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This page will help you work out where you are in the process of becoming a social worker, from considering social work as a career to applying for a place on a social work degree, and what you need to do next.
Experience of the kind of work involved in social work is invaluable in helping you make up your mind about your career. Even if you're completely sure, many higher education institutions and universities will be looking for people with knowledge of social care, whether paid, voluntary or life experience. You are more likely to gain a place on your chosen course if you can demonstrate this.
The undergraduate BA degree (usually three years full time) is probably right for you if:
The postgraduate MA degree (usually two years full time) is probably right for you if:
The sponsorship route (qualifying whilst working full time) may be an option for you if:
Find out more about your preferred universities, higher education institutions and courses from their websites or by reading their prospectuses. Check the entry requirements of individual institutions, they may specify particular subjects, grades, qualifications and experience.
All college-based courses, including the postgraduate degrees, recruit through UCAS (Universities and Colleges Admission Service). The UCAS website will give more details.
If you are applying for an employment based course, your employer will be able to tell you how to apply.
As part of the UCAS application you will need to write a personal statement. It's worth putting considerable time and effort into this - it's your chance to stand out above other candidates competing for places. Your personal statement is where you will describe the experience which inspired you to become a social worker (and where you'll prove you've got what it takes). Don't just describe your work experience, give examples of skills and qualities you have gained and why you think you would make a good social worker. What evidence can you provide that you are empathetic, a good problem-solver, resourceful and a team player.
All applications for entry to courses should be made online using the electronic system ‘Apply'. Apply is a secure web-based application system. If you do not have access to a personal computer with an internet connection, you can use the UK online centres website to find an online centre in your local area that offers these resources for free. At these centres you will be able to access the UCAS website, set up your account, apply to the institutions of your choice and track your application progress.
The social work profession needs people who reflect the diversity of different communities in Britain. Applications for social work courses are welcomed from people of all ages (18+), men and women, people with disabilities and people from all racial, cultural and religious backgrounds.
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The UCAS website, managing applications to UK higher-education courses.