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MA Social Work

(11 Posts)
voodoomunkee Sat 04-Jun-11 18:53:08

Hi! Just wondering if anyone has had any experience of applying for and getting a place on an MA in Social Work?

Have had the initial assessment and been invited back for interview and wondered if anyone had any tips that may help me?


slipperandpjsmum Sun 05-Jun-11 18:36:23

Hi I did the BA (Hons) SW. Its a while ago now and I am struggling to remember the questions. However, I am now a Practice Educator and facilitate students in placement. What is your degree in?

They will be looking for someone who does not judge others and is able to have the capacity to unpick complex situations.

If you have any voluntary/work experience apply those experiences to the questions, if things went wrong demonstrate what you learnt and how open you are to taking on board other people's opinions.

Is it just the interview you are going back for?

What area of practice would you like to go into?

voodoomunkee Sun 05-Jun-11 18:45:45

Hi! Thanks for answering! My degree is a joint honours degree in Advice Guidance and Counselling and Professional Practice Studies - graduated last summer with a 1st and have worked in the voluntary sector for 13 years as well. I currently work for a charity working with people who have disabilities. I think (I hope) that I can apply the experience to the interview, just having a worry really!

Yes, passed the assessment week before last and got invited to interview on weds - interview late this week. Ideally I would like to go into sensory support or working with disabilities either adults or children, however am happy to look at other areas but can't see me working in child protection. My interest in this area is due to my work experience really.

Any tips are happily received as I am really keen to do well at this interview and to get on to the course. I want to study at Masters level and I also want to improve my career prospects and stay working in a related field to that which I am in now. If you get what I mean smile

slipperandpjsmum Sun 05-Jun-11 20:25:32

Yes, get what you mean. You reach a ceiling don't you. It sounds from the amount of experience you have you will be fine. As I said relate your experiences to the questions for example how would you apply ADP to your work? Use your existing knowledge and how you dealt with discrimination.

I am sure I won't need to tell you but keep the child/service user at the centre of your example so make sure you mention ways to include them in the plans you make.

My friend did not get a job last week because they said she was not child focused enough, so start from where they are and work from their.

I work in child protection in an inner city and there are alot of stories around that just aren't true about that area of practice and of course you will cover cp if you move into local authority and become a children's disability social worker.

Hope you don't think I am telling you things you already know. As I said with your range of experience you will be fine but I know how scary these interviews can be especially when you really want it.

If there is anything else I can help you with please ask away!

voodoomunkee Sun 05-Jun-11 22:18:47

No honestly you aren't telling me things I know! It is so easy to forget little things and I am not the best at interviews normally, however I feel that at least I have a fighting chance of it being a decent interview. A friend has just gone through the process and she said it was very relaxed and focused a lot on the service user. Fortunately some of the SW lecturers taught on my degree programme so even if it is not the same ones (which I would not expect it to be) I feel that I have a little knowledge about where they may start from.

The cp stuff scares me as it is not something I have a great deal of knowledge in. However saying that I do have experience of the social work teams who work with some of the children using our services so may be able to draw upon that. Most of my knowledge is with adults though. I am reading some texts and trying to keep up to date with current issues, however I know that this is useful but not the be all and end all as this is why I am wanting to undertake a course!

I think some of the reason I passed the assessment is to do with the fact I talked a lot about including the service user, making sure they were involved in their care and understood the process rather than it being something 'done' to them. I am hoping I can use this again in the interview!

Sorry to be going on, it is just really, really helpful to have got your opinion and for you to be kind enough to take the time to help me out! Am generally not a nervous person but this is making me that way, mostly because I do want it so much!

Do you think it may be useful to have some sort of question prepared? I know a lot about the course and the university and they have already covered the placements etc in the assessment briefing... just not sure what could be a good question to have!

Also (my final point I promise smile ) I have set some revision for myself regarding some key things I may need to know - reading up on the GSCC and looking at key qualities of a social worker, do you think it is worth looking at some cp things?

You are a star! Thank you again smile

slipperandpjsmum Wed 08-Jun-11 16:45:30

Everyone gets nervous at interviews don't they use that energy to keep your thought processes sharp!!

I would have a glance through Munros latest report (just the summary)!

I don't imagine they are going to ask you specific legislation but the children act 1989 (sections 17 - child in need and section 47 - risk of significant harm of are the main sections that we use). Remember the needs of the child are paramount and the whole act is built around that. Children Act 2004 focused more on agencies working together as its a common thread in all serious case reviews that this is a failing, as are not including absent fathers in assessments and not being clear about who else is in the house eg Mums boyfriend.

Every child matters and the five outcomes may just be worth remembering.

BASW code of ethics are good to.

Hopefully as you say it will be informal its great that they already know you which I am sure will go in your favour.

In terms of questions the placements are always the bigggest concern of students I think. Could you ask if you will have a voluntary and a local authority placement? Or has that been covered? Are you able to find your own placement if there is somewhere you would really like to be?

I set up a mentoring scheme when I was at uni as they did not have one. Could you ask if there is one at your uni? Although as you say you know alot about the university.

I was really really nervous so I know how you feel. Just remember you have so much experience and many people do not have that.

Its really no problem. Happy to help. If you think of anything else ask away! And don't forget to let me know let me know how you get on!!

voodoomunkee Thu 09-Jun-11 18:18:50

Hiya interview was today, asked me what were the challenges for 21st Century social work practice, why I wanted to be a social worker, what qualitites would I bring, to describe a situatiuon that was difficult or challenging; how I dealt with it and how I dealt with my reaction, what areas I was interested in and what were the negatives of what I could bring to the profession!

As I had sensibly revised all of these I felt like I wasnt caught on the hop! Don't find out for 6-8 weeks but have no idea of the outcome. Feeling hopeful at least!

Thanks for your help and I shall repost when I have an answer one way or another. Feel very much like this has been a really positive experience and am thinking well if I dont get on at least I know that I have the right things and will at least be confident to try again, whilst of course being secretly gutted!


slipperandpjsmum Fri 10-Jun-11 15:08:42

From what you have written in your postings I am sure you will have been easily able to answer all those questions.

Can't believe they make you wait so long - torture.

Please do re-post when you find out and thanks for taking the time to update me.

voodoomunkee Tue 05-Jul-11 22:18:17

Hi again! Just wanted to let you know that .....(drum roll)....... I got a place! Conditional offer dependent on retaking a gcse sob however I have a plan in place and am very very happy!

Thanks for your help, it was very useful to be able to talk it over with someone. smile

Have to keep taking letter out and looking at the conditional offer thing! Yay!

Cheers again smile

letsgetloud Fri 08-Jul-11 23:10:57

Congratulations and well done.

I am sure you will love it.

slipperandpjsmum Sat 09-Jul-11 14:51:48

Thats fantastic - well done, knew you would do it!!!

You will have a great time!!!

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