Comparisons of ASYE in the UK and the EPAS framework in the US: Competency Benchmark Comparisons.

This source preferred by Margarete Parrish

Authors: Parrish, M.

Start date: 11 July 2013

The transition from student to newly-qualified professional poses substantial challenges across the various disciplines associated with health and social care. For social work students in the UK, the past decade of degree-level education has also been a time of considerable upheaval related to the quality and quantity of support and assessment of students entering the social work profession. For example, overlapping PQ and NQSW criteria sometimes proved confusing. This upheaval appears to be potentially resolved with the introduction of the “Assessed and Supported Year in Employment” (ASYE) now being implemented in the UK. The goal of ASYE is to standardise and quantify social work graduates’ preparedness to enter practice.

Likewise in the USA, the Council on Social Work Education (CSWE) has recently updated its mandatory practice competency educational framework, the Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards (EPAS), to strengthen the required measurement of these competencies. The goal of EPAS is to ensure social work graduates enter practice having met competency benchmarks. By comparing and contrasting the two approaches in response to the challenges of assessing newly-qualified social workers, the presenters will explore both frameworks in relation to demonstrating outcomes of social work education from an international basis. This workshop will provide participants with an interactive discussion of the strengths and weaknesses of both the ASYE and EPAS frameworks. Particular attention will be paid to the similar features and potentially transferrable aspects of the two frameworks in relation to the professionalization of social work.

The historical aspects of social work education in both the US and the UK will be discussed alongside the evolution of the ASYE and EPAS frameworks (Grinnell & Unrau, 2010; Keen, et al, 2013; Orme et al., 2009). While the logistics of registration in the UK and licensure in the US vary, the similarity of their functions will be considered by the workshop leaders.

Learning outcomes from attending the workshop include: • Increased awareness and familiarity with the ASYE framework • Increased awareness and familiarity with the EPAS framework • Development of ideas of the transferability of features of both frameworks for those students interested in practicing in the other national system • Increased familiarity and comfort levels with the implementation of the ASYE for newly-qualified social workers.

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