level), DDM (BTEC), Merit (T Level)
Course information table
Institution code: S82
UCAS code: L501
Start date: September 2025
Duration: Three years full-time, four and a half to seven years part-time.
Location: Ipswich
Typical Offer: 120 UCAS Tariff points (or above). BBB (A-level), DDM (BTEC), Merit (T Level)
Course information table
Institution code: S82
UCAS code: L501
Start date: September 2025
Course information table
Duration: Three years full-time, four and a half to seven years part-time.
Location: Ipswich
Typical Offer: 120 UCAS Tariff points (or above). BBB (A-level), DDM (BTEC), Merit (T Level)

Overview

A Social Work degree opens the door to a profession which is varied and aims to improve people’s lives. It is more than simply ‘helping people’ and will involve a striving to create change. You may find yourself supporting someone who is distressed, or perhaps empowering someone in need of advice or even involved in protection work to ensure people and children are safe, well and healthy. Social Workers not only focus on day-to-day matters, but also consider the bigger issues that affect people’s lives such as poverty, trauma and disadvantage. However, it is our core values and practical skills which make social work distinctive from other professions. Social Work students possess transferable skills which are valued by many employers and at the University of Suffolk, graduates experience high levels of employment.   

The course is underpinned by a commitment to social justice, where we bring together theory and practical skills through learning and teaching excellence, high-quality research and contemporary professional skills and practice learning experiences. If you share our passion for understanding and addressing the effects of oppression, racism and discrimination and strive to promote fairness and equity this course is ideal for you, and opens the door to a diverse career in social work. 

In addition to our academics who are leading in their field, the course is embedded with people with lived experience and practitioner involvement to prepare you to reach your potential as a confident and capable Social Worker.  

The course is approved by the profession’s regulator, Social Work England, and is mapped against the following: 

Social Work England Professional Standards (2019) 

BASW Professional Capabilities Framework (2018) 

Institute for Apprenticeships Social Worker (Integrated Degree) Standard (2022) 

QAA Subject Benchmark Statement for Social Work (2019) 

Further information about the University's relationship with Social Work England is available in the PSRB register.

The University of Suffolk is world-class and committed to our region. We are proudly modern and innovative and we believe in transformative education. We are on the rise with a focus on student satisfaction, graduate prospects, spending on academic services and student facilities.

1st

in Social Work for graduate prospects

The Complete University Guide 2023

1st

in Social Work for spend per student

The Guardian University Guide 2023

94%

of Social Work students said the course is intellectually stimulating

The Guardian University Guide 2023

Course Modules

Our undergraduate programmes are delivered as 'block and blend' - more information can be found on Why Suffolk? You can also watch our Block and Blend video.

Our BA (Hons) Social Work focuses on providing you with a range of diverse opportunities to become critical, analytical and reflective thinkers. The course equips you with the knowledge, skills and values to be an effective social worker in a variety of settings.  You will achieve a recognised social work qualification with eligibility to apply for registration with Social Work England. 

Full-time students take up to five modules per year, with a combination of practice learning experiences, block and year-long modules. Part-time students negotiate their study of pattern with the course team and typically take the block and year-long modules or practice learning experiences on alternate years.

Downloadable information regarding all University of Suffolk courses, including Key Facts, Course Aims, Course Structure and Assessment, is available in the Definitive Course Record.

Social worker holding hands with senior woman

This module prepares students and assesses their suitability to commence direct practice in line with the BASW Professional Capabilities Framework (2018) level of ‘Readiness for Practice and the Social Work England Professional Standards' Social Work England Professional Standards (2019) 

The individual moves through various stages of the lifespan and this module, offers students the opportunity toexamine the implications of a development process and life stages on the individuals behaviour. The module introduces students to the conceptual frameworks of human development from pre-birth to old age, encompassing both ‘normal’ and atypical development. 

This module introduces students to a range of key theories and major themes drawn from sociology and rooted in social justice. Students will develop their “sociological imagination” and engage with concepts and debates to challenge their assumptions and long-held beliefs. The module will promote students’ curiosity and encourage them to question themselves and the world that they live in, providing a space to broaden understandings of their personal and professional value base and their developing professional identity. 

Social Work England professional standards (2019) require that all practitioners reflect on their personal and professional values (Standard 4.8) to ensure that practice is safe, ethical and operates within anti-oppressive and anti-discriminatory frameworks. The module enables students to critically reflect on their own personal values, explore the value base that underpins social work practice, appreciate that social work is full of ethical dilemmas, that practitioners need to sensitively navigate, and understand the damaging consequences of discrimination on individuals and groups.  

The ability to communicate effectively is an important life skill. It can be argued that the accomplishment of effective communication is the foundation upon which social work practice is formed. This module will support the development of students to become accomplished communicators with people that access services, managers and other professionals both within and outside of social care. 

The key aim of this module is to enable students to discuss, analyse and evaluate the effectiveness and efficacy of national legislation and how policy is applied at regional and local levels. Contextualising social work practice with adults within a legal, political, social and economic framework, students will be encouraged to analyse and evaluate the constraints and opportunities which arise within this continually changing context. 

