BSc Social Work entry requirements for 2015/16
The selection process is designed to cover the domains of the College of Social Work Professional Capabilities Framework at entry level.
The admissions requirements will include:
- GCSE English and Mathematics at Grade `C` or above or an equivalent.
- To demonstrate effective written and oral skills in English and basic IT skills
- A satisfactory Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check(see below)
- Completion of a satisfactory health check (see below)
Plus one of the following:
- A minimum of 260 UCAS tariff points
- Access to Higher Education Certificate
- Open University 60 point course
- BTEC: An appropriate National Diploma of good standing including Merit and Distinction passes in appropriate units
- Irish Learning Certificate:
- Scottish Highers
- Minimum of Merit in Advanced GNVQ.
- Other relevant qualifications e.g. Registered General Nurse; Diploma in Childcare & Education grade B or above
Previous Life/Work experience
Experience of either voluntary or paid work in the social care sector is an advantage. However there is no formal pre-requisite of length of time or nature of life/work experience. Candidates will be required to demonstrate in their UCAS application and at interview how life/work experience has enabled them to prepare for studying on the social work degree course. They should also be able to demonstrate their learning from these experiences.
Applications will be considered against the criteria above.
Shortlisting for interview is undertaken by the Admissions Tutor in consultation with other members of the team and the decision regarding whether to offer the applicant an interview will based on the information provided in the UCAS application.
There are three stages to the interview day;
- Candidates complete a typed written exercise produced under exam conditions.
- Candidates participate in a group exercise, observed by two members of the selection team.
The written and group exercises are assessed by the admissions tutor and a decision taken if a candidate will progress to the final interview stage.
- Formal Interview. The remaining candidates will each be interviewed by a service user or carer, a practising social worker from a partner agency and a tutor. The interview process is designed to test applicants’ motivation for social work, their initial understanding of the role of the social worker, an understanding of the possible impact of their own values and the ability to reflect on and analyse their own strengths and weaknesses.
Interview discussion points:
- Readiness for study at higher education level
- Readiness to train for professional practice
- Flexibility of thought and critical analysis
- Understanding of discrimination and empowerment
- Criminal convictions, which could or would preclude them from practising in social work (further information and discussion will be required).
- Health issues (see below) which could or would affect participation in the course and practise in social work (further information and discussion will be required).
Consideration will be given to candidates who wish to claim APL status on a case by case basis however the practice units cannot be accredited with prior learning and must be completed as part of the programme.
Students must be able to speak, write and understand English so that they can follow their programme of study and we need therefore to see evidence of proficiency in the English Language; as a guide, this means an IELTS score of 7.0 or equivalent, with a score of at least 6.5 in each element.
DBS and Health Checks
Offers are conditional on satisfactory (Disclosure and Barring Service) DBS checks and Health Checks. Both of these checks are only pursued once an offer of a place has been made AND accepted.
DBS checks are made to ensure that an applicant will not be prevented from training or practising as a Social Worker. The DBS checks are made through a number of different registers. In the event of an issue being identified which may affect the applicant’s suitability then confidential discussions are held with senior managers in partner agencies. The discussion is to ascertain whether the agency would offer the student a placement or potential employment as a social worker. The applicant will pay for the DBS check and the cost currently (2015) is £44.
Health checks are made for two purposes. Firstly to give an opportunity for an applicant to reveal any issues which the College needs to consider in making reasonable adjustments to enable successful study, and secondly to ensure that an applicant is fit to practise as a social worker as defined by the HCPC guidance on health and character
Applicants will complete a pre-course Health Declaration. Should the answer to any of the questions on the declaration be yes, then the applicant is asked to supply evidence from their GP that the applicant is fit to undertake the programme and will be able to practise as a social worker. The applicant pays for this check to be carried out if any charge is to be made. The costs varies with the applicant and the GP but applicants have reported that this is in the region of £70-£100.
The programme is committed to ensuring that students with additional needs are offered equal opportunities to succeed in their application and on the programme, in line with the Equality Act 2010. We recommend that the applicant tells us about any learning difficulties, long-term health conditions or disability they have. This will enable us to assess whether we can make reasonable adjustments in such a way that the applicant can meet the HCPC Standards of Proficiency and Professional Capabilities Framework.
Candidates are required to demonstrate that they have basic IT skills through a self-declaration, evidenced in the UCAS application and through the typed written exercise.