Accessibility statement

Skills for social work - SPY00029I

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  • Department: Social Policy and Social Work
  • Module co-ordinator: Mr. Edward Robson
  • Credit value: 30 credits
  • Credit level: I
  • Academic year of delivery: 2021-22
    • See module specification for other years: 2022-23

Module summary

This module will provide you with an opportunity to learn and practice some core social work skills, such as communication, collaboration and negotiation with others. It will prepare you for your for working within an organisation and introduce key aspects of organisational skills that you will draw on in your placement opportunities. 

Professional requirements

The PSRB requirements are integrated into the module

Module will run

Occurrence Teaching period
A Autumn Term 2021-22 to Summer Term 2021-22

Module aims

This module aims to prepare you for your first placement learning experience by providing teaching and practical sessions on social work skills. These include the inter-personal skills you require to become an effective social worker, such as communication, negotiation and collaboration. As social workers usually work within organisations, this module will introduce you to organisational structures and dynamics, and the inter-personal skills required to become an effective member of a team. 

Module learning outcomes

By the end of the module you should be able to:

  • demonstrate your ability to communicate, negotiate and collaborate effectively with others
  • demonstrate your understanding of organisations which employ social workers, including their structures and relationships with other organisations and professionals
  • critically reflect on your professional development as a social worker in training

Module content

The module has three distinct, but overlapping components, which will be taught throughout the module.:

1. Inter-personal and group work skills

Basic communication, negotiation and collaboration skills will be taught and practiced in classroom skills-based sessions. Students will be encouraged to identify areas of strength and further development which can be worked on during their placement. 

2. Understanding and working within organisations

A critical introduction to organisational theory and structures will be provided, in addition to an exploration of the different organisational contexts in which social workers are employed or social work skills can be utilised. This will include statutory, private, independent and voluntary sector organisations. The dynamic interactions which can often be found within teams will be discussed and scenarios role-played in the classroom.

3. Evaluation and planning skills

Students will consider evaluation skills such as assessment, information management and critical reflection and how these can be applied to working with different social groups. 


Task Length % of module mark
Final essay
N/A 70
Reflection on the Group Presentation
N/A 30

Special assessment rules


Additional assessment information

Reassessment will be required at the component level to ensure students have attained a minimum standard across all skills featured in the learning outcomes. 


Task Length % of module mark
Final essay
N/A 70
Reflection on the Group Presentation
N/A 30

Module feedback

Students receive written feedback within 4 weeks in line with university guidelines

Indicative reading

Rogers, M. et al. (2016) Developing Skills for Social Work Practice, London: SAGE

Koprowska, J. (2014) Communication and Interpersonal Skills in Social Work, 4th edition, Learning Matters

Handy, C. (1993) Understanding Organisations, 4th edition, Penguin

The information on this page is indicative of the module that is currently on offer. The University is constantly exploring ways to enhance and improve its degree programmes and therefore reserves the right to make variations to the content and method of delivery of modules, and to discontinue modules, if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Where appropriate, the University will notify and consult with affected students in advance about any changes that are required in line with the University's policy on the Approval of Modifications to Existing Taught Programmes of Study.