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25/02/2022

Entry Routes for a Master’s in Social Care: Staying on at University

Staying on at university can help you take transferable skills from your existing course and focus your training in a healthcare environment. A master’s can also improve your employability, develop both your practical and soft skills, and boost your earning potential.

A master’s in social care is a fantastic course, open to students across various backgrounds. If you’re interested in working as a healthcare worker or a care assistant or manager for the NHS and other social care organisations, there are various routes you could take.

Applicants with a second degree are often favoured by the NHS or private healthcare employers, and further academic study is always encouraged. This makes postgraduate training a worthwhile investment, and there’s nowhere better to upskill than the University of Bolton.

Our MSc Social Care, Health and Wellbeing course is open to graduates with at least a lower second class (2.2) honours degree or equivalent in a relevant subject. If you’re a third-year student in any of the following subjects, this course could be the perfect career move for you:

Health and social care

A master’s in social care is a natural progression for those studying BSc (Hons) Health and Social Care at Bolton. As a student on this programme, you’ll have had a chance to develop essential values, skills and knowledge for good health and social care practice.

Plus you’ll already be skilled in policy, practice, and academic training. Advancing onto a master’s will help you hone what you know already, discover areas of specialism, and gain the employability skills needed to become a leader and influencer in the social care sector.

Social work

Another common route into social care is with a first degree in social work. Social care provides a whole range of services to support service users, and this can encompass services such as social work.

These two career paths run alongside each other, which makes it a great transition from undergraduate to postgraduate study. In the care sector, social workers are required to collaborate with professionals from other agencies, including social care teams. So there’s a lot that can be transferred from one degree to another.

Early years childhood studies

If you’re studying early years childhood, you may wish to go into a child social care role. With a master’s in social care, you can combine your understanding of helping, assisting and supporting pre-primary school children with the necessary skills for working in a healthcare setting.

Postgraduate training is also an opportunity to find your specialism or diversify your skills, and our course leaders will align the modules to your needs to ensure you get the personal and professional development required for your chosen career path in children’s social care.

Furthermore, our passionate tutors will help you refine your knowledge of leadership, management and research. This will position as the perfect candidate for higher-paid management roles, where you will get to have more influence on the planning, delivery and transformation of children’s social care and health services.

Community and youth work

Community support workers and outreach workers make up a large part of the social care sector. One of the biggest parts of their role is to apply cross-disciplinary thinking, and work collaboratively with professionals from other health and social care fields.

Collaboration is essential for community-based roles, and a social care master’s will expose you to graduates and professionals from all disciplines, as well as first-hand live examples of current practice. You’ll get to work alongside students from various backgrounds, including early years and youth studies, or medical backgrounds such as nursing and midwifery.

The varied student backgrounds means you can benefit from a wider range of knowledge and experience. This is invaluable for those looking to diversify their skills, develop concepts for inter-professional working, or those looking to work in a managerial position.

Nursing

Although there is no combined degree for nursing and work, some people choose to earn degrees in both fields. The transition from nursing to social work makes a lot of sense because these areas overlap in both education and on-the-job responsibilities.

By supplementing your nursing degree with a master’s in social care, you can gain a well-rounded perspective, something that is vital across all care settings.

During your master’s, you’ll get the opportunity to shape your career in the direction that suits you, and you’ll get to develop essential values and behaviours for NHS workers. These include action planning, personal impact and confidence, self-awareness, social and ethical responsibility, respect and commitment to quality.

Midwifery

Midwives often work closely with social workers and social care teams on a number of issues concerning parents and their unborn babies or new-borns. They may work in consultation with hospital social workers in initiating referral to child protection services. They may also need to cross-collaborate when it comes to delivering highly-targeted social care for vulnerable pregnant women.

This is why midwifery degrees are a fantastic route into social care. By advancing your skills in the social care field, you’ll be able to improve your practice and provide better care for the most vulnerable people in society. This sort of training is the ideal stepping stone for management and leadership.

Thinking of staying on at the University of Bolton?

If you’re studying any of the aforementioned subjects and want to increase your job prospects, our MSc Social Care, Health and Wellbeing course could be for you.

This postgraduate programme has a dynamic, multi-professional approach to teaching, and it covers the principles and techniques of academic research and investigation. Our goal is to help you progress your evidence-based practice, and arm you with the skills needed to formulate creative solutions to complex problems.

Furthermore, we have strong strategic partnerships with local NHS and social care organisations, and our dedicated Employability Team is on hand to support your career ambitions. We’re also 1st in the UK for Student Satisfaction in Health and Social Care*, so the University of Bolton is a great place to continue with your studies at master’s level! 

To find out more about applying in 2022 or 2023, see our course page for details.

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