Dr Jo Finch
Reader in Social Work and Programme Leader - Professional Doctorate in Social Work
Deputy Director - Centre for Social Work Research
I have been a social work educator since 2002, working on both qualifying and post qualifying programmes. I now lead the Professional Doctorate in Social Work.
Dr Jo Finch has previously worked as a children and families social worker in both the voluntary and statutory sectors in a variety of inner London boroughs. She has also worked as a play therapist. Jo previously worked at Havering College of Further and Higher Education, from 2002 to 2010 as a Curriculum Manager on the BA (Hons) Social Work and post qualifying awards before moving to UEL in February 2010. Jo was formerly the programme leader for the BA (Hons) Social Care (distance learning) before becoming programme leader of the MA in Social Work (2012 to 2016). Jo was also the programme leader for the PGDip Step Up cohort 3 (2013 to 2015). Jo is now the programme leader of the Professional Doctorate in Social Work. Jo has worked across a number of programmes at UEL, including the BA (Hons) Social Care, BA (Hons) Social Work, Step Up and MA in Social Work, post qualifying programmes (practice education), Professional Doctorate in Education and was formerly seconded to the Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust to work on the Professional Doctorates in Emotional Well Being and Social Work/Social Care (2012 to 2015). Jo is currently Reader in Social Work, and Deputy Director of the Centre for Social Work Research
Jo is the Editor of the Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning - the only UK based inter disciplinary journal focusing on practice learning, assessment and work based learning.
Other scholarly activities
Registered Social Worker, HCPC
PFHEA (Principal Fellow of the Higher Education Academy)
External Examiner, MA, Applied Public Policy, MA Specialist Social Work, Children and Families, MA Specialist Social Work, Practice Education, University of Bedfordshire 2012 - 2016
BA (Hons) Social Work,
Wolverhampton University, 2011 to 2014
Bournemouth University, 2014 External Examiner, Graduate Certificate in Practice Education 2014 to present
Nottingham University, External Examiner, MA Social Work, 2016 to present Editor - Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning 2015 to present
Finch, J. & Schaub, J. (2015) Projective Identification as an Unconscious Defence: the Example of Social Work Practice Education in Armstrong, D. & Rustin, M.(eds) Social Defences against Anxiety: Explorations in the Paradigm, Karnac, London
Finch, J. (2010) Can't Fail Won't Fail - Why Practice Assessors Find it Difficult to Fail Social Work Students. A Qualitative Study of
Practice Assessors' Experiences of Assessing Marginal or Failing Social Work Students, DSW Thesis, University of Sussex
Finch, J. (2010) “It must be a fluke” – The Self-Perceptions of Learners Entering a College of Further and Higher Education, FACE,'Towards a New Agenda for Lifelong Learning: Access, Diversity and Participation' July
Finch, J. (2010) An Analysis of Higher Education Student Progression in a College of Further Education, London, Havering College of F and HE
Finch, J (2009) Widening Participation in the London Borough of Barking and Dagenham, UEL Continuum/Higher Education Funding Council of England, London.
Conferences and Key Notes Finch, J. (2014) Reflective Practice Educators: the relational and emotional climate to practice assessment, and factors involved in ‘failing to fail students’, Using Supervision to Evidence the PCF One Day Workshop for Practice Educators, Practice Supervisors and Social Workers, Greenwich University, Monday 8th September 2014 Finch, J. (2014)
Participation, Power, Emotion and Decision Making in Respect of Failing Social Work Students: An ethnographic and Practice Near Exploration of Practice Assessment Panels, JSWEC, Holloway University, 23-25th July 2014.
Whiting, R., Finch, J. & Holmstrom, C. (2014) The Emotional Labour of Suitability/Fitness to practice, 16th Joint Social Work Education Community, Holloway University, 23-25th July 2014.
