Helping to support and grow Our Social Work Students in the North East

Here at NESWA we are keen to help to develop the next generation of social workers in the North East.

We want to showcase why people should be encouraged to become a social worker, what this entails and what support is available. We also want to promote inclusivity in terms of admissions and programme support as well as next steps once a student completes their studies.

As we're based in the North East, we want to promote the region as a place to live, work and play. The region is home to fantastic opportunities for social work, whether you are studying to become a social worker, you have just qualified or even if you're simply thinking about which course to enrol on.

Please take the time to have a look at the information on offer and make sure to ask plenty of questions - There's no such thing as a stupid question. You can even ask us here at NESWA at or find us on Twitter.

Pre-Course Checklist

Make sure to take your time reading up on the different routes into social work that are available.

Ensure that you have consulted the course reading list.

Make sure you are aware of any course requirements before you start, for example, information on portable DBS Checks (find out more here)

If possible, speak to fellow students that are enrolled on courses as well as qualified practitioners for realistic advice and guidance.

Ensure you have all the necessary equipment in order to complete the course or that there is available access to required resources.

Keep up to date with legislative changes and key pieces of documentation such as the Professional Capabilities Framework and Key Skills Statements.

Research about the admissions process for your course and also practice placements which form a substantial part of the SW course.

Become accustomed to the language used within the profession (see our Jargon Buster for examples).

Speak to qualified practitioners or even take on some voluntary work as this will supplement your knowledge and experience.

Keep up to date with recent news articles that are relevant to national legislation or the area in which you live/study.

Research key organisations in the Social Work field i.e. BASW, HCPC and Social Work England (Links to all can be found here)

Research available student support to you, both from the institution you are attending and national/regional organisations.

BASW & Social Work England – Appointment Rules Consultation

By Glenn Dunnett | November 13, 2018

Social Work England (SWE) have launched their first public consultation on Social Work England’s appointment rules, which form part of the legislative framework underpinning the work of the organisation.   SWE will be the new, specialist regulator for all child, family and adult social workers in England.  SWE will be an independent public protection body,…

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Social Work on the Move

By Felicity Shenton | November 12, 2018

Anyone that knows me will be aware that I am not a fan of hot-desking, sorry agile working! This week I came across some interesting research on the subject. ‘Seeking Solitude & Distance from Others: Children’s’ Social Workers Agile Working Practices and Experiences Beyond the Office. Dharman Jeyasingham, British Journal of Social Work (2018) 0, 1-18.’…

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Social Work England – Have Your Say on its Identity!

By Glenn Dunnett | November 6, 2018

Social Work England is the new national body that is being developed to represent social work in England and they are asking for your views on its identity. “Hemingway Design has been appointed to develop a visual identity to communicate the mission of Social Work England.” However, the group are looking to collaborate with as many people…

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Prison – No Place for Old Men – Monday 10th December

By Glenn Dunnett | November 2, 2018

A short workshop, which aims to explore the position of the ‘older’ prisoner in relation to health and social care provision, recognising how people over the age of 60 are the fastest growing group in custody. Through the examination of Prison Reform Trust reports and documentation, as well as research, the workshop will examine the…

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Co-Production a Better Route to Impact? – Tuesday 20th November

By Glenn Dunnett | November 2, 2018

Service User Co-Production and Participation in Mental Health – Tuesday 20th November, 9:00-12:00 Room 5, The Durham Centre, Belmont, Co. Durham, DH1 3TN Participation, user led, collaboration, co-production are all common terms used to describe the involvement of people in learning, teaching and research. This masterclass will explore the meaning of these around the blurring…

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NESWA Annual Appraisal Tool Mapped Against the KSS – Use it Today!

By Felicity Shenton | October 30, 2018

NESWA has been developing a number of pieces of work that aim to ensure that the Knowledge and Skills Statements (KSS) are firmly embedded within organisations that employ registered social workers. The new social work regulator Social Work England has already indicated that when it starts work next autumn it will be looking at how…

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Social Work England – What Difference will you See?

