Social Work - BSc (Hons)


Key Facts

​​​​​UCAS Code: L501

Place of Study: 
Llandaff Campus

Franchised programme delivered at Bridgend College

Cardiff School of Education & Social Policy

Course Length:
Three years full-time.

Blog Post

Jane Blades
My dream job is now a reality thanks to studying Social Work at Cardiff Met.
Jane Blades - BSc Social Work.

Meet the Team
Meet Sarah Thomas, BSc (Hons) Social Work Programme Director.

Course Overview

​The BSc Social Work degree at Cardiff Met is based on the National Occupational Standards for social work practice (2011) and is delivered in partnership with local social work agencies and service user groups. It combines and integrates professional training in social work with academic study to degree level.

Social Work involves a flexible approach to meeting the needs of individuals, groups or communities. The social work programme is concerned with developing a range of competencies to meet the National Occupational Standard for Social Work. Student learning is informed by legislation, theory and research-informed evidence in relation to social work knowledge, skills and values and is related to experience gained through social work practice learning opportunities. This social work degree also includes an understanding of the legislative provision of services and the importance of understanding social work within a Welsh, UK and International context.

The Code of Professional Practice for Social Care (2017) and equality and human rights issues will be integral to learning and practice, which you will be expected to comply with.

This course is also available at Bridgend College. Please visit or contact Bridgend College directly on 01656 302 302 or for further information. To make an application for this course at the Bridgend College site, please apply through UCAS for C20 - Cardiff Met - and choose Bridgend College.

Due to a high volume of applications, unfortunately deferred applications cannot be considered.

Course information on this page relates to September 2020 entry

This programme will undergo an elective review in February 2020. As a result, course content shown below may change to ensure the programme remains current. Any applicants will be informed of any changes following the review.

​Course Content​

Year One: 'Introduction and Foundation'
At this stage you will be assessed on your potential for further development. Before undertaking direct practice with service users in a practice learning setting, you must undertake 20 days of assessed practice learning through which you must demonstrate that you have the interpersonal skills and values required to be suitable and safe to work with people with social care needs and their carers. The first year of study will also focus on core values and skills as well as broader social, cultural and institutional processes that frame the role and task of social work.

Years Two & Three: 'Applying knowledge, skills and values in social work practice and the development and confirmation of competence in social work practice'
You will spend 180 days in assessed practice learning settings (80 days year 2 and 100 days year 3). 

​This will involve a minimum of two practice settings. This will provide you with a range of learning opportunities to demonstrate competence in relation to National Occupational Standards for Social Work (2011) and the Code of Professional Practice for Social Care (2017). By the end of these two longer periods of practice based learning you will be applying social work knowledge, skills and values including research findings in your practice and will need to demonstrate the development of critical, analytical and reflective practice. 

There will be a focus on disadvantage, oppression and deprivation; leading to an emphasis on social work intervention and the contexts within which social work is practised.​​

​In year two there will be a focus upon the application of social work knowledge, skills and values including research findings in their practice and academically assessed work, with an emphasis upon students demonstrating their development of critical, analytical and reflective practice.

Year three subsequently offers the opportunity for students to build on the knowledge, skills and values attained in year two, with students demonstrating professional judgement, intervention and critical reflection across both their practise and within academically assessed work. ​

Learning & Teaching


All students that enrol on the BSc (Hons) Social Work are assigned a personal tutor that will provide both group and individual tutorial support. All staff on the social work degree have extensive experience of employment within social work, and draw on this to enhance students learning experience of the subject. Students are taught through a range of teaching and learning methods, including experiential and problem based group work, interactive lectures and seminars along with the integration of media to support a wider understanding of the experiences of people with social care needs and their carers. 

Students are placed within Local Authority 'Host agency' groups for the duration of their studies, and subsequently have the opportunity to build and sustain professional working relationships with peers and professionals within their host Local Authority. A substantial part of the course is spent in practice settings within agencies in South Wales; therefore the ability to undertake travelling to and within practice agencies will be advantageous.

Whilst on the social work degree students are also required to demonstrate that they are able to use Information and Communication Technology (ICT) methods and techniques to support their learning and practice.



Assessment of individual areas of study will include a combination of different approaches: through practice learning, simulation/case study exercises, essays and assignments, reports, poster presentations, group and individual presentations and examinations. 

In addition, students are required to produce portfolios that are linked to their practice based learning, which includes observations of practice and reflective accounts based on the observations.

Students on the social work degree receive electronic feedback and feedforward to all academically assessed work and are encouraged through the enhanced personal tutorial process to review feedback and build both academic and practice based social work skills.


Employability & Careers

On completion of the social work degree and all associated academic and practice based learning opportunities, graduates will be able to access a wide range of employment opportunities within social work in statutory, independent and third sector employment. Graduates are able to take up employment with people with social care needs and their carers who use a range of social work and social care services which address complex social issues and needs. 

Graduates will also be required to pursue Continued Professional Education and Learning within their Social Work career, or a postgraduate qualification, for example in teaching in further/higher education or a Masters or Doctorate in Social Work. There are also other graduate opportunities outside Social work.

