MA Social Work: A degree full of support

Studying a master’s is never going to be easy, and along the way, you’re going to need support from the people around you. Some people rely on support from their friends, others rely on support from their family but there’s one thing that you can guarantee as a University of Manchester Social Work student – you will get support from your tutors.

Final year student, Simmy Singh, has previously written a blog for us before during her first year on the programme. This time we check in with her just over a year later, as she explains just what that support entails and how it’s helped her to get the most out of her degree.

My name is Simmy and I am currently in my final year studying a master’s in Social Work.  As I am coming towards the end of my degree, I wanted to share with you the support I have received while studying this degree.

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Course size

One of the main reasons why I believe the support we receive on the course is excellent is because of the fact that the class sizes are smaller than what you normally get on standard undergraduate degrees. The maximum number of students on the course is between 40-45 students which makes it much easier to speak (or shout!) your answer out during a lecture or a seminar.

There is a range of support available within the social work department such as being able to access relevant readings and links on Blackboard to having face to face chats with a lecturer. The support which is offered is available to every student, whatever their need/worry.

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Essays

Another form of support that we receive relates to essays. The feedback on each and every essay that I’ve written during my time on the course has been incredibly thorough, constructive and helpful. In addition to the written feedback, we are also given the opportunity after each essay to go and talk to the unit lead to discuss the feedback further and how the comments can be applied in a practical way. This is something which is optional however in my experience, the discussions with the lecturers are useful as they offer support going forward with other essays and placements.

Placements

While on placement, there is support available from your placement practice educator to other students on the same placement to your practice link tutor who is the bridge between university and placement. Whether you chose to gain support from one of the above people or all of them, it can help enhance your placement experiences providing a wealth of opportunities which you are able to gain. Placement can be daunting for some; whether you have a question or would like advice on something particular, there is support available.

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A bond with academics

As mentioned above, the degree is small however so is the social work department which is actually a positive aspect. The lecturers are able to get to know the students better, understand our personalities and be able to support us through the degree whether that is an academic issue or a personal issue. This is something which I have experienced as I have been able to go to my academic advisor and discuss my worries which are listened to and collectively are worked out.

Overall, the support you receive on the course is helpful and is appropriate to your needs, whether you prefer face-face, digital support or both! It allows you to learn new skills and gain opportunities while at university and at placement.


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