Social Work Studies
The Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies (PGDSWS) is a two-year full-time course that combines academic study with fieldwork placements. The PGDSWS course is accredited by the Health and Social Care Professionals Council (CORU). The course leads to an academic qualification and will make you eligible to register as a social worker with regulatory bodies in Ireland (CORU) and internationally.
ALL prospective applicants should also check the School of Applied Social Studies website at: http://www.ucc.ie/en/msw
N.B. Applicants should check the entry requirements below to ascertain if they should apply for the Masters in Social Work OR the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies option.
N.B. Applicants should ONLY apply for ONE of these options as it is the same selection procedure for both options (FINAL YEAR STUDENTS) or current Higher Diploma in Social Policy students should apply for the Master's level (MSW) programme).
Students on the PGDSWS take modules in social work theory, skills, social policy and courses specific to social work settings such as child and family welfare and mental health.
On completion of the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies course, you will be able to:
- apply knowledge of social systems and human behaviour to promote social change, problem-solving in human relationships and the empowerment of people to enhance their well-being
- apply knowledge of social policy to critically examine and respond to the impact of social and political contexts on service users and social workpromote principles of social justice, human rights and anti-oppressive practice as intrinsic elements of social work practice
- demonstrate core social work practice proficiencies in the areas of: professional autonomy and accountability, interpersonal and professional relationships, effective communication, personal and professional development, provision of quality services, knowledge, understanding and skills
- demonstrate knowledge of theory, legislation, policy, official inquiry reports and international conventions, and apply it to assessment and intervention planning in social work practiceillustrate a reflective approach to learning that is self-directed, strengths-based and reflective.
For further curriculum details see the Postgraduate College Calendar
ALL prospective applicants should also check the School of Applied Social Studies website at: http://www.ucc.ie/en/msw
This website has been designed to answer most of the questions you may have about the PGDSWS, social work and applying for the MSW/PGDSWS.
Why Choose This Course
The staff on the Master of Social Work/Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies provide a very successful and much sought-after course of professional education and training in social work. It is a leader in social work education in Ireland where it was one of the first courses to adopt a reflective approach to teaching and learning throughout the course, with the aim of supporting the development of skilled, reflective practitioners. The course has been accredited and commended by the Health and Social Care Professionals Council (CORU) for its delivery of a coherent, well-constructed and successfully executed course of professional social work education. The teaching and learning methods on the course are centrally concerned with building on students' prior knowledge and experience, and with developing and extending skills and competencies. Preparing you to meet the requirements for professional registration under (CORU) is a central objective of the course. Our graduates are much sought-after by the major national and international employment agencies.
Further details on the modules listed above can be found in our book of modules. Any modules listed above are indicative of the current set of modules for this course but are subject to change from year to year.
You can find the full academic content for the current year of any given course in our University Calendar.
Admission to the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies (CKC06) is confined to a limited number of students holding a BSocSc (Hons) Degree with an overall result of at least a Third Class Honours or its equivalent, such as (but not limited to) the BA in Early Years and Childhood Studies, BA Hons in Applied Social Studies in Social Care, or graduates with a conversion course, i.e. the Higher Diploma in Social Policy (or its equivalent)
Students who achieve a mark of at least 50% in each module in the First Year of the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies may be permitted to transfer to the Second Year of the MSW programme.
There is a selection process based on the following combined elements: academic performance and research capacity; certified social work- related experience and initiative; knowledge of social work and motivation, commitment and suitability
IMPORTANT NOTE: Applicants should NOT apply for BOTH the Masters and Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work options as it is the one selection procedure for both options. The Postgraduate Diploma option is aimed at graduates who have already completed their BSocSc level 8 degree (or equivalent) and achieved at least an overall 3H result.
Both Applicants who have graduated with at least a Second Class Honours Grade I in their BSoSc level 8 (or equivalent) or Second Class Honours Grade I in the Higher Diploma in Social Policy (Level 8) (or equivalent) and Current FINAL year students pending their final results in Summer 2021 should apply for the Masters Of Social Work option ONLY.
Final year candidates who are successful at interview will be allocated places on the MSW, conditional on achieving a minimum Second Class Honours Grade I in their final degree/Higher Diploma exams. Should they obtain at least a Third Class Honours in their final exams, they will be allocated a place on the PgDipSocWkStudies. (See http://www.ucc.ie/en/cke64 for the MSW details)
IMPORTANT NOTE: For those that do not have the requisite BSocSc (level 8) or its equivalent, the Higher Diploma in Social Policy is a conversion course giving a foundation in the field of social policy for graduates who do not hold a social science degree and details of that programme are available at http://www.ucc.ie/en/cka02
Please note that as part of this programme students will require Garda Vetting as they will take part in a placement or UCC related activity where they will be working in an unsupervised capacity with children and/or vulnerable adults. For more information on this process please read the UCC Student Garda Vetting Policy
FITNESS TO PRACTICE
This programme is subject to the University's Fitness to Practise Policy.
