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Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert

Learn about the course below
September 2023
April 2023
1 year
See individual modules
Course leader
Diane Apeah-Kubi

This programme facilitates your transition of qualified social worker from being enabled by others, to becoming enablers of others, by meeting the practice education requirements as set out in the Practice Education Professional standards (PEPS). Enhance your professional social work skills and develop your capacities in critical reflection, supervision and professional leadership, so that you can practice at a specialist level and improve outcomes for users of services.

Why study Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert at Middlesex University?

Enhance your professional social work skills and further your career by honing your skills in critical reflection, research, supervision and professional leadership.

Our academic staff and practitioners bring a wealth of experience and knowledge, and our long-standing and strong ties with local authorities, charities and independent agencies ensure our courses provide the most current policy and practice in social work. Teaching staff are very supportive and do their best to ensure you succeed.

Upon graduation, you will have developed the knowledge and skills to be able to apply for specialist practitioner roles and/or more advanced social work positions such as those within management.

Many of our graduates continue working as a Practice Educator before using the experience gained to apply for advanced social work positions such as those within practice management.

Find out more

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What will you study on Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert?

Upon completion of this programme you will have an in-depth understanding of the theory and practice of adult learning, learning organisations and continuous professional development. You will know the meaning and scope of ‘practice education’ within a national and professional context and the role of the practice educator and practice assessor as well as the pre-qualifying social work student within that context (this is also in reference to the PCF and PEPS).

What will you gain?

As well  as enhancing and developing your professional social work skills and knowledge, you will also have the ability to enable others in particular areas of specialist social work practice. You will have the pre-qualifying social work practice requirements and the related knowledge and values within the workplace in relation to PCF, PEPS and KSS.


  • Modules

    • Practice Education (Stage 1) (30 credits) - Compulsory

      This module facilitate your transition of a qualified social worker from being enabled by others, to becoming enablers of others, and meeting the Stage 1 practice education requirements within a particular specialism such as adult, child and family, or mental health social work as set out in the Practice Education Professional standards (PEPS).

      Have a look at this module in more detail, including fees and learning outcomes.

    • Practice Education (Stage 2) (30 credits) - Compulsory

      This module will promote good practice in your assessment of and is supported by practice-based teaching. You will also be enabled to meet Stage 2 practice education requirements within a particular specialism of adult, children or mental health as set out in the Practice Education Professional Standards (PEPS).

      Have a look at this module in more detail, including fees and learning outcomes.

You can find more information about this course in the See the course specification for more information programme specification. Module and programme information is indicative and may be subject to change

Course specification 2020/21

We are regularly reviewing and updating our programmes to ensure you have the best learning experience. We are taking what we've learnt during recent years by enhancing our teaching methods with new and innovative ways of learning. Please regularly check this section of the course page for updates.

How is the Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert taught?

You will learn through research, reading and critical reflection, workshops, tutorials and class discussions. Teaching will predominantly if not fully, be delivered online.


You will be assessed via a combination of formative and summative written assignments, group work, assessed role plays and reflective writing based on practice experience. There are currently no examination assessments on the programme.

Teaching and learning from 2022

We have reviewed our approach to teaching and learning for 2022 entry and beyond. We've learned a lot about how to give you a quality education - we aim to combine the best of our in-person teaching and learning with access to online learning and digital resources which put you more in charge of when and how you study. We will keep you updated on this throughout the application process.

Your timetable will be built around on campus sessions using our professional facilities, with online sessions for some activities where we know being virtual will add value. We’ll use technology to enhance all of your learning and give you access to online resources to use in your own time.

The table below gives you an idea of what learning looks like across a typical week. Some weeks are different due to how we schedule classes and arrange on campus sessions.

You'll receive full information on your teaching before you start your course.

Learning structure: typical hourly breakdown in 2021/22


Live learning

Contact time per week, per level:

22 hours


Self-paced learning time

Average hours per week, per level:

20 hours


On demand resources

Average hours per week, per level:

30 hours

Outside of these hours, you’ll be expected to do independent study where you read, listen and reflect on other learning activities. This can include preparation for future classes. In a year, you’ll typically be expected to commit 1200 hours to your course across all styles of learning. If you are taking a placement, you might have some additional hours.

