If social work students are to flourish in their careers, and go beyond a basic sense of ‘competence’ in practice, it is essential to develop a sense of Professional Self. This book will help students develop critical understanding of their own social work practice, and the tools and skills required to become a professional social worker.

Understanding Continuing Professional Development

Patricia Higham

Understanding Continuing Professional Development

Understanding continuing professional development
Patricia Higham


Qualified social workers are expected to update and extend their knowledge, skills, and understanding for practice through a process of continuing professional development (CPD). Most social workers in the United Kingdom have thought of this process as ‘PQ’ – Post-Qualifying Social Work Education and Training, which comprises specific, regulated assessed modules or awards designated by the professional regulator to develop social workers according to employer requirements for practice. But social workers have to develop their practice within changing regulatory and professional environments.

England's strong regulation of PQ has been superseded by a greater emphasis on professionalism, where responsibility for professional development lies with the practitioner. The Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF) (The College of Social Work, 2013; ...

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