Manchester Metropolitan University

MA

Advanced Social Work Practice

2017 entry

Features and benefits of the course

  • Teaching and learning undertaken as a flexible programme of masterclasses linked to your experience and requirements
  • All master classes draw upon the students range of experiences and practice and focus on the application of theory and research to practice.

About the course

Teaching and learning is undertaken through a range of master classes often led by nationally known experts in the defined field of study. This is supported by active skills based work, seminars, tutorials, web links and the use of problem based learning techniques. 

Typical units of study may include

Year 1

Likely Optional Units
Assessed and Supported Year in Employment

This Masters level unit will address issues of professional practice for Social Workers at the beginning of their career, aligned with the PCF/ASYE level capabilities.

The unit will provide underpinning knowledge and learning to be delivered alongside employer ASYE programmes and will contribute to students’ understanding and achievement of PCF/ASYE level descriptors and continuing requirements of professional registration.

Assessment and Intervention- Skills for Practice

The overall aim of this unit is to provide a systematic and critical exploration of areas of practice that relate to the assessment and intervention in working with children, adults, families and communities. The focus is upon skill development underpinned by theoretical knowledge and application within and across a range of contexts and service user groups. The unit will focus upon models of assessment and intervention and focus upon defined skill areas relating to defined areas of practice. It aims to enable recognition of the contribution, and begin to make use of, research informed practice and will focus upon utilising critical thinking and evidence based decision making to understand assessment and intervention across a range of service settings in addition to focusing upon forms of harm and their impact on people, and the implications for practice, drawing on concepts of strength, resilience, vulnerability, risk and resistance, and their application to practice. It considers assessment and intervention within an inter professional and intra organisational context and considers how practice and organisational cultures can shape and impact upon practice.

The areas identified are linked to TCSW Professional Capabilities Framework  level descriptor -Social Worker and Experienced Social Worker

Best Interests Assessor

The aim of this unit is to provide the necessary legislative frameworks and accompanying principles required for practitioners to undertake the statutory role of Best Interest Assessor (BIA). The BIA is responsible for deciding whether a person is deprived of their liberty as defined by Article 5 of the ECtHRs, whether it is in their best interests and for how long an authorisation should last. In order for practitioners to be qualified as BIAs their respective Supervisory bodies will need to be satisfied that they are able to undertake assessments at the standard set in the Mental Capacity (Deprivation of Liberty: Standard Authorisations, Assessments and Ordinary Residence) Regulations 2008. Similarly, practitioners will need to demonstrate the six areas of capability as defined by the College of Social Work (TCSW). 

Consolidating Professional Practice

The overall aim of this unit is to provide a systematic and critical exploration of areas of practice that relate to the consolidation of practice beyond the first year of an NQSW. It explores issues or criticality, empirical evidence, use of knowledge related to specific areas of practice, including critical awareness of current issues and new evidence based practice research. It aims to enable recognition of the  contribution, and begin to make use of, research informed practice and will focus upon utilising critical thinking and evidence based decision making to understand forms of harm and their impact on people, and the implications for practice, drawing on concepts of strength, resilience, vulnerability, risk and resistance, and their application to practice

The areas identified are linked to TCSW Professional Capabilities Framework  level descriptor -Social Worker 

Contemporary Policy and Legislation

The unit is designed to provide a critical overview of contemporary policy and legislation in one or more of the following areas: Children’s Services; Adults Services;

Mental Health Services; Integrated Services; Mental Capacity; Family Justice.

It will include critical evaluation and analysis of the impact of contemporary policy and legislation on service users, carers and professionals. The unit teaching and learning materials and the unit assessment will be linked to the student’s area of practice or leadership and their professional development in the context of the TCSW capabilities framework.

Continuing Professional Development in Social Work

The overall aim of this unit is to provide a systematic and critical exploration of areas of professional identity and professional development as a social worker at all levels within TCSW PCF level descriptors. The unit will aim to support the development of professional identity in relation to knowledge of social work as a profession, identification of skills and knowledge relating to the social work role with critical analysis of the development of individual social workers within this. 

