The Early Professional Development (EPD) programme closed on 31 March 2013.

The programme was designed to enable employers to offer a high quality, support package to social workers entering years 2 and 3 of employment of working with children and families. The programme ran from 2009-13.

Following its launch in 2009, the EPD programme provided support to over 3600 social workers across more than 120 local authority and voluntary and community sector (VCS) organisations in England.

The programme structure featured 6 outcome statements, which described what social workers should know, understand and be able to do by the end of their third year in practice. Focusing on their daily activities, social workers were expected to evidence their progress against these outcome statements by meeting a number of evidence requirements.

The professional capabilities framework (PCF) now provides the single framework for social workers to think about and plan their careers and professional development. The PCF is owned by the College of Social Work and serves as a framework for initial social work students and qualified social workers at all stages of their careers.

The College of Social Work has published a document which maps EPD outcome statements to the PCF.

The EPD programme closed to new registrations in March 2012 and the department continues to support social work training and development through programmes like the Step Up to Social Work and the Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE).

The department published an evaluation of the EPD programme in January 2013.

Contact details

Early Professional Development (EPD) Team