Manchester Metropolitan University

Step Up To Social Work

Courses

MMU was one of the two universities commissioned by the Department for Education to develop and quality assure the initial Step Up to Social Work Programme Pilot which ran for the first time in 2010. We have continued to deliver the programme with local authority partnerships ever since and are currently working with our fourth cohort of students.

MMU is committed to developing sustained partnership working with employers in order to produce high-calibre Social Workers equipped for the realities of the front-line Social Work practice; this was recognised in a recent national evaluation of the programme by DfE.

Information About Cohort 5 – 2018 / 2019

On 14 January 2016, the government announced that another cohort of the Step Up to Social Work programme (Cohort 5) will be commissioned.

Please visit the following link for more information and to register your interest in the programme. This will enable you to receive regular information about the timetable for recruitment and selection process:

www.gov.uk/guidance/step-up-to-social-work-information-for-applicants

We advise you to check the website regularly for any updated information on Cohort 5.

Our Current Partnerships

MMU currently has three regional partnerships of local authorities in Greater Lancashire, East Midlands and the North East for the fourth cohort of Step Up to Social Work programme, which commenced in January 2016.

East Midlands

MMU has been working in partnership with the East Midlands Partnership since cohort 1. For cohort 4 the Partnership comprises of the following Local Authorities

Derby City, Nottingham City, Nottinghamshire County Council, Leicester City, Leicestershire County Council, Northamptonshire County Council, Lincolnshire County Council.

Key strengths include:

  • Overall student satisfaction levels for their programme of study
  • Strong partnership working
  • Student preparedness and readiness for practice at the point of qualification and employment
  • A course that is mapped against the statement of knowledge and skills for child and family social work

External examiners have commented that high attainment levels and high completion levels, reflect the success of partnership working, the commitment to joint working, including co-delivery with service users and an overall commitment to supporting and developing students to very high standards ready for the workforces of each local authority.

The success of our partnerships arises from:

  • A very positive ethos of joint working
  • Employer and University responsiveness to high quality educational and practice based provision
  • Flexibility to meet employers needs over a wide geographical area
  • Creative and innovative provision which is employer led
  • Currency of knowledge and flexibility within the curriculum

The programme is a high quality bespoke programme based on:

  • A blended learning approach to Social Work education encompassing online delivery, direct  face to face teaching sessions, workshops, tutorials and small group learning opportunities
  • Utilisation of electronic technology for the programme online delivery aspect.
  • Sustained focus on integrating theory and practice, throughout the programme, stimulated by an integrated practice/academic structure focusing upon skills development

Practicalities

The programme provides support to students through face-to-face workshops, online tutor support and personal tutor arrangements. Students are expected to be highly motivated, able to work independently and to engage fully in online material aimed to support their learning.

Face to face teaching will occur in the region; in previous cohorts this has been in Nottingham. Face to face teaching and workshops occur approximately once a week.

Some Local Authorities expect students to have a driving licence.

The Local Authorities in the partnership are very committed to provide good learning experiences for Step up students and, after graduating, as a social worker with the supporting Local Authority.

What our current students think of the course

"iBooks have been superb. This has been a new way of learning for me, and I have enjoyed the freedom to work through at my pace."
"I am deeply humbled to be taught by passionate and knowledgeable people. We have met tremendously influential professionals. This has been an incredible journey which has raced along with fabulous management, energy and knowledge."
"The staff are supportive, the programme is current and I have enjoyed the course. Although it is fast paced it works well and the placements are a fantastic opportunity to prepare you for the world of social work."

Greater Lancashire

The Greater Lancashire Partnership comprises of, Lancashire County Council, Blackburn with Darwin and Blackpool Council.

Key strengths include:

  • Overall student satisfaction levels for their programme of study
  • Strong partnership working
  • Student preparedness and readiness for practice at the point of qualification and employment
  • A course that is mapped against the statement of knowledge and skills for child and family social work

External examiners have commented that high attainment levels and high completion levels, reflect the success of partnership working, the commitment to joint working, including co-delivery with service users and an overall commitment to supporting and developing students to very high standards ready for the workforces of each local authority.

The success of our partnerships arises from:

  • A very positive ethos of joint working
  • Employer and University responsiveness to high quality educational and practice based provision
  • Flexibility to meet employers needs over a wide geographical area
  • Creative and innovative provision which is employer led
  • Currency of knowledge and flexibility within the curriculum

Step up to social work is a high quality bespoke programme based on:

  • A blended learning approach to Social Work education encompassing online delivery, direct  face to face teaching sessions, workshops, tutorials and small group learning opportunities
  • Utilisation of electronic technology for the programme online delivery aspect.
  • Sustained focus on integrating theory and practice, throughout the programme, stimulated by an integrated practice/academic structure focusing upon skills development

What our current students think of the course

"Really comprehensive information, with lots of links to other resources that may be of use to the module being studied, but also to practice. I feel that they are able to offer much more information that would be available if delivered face to face…I like the availability of iBooks and the ability to access electronic versions of academic texts using them."
"The quality and relevance of the teaching at MMU is very good. It not only prepares students to be technically competent at the task of being a social worker but encourages them to think about the profession and become mindful of the challenges face within the field and what changes are required. I believe that this will support students to progress quickly upon qualifying."

North East

MMU is delighted to be working in partnership with the North East for cohort 4 to deliver the same high standard of education provided in previous cohorts. The Partnership comprises of the following Local Authorities

Currently involved in the programme?

We have dedicated resource area for current students and practice educators on the Step up to Social Work programme. The resource area contains everything needed to complete the programme.

Access the Step up to Social Work resource area