The traditional route into social work – University

There are many possible routes to gaining a social work honours degree.  University is the most common.  For this, you will need to have a gained a social work degree either at BA or MA level or Post Graduate Diploma in Social Work.  You’ll also need to be registered with the HCPC (Health and Care Professions Council) prior to being able to practice as a social worker.

The entry requirement for each course differs, so you need to research what the minimum requirement for the course is at each higher education institution. As a rule of thumb in England you will need minimum 5 GCSE’s grade A* to C, including English and Maths, and 2 A-levels. (Minimum 240 UCAS points).

The Open University (OU) also run social work programmes. You can study social work at your own pace and continue to work. However the OU do not find social work placements for you so you would need to find an employer to sponsor you in order to become a social worker (which can be difficult). This route may be useful if you work in the field of social care already.

Further information can be obtained via our local HEI’s – see the Social work courses page.

Fast track degree routes

The DfE sponsor “Step up to Social Work”an intensive full-time training programme that covers everything trainee social workers need to know in 14 months. It is funded, so bursaries and course fees are paid.

You can apply for Step up to Social Work If you got a 2:1 or above at undergraduate level, or if you have a wealth of experience. The scheme is aimed for people looking to get into Children and Families. See our Step Up page for more information. See our Step up page for more information.