University bins controversial proposals to axe social work courses

The university had proposed ending two MA social work degrees last year

student
Photo: StockPhotoPro/Fotolia

A university which came under pressure for proposals to end two social work masters degrees has decided to keep running the programmes.

A review carried out by Durham University last year had recommended that two, two-year MA social work degrees be closed due to concerns over the programmes’ financial viability, and that graduates from the course made up a small proportion of the social workers in the north east of England.

A decision was due in June last year, but was deferred to the end of 2017 amongst opposition to the plans from university staff, the University and College Union and students, who launched a petition to save the course which attracted 642 signatures.

A Durham University spokesperson confirmed the department of sociology had voted to continue to take applicants on both its social work degree and international social work and community development courses.

They added the department would “continue to assess its provision of academic programmes in line with its strategic priorities”.

Jon Bryan, a spokesperson for the University and College Union, said: “The social work courses at Durham University have always been highly valued by staff, students and all those who work with them. Social care remains a huge issue both locally and nationally and we are pleased that these courses will continue.”

5 Responses to University bins controversial proposals to axe social work courses

  1. N January 15, 2018 at 8:28 pm #

    I had to leave my two year MA course as I simply ran out of money to pay fees and live. My grades were excellent and I really enjoyed my placement. It’s financially impossible for me to return to complete s the course is full time and I have to work. I don’t qualify for a student loan as I already have an MA – totally unrelated subject and done years ago so that was self financed too.

  2. Erick January 16, 2018 at 10:58 am #

    I wish they would make them so you could do them in a year.

    • Jules Hutchings January 17, 2018 at 11:34 am #

      You can, Step Up to Social Work is a 14 month fast track qualification. Entry requirements are english and maths GCSE C or above or equivalent, plus a degree at 2:1 in any subject.

  3. Charlotte Young January 17, 2018 at 12:08 am #

    I’m pretty sure Step-up to social work is a 14 month programme Erick

  4. sad January 19, 2018 at 9:11 pm #

    look at other comments regarding social work regarding other articles on Community Care and consider carefully whether you want to enter such a dysfunctional profession where bullying is rife and burn out almost certain after a few years. Is it worth the financial, emotional, social and physical cost?