The areas identified are linked to TCSW Professional Capabilities Framework level descriptors for all qualified social workers. 

Developing Effective Supervision and Mentoring

The aim of this unit is to critically explore and understand the core knowledge and skills required for effective supervision and mentoring of social work practice, that enhance the evidence based decision-making skills and critical analysis of the practitioner and thus promotes safe and positive outcomes for service users. The unit will explore and understand the purpose of professional supervision as a process of change for supervisors, supervisees and service users, critically considering the functions and processes of supervision and the role of the supervisor in assisting supervisees and teams in developing their practice and professional judgement. The unit will also consider the role of supervision, and the effective supervisor, in the management of performance within the workplace. The areas identified are linked to TCSW Professional Capabilities Framework level descriptor – Experienced Social Worker.

Leadership and Management

The overall aim of this unit is to provide a systematic and critical exploration of the knowledge base and skills associated with leadership and management within a range of practice based settings. The unit will explore theoretical concepts relating to management, leadership, organisational change, public sector governance and the management and leadership of others. The unit will provide opportunity to develop skills in the application of these concepts to law, policy, workplace cultures and work based practice with a view to achieving quality standards in organisational and individual performance management within the public sector.  Issues relating to individual and organisational accountability within partnership arrangements will be considered. Taught through a series of master classes the module is flexible to meet the emerging and different needs of leaders and managers in a range of settings. There will be a focus on the application of these concepts and associated skills in practice, for some this may relate to supporting others with a focus on staff supervision and in continuing professional development, for others this could relate to managing higher levels of risk and understanding strategic contexts.

The areas identified are linked to TCSW Professional Capabilities Framework level descriptor – Experienced Social Worker, Advanced Social Work Practitioner and Principal Social Worker.

Safeguarding Adults within Clinical Practice

The aim of this unit is to provide a systematic and critical exploration of clinical roles across health and social care settings within safeguarding adults. This will be from the perspective of safeguarding alerters within the process and is designed to support practitioners within these contexts to meet their clinical responsibilities. The unit will support practitioners to demonstrate their professional capability and competency within safeguarding adults under the appropriate health and social care frameworks.

 This unit will focus on the roles and responsibilities of health and social care professionals within their clinical practice as it relates to safeguarding adults. It explores current policy and legislative frameworks and identifies the thresholds for interventions. There will be a focus on clinical decision making and links made to respective professional competency and capability frameworks. The unit will explore the particular issue of unwise decisions and self-neglect. Links to the research evidence will take place in order to support clinical decision making.

 

The Professional Educator (Stage 1)

This unit aims to prepare post-qualified social workers to act a Practice Educators, for pre-qualifying social work students. This unit will develop and extend students’ abilities in managing the learning and assessment of pre-qualifying social work students. This will include the understanding of skills and knowledge required to develop the learning of others and to supervise, support and assess learners in line with the Professional Capabilities Framework and PEPS 2013

The Professional Educator (Stage 2)

This module will develop and extend students’ abilities in managing the learning and progression of qualifying students and NQSWs. This will include the understanding and extension of the skills and knowledge required to develop the learning of others and to supervise, support and assess such learners in line with the requirements of the Professional Capabilities Framework and the PEPS (2012).

Working with the Court of Protection

The aim of this unit is to support health and social care professionals in  their dealings with the Court of Protection.

Since the Supreme Court judgement in 2014, known as the ‘Cheshire West’ case, there has been a significant increase in the use of the Court of Protection to authorise the care and treatment of those who lack decision making capacity. In particular there has been a need for professionals

to seek authorisation from the court for so called ‘deprivations of liberty in the community’. This has resulted in predominantly adult social workers having to either prepare reports for and present evidence in the courts. This is not a role that this set of workers have previously undertaken.

Therefore, this unit is designed to support workers in this new role.

