Professional Development and Practice PGCert

Professional Development and Practice PGCert

School of Social Work, Care and Community


Post- graduate





Contact UCLan

Course Enquiries
University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, UK.

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

  • Duration:

    Part-time: 1-2 years

  • Level:

    Postgraduate, Professional Development

  • Mode:


  • Delivery:

    Mixed Mode, Part-time

  • Campus:


  • Start Date:

    Flexible – please discuss options with CPD team

  • Award Type:


Why study this programme?

This course offers the opportunity of postgraduate study for practitioners in social work and social care in the broad settings of child, adult and mental health care. This also includes practitioners in specialist practice areas such as: YOT, homeless services, domestic violence, learning disabilities and substance misuse.

For social workers this will provide evidence of their learning in order to meet HCPC requirements for renewing their registration. However, we would expect this course to be attractive to non-social work qualified staff as part of their continuing professional development (CPD) and career development.

The core module aims to support practitioners to extend their knowledge and analytical skills in relation to their own CPD and to reflect on their capability in relation to their evolving scope of practice.

Find out more about our virtual open days Find out more about our virtual open days

Entry Requirements

This course is available for all practitioners in the field of social work or social care and will form part of their employer’s commitment to CPD alongside their own registration requirements with professional regulators.

There is a standard benchmark of a first degree at 2.2 or above in a relevant subject, but non-standard entrants with suitable experience in social care and evidence of recent study will be considered.

International applications must have an IELTS score of a minimum of 7.0.

Please note, certain modules within this course may have additional entry requirements.

Programme at a Glance

This course consists of 3 modules:

  • Critical reflection on Professional Learning and Development (SW4703)

Plus two modules from:

  • Advanced Facilitation of Learning in the Workplace (SW4706)
  • Advanced Mental Health Practice (SW4714)
  • Assessment, Management and Treatment of Sexual Offending (SW4719)
  • ASYE: Demonstrating Capability in Social Work Practice (SW4701)
  • Best Interest Assessor (SW4120)
  • Childhood in Law and Welfare (SW4032)
  • Global Perspectives on Children’s Participation (SW4709)
  • Inclusion and Community (SW4717)

  • Introduction to Facilitating Learning in the Workplace (SW4705)
  • Leadership for Innovation and Integration (SW4707)
  • Leading and Inspiring through Professional Supervision (SW4704)
  • Making Personalisation Effective in Mental Health Practice (SW4710)
  • Professional Development Review (SW4700)
  • Responding to Contemporary Issues in Social Work and Social Care (SW4712)
  • Safeguarding and Adult Protection (SW4702)
  • Safeguarding Children and Young People (SW4033)
  • Social Pedagogy: Theories and Practice (SW4721)
  • Social Perspectives on Personality Disorder (SW4716)

  • Substance Misuse: A Holistic Approach to Problematic Drug and Alcohol Use (SW4708)
  • Theorising Childhood and Adolescence (SW4085)
  • Understanding Mental Health Practice (SW4713)
  • Violence Against Women: Practice and Prevention Across Different Communities (SW4720)
  • Youth Justice: Theory, Policy and Practice (SW4718)


Find out more information on each module via the Centre for CPD’s webpage. Alternatively, use the UCLan search engine at the top of this page.

Further Information

The course will: 

  • Enable students to critically reflect on and review their professional development to facilitate enhanced performance and service delivery
  • Provide learning opportunities for students to critical reflect on complex challenges, current issues and new evidence-based practice research
  • Develop and enhance students’ capacity for critically evaluating key theoretical knowledge, law and policy in relation social work and social care practice
  • Provide learning opportunities for students to develop and to enhance decision-making skills in complex situations in social work and social care practice
  • Enable students to demonstrate self-direction and originality in tackling and solving problems, and act autonomously in planning and implementing tasks at a professional level
  • Enable students to recognise the contribution, and begin to make use of research to inform practice.

How to Apply

Initially please contact the CPD team to discuss your module preferences.

You can apply either on a course basis or individual modular basis. For specific guidance to support you in completing an application and to ensure it is directed appropriately once submitted. You will be advised to apply through the University Online Application System

Individuals should initially discuss their application with their employer as arrangements may be in place for financial and study leave support.

Should you have any further questions about the application or enrolment process please contact the CPD team on:

Tel: +44 (0)1772 894361/3408

For further details about the course and module options please contact:

Matt Graham, Course Leader
Tel: +44 (0)1772 893462


Apply now or see further information about postgraduate study and research. International students should visit our international pages.

Contact Us

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400


Fees 2020/21

Full-time: N/A
Part-time: £880 per 20 credits (UK/EU)

Module fees will remain the same for the duration of the course providing students do not interrupt their study.

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

Professional Accreditation

The Centre for CPD has been awarded BASW CPD Provider Accreditation. Valid February 2018 – February 2020.

Learning Environment and Assessment

Determined by your module selection.

Keynote lectures, seminars, tutorials, material for self-directed learning, e-learning, workshops will form part of university based learning provision.

Students will be required to link formal learning to their practice and will be encouraged to build on existing skills/develop new skills to consolidate their learning across the academic and practice fields.

Skills, values and knowledge will be developed through group discussions, group tutorials, presentations and practice learning opportunities.

The overarching teaching and learning strategy will enable students to develop cognitive skills which are appropriate to independent learning and postgraduate study.

A range of assessment methods will include essays, presentations, case studies, practice observation, reflective writing, practice portfolios, and personal development files. 

Progression Routes

On successful completion of this award students can progress to MA awards, such as the MA in Professional Development and Practice. For full details on the offering and progression routes please visit the Centre for CPD.