University of Brighton

Social Work

  • Course summary and entry requirements

    Course duration Help

    Full-time: 3 years

    Part-time: 4 years

    UCAS code L500

    Professional accreditation

    Social work education and training are regulated by Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) and you are required to conduct yourself in accordance with the Health and Care Professions Council guidance on conduct and ethics for students. The course has transitional approval from HCPC, with an approval visit made in 2013. The course is endorsed by The College of Social Work (TCSW).
    The Health and Social Care Professions Council's Standards of Proficiency for Social Workers (which students must meet by the end of the course) and The College of Social Work's Professional Capabilities Framework are addressed throughout the course.

    About the course

    BSc(Hons) Social Work combines academic study with practice learning in placements in agencies providing social care and social work services. As well as learning about social work practice, there is a focus on the inter-professional context of social work, with shared sessions with occupational therapy, nursing, physiotherapy, education and medical students. Like all our social work courses, this course is run in partnership with Local Authority Social Services Departments (Brighton & Hove City Council, East Sussex County Council, West Sussex County Council) and with users of services and carers.

    Social work practice is demanding and challenging. Practitioners must have sound knowledge and skills to work in a meaningful way with individuals who may be vulnerable, marginalised and in need of support and protection. Social work requires commitment, a willingness to examine own attitudes and values, good organisational skills and emotional resilience.

    Achievement of BSc(Hons) Social Work enables you to be eligible to apply to the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) to register as a social worker, which is a title protected by law. The social work degree is generic and after it you choose an area of practice in which to specialise.

    Typical entry requirements Help

    The entry requirements listed here are for students starting their course in 2014.

    Applicants whose predicted grades fall below these requirements, but who can demonstrate a high commitment to the subject discipline or have relevant work experience, are still encouraged to apply and will be considered on an individual basis.



    International Baccalaureate:
    34 points.

    Access to HE Diploma
    pass (at least 45 credits at level 3), with 30 credits at merit or distinction, including level 3 credits in written communication, study skills, and reading and writing skills. Social work courses preferred.

    GCSE (minimum grade C) or Access Equivalent
    a good profile including maths and English.

    For non-native speakers of English:
    IELTS 7.0 overall, with a minimum of 6.5 in the other elements.

    Experience in either a social work agency or similar setting, paid or voluntary.
    Understanding of and preparedness for social care and social work practice.
    A satisfactory academic reference.
    A satisfactory second character reference, preferably relating to social care or from your most recent employer.

    Visit the school that delivers this course

    Other courses like this:

    Social Work

  • Course content

    Course structure

    Year 1 introduces social work practice. There is learning about how the social sciences inform social work, and a focus also on social work skills and theory. The inter-professional practice context is introduced.

    Year 2 develops more specialist practice knowledge and skills. There is inter professional learning on specific topics, and learning on evidence-based practice and the first practice placement of 70 days takes place.

    In Year 3, the second placement of 100 days enables further development and consolidation of more complex practice. Learning continues on research mindedness with an in-depth social work practice project of your choice.


    The modules are as set out below, with inter-professional learning across all three years:
    Year 1
    SS406 Introduction to Social Work Practice
    SS407 Social Policy and Social Welfare
    SS408 Human Growth and Development (Applied Psychology for Social Work and Social Welfare Practice)
    SS409 Preparing for Social Work Practice (Social Work Approaches and Interventions: Skills, Theory and Methods )
    SS410 Law for Social Workers
    SS411 Service User and Carer Needs and Resources

    Year 2
    SS505 Social Work Practice with Adults, Children and Families: Skills theory and Context
    SS506 Social Work Practice with Adults, Children and Families: Law, Policy and Protection
    SS508 Developing Reflective and Analytic Social Work Practice
    SS507 Practice Learning 1 (70 day placement)

    Year 3
    SS600 Social Work Project
    SS601 Contemporary Social Work
    SS602 Practice Learning 2 (100 day placement)

    You can view the programme specification for this course as a PDF file by clicking on the link below:

    Programme Specification

  • Fees and costs

    Social Work Bursary: Background Information:
    In previous years social work bursaries have been available via the NHS Business Services Authority (NHSBSA) to support study on approved undergraduate courses of social work education.  NHSBSA  administer bursaries for social work students on behalf of the Department of Health (DH).  For students entering in 2013 changes were made, with bursaries available for Years 2 and 3 of an undergraduate social work degree and a cap on the number of bursaries available nationally. For 2013 entrants 15 bursaries were made available for BSc (Hons) Social Work at University of Brighton. You can read about reforming the social work bursary at:  

    The NHSBSA state: ‘The DH recognised the bursary would work in combination with the Social Work Reform Board (SWRB) reforms on education to improve quality. A Social Work Bursary Prioritisation Advisory Group has been set up to advice on the capping arrangements and there will also be a Monitoring Group with wider membership’.

