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A critical exploration of practice assessment panels: participation power emotion and decision making in relation to failing social work students

This report documents findings from a study on practice assessment panels and focuses on decision making around social work students deemed to have failed their practice placements. The report briefly documents major developments in English social work education as well as the current context of practice learning within England.

The report goes on to highlight concerns around the robustness of practice education in particular the apparent reluctance by practice educators to fail social work students in practice learning settings and details how the research under discussion emerged out of this existing research. The practice assessment panel a feature on many UK social work education programmes is often a key site of decision making but to date has not been the subject of any academic inquiry. The report documents original research which aimed to explore practices around PAPs as well as decision-making processes when issues of marginal or failing students arose. The research utilises a dual-strand methodology: an online survey sent to social work education providers in England and an ethnographic study.

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