Entry Requirements​ & How to Apply

The Social Work programme is keen to support applicants from all backgrounds and with varying educational experiences.

Applicants should hold GCSE English Language (or Welsh First Language) and Mathematics* at grade C or above (or grade 4 or above for applicants holding newly reformed GCSEs in England​).  Equivalent qualifications considered are Essential Skills Level Two in Communication and Application of Number, or Functional Skills Level 2 in English and Maths.  Successful applicants will be required to provide evidence of these.  Applicants must be able to demonstrate an ability to study at higher education, normally through a recognised qualification:

  • 96 points from at least two A levels to include grades CC; Welsh Baccalaureate – Advanced Skills Challenge Certificate considered as a third subject
  • RQF BTEC National Extended Diploma/Cambridge Technical Extended Diploma MMM
  • CACHE Diploma grade C (minimum 96 points)
  • A relevant NVQ Level 3 or 4 in a social work/social care related subject area
  • 96 points from the Access to Higher Education Diploma. English and Maths related credits covered within the Access are not normally accepted as GCSE equivalent 
  • 96 points from at least two Scottish Advanced Highers to include grades DD. Scottish Highers are also considered, either on their own or in combination with Advanced Highers   
  • 96 points from the Irish Leaving Certificate at Highers to include 2 X H3 subjects           
  • Other recognised qualification that provides evidence of ability to study at Higher Education Level

  • Applicants are also expected to hold a minimum of 455hrs (13 weeks) of supervised (paid or unpaid) work experience in a social care setting. This requirement will have to be demonstrated on your UCAS application form and be completed by the time you attend an interview. There is no time limit for when this work experience was completed, however more recent experience would strengthen your application. Experience does not have to be gained in one block and could come from full time or part time, paid or volunteering experience or from a placement experience over a longer period of time.

    The programme will also consider, in exceptional circumstances, those applicants that have personal experience as an individual with social care needs or as a carer. For example, applications from individuals that have been a primary carer, on a substantial and regular basis of a relative, friend, or neighbour or a child/young person looked after by the Local Authority - that is, a care experienced person. In such circumstances, applications can also be strengthened with additional volunteering/paid social care experience.

*For Welsh applicants sitting the reformed Mathematics GCSE, we will accept either GCSE Mathematics or Mathematics – Numeracy.

For applicants who are only undertaking 2 A levels or equivalent, this will be considered along with the rest of the academic profile and we may issue a graded offer in lieu of an offer using the UCAS Tariff.

If you are studying combinations of the above or if your qualification isn't listed, please either contact Admissions or refer to the UCAS Course Search for entry requirements. Further information on our entry requirements, including qualifications from the EU can be found by clicking here.

DBS Checks
All offers made are conditional, in that all successful applicants will have to satisfy Disclosure and Barring (DBS) requirements and meet the requirements of registration with Social Care Wales.  We also strongly recommend registering for the Update Service as this will mean you do not need any additional DBS Checks to cover your placements as part of the course. Further information on the DBS process can be found

If you are successful and offered a place, you will receive written instruction about starting on the course and the DBS/Social Care Wales registration conditions that need to met prior to commencement of the course

Selection Procedure:
Selection is based on the receipt of a completed UCAS application where suitability is assessed based on your match to the entry requirements, including work experience hours. All short listed applicants will be invited to an interview day. Applicant’s supported/sponsored by Local Authority Social Services Departments in the South Wales region should apply directly through your own Training Departments who will subsequently initiate the selection process.

Unfortunately, due to limited numbers, applicants who choose the university as an Insurance choice cannot be guaranteed a place.

International Applicants
Students whose first language is not English will need to provide evidence of fluency to at least an IELTS 6.0 standard or equivalent. For full details about how to apply and English Language qualifications please visit the International pages on the website.

How to Apply:
Applications for this course should be made online to UCAS at For further information please visit our How to Apply pages at

Mature students

A mature applicant is anyone over the age of 21 who didn't go to university after school or college. Cardiff Met welcomes applications from mature applicants and further advice and information can be found here.

Interview Process

Written Task: You will be required to undertake a written test under examination conditions. The written test is based around a current issue/case study within social work, and will last for 45 minutes. You will be expected to answer questions on the written task during your individual interview. This process is to enable you to demonstrate the potential to work with people in need and show you have the appropriate personal qualities, skills and values to be a social worker. 

Group Task: Following the written test, each candidate will be required to participate in a group discussion around a particular topic (which you will be sent details of with your interview information). This discussion will be observed and form a further stage of the selection process. 

Individual Interview: Your individual interview will last around 15-20 minutes and will be undertaken by academic members of staff from both Cardiff Metropolitan University and Bridgend College, alongside social work practitioners and individuals that use social work and social care services, that are involved with the Programme. 

Contact Us

For general enquiries please contact the Admissions Team on 029 2041 6044 or email

For course specific enquiries, please contact the programme leader, Sarah Thomas
Tel: 029 2041 6843​​


Programme leader(s) Anthony Lewis and Jude Badmington-Fowler (Bridgend College)
Email:  &
Tel: 01656 302 302

Full terms and conditions in relation to accepting an offer to study at Cardiff Metropolitan University can be found by visiting