PgDip

Applied Social Studies (Mental Health)

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Key Programme Information

Entry Year

2017

Programme length *

2 year(s)

Places available

TBC

Attendance

Part-Time

Faculty

Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences

School

Social Sciences, Education and Social Work

* Part-time (MSc normally 3 years, PgDip 2 years, PgCert 1 year)

Overview

These programmes are designed to meet the continuing professional development needs of those staff working in the care professions (social work, psychology, education, nursing, teaching, medicine, etc). They present opportunities to study a range of areas including direct practice in child care, management and leadership within organisations, family therapy and adult mental health at postgraduate level. In addition, they aim to maintain educational coherence whilst covering diversity and choice. Students can access a range of modules that accumulate into an award, affording the flexibility to work within their own time schedules.

Why Queen's?

These programmes have been accredited by the Northern Ireland Post-Qualifying Education and Training Partnership and the Association of Family Therapy (for the Family Therapy pathways) and offer a range of professional awards and requirements at the specific, specialist and leadership levels. On these pathways there will be restricted access to relevant data by employers, the NISCC, DHSSPS, HSC Boards and any successor bodies.

Course Details

CHILDCARE PATHWAY

Meeting all nine of the professional requirements in the 'specialist' category (with the PG Diploma option) and giving the specialist award and three requirements at the 'Leadership' category (with the Masters option). One module on this pathway will be delivered with the British Association of Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) and is targeted at social workers only.

There are three modules forming the PG Diploma, but these can be taken as standalone modules.

MODULES

  • Advanced Knowledge, Theory and Methods
  • Working to Enhance Outcomes for Children in State Care
  • Working to Promote and Safeguard the Welfare of Children and their Families

Additional Entrance Requirements: Applicants will normally hold a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University, or the Pre-2007 post-qualifying award in social work. Where this academic requirement is not met, applicants must satisfy the Programme Director that their experience and qualifications equip them to undertake postgraduate study through the completion of a written assignment. Applicants must also possess a social work qualification recognised by the Northern Ireland Social Care Council, be registered with the Council and should normally have two years post-qualification experience practising with service users or carers in a social work setting (including the Assessed Year in Employment where appropriate). All applicants must be currently engaged for at least 12 hours per week in a capacity in which core social work values underpin their practice with service users or carers.

MENTAL HEALTH PATHWAY (incorporating the Northern Ireland-approved Social Work Programme)

Meeting all nine of the professional requirements in the 'Specialist' category and giving the specialist award (PG Dip option) and three requirements at the 'Strategy and Leadership' category (Masters option). This pathway is targeted at social workers only and is delivered in partnership with social work agencies.

MODULES

  • Context and Concepts in Mental Health
  • Law Ethics and Applied Law in Mental Health

Additional Entrance Requirements: Social Workers seeking nomination to the programme must be registered with the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and have at least two years post-qualifying social work experience or must have successfully completed the Assessed Year in Employment plus have one year's experience by the date of commencement of the programme. They should be nominated by their employer who will undertake to provide support and appropriate learning opportunities. Nominees will have demonstrated that they hold the PQSW part 1 certificate or have passed the University of Ulster's 'Inter-Professional Development' module in mental health or demonstrate equivalent competence through an APL submission. They should also have social work experience of working with clients with a mental disorder (or receive preparation before the programme commences) and be employed for at least 12 hours per week in a social post in Northern Ireland. It will be the responsibility of employers to ensure that applicants have the opportunity to develop and demonstrate social work competence in their work with people who have a mental disorder and their carers. Nominees should also have a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. Where this academic requirement is not met they must satisfy the Programme Director that their experience and qualifications equip them to undertake postgraduate study by showing either that they have the Pre-2007 Post-Qualifying Social Work Award or by producing a reflective assignment on their practice in this area (2,000 words).

