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We approve and quality assure social work honours degree and postgraduate courses at universities across Scotland. The Standards in Social Work Education (SiSWE) set out what students need to learn to do, what they need to be able to understand and the competences they must have when they qualify as social workers.

The Framework specifies what providers of social work training are required to do to deliver social work programmes. Eight Scottish universities deliver social work programmes. Find out more about a career in social work on our careers website.

Social work programmes are designed and structured to allow social work students to show that they can meet the SiSWE and ensure that they have high quality and assessed practice learning opportunities. While learning in practice social work students are supervised and assessed by practice educators or practice teachers. Practice learning opportunities are in a range of settings that deliver social work and social care services.

Involving people who use services and carers

Each university has systems in place to include people who use services and carers in all aspects of programme delivery, including management, design, planning, teaching, assessment and programme evaluation, which is a requirement of the SiSWE. Service user and carer representatives are part of our approval panel when we consider applications from higher education institutes to deliver a social work programme.

There is also an Inter-University Service User and Carer group who meet regularly to discuss cross cutting issues and national issues.

The SSSC and the General Teaching Council for Scotland (GTCS) produced a guidance kit to help disabled social work and teaching students achieve their full potential. The guidance helps lecturers, tutors and others involved with students to provide vital learning support. Get it here: Learning support for disabled social work and teaching students: a guide.

If you studied a specialist social work postgraduate programme in England such as Frontline, Step Up or Think Ahead you should read the information on this page.