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Applied Social Work Practice


School - School of Health and Society

Subject area - Social Policy and Social Work

Start Date(s): September; February; April


MSc (three years part-time)
PgDip (two years part-time)
PgCert (one year part-time)

Fees 2018-19:

2019-20 fees will be displayed shortly.

Part-time - £750 per 30 credit module

In Brief:

  • Maintain your CPD for professional registration with the Health and Care Professions Council.
  • Flexible access to modules which equip you with the critical skills needed for contemporary practice to improve the lives of service users
  • Enhance your career, professional credibility and employability with the scope to take one module or progress to the awards of PgCert, PgDip or master's
  • A part-time only course

Course Summary

Social Workers are required to intervene in the lives of vulnerable people and people in crisis making decisions which impact directly on individuals, families and society. The emphasis in this course is on the application of skills (practical, critical and intellectual), knowledge and research to social work practice, with the aim of improving opportunity and outcomes for service users and communities.

Modules are offered which are relevant at whatever stage of career you are at – from modules to support you at the outset of your social work career to modules which develop supervision and management skills. All modules have been developed in collaboration with regional stakeholders.

You may enter the course as sponsored student from your employer or may be self-funding.

Course Details

If you are a newly qualified social worker you will usually come onto the course to undertake Professional Practice (ASYE) and/or Consolidation of Professional Practice and/or Applied Critical Reflection.

If you are more experienced social workers you may wish to access modules individually or you can undertake a number of modules in order to gain a PgCert, PgDip or MSc.

The table gives a brief description of the modules and indicates in which semesters they will run in any one year. Some of our modules run twice a year.

Long, thin module  over 2 semesters
To ensure that you have consistently demonstrated practice in a range of tasks and roles commensurate with the PCF level at end of first year in practice following qualification.
Intakes September and February
To ensure that you can meet requirements of the qualified and professionally registered social worker, equipping social workers to work with complexity and make confident decisions in practice to improve the lives of service-users.
Semester 1
To consolidate knowledge, theory and skills from practice in the assessment and management of risk. To further develop knowledge of the application in practice of a range of theories and models which inform your decision-making and influence methods in social work.
Semester 1
To consolidate knowledge, theory and skills from practice in the assessment and management of risk. To further develop knowledge of the application in practice of a range of theories and models which inform your decision-making and influence methods in social work.
Semester 1
To consolidate knowledge, theory and skills from practice in the assessment and management of risk. To further develop your knowledge of the application in practice of a range of theories and models which inform decision-making and influence methods in social work.
Semester 2
The module provides you with the opportunity to critically  appraise, demonstrate and apply to practice a range of strategies, theories and approaches to direct work with a child/young person which will enable entry into the child’s/ young person’s world and perception and facilitate better outcomes  for them.
Semester 2
To provide social workers with underpinning legal, social, economic and political contexts of personalisation and a critical analysis of the impact of personalisation on different service user groups.
Semester 2
This module will take participants who are already or about to become supervisors. It will critically explore the theory and practice of social work supervision and help the participant to develop their supervisory style and skills.
Semester 2
Provides you with opportunities to critically examine the theory and research base of leading practice education and at different levels of practice and expose students to professional and inter-professional learning and teaching opportunities relevant to practice settings with support and supervision from an experienced educator.
Semester 2
Enables you to develop personally and professionally in the knowledge of self and the significance of 'me' as a leader to see them through the demands of your job. Recognise the importance of the complex relationship between you as individuals, your team and your  health and social care organisation.
Semester 2
Enable you to critically apply knowledge of project management through experiential learning within their organisation.Apply appropriate methods of inquiry to bring about patient/client/service user or service improvement within your organisation.  
If you want to go on to study for the MSc you will need to take the Research Methods module before your Dissertation.
Semesters 1 & 2
To enable you to develop a rigorous approach to the process of research and its impact and prepare students to complete a dissertation/research project or systematic literature review.
Semester 1 and ongoing support from supervisor
To enhance your ability to utilise a systematic process of inquiry and apply critical thinking and problem solving, in order to investigate an aspect of professional, educational, clinical, or organisational practice.

Entry Requirements

The course and the modules constitute Continuing Professional Development for qualified social workers. You must therefore be undertaking primary social work tasks in your employment (or be eligible to do so in the case of newly qualified students). In order to enter the course and achieve the MSc, PgDip or PgCert, candidates must hold:

  • A Bachelor’s degree normally with a 2:2 honours or professional qualification (if applicable) from the UK or elsewhere.
  • A Professional Qualification in Social Work (CQSW/DipSW).
  • In addition, you must be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as a social worker.
  • We positively welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to successfully pursue a programme of study at postgraduate level. See ‘applicant profile’ section.
  • We welcome candidates from professions other than social work and/or people with appropriate experience to undertake stand-alone modules to build or contribute to a CPD portfolio. In this case you would not however register for the PgCert, PgDip or the MSc in Applied Social Work Practice.