STRATEGY AND LEADERSHIP PATHWAY

This pathway aims to provide social workers with the opportunity to look at the role of leadership and strategic vision in the planning, commissioning and delivery of high quality services. Relevant research, explanatory frameworks and analytical tools will be used to review past practice and project future approaches to management and leadership. This pathway is targeted at social workers only. There are six modules forming the PGDip, with three offered in this academic year. For individuals completing the PGDip the pathway meets all nine professional requirements in the 'Strategy and Leadership' category of the Professional in Practice Framework and gives the Leadership Award.

MODULES

Leadership in an Uncertain World

Strategic Thinking in Social Work

Modern Organisations

Additional Entrance Requirements: applicants will normally hold a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University, or the Pre-2007 post-qualifying award in social work. Where this academic requirement is not met, applicants must satisfy the Programme Director that their experience and qualifications equip them to undertake postgraduate study through the completion of a written assignment. Applicants must also possess a social work qualification recognised by the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and be registered with the Council. All applicants should normally have five years post-qualification experience in a social work setting (including the Assessed Year in Employment where appropriate). All applicants must be currently engaged for at least 12 hours per week in a capacity in which core social work values underpin their practice with service users or carers.

SYSTEMIC PRACTICE AND FAMILY THERAPY PATHWAY

This pathway offers multidisciplinary training, which, for social workers, meets all six requirements in the 'Specific' category (first year PgCert option/family therapy Foundation Level) and six of the nine requirements in the 'specialist' category (second year PgDip option/Family Therapy Intermediate Level). This pathway is accredited at Foundation Level (Year 1) and Intermediate Level (Year 2) by the Association for Family Therapy (UK).

SYSTEMIC PRACTICE PATHWAY: YEAR 1

  • Foundation Level (AFT UK)

MODULES

  • Introduction to Systemic Theory, Research and Practice
  • Personal and Professional Development in Systemic Practice
  • Systemic Practice Skills and Their Application to the Work Setting

SYSTEMIC PRACTICE PATHWAY: YEAR 2

  • Intermediate Level (AFT UK)

MODULES

  • Systemic Practice Skills and Their Application to the Work Setting
  • Theory, Practice and Research in Family and Systemic Practice

Additional Entrance Requirements: This is a multidisciplinary pathway with applications welcome from a range of relevant professions as designated by the Association for Family Therapy and Systemic Practice (AFT). Normally one year's post qualification experience is required and all Social Work applicants must have successfully completed the Assessed Year in Employment. Applicants who do not hold one of the designated relevant professional qualifications, but who would find a Foundation level course useful to their work may be accepted in accordance with the AFT acknowledged 'widening participation' philosophy. All applicants, including those intending to self-fund, must: for SPFT year 1 (AFT Foundation level) have 'an opportunity to apply systemic ideas to a current work setting or placement'; for SPFT year 2 (AFT Intermediate Level) have successfully completed course accredited by AFT at 'Foundation Level' or equivalent, and have a work context in which to apply the course learning that will satisfy the AFT requirement for 60 hours of systemic practice in the 12 months leading to the end of the programme.

SYSTEMIC PSYCHOTHERAPY PATHWAY

This pathway offers multidisciplinary training, which, for social workers, meets all nine requirements in the 'Strategy and Leadership' category (two-year qualifying-level training in family therapy). It is accredited as qualification-level training by the Association for Family Therapy (UK) and leads to full registration as a systemic psychotherapist with the UK Council for Psychotherapy. This degree programme requires a major commitment over two years, involving a minimum of 1,920 study hours, at least 480 of which are indirect contact with staff. A distinctive feature of this training is 300 hours of live supervised practice in a clinical placement. Students must also be able to evidence 200 hours of systemic practice in their own work setting. For social workers completion of the degree meets the full requirements for the N. Ireland Strategic and Leadership Award.

