Training for the professional Social Work Qualification

Are you interested in working with people and would like to get a professional qualification in Social Work?  This career is challenging yet rewarding, you might work in a variety of specialisms and with diverse needs, in statutory settings, or charities and non profit organisations.  It is important that you do some research to get a better understanding of what social work is; a good place to start is the British Association of Social Workers website

Training requirements for the Social Work Professional Qualification

To work as a Social Worker in England you have to complete a Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) recognised course delivered by a University.  The courses offer academic teaching and the opportunity to relate this to practice by the completion of 30 in university ‘skills days’ and 170 practice placement days delivered in a practice setting.  To apply for the social work degree you need to have a Maths and English GCSE equivalent at C grade, 240 UCAS points or equivalent and if English is not your first language IELTS at level 7.  You will need to be proficient in IT and you will have to complete an Enhanced DBS check.  In addition you will need to complete a medical check prior to starting a course, if you are selected.  To ensure that you have suitability to train as a social worker you will be asked to provide 2 character references on application.    

Local Universities where you can study Social Work

Anglia Ruskin University:

Offers Full Time BA (3Years) and MA (2 Years) at the Cambridge Campus

Also offers Part Time BA (4 Years) at the Peterborough Campus

Cambridgeshire County Council works in partnership with Anglia Ruskin to provide final year placements in statutory settings in both our adults or children and families service areas.

Open University

The Open University work with local employers, including Cambridgeshire County Council to offer a self-funding work based route for social work qualification.  To take this route you need to have an employer who is prepared to support you whilst you take the placement days, and who will allow you study leave.

Step Up to Social Work

Step Up to Social Work is a Post Graduate Diploma 14 month accelerated course which is focussed on preparing graduates for working in Children and Families social work.  Selection is via the Department for Education and applicants meeting the selection criteria are interviewed for partnerships of Local Authority Employers, Cambridgeshire are leading the East Regional partnership, which consists of Cambridgeshire, Peterborough, Norfolk, Suffolk, Essex, Southend on Sea and Thurrock.  The programme will start in January 2018 at Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge.

If you want to know more:

Cambridgeshire Workforce Development team is  to offer advice and suggestions on ways you can prepare for application to a Social Work course. If you are interested please sign up through Learn Together Cambridgeshire.

Return to Social Work

For any previously trained social workers whose professional registration may have lapsed, the HCPC specify requirements for re-registration.

There are also requirements for EEA Social Workers wishing to work in the country,

Cambridgeshire County Council welcomes enquiries for those hoping to return to work or transfer qualifications to the professional standards for England – please contact