SW0514 - Preparing for Professional Practice

What will I learn on this module?

This module builds upon teaching themes and your learning at Level 4. In line with the requirements of the Practice Capabilities Framework (PCF) the module aims to support you from beginning level practice to the end of the second year of professional social work education. The main topics and subject areas you will study include understanding professional organisations and contexts and collaborative working. There are 27 placement days attached to this module where you will have the opportunity to develop knowledge and skills as developing social work practitioners with service users, carers and other professionals in practice settings. You will demonstrate your professional development through applying your learning on professional practice within differing contexts and by taking responsibility for your conduct, practice and learning within a designated setting. The module will build on the theme of developing your critical self-awareness to enable you to develop your skills in the area of relationship building and collaborative working with a range of stakeholders in a variety of organisations. The module will assist you in developing your appreciation of critical reflection on your own professional journey and viewing this as a key skill for becoming an effective practitioner who is able to respond to changing economic, social, political and organisational contexts. You will have opportunities to build skills of mentoring undertake a peer mentoring role and be involved in the development of others in a supportive environment. The module teaching will provide you with the preparatory foundation for your practice as a professional which will be enhanced in level 5.

How will I be supported academically on this module?

A combination of lectures, seminars and group guidance tutorials will be used to support your academic learning on this module. Lectures and seminars will be delivered by the module team and will focus on key concepts introduced within the main topics and subject areas of the module. Individual and group work will facilitate your academic learning and some of the module learning will be encouraged through delivery of key areas of professional practice by specialist practitioners. The module staff team will provide academic support throughout the course of the module. Your learning in practice will be supported and assessed by an allocated Practice Educator (PE). Your PE will provide you with practice learning support and will be responsible for assessment of your practice-based learning. Throughout the duration of your practice-based learning you will have regular supervision with your PE in relation to your development of practice competence in meeting the requirements of the PCF. Teaching and learning strategies provided by your PE will include supporting you in preparing for and undertaking a direct observation of practice and managing the practice experience. Supervision with your PE will support you in discussing professional issues and focus on encouraging your critical reflection on your learning experience. During the period of practice-based learning you will be supported by a Personal Tutor (PT) who will monitor your professional development and provide academic support during your placement.

What will I be expected to read on this module?

All modules at Northumbria include a range of reading materials that students are expected to engage with. The reading list for this module can be found at: http://readinglists.northumbria.ac.uk

What will I be expected to achieve?

Knowledge & Understanding:

• You will develop knowledge, understanding and an ability to work within the professional standards and meet the required level within the PCF for the end of the first year of professional practice in placement

Intellectual / Professional skills & abilities:

• You will be able to analyse the role of the professional social worker in a range of contexts and be able to work collaboratively with a range of key stakeholders
• You will develop the ability to articulate the important role of supervision and make an active contribution to learning and practice in this process

• You will have developed competence in taking responsibility for managing self as a professional social worker within a range of organisational contexts providing social work services

Personal Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):

• You will develop your value-base and an ethical approach to practice whilst being able to critically reflect on your own development as a professional social worker

How will I be assessed?

Throughout the module you will be offered feedback in seminar groups and you will receive ongoing feedback in relation to your practice-based learning via the supervision process with you PE.

Within your practice placement your PE and PT will provide oral feedback at a mid-way point. A formative assessment will require you to present to your PE and PT a critical analysis of your practice at a mid-way meeting.

A two-part summative assessment will require you to first present a complete and well-presented Practice Placement Portfolio which will include a signed recommendation from your PE that you have met the full range of PCFs required at a qualifying level. Your portfolio will be marked pass or fail.

The second part of your summative assessment will require you to undertake a critical analysis and reflection on a piece of observed practice where you have collaborated with key stakeholders within your practice setting. The 2000-Word summative assessment makes up 100% of the module marks.

Feedback on your 2000-Word summative assessment will be provided by a member of the module team who will complete a feedback/feedforward marking sheet.


SW0515, SW0516, SW0517, SW0518

Module abstract

The module will allow you to explore the professional social work context and work within a social care setting with a range of stakeholders. On examining the role of the professional social worker you will develop your learning in context and through a practice-based opportunity build collaborative relationships with service users, carers and other professionals. The specific themes, concepts and topics covered within the module will include examining the nature and influence of power, hierarchy, culture and organisational policies and procedures in shaping the role of professional social workers. On developing your understanding of the professional role and context you will acquire knowledge of models of supervision and the importance of contributing to the supervision process as part of the development of your professional practice. Module benefits include an opportunity to explore professionalism within organisations and to work collaboratively within different contexts to enhance your professional knowledge, skills and values.

Course info

UCAS Code L502

Credits 20

Level of Study Undergraduate

Mode of Study 3 years full-time

Department Social Work, Education and Community Wellbeing

Location Coach Lane Campus, Northumbria University

City Newcastle

Fee Information

Module Information

All information is accurate at the time of sharing. 

Full time Courses are primarily delivered via on-campus face to face learning but could include elements of online learning. Most courses run as planned and as promoted on our website and via our marketing materials, but if there are any substantial changes (as determined by the Competition and Markets Authority) to a course or there is the potential that course may be withdrawn, we will notify all affected applicants as soon as possible with advice and guidance regarding their options. It is also important to be aware that optional modules listed on course pages may be subject to change depending on uptake numbers each year.  

Contact time is subject to increase or decrease in line with possible restrictions imposed by the government or the University in the interest of maintaining the health and safety and wellbeing of students, staff, and visitors if this is deemed necessary in future.


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