    Information for September 2014 entrants
    The DH has announced a further review of the social work bursary and at present the outcome of this is not known. You should visit the NHSBA website for information and are welcome to contact the Admissions Tutor for discussion. We will update this information when it becomes available. 
    Note: You can find information on other sources of financial support at:

    Fees are set by the University in advance and will not be affected by any changes to the NHS Social Work Bursary
    The fees listed here are for full-time courses beginning in the academic year 2013-14 and are given for indicative purposes. Further tuition fees are payable for each subsequent year of study and may be subject to small increases, in line with inflation.
    The tuition fee you have to pay depends on whether you study full- or part-time. If you are studying part-time you will normally be charged on a pro rata basis depending on the number of modules you take.
    Information for fees for courses starting in 2014 will be advertised when it is available.
    What's included in the fee?
    When costs such as health or criminal record checks are incurred as a mandatory requirement of the course they are included in your tuition fee.
    You will incur additional costs on the course (e.g. the cost of travelling to and from placement). Before you apply please check with the Admissions Tutor for advice about what is included and what additional costs you could face so you can budget accordingly.
    Our website  provides advice about funding and scholarships as well as further information about fees and advice on international and island fee paying status.
    BSc Hons Social Work   [L1EG001]
    UK/EU (Full Time) 9,000 GBP
    Island Students (Full Time) 9,000 GBP
    International (Full Time) 12,900 GBP

    BSc Hons Social Work  [L1EG001]
    UK/EU (Full Time)9,000 GBP
    Island Students (Full Time)9,000 GBP
    International (Full Time)13,220 GBP

  • Location

    Location Help Falmer

    Our Falmer campus is located on the edge of the South Downs National Park on the outskirts of Brighton. Approximately 7,000 students are based here.

    View campus maps and directions

    Living in Brighton

    Brighton’s rich mix of historic architecture, lively arts scene, varied shopping and cosmopolitan community make it a vibrant, enjoyable place to live. It is no wonder that many Brighton graduates choose to stay here.

    Social scene

    Alongside the traditional seaside attractions, Brighton is famed for its exciting social scene with a wide choice of pubs, clubs and restaurants.

    Music event on the beach


    The highlight of the city’s cultural year is the Brighton Festival. The event is held each May and is England’s biggest arts festival, which showcases arts and performance from around the world. Brighton is also home to the UK’s oldest working cinema, the Duke of York’s, which shows alternative and mainstream films. The city is also well known for its exciting music scene and hosts The Great Escape music festival.

    Burning the Clocks winter solstice festival


    Whether you take your sport seriously or just want to keep fit, Brighton offers all kinds of sports opportunities and facilities, on and off campus. You can also make the most of the location, and play volleyball, basketball and windsurfing down by the beach. The seafront is also the finishing point for the famous London – Brighton bicycle ride and the quirky veteran car run.

    Playing volleyball on the seafront
  • Career opportunities

    This is an important time to enter the social work profession. There continues to be a need for social workers nationally.

    Employment opportunities arise in local authorities and voluntary agencies for practice with children, older and disabled people and those using mental health services.

    Visit the careers service website.

  • More...

    Excellent Facilities

    The School of Applied Social Science is located on the attractive Falmer campus, only four miles from central Brighton.  Facilities at Falmer include a state of the art computer centre, extensive library and a media resources centre for student use.

    Other student support services include the university’s careers centre, welfare service, a counselling service, chaplaincy and childcare provision.


    Our lecturers in social work are all involved in national and international research cultures, publishing and speaking to national and international audiences, and are frequently reported in local, national and international media.

    Ongoing research work informs our teaching, making it contemporary, innovative and dynamic. 

    Our degrees enable students to acquire the essential research skills needed for investigating experience and behaviour, supporting students to develop the ability to conduct research independently.

    Community participation and development

    Teaching and research within the School of Applied Social Science is supported by our links with local communities.

    The School’s close working relationship with the university’s Community University Partnership project (Cupp) allows us to offer our undergraduate students the opportunity to combine practical experience within a community or voluntary organisation with academic study. 

    The Community Participation and Development (CPD) module offers the opportunity to explore some of your personal values and aspirations while working for 30 to 50 hours on a relevant placement.  Staff and students provide their skills and expertise, working alongside community organisations to help them achieve their aims.  For example students on criminology courses may wish to work with a crime prevention organisation while sociology students may wish to work in a homeless shelter or a local pressure group.

    It is offered in 10- and 20-credit modules at levels 2 and 3, and assessment is based on reflective as well as analytical assignments which encourage you to look at your own personal journey as well as the policy and practice of the organisation in which your placement is based.

Social Work

Find out more

You can apply for 2014 entry now

Call our enquiries team
01273 644644

Or email

If you are an international student call us on
+44 1273 644644

More about this course