Guardian Careers – Social Work

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Based in the Faculty of Health, the School of Health Professions has something for everyone interested in health and care-related professions and is committed to shaping our students into the best health professionals they can be. The School offers a unique interdisciplinary learning environment, where students can benefit from excellent skills and research laboratories, research-informed teaching, stimulating practice placements and teaching delivered by professionally registered academic staff.

The School is proud of the commitment to student voluntary work, staff–student partnership, strong professional values and our record of student achievement and student satisfaction. State-of-the-art facilities and equipment help students maximise their potential and develop their core skills, preparing them to embark on exciting and rewarding careers. The School holds an Athena SWAN Bronze award demonstrating the University’s ongoing commitment to advancing gender equality and success for all.

The University of Plymouth BA Social Work is rated 9th in the UK (Complete University Guide) and is located in Britain’s breath-taking Ocean City on the southwest peninsula. We are seeking a Lead Social Worker (at Associate Professor banding) with vision for social work education to lead and line manage a team of academics in order to deliver and develop a quality contemporary learning experience for social work learners. The Social Work Department sits in the School of Health Professions within the Faculty of Health and is an integral part of the inter-professional vision for the university. The Faculty is one of the largest integrated health and social care education providers in the country. It has a strong focus on interdisciplinary learning and valuing the expertise of all elements of the health and social care workforce.

The Lead Social Worker role requires excellent leadership skills to strategically develop and guide our academic social work provision and strengthen our links with social work practice in the region. The role requires excellent skills in relationship management and networking to work alongside key internal and external stakeholders (service user and care consultancy group, external agencies and professional education forums). The role will be university based leading and delivering education in-line with Social Work England standards. You will be encouraged to maintain practice by spending up to 1 day per week in practice settings, shadowing or delivering social work interventions and/or providing academic support to the practice setting. There are excellent opportunities for career development and to enable development in others.

Our Ideal Candidate Will Be Either Be

An experienced Social Work academic with strong links to contemporary practice. Recent experience or exposure to social work practice through secondments/shadowing/practice-based research would be desirable.


A Senior or Principal social worker with experience and expertise in higher education teaching and learning including module and/or curriculum design. A teaching and learning qualification or membership/affiliation with Higher Education Academy would be desirable.

All Associate Professor roles at the University of Plymouth are advertised as ‘Balanced pathway’ (combining leadership, education and research) in the first instance. For this role, the focus is on leadership and education – limited research expertise would not preclude appointment.

For an informal discussion to find out more about the role then please contact Dr Sally Abey by email [email protected] or Dr Rosi Raine by email [email protected]

This role will require an Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Check plus an Adults’ Barred List check.

Please demonstrate how you meet the essential criteria outlined in the knowledge, qualifications, training and experience elements of the job description in your supporting statement.

Closing date: Midnight, Sunday 6 November 2023.

Interviews are likely to take place on Wednesday 30 November 2023 and you will be notified if you have been shortlisted or not.

This is a full-time position working 37 hours a week on a permanent basis

Flexible working options including job share will be considered.

We offer a competitive salary package and a generous pension and holiday scheme. We also offer a range of other benefits, including ongoing development opportunities.

A relocation package may be available to the successful candidate, conditions apply.

The University of Plymouth has a strong interdisciplinary research ethos which is supported by our three strategic Research Institutes: the Marine Institute, the Sustainable Earth Institute, and the Plymouth Institute of Health and Care Research. As a member of our academic community, you’ll be expected to contribute to our recognised research strengths. Working holistically across the University, you will be challenged to innovate, collaborate and deliver impactful research contributions as part of a systems thinking approach to addressing today’s global challenges.

The University of Plymouth is a diverse, welcoming community where everyone makes a difference and is encouraged to bring their whole selves to work. To find out more about our inclusive community, initiatives such as Athena Swan and the Race Equality Charter and our range of benefits/support mechanisms such as flexible working, staff networks and enhanced maternity, paternity & adoption leave please visit our Equality, Diversity and Inclusion webpages

We particularly welcome applicants from under-represented groups such as BAME/BIPOC and LGBT+.

The Faculty of Health holds a Silver Athena Swan Award and the University holds a Bronze Athena SWAN Award which recognises commitment to advancing women’s careers in STEMM academia.

Staff appointed within the Faculty of Health may be able to join the NHS pension scheme subject to eligibility criteria.

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