Social Work

The National Occupational Standards for Social Work (NOS) were revised in 2011 and are published by the UK Commission for Education and Skills. The consultation exercise in Wales included people who use services, carers, employers, practitioners, government officials, representatives from further and higher education and from professional bodies.

NOS have numerous uses in the workplace or in the development of the individual. These include defining roles at work, staff recruitment, supervision and appraisal, identifying training or Continuing Professional Development (CPD) needs, and staff planning. They help maintain high quality social care services.

NOS are also a valuable tool to be used as benchmarks for qualifications and the social work degree is based upon the NOS for Social Work.

For students currently studying and for those starting their degree in Wales in 2012/13, the course will be based upon the original 2003 standards.

NOS for Social Work 2003

For students starting their degree in Wales in 2013/14 the course will be based upon the revised 2011 standards.

The 2011 standards describe the 6 key roles for social workers.

Functional map
ReferenceStandard
Map SW /GC
moreFunctional map
The Index (or Functional Map) describes the key role for each NOS in for Social Work. Download
01-01-2003
moreNOS for Social Work 2003
These national occupational standards for social work were developed jointly with Northern Ireland Social Care Council, Scottish Social Services Council and TOPPS England. The consultation exercise in Wales included people who use services, carers, employers, practitioners, government officials, representatives from further and higher education and from professional bodies. The Care Council for Wales agreed the standards in March 2002. The standards were approved by the Qualification and Curriculum Authority (QCA) in June 2002.Download
Key role 1 - Maintain professional accountability
ReferenceStandard
SW 1
moreMaintain an up to date knowledge and evidence base for social work practice
SW 2
moreDevelop social work practice through supervision and reflection
Key role 2 - Practise professional social work
ReferenceStandard
SW 3
moreManage your role as a professional social worker
SW 4
moreExercise professional judgement in social work
SW 5
moreManage ethical issues, dilemmas and conflicts
SW 6
morePractise social work in multi-disciplinary contexts
SW 7
morePrepare professional reports and records relating to people
Key role 3 - Promote engagement and participation
ReferenceStandard
SW 8
morePrepare for social work involvement
SW 9
moreEngage people in social work practice
SW 10
moreSupport people to participate in decision-making processes
SW 11
moreAdvocate on behalf of people
Key role 4 - Assess needs, risks and circumstances
ReferenceStandard
SW 12
moreAssess needs, risks and circumstances in partnership with those involved
SW 13
moreInvestigate harm or abuse
Key role 5 - Plan for person centred outcomes
ReferenceStandard
SW 14
morePlan in partnership to address short and longer term issues
SW 15
moreAgree risk management plans to promote independence and responsibility
SW 16
moreAgree plans where there is risk of harm or abuse
Key role 6 - Take actions to achieve change
ReferenceStandard
SW 17
moreApply methods and models of social work intervention to promote change
SW 18
moreAccess resources to support person centred solutions
SW 19
moreEvaluate outcomes of social work practice
SW 20
moreDisengage at the end of social work involvement