MODULES

  • Family Therapy and Systemic Thinking 1: Theoretical Perspectives
  • Family Therapy and Systemic Thinking 2: Theoretical Perspectives
  • Family Therapy Skills and Techniques 1: Practice Applications
  • Family Therapy Skills and Techniques 2: Practice Applications

Additional Entrance Requirements: This 2-year pathway is suitable for professionally qualified staff who have completed Foundation- and Intermediate-level Systemic Practice and Family Therapy training and wish to become qualified Systemic Family Psychotherapists. It is accredited at Qualification-level by AFT, a member organisation of the UK Council for Psychotherapy (UKCP). The degree is recognised by the core professions' continuing professional development arrangements. Please note: two references and an interview are required as part of the selection process.

DUAL DIAGNOSIS PATHWAY

This multidisciplinary pathway is designed to enable social workers, addiction professionals, mental health workers and workers from allied health and social care sectors to gain an understanding of dual diagnosis, including definitions, UK and regional contexts and the application of theory in practice. The programme consists of three modules ( 20 CATS each ) including Introduction to Dual Diagnosis, Assessment and Intervention and working with Specialist Groups. The modules are delivered on a multidisciplinary basis and tutors come from social work, nursing, mental health and addictions specialist professions. For Social Work candidates only the Certificate meets all six of the professional requirements in the 'Specific' category in the Post-Qualifying framework, and on completion candidates will be conferred with the Specific Award. This Award is intended to enable practitioners with a basic qualification in social work to develop the range of knowledge and skills associated with competence 'in-depth' in a specific area of work.

MODULES

  • Assessment and Intervention in Dual Diagnosis
  • Introduction to Dual Diagnosis
  • Working with Specific Service User Groups

Additional Entrance Requirements: the programme is open to prospective applicants from a range of allied health and social care professions and from those employed within the voluntary and statutory sectors. Social work applicants will normally hold a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University, or the Pre-2007 post-qualifying award in social work. Where this academic requirement is not met, applicants must satisfy the Programme Director that their experience and qualifications equip them to undertake postgraduate study through the completion of a written assignment. Social work applicants must also possess a social work qualification recognised by the Northern Ireland Social Care Council, be registered with the Council and should have completed the Assessed Year in Employment or have at least one year post-qualifying experience if graduated prior to the AYE implementation. All non-social work applicants must hold a 2.2 Honours Degree or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University in a cognate area. Applicants not holding one of these qualifications are required to satisfy the Programme Director of their suitability for postgraduate study by completing a 2,000-word assignment. In addition, prospective applicants must have experience of working with clients with a mental disorder and/or substance misuse problems. Where an applicant does not have prior experience of working with people with a mental disorder and /or substance misuse problems they should undertake appropriate preparation before and/or during Module 1 of the training programme.

COURT WORK SKILLS: AN INTERDISCIPLINARY APPROACH

This module develops court work skills for social work and legal practitioners working in the area of child protection and welfare. Qualified legal and social work professionals with expertise in the subject area deliver teaching on this module and there is a core focus on developing skills in client advocacy, case preparation, report writing, giving evidence in chief and dealing with cross-examination. For further information please see the School website.

MODULES

  • Court Work Skills
  • Dissertation module

This module is suitable for professionally-qualified staff seeking to develop and build on competencies in court work. It is jointly delivered by the School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work and the Institute of Professional Legal Studies at Queen's.

Additional Entrance Requirements: Social work applicants will normally hold a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University, or the Pre-2007 post-qualifying award in social work. Where this academic requirement is not met, applicants must satisfy the Programme Director that their experience and qualifications equip them to undertake postgraduate study through the completion of a written assignment. Social work applicants must also possess a social work qualification recognised by the Northern Ireland Social Care Council and be registered with the Council. Legal practitioners should have an LLB and Certificate in Professional Legal Studies. (*credit-earning module only (ie no award) - can be taken within the programme to contribute to the Combined award but is mostly taken as a credit-earning module.)

For application information please see the School website.

Assessment & Feedback

Assessment methods include written assignments, observations of practice, projects, and a dissertation (for the final 60 credits).

