Applied Social Work Practice: Children and Families - MA

About the course

If you wish to develop your expertise as a Children and Families Social Worker, this course is for you.

Developing advanced systematic understanding, knowledge and analytical skills, you will enhance your competence and management of risk, based on the values of contemporary social workers.

Duration: The course is normally completed within five years.

Intermediate qualifications available:

  • Postgraduate certificate – 60 credits at Masters level
  • Postgraduate diploma – 120 credits at Masters level

Applied Social Work Practice: Children and Families - MA - Putteridge Bury Campus, Luton

  • Apply Via - DIRECT ENTRY
  • Course level - Postgraduate
  • UCAS Code -
  • Campus Location - Putteridge Bury Campus, Luton
  • Start dates - Oct
  • Duration - 2 Years
  • Attendance - | Part-time day
  • Download Course Specifications

Why choose this course?

  • Study and use the latest ideas and theories, and promote a culture of professional curiosity that embraces current research within children and families social work
  • Explore the knowledge, analytical skills and mental agility required in the assessment, planning and decision making needed for best outcomes while working collaboratively in ever-changing environments
  • Develop your expertise in critical reflection, bringing analytical and research-led perspectives to the forefront of your practice when making professional judgements in complex family interventions
  • Gain your full potential by enhancing your confidence, resilience, adaptability and self-awareness so that you can evaluate and plan for your own future direction and learning needs
  • Benefit from discovering how best to protect vulnerable children by making professional and well-informed judgements that are based on analysis of complex evidence.

This course will enable child and family social workers to develop a high degree of competence and professional expertise by engaging with current knowledge and developing a high level of skills for intervention.

The course is aimed at registered social workers practicing in the area of Children and Families service provision. Underpinned by the Professional Capabilities Framework (TCSW 2012) and current evidence from research, this course will provide Children and Families practitioners with the advanced systematic understanding, knowledge and skills needed for competent practice and the development of higher level professional capability.

Unit Information – What Will I Learn?

  • Complex Assessments, Decision Making, Analysis and Risk
  • Motivational Interviewing for Social Work
  • Current Issues in Fostering and Adoption
  • Supervising for Quality and Performance in Social Work
  • Practice Educator Training: Stage 1
  • Practice Educator Training: Stage 2
  • Applying Knowledge to Work Based Learning
  • Applied Research Skills in Social Work
  • Dissertation for Social Workers: Children and Families

Discover the School of Applied Social Studies

How will I be assessed?

Throughout the course you will encounter a wide range of assessments designed to collectively meet a variety of individual learning styles and to support you in your progress towards becoming an autonomous learner.

These methods are designed to test you in all the areas necessary for competent practice as an experienced social work practitioner, as well as the academic disciplines underpinning this practice.

Assessments building towards the final stage of study encourage more self-directed study and autonomous learning. In some units there is an initial assessment early on in the delivery of the course to enable students to practise key skills with feedback given in areas for improvement and development.

Assessment methods include:

  • Direct observation of practice
  • Reports and case studies
  • Presentations
  • Dissertation

Entry requirements


    Applicants must be registered with the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) or any other Social Work regulator in the United Kingdom.


    Successful applicants will normally have an Honours degree (2:2 or above) and must have a professional qualification in Social Work.  They also must have one year of post qualifying experience to be eligible to apply for the course.


    All applicants must be practising social workers in a children and families social work setting. Applicants will normally have a minimum of one year of post-qualifying experience within the children and families setting for direct entry into the course.

    Recognition of Prior Certificated Learning (RPCL)

    Students seeking accreditation of prior certificated learning (RP[C]L) will be referred to the University of Bedfordshire's regulations for admission with advanced standing. Each case will be assessed on its merit and in line with the University's maximum permissible credit transfer for the level of award sought.

How will this course enhance my career prospects?

As the course has been mapped against the Professional Capability Framework for Social Work (TCSW 2012b), on completion you will have evidence that you have met the capabilities at advanced level.

Many career opportunities will be available to you in social work as a consequence, with some employers sponsoring aspiring practitioners onto this course.

Specifically your employability skills will be enhanced by:

  • being given opportunities to practise skills through varied activities and by engaging in a simulated interview that will be recorded and analysed, including receiving thorough feedback on recorded practice
  • creating a personal development strategy outlining your strengths, areas for improvements, opportunities for development and how any barriers to these can be overcome, thus mapping out ways for your aspirations to be achieved
  • developing employability skills such as professional expertise, high level oral and written communication skills, analytical problem solving and decision making abilities
  • learning from other social work practitioners both informally and formally about what works and what does not work in social work with children and families and sharing this knowledge to improve social work practice.

As an applied and practice based course, students are able to bring live case material to the learning, enabling them to learn from each other and ensuring that the curriculum is applied to real life practice. Our innovative unit on Motivational Interviewing is well supported by local employers and provides an opportunity for students to have their practice observed and analysed in a safe and supportive environment as they learn new skills.
Quote from a lecturer

Go Global

Whether you want to learn a new language, build networks, simply have the travel bug, or want to develop new skills and life experiences, our Go Global programme offers the opportunity to broaden your horizons, enhance your CV, and gain a truly international experience, all at the same time as studying towards your undergraduate degree. The Go Global programme is open to students from the UK and EU.

Travel to exciting destinations, including:

  • China
  • Vietnam
  • India
  • New York
  • Malaysia and Singapore

At the University of Bedfordshire we ensure that your experience here is cultural, as well as academic. That’s why a whole host of opportunities are opened up to you, providing you with that all important experience to make you stand out from the crowd when it comes to getting graduates jobs.

Go Europe

Our International students meanwhile, can make the most of trips to a series of exciting European destinations. From France and Belgium, to Holland and Germany, there are plenty of places to visit, network and broaden your knowledge of the global market place, by seeing and experiencing it for yourself, first-hand.

At the University of Bedfordshire we ensure that your experience here is cultural, as well as academic. That’s why a whole host of opportunities are opened up to you, providing you with that all important experience to make you stand out from the crowd when it comes to getting graduates jobs.

Fees and funding

    MA Applied Social Work (Post Qualifying)

  • UK /EU
  • For the Academic Year 2018/19 fees are £850 per 30 credits course unit.

    This course is subject to a fees variance agreement. Details are available from the course coordinators.

    The University reserves the right to increase tuition fees by no more than inflation.

  • Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding, please email


See UK/EU Postgraduate students for full information on fees and funding.

Alternatively if you have any questions around fees and funding, please email


A prompt payment discount is available if you pay the full fee before or at registration. There are also special scholarships available.

See Fees and Funding for International Students for full information.


Putteridge Bury campus

Putteridge Bury is a magnificent country mansion set in 30 acres of landscaped gardens and picturesque parkland. Built in 1911, it is just four miles from the University Square campus on the Hertfordshire - Bedfordshire border. 

It is home to the Bedfordshire Business School postgraduate programmes and the University’s Conference Centre.

A free shuttle bus service operates between Putteridge Bury and University Square.

Comprehensive Learning Resources Centre

The Putteridge Bury campus has its own comprehensive Learning Resources Centre equipped with PCs, which give you access to online information databases and more than 2,000 electronic journals.

Students based at Putteridge Bury can also benefit from the 200,000 books and specialist texts, 9,000 journals and 300 fully networked PCs that are available at the University Square campus.


Ideally located only four miles from Luton town centre, Putteridge Bury is set in picturesque parkland just off the A505 and enjoys a tranquil rural environment and ample parking within the grounds.

Putteridge Bury lies close to the University Square campus, and is a short drive from the London Luton airport, the train station and bus station.

How to Apply

Bedfordshire University

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