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Printed from the ScOPTbox Practice Learning Library

‘An Active Conversation Each Week in Supervision’: Practice Educator Experiences of the Professional Capabilities Framework and Holistic Assessment

Since the academic year 2013-14 within England, Practice Educators (PEs) have been required to assess social work students during field placements using the Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF) and according to the principles of holistic assessment. Whilst the adoption of the PCF as part of the national change agenda is currently being scrutinised and debated, there has been little research or analysis regarding the practice assessment of social work students on placement and, in particular, the views and experiences of PEs charged with this responsibility. This article will discuss the implementation of the PCF in relation to PEs' practice assessment, based on a small-scale study of PEs (n = 43) from two UK universities, University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) and Manchester Metropolitan University (MMU). The article will consider some of the complexities and challenges involved in holistic assessment using the PCF and posit areas for further consideration and debate.

Note that the article is linked to the standards for practice learning in England

  • Author(s):
Cathie Jasper, Pam Field
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  • Tags:
Assessing Learners
Placement Journey
England, Competence, Capability, Practice Educator, Holistic Assessment, Placement
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This article is published in the British Journal of Social Work (2015)
doi 10.1093/bjsw/bcv113
First published online: November 19, 2015

Access to the full article requires a subscription to BJSW.

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Jasper, C. and Field, P. (2015) ‘An Active Conversation Each Week in Supervision’: Practice Educator Experiences of the Professional Capabilities Framework and Holistic Assessment. ScOPTbox Practice Learning Library. [Online]. Available from:

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