Introducing the social worker degree apprenticeship

Recruit and retain motivated, talented staff who are trained to the highest standard.

Introducing the social worker degree apprenticeship

Social care institutions rely on motivated, committed and highly skilled staff to protect some of society’s most vulnerable people. Being a social worker is very demanding and requires a lot of training, which is why Social Work England (SWE) have launched the new social work degree apprenticeship.

The new level 6 degree apprenticeship equips social workers with the skills, knowledge and practical experience needed for such a demanding role. It's a fantastic option for prospective social workers who are paid throughout their training, get real-life experience in a social care setting and gain a BA (Hons) degree in social work when they complete the course.

What are the benefits for employers?

The new degree apprenticeship is a great option for employers too. You can use the apprenticeship to recruit motivated, talented staff and make sure they’re trained to the highest standard. You can also use the apprenticeship to upskill and retain your existing staff. Apprentices are employed full time and train on the job, so they’ll be able to put their learning into practice immediately – helping to improve service in your organisation.

If you pay the apprenticeship levy, you can use your levy funds to pay for the training.

How long is the course?

The social worker degree apprenticeship lasts 3 - 3.5 years. Apprentices are employed full time (at least 30 hours a week) and must spend at least 20% of their contracted hours completing off-the-job training.

Who is it for?

The programme is suitable for new and existing social care support staff who are looking to take on greater challenges and responsibilities as qualified support workers. Apprentices must have maths and English level 4 (or grade C) and be able to study at undergraduate degree level. They must also be employees of a social care setting.

What topics does the apprenticeship cover?

The social work apprenticeship was designed by employers in the social work sector, and covers the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to be an effective social worker.

  • Social work theory and legislation
  • Supporting individuals, families, carers, groups, communities and other professionals, such as police, schools and probation services
  • Person-centred care
  • Delivering human services in a diverse society
  • Codes of practice and professional conduct
  • Theories, concepts and principles that underpin social work practice

How is the apprenticeship delivered?

The apprentice will learn on the job and complete tutor-supported study off the job. You’ll work with the apprentice to support their learning, and their training provider will help manage the apprenticeship journey from start to finish.

To find out more about using your apprenticeship levy to train social workers, download your complete guide to the apprenticeship levy.

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Or if you’re thinking of applying to the social care apprenticeship, download our top tips for applying for an apprenticeship.

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