Social work is both a challenging and rewarding career through which you can make a real difference to the lives of vulnerable children and families. You will need to build relationships with families facing difficult times, show a lot of patience and be a good listener. You will also need good observational skills, analytical thinking and sound judgement to make the right decisions and protect children. Social work regularly tests resilience, stamina, and resolve - all of which you will need to succeed. Social work can be life changing for those you support.
The Step Up to Social Work programme is a unique opportunity to receive support while you are training to start a new career in social work. On the 14-month training programme, you will receive hands-on experience of working in a real-life social work role through placements in a local authority whilst undertaking your qualification. Once you’ve successfully completed the course, you’ll be awarded a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work enabling you to apply to register and practice as a social worker.
The Department for Education covers the cost of your university tuition on the programme and provides a tax-free bursary of £19,833 paid over the duration of the programme to support you during your training.
The deadline for Step Up to Social Work applications has been extended - it will now close at 12 noon on 3rd April 2023. Interviews will take place in June/July 2023 and this cohort will start in January 2024 and finish March 2025.
The programme runs once every two years, dependent on government funding, so if you are interested, make sure you don’t miss out on your chance to apply.
Step Up to Social Work entry criteria
We are looking for dedicated individuals who have experience of working with vulnerable children, young people, families or vulnerable adults and who can demonstrate their maturity and emotional resilience. We encourage applications from a diverse range of candidates and aim to have a workforce that represents the society that we serve.
You will need to have a minimum 2:2 level 6 degree qualification, for example an honours degree or a graduate certificate (this can be in any subject) to apply to the programme. You should also have GCSEs in English or English Language and Mathematics at grade C or above, or the new grade 4 and above (or an approved equivalent). You will need to show all of your original certificates to us as part of the application and assessment process. If you cannot find these, you can order replacements online.
To find out more, including a list of FAQs, visit our dedicated Step Up to Social Work page.