Social Work (Scotland) (SSSC Approved)

Open University in Scotland


Social workers support and protect some of society’s most deprived and vulnerable people. It’s immensely challenging and rewarding work, requiring a high level of motivation and commitment. The OU offers a work-based distance learning route to the degree. Successful graduates are eligible to apply for registration as a qualified social worker with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC), working in either children’s or adult services. To take this course, you need to be working in a social care agency in Scotland, whether or not you’re sponsored by your employer. You'll also need to be released from your substantive post to undertake two 100-day placements. In exceptional circumstances, placements within your work setting can be considered but will require the approval of the Social Work Team in Scotland.

Entry Requirements

This degree course is restricted to students working in social care in Scotland (for at least 1 year).

For sponsored students entry has to be made through the employing agency: you cannot apply direct to the OU. A limited number of places are available to independent students – for more information contact The Open University in Scotland.

Employing agencies and individuals who are interested in this degree should contact the Social Work Co-ordinator at The Open University in Scotland on 0131 226 3851 or email

All candidates for the degree must: have a qualification at the level of National 5 English and Maths and show that they can communicate clearly in spoken and written English.

You must demonstrate that you have the appropriate personal and intellectual qualities to be social workers and take part in an interview.

They must also register with the SSSC as a student social worker. Registration with the SSSC includes a Disclosure Scotland check.

Progression Routes

On successful completion of the necessary courses, you will be awarded a BA (Hons) in Social Work (Scotland) degree. You will be entitled to use the letters BA (Hons) after your name.

An honours degree in social work is now the professional award for all social workers. Once you have successfully completed the award you are entitled to register with the Scottish Social Services Council (SSSC) as a social worker.

Start Date





BA Hons

Study Method

Distance and Flexible learning

Course Length





Health and Social Care

SCQF Level