If your first language is not English you must possess a current qualification deemed acceptable by the University as evidence of proficiency in the English Language. Such a qualification must equate to a minimum average score of 6 or above (and for each component 5,5 or above or complaint with UKBA guidance) from the Cambridge / British Council English Language Testing Service (IELTS) which provides a common international basis for the elaboration of language syllabuses, curriculum, examinations etc. This is broadly comparable to a classification of C1 under the Common European Framework (CEF).

Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL)

We welcome applications from students who may not have formal/traditional entry criteria but who have relevant experience or the ability to pursue the course successfully.

The Accreditation of Prior Learning (APL) process could help you to make your work and life experience count. The APL process can be used for entry onto courses or to give you exemptions from parts of your course.

Two forms of APL may be used for entry: the Accreditation of Prior Certificated Learning (APCL) or the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).

English Language Requirements

International applicants will be required to show a proficiency in English. An IELTS score of 6.0 (no element below 5.5) is proof of this.

Applicant profile

In line with national developments all of our modules are assessed at postgraduate level. We feel this acknowledges that social work as a profession operates at that level of academic equivalence. However, we positively welcome applications from students who may not meet the stated entry criteria but who can demonstrate their ability to successfully pursue a programme of study at postgraduate level.

For example:

  • You may have a degree in a subject that is not related to social work but will indicate to us the potential to study at postgraduate level.
  • You may not have a degree but have experience as a social worker and have been working with a level of autonomy and complexity which would indicate to us that you were capable of post-graduate level academic work.
  • You may have been an experienced social worker but have been out of social work practice for some time and be considering returning to the profession and want to refresh your knowledge and skills.

Application is done online.

We do not normally require a test and will only do this if you do not possess a degree and cannot demonstrate to us on the application form that you have the potential to study at postgraduate level.

Please complete application as fully as possible.

Fees 2019-20

Fees for entry in 2019 will be displayed shortly.

Fees 2018-19

Type of StudyFee
Part-time£750 per 30 credit module

Scholarships and Bursaries

  • If you are applying for Applied Social Work Practice single modules or the MSc, PgDip or PgCert you will also need to complete the Agency Sponsorship Form and send it to
  • If you are self-funding, fees will be paid in the usual way.


This course has an integrated approach to teaching and learning, focusing on lectures, seminars and tutorials as well as independent learning methods.

Teaching is usually over five weeks, one day per week.

You will be encouraged to critically analyse and reflect upon your own practice experiences.

Teaching modes include:

  • Lectures
  • Seminars
  • Critical incident analysis
  • Presentations
  • Guided reading
  • Independent study
  • Participation on BB (virtual learning) site


By module

  • Professional practice (ASYE)
    Reflective assignment (50%) - 3,500 words and Professional discussion (50%) - 20 mins
  • Consolidation of Professional Practice
    Case Analysis (70%) - 3,500 words and PCF analysis (30%) - 1,500 words
  • Applied Critical Reflection Assignment
    Reflexive account(100%) - 5000 words
  • Working with Children and Young People
    Critical Evaluation Report (100%) - 5,000 words
  • Personalisation in Practice
    Case commentary (20%) - 1,500 words and Assignment (80%) - 3,500 words
  • Risk assessment and analysis in child care
    Case Analysis (100%) - 5,000 words
  • Risk Assessment and Analysis in Adult social care
    Case Analysis (100%) - 5000 words
  • Project Management and Methods of Inquiry for Health and Social Care Practice
    Evidence based business plan (30%) - 2000 words and Oral presentation (70%): Justify and defend the business case via the via voce - 20 mins
  • Research Methods
    Research proposal (100%) - 5000 words
  • Developmental Supervision
    Critical Analysis of recorded (1hr max) supervision session (100%) - 4,500 words
  • The ‘Me ‘in leadership for health and social care practice
    Patch Work Text equivalent to an assignment of 5,000 words (100%)
  • Leading Education in Practice
    Poster presentation to peers (100%) - 30 minute (+ 10 minutes for discussion)
  • Dissertation
    Dissertation (100%) - 15,000 words - either systematised literature review or practically orientated project


  • Completing CPD is now an essential part of maintaining your professional registration.
  • By undertaking CPD modules and courses, students demonstrate to employers a commitment to the profession.
  • Undertaking modules leads to better career prospects and promotion.
  • Modules are aligned to the College of Social Work’s Professional Capabilities Framework ASYE, Social Worker, Experienced Social Worker, and Advanced social worker levels.
  • Successful completion of the course demonstrates your capability to become a Strategic level social worker.
  • The course supports The College of Social Work developmental pathways of Professional Social Work Educator, Advanced Social Work Practitioner and Social Work Manager.

Download our CPD booklet

Links with Industry

Social work at the University of Salford has links with a wide variety of agencies in the Greater Manchester area. We work with local authorities, not-for-profit agencies and the voluntary sector. We work with over 300 agencies and are involved in collaborative training with our local authority partners.

This course and the modules have been designed with the involvement of local employers to support workforce development and the needs of stakeholders.

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