Step up to social work

Applications for the 2024 programme have now closed.

Applies to England

Applications for the 2024 programme have now closed. We’ll update this page with details about the next programme, when it’s available. Use Explore Careers for information on how to become a social worker.

Step up to social work is an intensive, 14-month, full-time programme. If you want to become a social worker but do not have a degree in social work, you can train through this programme.

What you’ll need to apply

To apply to the programme, you’ll need to have:

  • a minimum 2:2 undergraduate degree qualification (level 6)
  • 6 months’ full-time (or equivalent) direct experience, either in a paid or voluntary capacity, of working with vulnerable children, young people and/or families, carers or vulnerable adults
  • GCSEs in English or English language and mathematics at grade 4 (C) or above (or an approved equivalent)

You must have completed your degree programme before applying. Final year students are not eligible to apply.

Training and funding

If your application is successful, you will:

  • train through a combination of academic study and hands on social work experience in a local authority
  • receive a bursary of £19,833 to support you during your training

What you’ll get when you qualify

Once you successfully complete the programme, you will qualify with a Postgraduate Diploma in Social Work. This will allow you to apply to register with Social Work England as a qualified social worker.

Published 13 January 2023
Last updated 3 April 2023 + show all updates
  1. Applications for the 2024 programme have now closed.

  2. 'Step up to social work' has been updated to show that applications are now open and to include a link to the applications.

  3. First published.