Learning and Teaching

A variety of assessment methods for the Certificate will be used including written assignments, a reflective analysis on how the student applies relevant theory to their practice in two different cases and an assignment critically reflecting on how the student has enhanced the practice of colleagues drawing on the knowledge in this module.  The dissertation is undertaken for a full academic year in the final year.

 

Entry Requirements

MSc Applied Social Studies

Normally a 2.2 Honours degree or above or equivalent qualification acceptable to the University. Equivalent qualifications include the Pre-2007 Post-Qualifying Award in Social Work. Where this is not met, applicants must show that their experience and qualifications enable them to study at postgraduate level through the uptake of references and through completing a reflective assignment on their practice.

Please note that this programme is only open to applicants who are working as Social Care Professionals within NI/UK. Social Work applicants must have a recognised social work qualification and be registered with the Northern Ireland Social Care Council. It is important that Social Work applicants include their NISCC Social Care Registration Number in the Additional Information section of the application form. Please note that pathways within the programme have additional entrance requirements in relation to qualifications or experience that need to be met by applicants, see the relevant pathway for details.

Please note: The closing date for applications to this programme is Tuesday 1st August 2017 at 4pm. Applications received after the closing date will be regarded as LATE and will be considered only if vacancies exist when all applications received by the closing date have been processed. 

International Qualifications

For information on international qualification equivalents please select Your Country from the list on our International Students website.

Additional Information for International Students

International students wishing to apply to Queen's University Belfast (and for whom English is not their first language), must be able to demonstrate their proficiency in English in order to benefit fully from their course of study or research. Non-EEA nationals must also satisfy UK Visas and Immigration (UKVI) immigration requirements for English language for visa purposes.

Evidence of an IELTS* score of 6.5, with not less than 5.5 in any component, or an equivalent qualification acceptable to the University is required.

*Taken within the last 2 years.

For more information on English Language requirements for EEA and non-EEA nationals see: qub.ac.uk/EnglishLanguageReqs

If you need to improve your English language skills before you enter this programme, our partner INTO Queen's University Belfast offers a range of English language courses. These intensive and flexible courses are designed to improve your English ability to entry to this programme. Please click the links below for more information:

  • English for University Study - an intensive English language and study skills course for successful university study at degree level
  • Pre-sessional English - a short intensive academic English course for students starting a degree programme at Queen's University Belfast and who need to improve their English

 

How To Apply

Applicants for Postgraduate programmes are strongly advised to carefully read the important information and follow the steps set out here before submitting their application via the Postgraduate Direct Applications Portal.

If you have queries on course content please contact the school representative below.

School Postgraduate Office
School of Sociology, Social Policy and Social Work
Tel: 028 9097 5117
Email: pgsoc@qub.ac.uk
WWW: www.qub.ac.uk/ssesw

How To Apply

Queen’s University Belfast Terms and Conditions 2017 Entry
The terms and conditions that apply when you accept an offer of a place at the University on a taught programme of study.

Career Prospects

Continuing professional registration in social work is predicated on continuing professional development, which this programme and its pathways offer. The DHSSPS has directed that social workers demonstrate their competence covered in the curricula of this programme and its pathways.

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

 

Queen's postgraduates reap exceptional benefits. Unique initiatives, such as Degree Plus and Researcher Plus bolster our commitment to employability, while innovative leadership and executive programmes alongside sterling integration with business experts helps our students gain key leadership positions both nationally and internationally.

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Fees & Funding

There is a range of funding and scholarship options available to those considering study at Queen's.

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For tuition fee information see www.qub.ac.uk/Study/PostgraduateStudy/TuitionFees/

Postgraduate loans
From the academic year 2017/18, the Department for the Economy will provide a tuition fee loan of up to £5,500 per NI / EU student for postgraduate study. Tuition fee loan information.

A postgraduate loans system in the UK offers government-backed student loans of up to £10,280 for taught and research Masters courses in all subject areas. Criteria, eligibility, repayment and application information are available on the UK government website.

Applicants should contact their agency employer. For fees and funding information please see the University's Graduate School website.

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