Social Work, Education & Community Wellbeing

Here at Northumbria we are at the forefront of high quality professional education, innovation and research. In this discipline we cover social work, social care, education, lifelong learning, public health and community welbeing.

Within this department we’re ranked top 5 nationally for our education programmes, while over half of our research in Social Work and Social Policy has been rated as world leading or internationally excellent.


The Department of Social Work, Education and Community Wellbeing is a multi-disciplinary department committed to the integration of health, education and social care. 

Our focus is on research-led teaching by academics who are experts in their field. We believe this approach provides our students with the best possible preparation for professional practice in a range of health, education and social care occupations. Our Education provision has been judged as outstanding for 14 years, and we are one of the top providers of Education Training in England.

The Department’s world-leading research has genuine impact and helps shape policy in areas such as social justice, family law, child welfare, overcoming educational disadvantage, and mental illness. This is particularly expressed through the use of participatory methodologies, where we work with partners to deliver actions or interventions to improve outcomes for individuals and groups throughout the life-course.

The Department also houses academic provision relating to the Children and Young peoples' Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (CYP-IAPT) programme. This is a Department of Health Initiative aimed at increasing number of therapists equipped to provide evidence based therapeutic interventions within children and young people's mental health services and involves the Department working in partnership with services spanning a geographical region from Hull to Northumberland. Since 2012, in excess of 200 psychological therapists have been prepared via these academic programmes.

Alongside Social Work and Education, Occupational Therapy is another professional programme provided within the department. Occupational Therapists work with people from birth to the end of life, focussing on activities that individuals and communities want and need to do that will help to maintain health, wellbeing and independence.

By working collaboratively and professionally with local, national and international stakeholders we optimise the life chances of individuals and groups who experience a range of vulnerabilities and challenges.  

This important work will provide opportunities for collaboration and partnerships that are mutually beneficial, so please contact us if you would like to know more.

Northumbria University was the fastest riser in research power in the latest Research Excellence Framework, and it is distinguishing itself further through its Multi-Disciplinary Research Themes (MDRTs). Among these, Integrated Health and Social Care brings together research that tackles inequalities in health, education and wellbeing. As a department we seek solutions to challenges in areas such as supporting young carers of parents with mental health problems.