All applicants should also consult with the Frequently Asked Questions about the Selection Process.
English Language Requirements
Applicants that are non-native speakers of the English language must meet the university approved English language requirements.
For applicants with qualifications completed outside of Ireland:
Applicants must meet the required entry academic grade, equivalent to Irish requirements.
For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.
For more information please contact the International Office.
Closing Date: 7 February 2022.
How Do I Apply
1. Choose Course
Firstly choose your course. Applicants can apply for up to two courses under one application. Details of taught courses are available on our online prospectus.
2. Apply Online
Once you have chosen your course you can apply online at the online application portal. Applicants will need to apply before the course closing date. There is a non-refundable €50 application fee for all courses apart from the Education - Professional Master of Education - (Secondary School/Post-Primary Teacher Training) which has a €100 application fee.
Applicants for the Postgraduate Diploma in Public Health Nursing must apply on the PAC website when the programme opens for applications.
3. Gather Supporting Documents
Scanned copies of the following documents will need to be uploaded to the online application portal in support of your application. Applicants may need to produce the original documents if you are accepted onto a course and register at UCC.
- Original qualification documents listed on your application including transcripts of results from institutions other than UCC
- Any supplementary items requested for your course.
Please log into the online application portal for more details.
4. Application processing timeline
Our online application portal opens for applications for most courses in early November of each year. Check specific course details.
For courses that are in the rounds system (Irish and EU applicants), please check the rounds closing dates below.
Questions on how to apply?
Please use our web enquiry form to contact us.
Additional Requirements (All Applicants)
The closing date for submitting an online application for the Master of Social Work is 7 February 2022. Please note you will be required to provide additional information as part of the online application process for this programme. This will include the following questions:
Social Work Experience - Paid/Voluntary and Student Placements:
To be eligible for this programme you need to have completed at least 420 hours of social work or social work related experience. Your experience will be used as one criteria to rank candidates for interview should there be a large number of applicants. However, we may interview candidates who have 250 hours by the application closing date if you state in the application additional/supplementary questions how you will make up the balance of the hours by the interview date (March).
You must outline briefly:
Social work practice related experience (paid or voluntary) and
Relevant student placements, if applicable.
Please list newest to oldest and specify in the duties and responsibilities box for each position whether it is:
You must also include your duties and responsibilities and number of hours completed for each agency.
Other additional questions:
- Social Work Practice Related Experience (Paid/Voluntary) Total Hours
- Student Placement Total Hours (if applicable)
- Summary of all social work related experience hours combined.
- Proposed work experience you will complete before interview to make required 420 hours (if applicable).
- In addition to your previously declared qualifications, please outline any additional academic courses, self-learning and professional training relevant to this programme.
- Please describe your motivation and readiness for this programme.
- Please provide the details of one academic referee and one professional referee (this can be from a voluntary role). Both referees will be contacted at shortlisting stage by the review panel.
- All additional supporting documentation for application to the Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work Studies needs to be submitted by 21 February 2022. If not, the application will be considered incomplete and not processed further.
There is a selection process based on the following combined elements: academic performance and research capacity; certified social work-related experience and initiative; knowledge of social work and motivation, commitment and suitability'
Your experience will be used as one criteria to rank candidates for interview should there be a large number of applicants. However, we may interview candidates who have 250 hours by the application closing date if you state in the application additional/supplementary questions how you will make up the balance of the hours by the interview date (March).
Group and individual interviews take place in March and candidates are advised of the outcome in April.
Deferrals are not permitted on this programme.
The closing date for non-EU applications is 7 February 2022.
You will undertake a wide variety of academic and practice assessments. You are assessed through group projects, enquiry-based learning assignments, reflective portfolios and learning journals, essays, research presentations, and a minor dissertation.
60 ECTS credits
2 years full-yime.
Start Date: 7 September 2020
Post Course Info
Skills and Careers Information
On graduation, you will have been prepared for professional registration and be in a position to demonstrate the core social work practice proficiencies (CORU) in the areas of: professional autonomy and accountability, interpersonal and professional relationships, effective communication, personal and professional development, provision of quality services, knowledge, understanding and skills. You will be able to exhibit a good knowledge of theory, legislation, policy, official inquiry reports and international conventions, and apply it to assessment and intervention planning in social work practice. Consequentially, you will be well prepared to respond reflectively and reflexively to a variety of social work situations in a diversity of social work settings, including multi-disciplinary contexts. Fields of social work which have attracted and employed our graduates to date include medical, mental health, child protection, probation, physical and intellectual disability, community social work and primary care.