MA Social Work

  • Available in Clearing 2024
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Make a difference to people’s lives. Combine in-depth professional training and tuition with practice placements - and graduate ready to apply to register as a qualified Social Worker.

A lecturer teaching social work students in a classroom Meet our Social Work students

Supporting your future in Social Work

Find out what it's like to study Social Work at ARU from our students

Already have an ARU degree? You may be eligible for our Alumni Scholarship for students starting postgraduate courses.

Our full time Masters degree is designed for graduates with at least six months’ relevant work experience, who want to qualify as professional Social Workers.

Offered in Chelmsford or Peterborough, this two-year MA Social Work is approved by Social Work England, so when you graduate, you’ll be eligible to apply for professional registration.

Typically, in your first year you’ll have three days of lectures a week on campus, with the rest of your time spent in independent study or on placement. In the second year, you’ll have one day on campus, with 3-4 days per week on placement.

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Key facts

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Entry Requirements


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Fees and Paying for University

Facilities and accreditation

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Practical experience

We know that learning doesn’t just happen in the classroom. As a social work student at ARU you’ll benefit from:

  • 70 days on placement
  • the chance to learn from registered social workers
  • covering both adults and children
  • experience of working in different settings
  • experience of working directly with service users.

You may be eligible for a Social Work Bursary in either year of your studies. This can help with living and travel costs and doesn’t have to be repaid. Eligibility criteria is set by NHS Bursary and a quota of students do get the bursary each year.

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Outstanding student support

Join our postgraduate student community and:

  • benefit from award-winning learning facilities, including extensive library and IT resources
  • learn from expert staff who will guide your research interests and career development
  • receive full support from our Employability Service, while you're studying with us and after you graduate
  • access support, should you need it, with study skills, health and wellbeing, and more.
Social Work England logo with the words 'this course is approved by Social Work England'

Social Work England

Our MA Social Work degree course is validated by Social Work England, so when you graduate, you’ll be eligible to apply to register as a Social Worker.


On completion of this Masters degree you’ll be eligible to register with Social Work England as a qualified social worker.

You’ll be equipped to build a career in various branches of professional social work, including children’s or adult services, mental health services, youth offending, residential social care and providing advocacy and support for vulnerable groups.

You’ll have developed a wide range of academic, practical and reflective skills that will allow you to move into your chosen career and embark on your Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE).

Social workers are in demand in the statutory, private, voluntary and independent sectors.

Although focussed on the education of future social work professionals, the degrees equip graduates with a range of transferable knowledge and skills.

Graduation doesn’t have to be the end of your time with us. You could choose to continue your academic career with a PhD programme at ARU. Take advantage of our Alumni Scholarship and save £400 on your fees.

While you’re studying here and after you graduate, you can access support through our dedicated Employability Service.

Apply now for MA Social Work

Want to talk to someone?

Do you have a question that we haven't answered so far? Talk to our application experts. You can also ask our Student Ambassadors about life at ARU.

We're here Monday-Thursday 9am-5pm (please note we close at 3.30pm on the first and third Thursday of the month for staff training), and Friday 9am-4.30pm.

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Vibrant campuses

Choose where you study: we offer this degree course in the heart of Chelmsford and Peterborough.

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Benefits of postgraduate study

Improve your employability, progress in your career, and take on an intellectual challenge with our flexible postgraduate degrees.

Postgraduate study at ARU