By Glenn Dunnett | October 30, 2018

NESWA can confirm that BASW North East Branch will host a seminar on the incoming Social Work England in the new year. It is anticipated that in 2019 Social Work England will be the new, specialist regulator for all child, family and adult social workers in England. Join BASW North East Branch, Skills for Care,…

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Systems Centred Theory – Free Workshop for Social Work Practitioners & Students

By Glenn Dunnett | October 30, 2018

GAPS (Groups for the Advancement of Psychodynamics and Psychotherapy in Social Work) are hosting a free workshop in Newcastle this Friday!! (2nd November) Research shows that building the working alliance is central to successful social work, yet is sometimes difficult to achieve. This workshop sets out to develop participants’ skills in conducting purposeful social work…

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Shining a Spotlight on Suicide Prevention

By Glenn Dunnett | October 30, 2018

Within the field of social work, and every increasingly in modern society, the topic of mental health is debated with various focus such as work-based anxiety and stress, depression and suicide. With particular regards to the latter topic, often, many people who engage in the conversation feel ill-equipped and/or ill-informed to fully engage or understand…

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National Learn to Care Annual Study Day – 26th November

By Glenn Dunnett | October 29, 2018

We are delighted to invite you to join your colleagues at the Annual study day for workforce development leads, principal social workers, commissioner’s et al who operate within the adults and children’s social care sector. This Learn to Care study event aims to provide information, support and networking opportunities through a blend of key note…

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Social Work on Social Media – Play by the Rules

By Glenn Dunnett | October 29, 2018

Social Media plays a huge role in society today and often people are quick to post about their daily routines, opinions and work. Added to this, as part of a revised PCF document, social workers are expected to contribute to the positive image of social work through social media. However, it is important to be…

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Time to De-Clutter – A Quick Reminder

By Helen Woolley | October 26, 2018

Having recently completed the GDPR training I realised that it might be an excellent time to remind PEs that if the student has gone through an academic board at the end of their placement the documents relating to the placement need to be destroyed. They are no longer current or relevant. If you have been…

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Recommended Reading

Professor David Croisdale-Appleby - Revisioning Social Work Education: An Independent Review

Sir Martin Narey - Residential Care in England Report

Neil Thompson - Understanding Social Work (Palgrave Macmillan, 2015)

Pete Feldon - The Social Worker's Guide to the Care Act 2014 (Critical Publishing, 2017)

Melanie Parris - An Introduction to Social Work Practice (MH Education, 2012)

Barbra Teater - Contemporary Social Work Practice: A Handbook for Students (MH Education, 2014)

Liz Davies & Evelyn Kerrigan Lebloch - Communicating with Children and their Familes: Responding to Need and Protection (MH Education, 2013)

Vivienne Cree - Becoming a Social Worker (Routledge, 2013)

Useful Web Links

British Association of Social Work (BASW) -

Social Work England -

Health & Care Professions Council (HCPC) -

International Federation of Social Work (IFSW) -

Community Care -

One Stop Social -

Skills For Care -

Critical Publishing -

National Institute for Health & Care Excellence (NICE) -

Guardian Social Care Network -


Handy advice for Student Admissions

  1. Admissions consists of three components: A Group Discussion, An Individual interview and written test
  2. Be aware of key legislation and documentation for the profession i.e. the Professional Capabilities Framework and Key Skills Statements
  3. During the group discussion element, be mindful of others but be positive in expressing your own views and contributing to the conversation
  4. The individual interview panel will consist of a member of university/college staff and either a service user/carer or practitioner
  5. Be mindful of your own strengths and weaknesses
  6. Be prepared to talk about personal or professional experiences you have faced. Perhaps develop a few examples either in your mind or written down before the Admissions process.
  7. Be yourself! - It's important that whilst you demonstrate knowledge and understanding of the subject matter, staff want to see you as a person and how your natural reaction affects discussions. Your personality is vital to your social work practice.
  8. Don't be disheartened if you are unsuccessful on the first attempt, for some candidates, having that experience helps build resilience which is a key component of social work life.

For further guidance and advice, make sure to undertake your own research online as there are lots of fantastic blogs and articles on this subject area such as this handy guide at One Stop Social.

wanting to know about a specific course or place of on one of the below and explore!

Money Matters

Aside from all the studying that you'll be doing as a student and information to take on board in relation to your courses, the issue of money is also a big concern for students.
On this page, we have tried to provide handy links to useful information and guidance all things regarding cash, student loans, grants and everything else to do with pounds and pennies!
It is important to recognise that student finance is the responsibility of the student so it is in YOUR best interest to take the time to read up on these things. Of course, your university/college will be there to offer support in these things and we've included some handy advice specifically from them too!


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