Our aim is to ensure our degree programmes are contemporary and at the cutting edge of public debate. Our external rating as one of the top Social Policy and Social Work departments in the country reflects our success in achieving that aim.
Building on the success of our research assessments and international standing of both the Department and University, SPSW at York offers you the opportunity to study within a centre of research excellence.
The University of York is one of the UK’s top research universities and has been ranked 8th overall in the 2008 Research Assessment Exercise (RAE), which measures research quality nationally.
The Department of Social Policy and Social Work has also been very highly rated and is in the top five of large departments in the country. The majority of our staff have been assessed as either ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’.
The Social Policy Research Unit (SPRU) has been awarded a Queen's Anniversary Prize for Further and Higher Education in 2009 for transforming research into policy. The award recognises the major influence SPRU has had on policy and practice for disabled or chronically ill children and adults, informal caregivers, income and employment support systems, looked after children and young runaways since its establishment in 1973.
The Unit has led the way in developing methods that enable disabled and older people and children to participate actively in research. It has achieved a national and international reputation for applied research. SPRU has provided a model for similar research groups in other countries and trained policymakers, practitioners and researchers from the UK and abroad.
We are pleased to report an excellent outcome to the recent Institutional Review of the University by the Quality Assurance Agency (QAA). The QAA assesses UK higher education institutions every six years, focussing on the quality and standards of the University’s teaching and learning activities.
In the three areas where formal judgements are given, the report confirms:
This excellent result is a clear endorsement of the hard work that has been done across the University to maintain and improve learning and teaching.
In particular, the QAA report highlighted the 'proactive approach to the creation of a community among distance learning students'. Our Online Masters Programmes are just one example of this, where an extensive community of learners from all over the world are supported by staff with distance learning expertise.
Ellen Roberts, of the Department of Social Policy and Social Work, has been awarded a National Teaching Fellowship from the Higher Education Authority. The National Teaching Fellowship is an internationally recognised award for outstanding teaching quality.
Ellen Roberts is responsible for York’s innovative e-learning Masters programmes for managers in public policy and management, which recruit from more than 40 countries, in both developed and developing parts of the world. The programmes offer professional development leading to Certificate, Diploma and Masters awards.
The Department of Social Policy and Social Work was awarded by YUSU in 2010 for consistency in excellent supervision. The award recognised how the Department of Social Policy and Social Work consistently receives high numbers of good quality nominations by students for the Supervisor of the Year award and for the speed and sensitivity with which it deals with Special Cases.
The University of York has been invited to join the Russell Group in August 2012, as a reflection of our excellent research, outstanding teaching and learning and impact of our work in the business and public sector. Find out more.
The Times Higher Education University of the Year Award 2010 was presented to the University of York in November 2010. Judges highlighted York's 'academic excellence, social inclusion and impressive track record in scientific discovery.' See the Vice-Chancellor's response.
The University of York is consistently ranked highly in worldwide assessments. See further details about the University's achievements and awards.