Definitions of terms

  • Live in-person on campus learning – This will focus on active and experiential sessions that are both:
    • Led by your tutors including seminars, lab sessions and demonstrations We’ll schedule all of this for you
    • Student-led by you and other students, like small group work and presentations.
  • Live online learning – This will include lectures, tutorials and supervision sessions led by your tutor and timetabled by us. It also includes student-led group work that takes place online

  • Tutor set learning activities – This covers activities which will be set for you by your tutor, but which you will undertake in your own time. Examples of this include watching online materials, participating in an online discussion forum, completing a virtual laboratory or reading specific texts. You may be doing this by yourself or with your course mates depending on your course and assignments. Outside of these hours, you’ll also be expected to do further independent study where you’ll be expected to learn, prepare, revise and reflect in your own time.


You have a strong support network available to you to make sure you develop all the necessary academic skills you need to do well on your course.

Our support services will be delivered online and on campus and you have access to a range of different resources so you can get the help you need, whether you’re studying at home or have the opportunity to come to campus.

You have access to one to one and group sessions for personal learning and academic support from our library and IT teams, and our network of learning experts. Our teams will also be here to offer financial advice, and personal wellbeing, mental health and disability support.

  1. Standard entry requirements
  2. International (inc. EU)
  3. How to apply

How can the Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert support your career?

Upon graduation, you will have developed the knowledge and skills required to apply for specialist practitioner roles and/or more advanced social work/ welfare positions such as those within leadership and practice management.

Diane Apeah-Kubi
Senior Lecturer

Diane worked as a social worker in children’s services covering roles in child protection and looked-after children. She has been with Middlesex since 2016 but still maintains links to practice by continuing to work as an independent practice educator and assessor of newly-qualified social workers.

Rahaman Mohammed
Senior lecturer

Prior to joining Middlesex, Rahman worked as a freelance trainer delivering workshops on safeguarding and Deprivation of Liberty. He also worked as an Approved Mental Health Professional and is a qualified Practice Educator.

Niall Daly
Lecturer (Practice) in Social Work

Prior to joining Middlesex on a permanent basis in 2019, Niall worked as an emergency duty social worker for a London borough. He is also a qualified AMHP

  • PGCert Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education)

    Sherine, Marsha & Victor

    PGCert Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education)

    Sherine, Marsha and Victor are Social Workers working in different organisations across London. They were part of a cohort of 20 Practice Educators who graduated in July 2022.

    “Studying, working full time and mentoring a student during the Covid pandemic did have its challenges, but my journey has been enriching and so rewarding. It has been an absolute pleasure being part of this cohort and having the peer support and guidance from other students and the course lecturers. I am really excited about the future and my continuous journey as a Practice Educator." (Sherine)

We’ll carefully manage any future changes to courses, or the support and other services available to you, if these are necessary because of things like changes to government health and safety advice, or any changes to the law.

Any decisions will be taken in line with both external advice and the University’s Regulations which include information on this.

Our priority will always be to maintain academic standards and quality so that your learning outcomes are not affected by any adjustments that we may have to make.

At all times we’ll aim to keep you well informed of how we may need to respond to changing circumstances, and about support that we’ll provide to you.

Advanced Social Work Practice (Practice Education) PGCert

Our entry requirements provide a guide to the qualifications that you’ll need to study our courses. We understand that problems with the system for exams and assessments might mean you have lower grades that you expected, so we’re taking a flexible approach to admissions. We’ll do our best to look at your application on an individual basis, consider lower grades than normal and mock results, and look at more than your qualifications when we’re making a decision.


  • We require an honours degree or masters in Social Work

Further requirements

  • You must have a minimum of two years post qualifying experience.
  • You must have prior experience of working with a newly-qualified or student social worker
  • You must currently be employed as a social worker
  • You must have a satisfactory DBS check
  • You must have a minimum of two years post-qualifying experience. Please note that certain modules require a proof of specific number of years of post-qualifying experience e.g. a letter / reference from your employer.

Your organisation should be able to provide you with a Practice Assessor, someone who is an already-qualified social work practice educator (i.e. they hold the Practice Teaching Award, or have completed PE1 and PE2), who will act as your assessor for the duration of the course. The Assessor will conduct observations of your practice. Where an organisation cannot provide an Assessor, we may be able to find someone to take on that role, however as they would likely be independent of the university, their fee would need to be covered by your organisation.


UK/EU and international students are eligible to apply for this course.

Interviews, entrance tests, portfolios and auditions

Entry onto this course does not require an interview, portfolio or audition, however candidates may have to go through a shortlisting / selection process by their organisation.

Other courses

Advanced Social Work Practice MA/PGDip/PGCert

Start: September 2023, January 2023

Duration: 2- 4 years

Code: MA: PGL50M, PGDip: PGL50C, PGCert: PGL50D

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