 Social workers must act to protect children and support them and their families. Children’s wishes and feelings must be sought and listened to and at the same time decisions must be taken in their best interests. Having knowledge of the law (including human / children’s rights legislation), procedures, ethics, and research including learning from Child Safeguarding Practice reviews, as well has being skillful in working directly with children and families and effectively communicating with them and with other professionals, is the foundation of excellent practice. 

Research underpins the social work knowledge-base, shaping and informing the profession. The module will promote students’ curiosity, through developing a questioning approach and encourage a critical appreciation of a variety of different research approaches supported through the development of design, evaluation and analysis skills. Students will engage with the principles, practice and integrity of research and progress their knowledge on the effective use of research findings. 

It is essential that social workers have a good knowledge and understanding of mental health and personal distress from a range of theories, law, lived experience perspectives and practice knowledge. These issues will be particularly explored in relation to social justice, including the tensions and dilemmas this raises for contemporary social work practice. 

Social Work students are required to spend 170 days gaining required experience and learning in practice settings. Each student must have experience in at least two contrasting practice settings.At level 5 students will undertake assessed practice learning of at least 70 days for the academic year. 

This module enables students to critically consider and develop understandings of social justice as theory and practice. This is vital to social work practice to enable social workers to become critical thinkers to challenge injustice and bring about change.  

Social Work students are required to spend 170 days gaining required experience and learning in practice settings. Each student must have experience in at least two contrasting practice settings.At level 6 students will undertake assessed practice learning of at least 100 days for the academic year. 

This module provides social work students with an opportunity to exercise their independent judgement and skills in the development and execution of a dissertation relevant to the field of social work. Students will investigate a topic of their own choice and develop the skills of project planning, design, analysis and critical evaluation. 

Course Modules 2024

Our undergraduate programmes are delivered as 'block and blend' - more information can be found on Why Suffolk? You can also watch our Block and Blend video.

Our BA (Hons) Social Work focuses on providing you with a range of diverse opportunities to become critical, analytical and reflective thinkers. The course equips you with the knowledge, skills and values to be an effective social worker in a variety of settings.  You will achieve a recognised social work qualification with eligibility to apply for registration with Social Work England. 

Full-time students take up to five modules per year, with a combination of practice learning experiences, block and year-long modules. Part-time students negotiate their study of pattern with the course team and typically take the block and year-long modules or practice learning experiences on alternate years.

Downloadable information regarding all University of Suffolk courses, including Key Facts, Course Aims, Course Structure and Assessment, is available in the Definitive Course Record.

Social worker holding hands with senior woman

This module prepares students and assesses their suitability to commence direct practice in line with the BASW Professional Capabilities Framework (2018) level of ‘Readiness for Practice and the Social Work England Professional Standards' Social Work England Professional Standards (2019) 

The individual moves through various stages of the lifespan and this module, offers students the opportunity toexamine the implications of a development process and life stages on the individuals behaviour. The module introduces students to the conceptual frameworks of human development from pre-birth to old age, encompassing both ‘normal’ and atypical development. 

This module introduces students to a range of key theories and major themes drawn from sociology and rooted in social justice. Students will develop their “sociological imagination” and engage with concepts and debates to challenge their assumptions and long-held beliefs. The module will promote students’ curiosity and encourage them to question themselves and the world that they live in, providing a space to broaden understandings of their personal and professional value base and their developing professional identity. 

Social Work England professional standards (2019) require that all practitioners reflect on their personal and professional values (Standard 4.8) to ensure that practice is safe, ethical and operates within anti-oppressive and anti-discriminatory frameworks. The module enables students to critically reflect on their own personal values, explore the value base that underpins social work practice, appreciate that social work is full of ethical dilemmas, that practitioners need to sensitively navigate, and understand the damaging consequences of discrimination on individuals and groups.  

The ability to communicate effectively is an important life skill. It can be argued that the accomplishment of effective communication is the foundation upon which social work practice is formed. This module will support the development of students to become accomplished communicators with people that access services, managers and other professionals both within and outside of social care. 

The key aim of this module is to enable students to discuss, analyse and evaluate the effectiveness and efficacy of national legislation and how policy is applied at regional and local levels. Contextualising social work practice with adults within a legal, political, social and economic framework, students will be encouraged to analyse and evaluate the constraints and opportunities which arise within this continually changing context. 

 Social workers must act to protect children and support them and their families. Children’s wishes and feelings must be sought and listened to and at the same time decisions must be taken in their best interests. Having knowledge of the law (including human / children’s rights legislation), procedures, ethics, and research including learning from Child Safeguarding Practice reviews, as well has being skillful in working directly with children and families and effectively communicating with them and with other professionals, is the foundation of excellent practice. 

Research underpins the social work knowledge-base, shaping and informing the profession. The module will promote students’ curiosity, through developing a questioning approach and encourage a critical appreciation of a variety of different research approaches supported through the development of design, evaluation and analysis skills. Students will engage with the principles, practice and integrity of research and progress their knowledge on the effective use of research findings. 

