University of East London

BA (Hons) Social Work

Are you interested in how people develop and what influences their behaviour? Do you want to help people at risk of harm? Are you interested in legislation and social policy?

This hugely popular course, one of UEL's flagship degrees, will give you a rewarding insight into contemporary social work and train you to become a reflective, capable and effective practitioner. You’ll learn how to support, protect and speak up for people in significant personal difficulty.

We'll give you the theory and information you need through lectures and seminars, but this course is all about hands-on experience - or 'learning by doing', as we call it.

You'll undertake supervised placements in your second and third years, applying your learning by working on real-life projects. By doing this, you'll be able to narrow down your areas of interest for your post-university career.

Thanks to an accreditation agreement between the University of East London and the Health and Care Professions Council, your degree will allow you to practise as a qualified social worker immediately after you graduate.

Entry Requirements


120 UCAS Points from

  • A LEVEL- Must include passes at A2 in at least two subjects.
  • BTEC- Extended Diploma minimum of DDM/DMM or Diploma with a minimum of D*D*
  • INTERNATIONAL BACCALAUREATE- Diploma with 33 points including 3 Higher Level subjects Applicants are required to have Grade 4 / C in GCSE English and Maths or equivalent. All suitable applicants are also required to attend an interview and pass a literacy test.

Other entry routes

Access to HE Diploma (QAA approved) with 60 credits overall and 45 credits at Level 3 - all Merit

English Language requirements

Overall IELTS 7.0 with a minimum of 6.5 in Writing, Speaking, Reading and Listening (or recognised equivalent).

If you do not meet the academic English language requirements for your course, you may be eligible to enrol onto a pre-sessional English programme. The length of the course will depend on your current level of English and the requirements for your degree programme. We offer a 5-week and an 11-week pre-sessional course. 

Disclosure and barring service

Applicants are required to complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for Regulated Activity.

As you will have close contact with children and/or vulnerable adults on this course, you will be required to have a satisfactory Disclosure & Barring Service Enhanced Disclosure certificate.

You need to complete this process prior to starting the course. Failure to complete this process will impact you going on placement as part of the course.

Social work interviews

All applicants applying to study Social Work will be required to take an in person test and subsequent interview. Applicants who are successful in passing the Social Work test will generally be interviewed two weeks after the test date. We are unable to arrange Skype or any other online means for our test and interviews. Photographic ID such as a passport or driving licence will be required on the day of your test and interview.

Professional Requirements

Applicants are required to complete an enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) check for Regulated Activity.

We are required by the Health and Care Professions Council, social work’s statutory regulator, to consider applicants’ potential health needs and the possible impact on fitness to practice. We therefore encourage all applicants to complete a health and wellbeing self-declaration form at the interview relating to health conditions that will affect their practice.

All entrants must demonstrate their suitability for social work training showing they possess the appropriate personal and intellectual qualities with the capability of meeting the required professional standards by the end of their training. Some experience of working with vulnerable people in a caring role and an understanding of how this relates to social work practice is essential.

All shortlisted applicants must confirm prior to offer that they have the ability to use basic IT facilities, including word processing, internet use and use of email, and will be asked to specify how these skills have been obtained.

Direct transfers from other programmes will not be considered.

Career Prospects

On your journey from student to practitioner, you'll be taught everything you need to know for a career in social work - current legislation and government policy, information sharing and confidentiality requirements, ways of communicating, social policy theories and research methods. 

But knowledge is just one side of the coin. Hands-on skills and experience are an equally important part of a social worker' toolkit. That's why 'learning by doing' is at the heart of our course. 

For example, you'll learn about safeguarding and when to take action, how to observe, when to observe, how and when to listen, how to promote social justice and how to practise in a non-discriminatory manner. 

You'll learn reflective practice – essentially, thinking more carefully about situations. You'll receive plenty of support to help you develop emotional resilience and an ability to work with others to solve problems. 

Other key skills you'll gain are the analysis and interpretation of evidence, as well as the art of critical thinking to draw on the appropriate knowledge and improve your performance as a social worker.

Course Details

We have more than 1,000 applicants for places on this course every year and only 65 places. Just to be accepted onto our programme is a massive achievement, and you'll when on your way to a rewarding career in social work. 

Because we're the principal social work training provider in east London, you can rest assured that you'll be in very safe hands when it comes to finding a job after graduating. 

We have strong links with local social work agencies and employers, who have known and trusted us and our graduates for many years. Our students are in constant demand for newly qualified social worker posts, so choosing this course will give you a head start when it comes to finding a job in social work in east London. 

We're fully accredited by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) to award professional qualifications in social work alongside academic degrees. When you complete this degree, you'll be eligible to register with the HCPC and practice as a social worker, though you'll still be required to continue your professional development as part of your professional registration. 

You'll do this through what's known as your 'Assessed and Supported Year in Employment', and you'll also have the option of gaining further qualifications, including a master's degree. 

Through these courses, you can continue to develop academically and professionally in line with the framework agreed by The College of Social Work - social work's professional body.

Year 1

Mental Wealth and Professional Fitness: Readiness for Social Work Practice
Communication skills
Introduction to theory
Human Growth and Development
Social Contexts and Social Policy

Year 2

Professional Practice Placement: I (70 Days)
Contemporary Issues for Social Work Practice: I
Social Policy, Welfare, and Law I
Contemporary Issues for Social Work Practice: II
Social Policy, Welfare, and Law II

Optional Placement

This course offers the opportunity of year-long placement between years two and three. If you choose to take this option, you’ll spend your third year on a placement with a relevant company or organisation, adding valuable practical experience to your growing academic knowledge.
The extra placement year means it will take four years to complete your studies, instead of three.

Year 3

Professional Practice Placement: II (100 Days)
Advanced Social Work Theory: Applying Critical Thinking and Analysis to Practice
Social Work Practice with Children and Families: Knowledge and Skills Integration
Research Minded Practice for Social Work
Social Work Practice with Adults: Knowledge and Skills Integration

*The information’s are correct at the time of publishing, however it may change if university makes any changes after we have published the information. While we try our best to provide correct information, It is advisable to call us or visit university website for up to date information.

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