The aim of this programme is to allow individuals to become professional and competent social workers who are knowledgeable, reflective, research-focused practitioners, able to work critically and ethically in a variety of different sectors.
To provide students with the knowledge, skills and competencies to become professional social workers in a variety of settings within the statutory, voluntary and independent sectors.
- To support students in developing a critical awareness of current issues facing society and generate innovative ideas to support the resolution of such issues.
- To facilitate students to develop an understanding of professional accountability and the legal and regulatory framework within which social work operates.
- To equip students to reflect, practise ethical, innovative and effective social work practice that actively promotes social justice in a diverse society.
- To develop learners who not only recognise and understand the importance of evidence and research in and to practice but who can contribute to this debate and apply to social work practice.
- To develop civic and social responsibility as an informed learner.
Key Course Information
The programme is two years full-time. Students complete two practice placements as part of the programme.
Students may undertake the programme over a longer period, and this can be discussed with the Programme Director.
The programme is delivered by experts in social work practice and discipline-specific expertise.
There are a limited number of places on this programme.
Accredited by: ATU, Sligo campus through delegated authority from QQI
Level 9 on the National Framework of Qualifications
MA 120 (ECTS = European Credit Transfer System
This programme is approved by CORU
Application Closing Date : 16th August 2024
Admissions and Selection Criteria
Once an applicant registers their application on the system using the 'Apply Now' link on the programme page (on the ATU website), they will be required to follow 6 steps, for example they will be asked to upload a CV, their third level results (transcripts are required at a later stage) and references. NB: All that is required at this point from an MSW applicant is their CV and transcripts (if they have them available, if not we will offer an opportunity at a late stage to submit these). MSW applicants can skip other steps, where they are asked for references, as we look for very specific information later. This then registers the applicant on our system. Following this, they will receive communication from admissions, requesting other more specific documentation, namely:
- A copy of their third level transcripts (it must be a relevant qualification within the discipline of social sciences)
- CV (if not already uploaded
- Applicants will be given 3 templates by the admissions team: (a) Academic Reference Template (b) Employer Reference Template and (c) a Work/Practice Experience form Template
Applicants need to ensure that the academic reference, employer reference and evidence of relevant practice experience are provided on the templates provided only
Applicants should not provide any other documentation other than what is listed above. Applicants will be given a deadline for the provision of all relevant documentation after which time shortlisting then occurs. If an applicant is shortlisted, they will be invited to interview, interviews have two components (1) written assessment and (2) individual interview.
To be considered for an interview and selection for this programme applicants:
- Require a grade of 2.1 or above in Social Sciences i.e. B.Soc.Sc, Community Development, Early Childhood Care and Education, Psychology, Social Policy, Social Science, Social Care Practice, Sociology, Social Policy, Youth and Family Studies. If an applicant has a level 8 award in a discipline that is not social sciences, they must hold a postgraduate award in social sciences (minimum 2.1 grade). If an applicant has a level 8 award in a discipline that is not social sciences, they must hold a postgraduate award in social sciences (minimum 2.1 grade). Students with grade of 2.2 with greater than five years of relevant experience may be considered as suitable applicants to the programme.
- Following registration of your application on the system, you will receive further guidance and documentation for completion from the admissions team.
- English Proficiency: As all lectures, tutorials and practical work are delivered through English, it is vitally important all students (who are not English native speakers) have the required standard on entry to ensure they gain maximum value from their time at ATU Sligo. The required minimum proficiency score in English required for entry to ATU Sligo to an MA Programme is IELTS 6.0 or equivalent. Further information on English proficiency requirements can be found here. Where this is relevant to an applicant’s submissions, Certified Evidence must be submitted during the application process.
- Students must have completed 420 hours (min of 200 at interview) of non-study related practice experience before they commence the programme.
Students will apply for the programme online. All applicants will be reviewed and those who demonstrate that they meet the application criteria will be shortlisted for the next stage of the selection process. If a large number meets the criteria, exceeding places available, shortlisting for the next stage based on the highest overall GPA will occur. It is the student's responsibility to ensure all documents, including references, are received before the application deadline. Incomplete applications will not be processed. No late applications will be considered.
Shortlisted applicants will attend for a full day of interview and selection.
There are two components (1) Written Assessment, (2) Individual Interview, all of which will be graded.
Written Assessment. Candidates will be given and topic to respond to within a specific timeframe.
The highest-scoring applicants will be awarded the places.
Garda Vetting is a requirement of this programme and will compliant with ATU Sligo`s Policy and Procedure Titled: Student Vetting. ADM/017/ Revision No 02. During the Garda Vetting Process issues that may emerge which were not declared by the student on the initial Vetting form may result in immediate termination of participation on the Programme. Offences that are disclosed through the process that is considered a serious risk to children and vulnerable persons may also result in a student’s discontinuation from the Programme.
Fitness to Practice
A student on the Masters in Social Work must be Fit to Practice. ATU Sligo guidance on Fitness to Practice can be found within its policy. Students will be required to read this Policy and acknowledge that they have read and understood this requirement.
Immunisations & Vaccinations
Placement agencies may require students to be immunised against specific infectious diseases.
The Department recommends that Social Work students are protected against Hepatitis B, Tuberculosis (TB), Mumps, Measles Rubella (MMR) and Varicella (Chicken Pox).
Closing date is 01 April 2024
Applications are now open for the September 2024 intake.
Upon qualification graduates are eligible to register with CORU (regulator) to practice in the profession of Social Work It is anticipated that the majority of graduates of this programme will enter the many vacancies in the social work field. Consequently, the programme has been developed to provide academic knowledge, and skills to work in a variety of social work environments.
This programme is approved by CORU.
Graduates of the MA will be able to continue to further study at postgraduate level (NFQ levels 10) at ATU Sligo and other institutions.
MA Social Work-
€4,750 fee per year.
|Social Policy for Social Work
|Social Work Theory to Practice
|Social Work Skills and Competencies
|Preparation for Placement
|Lifespan Developmental Psychology for Social Workers
|Fieldwork Placement 1
|Sociological Perspectives for Social Work
|Research Methods and Evaluation
|Professional Ethics in Social Work Practice
|Interprofessional and Interagency Collaboration (IPIAC) in Social Work
|Group Work -Theory and Practice
|Social Work Research Project
|Fieldwork Placement 2
|Law and Social Work
|Traumatic Experiences: Psychological impact across the lifespan