Service user and carer involvement in academic assessment of social work students


When did you first introduce the innovation?

Between 12 and 24 months ago

Please describe the innovation you have developed

Service users and carers part of academic assessment of social work students: active members in teaching parts of the module, as well as part of the assessment of group presentations.

What prompted you to develop this innovation?

There is a gap in the knowledge base around service user and carer involvement in academic assessment – more activities around assessment have been developed around assessment in practice education.

In your view, what is it about this innovation that makes it different/important?

As an under-researched area of service user and carer involvement, we need to explore ways in which the educational role of service users can be embedded in social work education and expand to areas of assessment. It is important to consolidate the educational role of service users and carers rather than just include them only to share their personal story.

To what extent does your innovation make use of existing approaches, resources or technologies?

This work builds on existing partnership arrangements with service users and carers, who have had a consistent presence in our educational programmes, especially around teaching delivery.

To what degree has this innovation led to changes in education or clinical practice?

This work has led to the development of a mentoring role for the service users and carers towards the academic work of social work students.

What evidence do you have of the impact of the innovation?

Students have evaluated this activity very positively through module evaluation forms.

To what degree has the innovation been disseminated in your organisation or elsewhere?

We have co-authored an article describing this work and presented in Conferences (i.e. JSWEC conference)

Please provide details of any plans you have to disseminate the innovation in the future.

Following on from this work, we have developed a mentoring approach for the service users and carers, acting as mentors/’critical friends’ to students towards their assessed individual presentations. This we aim to evaluate and submit for presentation at conferences and for publication in a peer-reviewed journal.