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Hugh McLaughin - Department Overview and Future Prospects

Last Updated:

29th May 2013

I'm in the Department of Social Work and Social Change, and we're part of the faculty of healthy, psychology, and social care, and in terms of post graduate course, we provide an MA qualifying course in social work, we also provide a PhD and (?) courses. Alongside the MA in social work, we also provide what are called a Continuous Professional Development courses, or what used to be called PQ couses. We do bespoke modules for practitioners.

I think the main strength of our program is the quality, the dedication, and the commitment of our staff. I think that they are the key strengths of the department, and they are committed to not just being merely purveyors of knowledge, but also creators of knowledge, and that we try to provide a research informed curriculum.

In terms of social work, and in terms of PhD, we're looking for people who have the ability to think, and to be creative. And we're also, particularly for social work, we're looking for people who can use their heart as well as their mind, because it's no use being the most intelligent person in the world who's able to analyze everything if you aren't able to communicate. It's also not any use to be able to communicate if you don't know what you're communicating about and why you're doing it. So we're looking for people who are both able to communicate, and people who have the analytical ability and the passion to undertake the work.

Well, the MA students often go into social work, and we're very pleased that a very high percentage of them, 90 odd percent of them, get jobs within that field, and get jobs within six months. The PhD students, obviously, it's a bit wider. Some of them will come into academia, and will some will then look for jobs within their professional groups. Some of them are part time students, and they'll go back into their organization and look towards getting promotion into more senior posts, either in practice or in terms of management.

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