What is an advanced practitioner?

If you’re a social worker looking to climb the career ladder, then this one’s for you! Carry on reading for expert insight into becoming an advanced practitioner, including desired skills, routes to entry and role requirements. 

What is an advanced practitioner? 

As an advanced practitioner in the social work sector, you will typically specialise in a specific area such as clinical social work, policy development, research or administration. 

Although advanced practitioner roles can vary from organisation to organisation, a typical day might include:

  • Providing assessments
  • Strategising for and co-ordinating services 
  • Support vulnerable young people and adults through identifying ‘best-fit’ services
  • Carry out casework services through interdisciplinary collaboration

What experience/qualifications do I need to become an advanced practitioner? 

Candidates applying for advanced practitioner roles need advanced knowledge and skills to address complex social issues, including: 

  • Bachelor’s degree in social work that is approved by Social Work England  
  • Registered with the HCPC as a qualified social worker
  • MA/PGDip/PGCert in Advanced Social Work Practice (depending on role requirements/employer) 
  • Significant experience as a social worker (usually 2 years minimum), ideally in the field you are applying for (e.g. rehabilitation) 
  • Satisfactory DBS check

Soft skills

In order to deliver the highest level of care to service users, advanced social work practitioners should be: 

  • Empathetic 
  • Good problem-solvers
  • Critically minded
  • Display resilience and drive
  • Strong written and spoken communicators 

Social work is people-facing, and therefore consistently improving on these soft skills will help you be happier, more productive and more collaborative in the workplace. 

We hope this blog provided you with a better understanding of the realities of becoming an advanced practitioner. If this sounds like a role you’d be interested in pursuing, make sure to get in touch with our specialist recruiters on 0203 8929 340. 

carlette Isaac

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