The unit will cover the necessary knowledge and skills required to work with the Court of Protection. This will include practical court room skills and report writing i.e. COP10 form. The unit will also identify the thresholds for involvement by the Court including identifying a community deprivation of liberty. As such, the relevant legislative frameworks and contemporary case law will be explored including the Mental Capacity Act 2005 and the Human Rights Act 1998.

Programme Review

Each programme of study that we offer undergoes an annual review to ensure an up-to-date curriculum supported by the latest online learning technology. In addition, we undertake a major review of the programme, normally at 6-yearly intervals, but this can take place at a more frequent interval where required. Applicants should note that the programme currently provided may be subject to change as a result of the review process. We only make changes where we consider it necessary to do so or where we feel that certain changes are in the best interests of students and to enhance the quality of provision. Occasionally, we have to make changes for reasons outside our control. Where there are changes which may materially affect the current programme content and/or structure, offer holders will be informed.

Assessment details

With flexibility being key to this programme, there is scope for
individual time plans for course completion taking into account your
individualised learning pathway. All modules can be undertaken as
stand-alone learning for your continuing professional development
(CPD). You will be assessed through a combination of assignments,
literature reviews, oral presentations, case studies, team
presentations to your work team, portfolio and a research project.
Detailed guidance for each area of study will be provided and
explained at the point of identifying your individualised learning
pathway.

Additional Information About this Course

Professional, Statutory and Regulatory Bodies require students to achieve results that demonstrate their ability to practise safely. There are therefore some exceptions to the standard University Assessment Regulations for those students, for example limitations on resits and on compensation of failed marks.

Teaching Staff

Your studies are supported by a team of committed and enthusiastic teachers and researchers, experts in their chosen field. We also work with external professionals, many of whom are Manchester Met alumni, to enhance your learning and appreciation of the wider subject. Details of departmental staff can be found at: http://www2.mmu.ac.uk/social-care-and-social-work/staff

Typical entry requirements

Typically, an applicant should hold either a UK honours degree (or international equivalent) or a professional qualification in social work recognised by HCPC. Applicants should also either be working in the field of social work or social care OR have recent experience of social work.

There’s further information for international students on our international website if you’re applying with non-UK qualifications.

How do I apply for this course?

The quickest and most efficient way to apply for this course is to apply online. This way, you can also track your application at each stage of the process.

Apply online now

If you are unable to apply online, you can apply for full- and part-time taught courses by completing the postgraduate application form. There are exceptions for some professional courses – the course information on our on-line prospectus will give you more information in these cases.

Please note: to apply for this course, you only need to provide one reference.

Career options after the course

This advanced programme of study, provides practising social
workers with an opportunity to study for either a specialised
postgraduate qualification or a stand alone CPD unit which will
significantly enhance professional practice and contribute towards
career development, providing evidence of continued learning as
part of HCPC’s requirement for continuing registration.
The programme also enables learners to specialise in a defined area
of practice and to develop pathways which reflect their career
development and areas.


This programme is approved by the HCPC and endorsed by
The College of Social Work

Confirmation of Regulator

The Higher Education Funding Council for England is the principal regulator for the University.

Important Notice

This online prospectus provides an overview of our programmes of study and the University. We regularly update our online prospectus so that our published course information is accurate and up to date. Please note that our programmes are subject to review and development on an ongoing basis. Changes may sometimes be necessary. For example, to comply with the requirements of professional or accrediting bodies or as a result of student feedback or external examiners’ reports. We also need to ensure that our courses are dynamic and current and that the content and structure maintain academic standards and enhance the quality of the student experience.

Please check back to the online prospectus before making an application to us.

The provision of education by the University is subject to terms and conditions of enrollment and contract. The current Terms and Conditions Applicable to the provision of the University’s Educational Services are available online. When a student enrolls with us, their study and registration at the University will be governed by various regulations, policies and procedures. It is important that applicants/students familiarize themselves with our Terms and Conditions and the Key Contract Documents referred to within. Applicants will be provided with access to an up to date version at offer stage. This can be found within the Information for Offer Holders document.