It is essential that social workers have a good knowledge and understanding of mental health and personal distress from a range of theories, law, lived experience perspectives and practice knowledge. These issues will be particularly explored in relation to social justice, including the tensions and dilemmas this raises for contemporary social work practice. 

Social Work students are required to spend 170 days gaining required experience and learning in practice settings. Each student must have experience in at least two contrasting practice settings.At level 5 students will undertake assessed practice learning of at least 70 days for the academic year. 

This module enables students to critically consider and develop understandings of social justice as theory and practice. This is vital to social work practice to enable social workers to become critical thinkers to challenge injustice and bring about change.  

Social Work students are required to spend 170 days gaining required experience and learning in practice settings. Each student must have experience in at least two contrasting practice settings.At level 6 students will undertake assessed practice learning of at least 100 days for the academic year. 

This module provides social work students with an opportunity to exercise their independent judgement and skills in the development and execution of a dissertation relevant to the field of social work. Students will investigate a topic of their own choice and develop the skills of project planning, design, analysis and critical evaluation. 

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WHY SUFFOLK

16th place in the Whatuni Student Choice Awards for Best Facilities 2023

WUSCA 2023

5th place in the Whatuni Student Choice Awards for Career Prospects 2023

WUSCA 2023

14th place in the Whatuni Student Choice Awards for Student Support 2023

WUSCA 2023
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Inside the Waterfront Building
Boats on the marina in front of the Waterfront Building
The Waterfront Building on Ipswich Marina
Bookshelves and step ladder
The Library
A student sitting with a laptop
SU Social Space

Entry Requirements

Entry Requirements

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Career Opportunities

We know how important employability is when considering degree courses. Social work graduates have a wide range of options upon graduation and are in great demand in the UK – from Social Workers within a local authority, the independent or private and voluntary (PVI) sector to careers involving research, education and beyond. Social Workers also work within many fields, such as:

  • Mental health
  • Child protection
  • Youth justice
  • Health

 

You could also work alongside older people, refugees and asylum seekers, children and families, people with disabilities, foster carers and adopters, and more.

What this means is that a career in social work can be varied and opens the door to many, different opportunities! 

Your Course Team

Dr Jo Finch

Jo is Professor in Postgraduate Research and is known internationally for her work on practice learning, and also writes on PREVENT and social work.

Jo Finch staff profile photo

Garfield Hunt

Garfield is a qualified social worker and has a particular interest in student feedback and engagement.

Leanne Alcock

A Senior Lecturer in Social Work with more than a decade of industry experience. Leanne's experience includes working with older adults and end of life care.

Leanne Alcock staff profile photo

Gina Lodge

Gina is an Academic Administrator within the School of Social Sciences and Humanities.

Gina Lodge staff profile photo

Fees and Funding

UK Full-time Tuition Fee

£9,250

per year
UK Part-time Tuition Fee

£1,454*

per 20 credit module
International Full-time Tuition Fee

£15,210

per year

*Please contact the Student Centre for further details

The decision to study a degree is an investment into your future, there are various means of support available to you in order to help fund your tuition fees and living costs. You can apply for funding from the Spring before your course starts.

UK Fees and Finance UK Bursaries and Scholarships International Fees and Scholarships

Fees and Funding

UK Full-time Tuition Fee*

£9,250

per year
UK Part-time Tuition Fee*

£1,454*

per 20 credit module

* Maximum tuition fees chargeable to Home-fee students are set by the UK Government normally in the autumn or early winter in the year prior to the year of entry (e.g. autumn 2024 for entry in 2025/26). The University of Suffolk reserves the right to increase tuition fees for 2025/26 if the UK Government increases the maximum annual fee. International tuition fees for 2025/26 will be confirmed and updated here in May 2024.

The decision to study a degree is an investment into your future, there are various means of support available to you in order to help fund your tuition fees and living costs. You can apply for funding from the Spring before your course starts.

UK Fees and Finance UK Bursaries and Scholarships International Fees and Scholarships

Ipswich Award

The University of Suffolk is offering a £1,000 Award for students joining the University of Suffolk’s Ipswich campus. The Award is based on specific eligibility criteria based on your year of entry.

More information
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How to Apply

To study this course on a full-time basis, you can apply through UCAS. As well as providing your academic qualifications, you’ll be able to showcase your skills, qualities and passion for the subject.

Apply Now Further Information on Applying
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Joe Palmer, Ba (Hons) Social Work

"Since graduating, I have accepted a role withing Essex County Council working as a Children and Families social worker, joining the team that I worked with in my first placement year. Throughout the course, I found that lecturers were excellent at preparing me for challenging nature of social work, and I feel that I have the confidence to succeed in my new role thanks to the learning and support I received throughout the course."

read more
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Related Courses

Wheelchair
BA (Hons) Social Work (Degree Apprenticeship)

A Social Work Degree Apprenticeship opens the door to a profession which is varied and aims to improve people’s lives.

Close-up of book pages
Post Graduate Certificate in Social Work Practice Education

This course aims to produce high quality social work practice educators who are able to produce evidence-informed assessments of social work students and newly qualified social workers.

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