Finch, J & Poletti, A. (2014) “Non e’ lo stesso anche in Inghilterra?” A comparative study of practice educators experiences of working with struggling and failing social work students in practice learning settings in the UK and Italy.4th European Conference of Social Work Research, Bolzano,
taly 15th - 17th July 2014
Finch, J. (2014) “Running with the Fox and Hunting with the Hounds:” Social Work Tutors‘ Experiences of Managing Students Failing in Practice Learning Settings, British Journal of Social Work, (advanced access) doi:10.1093/bjsw/bcu085
Finch, J. (2014) “...there are students who should not be in social work and we have to make that decision…” Exploring social work tutors experiences of managing struggling or failing students in practice placements, 4th European Conference of Social Work Research, Bolzano,
taly 15th - 17th July 2014 Finch, J. (2104) “…it was the first fail, I felt terribly guilty… had sleepless nights, felt quite sick - Decision Making, Emotions, Defences and Pain – Working with a struggling or failing student in practice learning settings, .Humber Practice Consortium First Annual Conference, Hull, April 2014 Finch, J. (2013) “You are just willing these students to fail” – Social Work Tutors’ Experiences of Managing Failing Students in Practice Learning Settings, 15th Joint Social Work Education Conference, Royal Holloway, 10th-12th July. Schaub J. and Finch, J. (2013) Projective Identification and the Fear of Failing, 15th Joint Social Work Education Conference, Royal Holloway, 10th-12th July.
Finch, J. (2013) Failing to see the Road Signs - On the road with new regulation but can it guarantee we take the right road with struggling or failing students?, National Organisation of Practice Teachers Annual Conference, Oxford, 4th July Key Note Speech
Finch, J. and Poletti, A. (2013) “I was just very angry at times”: A comparative study of practice educators experiences of working with struggling and failing social work students in practice learning settings in the UK and Italy. (Poster – won first prize), 3rd European Social Work Research Conference, Finland,
Briggs, S., Finch, J., Mulla, A., Ainscow, L. & Linford, H. (2013) Working with Practice Near Research – An Interactive Analytic Workshop, 3rd European Conference Social Work Research Finland
Finch, J. (2012) Assessing Failing Social Work Students in Practice Learning Settings, “Failing to Fail” Practice Educator Conference, HEA and Chester University, 16th February 2012 - Key Note Speech
Parkinson, C. and Finch, J. (2011) Standing on a Precipice? Practice Educators and the Future of Practice Learning in Social Work, 13th Joint Social Work Education Conference with the 5th Social Work Research Conference, University of Manchester
Finch, J. (2011) Placements Issues and Suitability - Research Informed Assessment of 'Suitability' in Social Work Education, SWAP with the University of Sussex, London, 13th June 2011
Finch, J, and Poletti, A. (2011) “Who the fuck do you think you are?” - British and Italian Practice Assessors’ anger and rage when failing social work students in practice learning settings. 4th Psycho-Social Conference, Brighton University, 10th and 11th June
Finch, J. (2011) The Need for Critical Reflection in the Practice Educator-Social Work Student Relationship - Stories of Anger, Guilt and Ambivalence, Lunchtime Seminar Series, Royal Holloway, University of London, 9th June.
Finch, J., Schaub, J. & Dalrymple, R. (2013) Projective Identification and the Fear of Failing: Making Sense of Practice Educators’ Emotional Experiences of Failing Social Work Students in Practice Learning Settings, Journal of Social Work Practice
Finch, J. (2011) Innovation or Imitation? - The use of the Voice Centred Relational Method in Social Work Research, Methods@Plymouth Conference, Plymouth University, 19th and 20th May
Finch, J. (2011) The Internalisation of Failure – Practice Assessors’ Narratives of [Not] Failing Social Work Students in Practice Learning Settings, 9th Practice Teaching Conference, University of Bournemouth, 11th to 13th April.
Finch, J. (2010) "The university didn't want to hear at all". Practice Assessors' Relationships with Higher Education Institutions. JSWEC Conference, University of Hertfordshire, 30th June to 2nd July
Finch, J. and Poletti, A (2010) "E' Stato un inferno!" - Italian and British Practice Assessors Talk - Assessing Failing Social Work Students in Practice Learning Settings, JSWEC Conference, University of Hertfordshire, 30th June to 2nd July
Finch, J. (2010) "I actually felt it was my failing" Why Practice Assessors do not fail Students in Practice Learning Settings, NOPT Conference, Birmingham, 21st and 22nd June 2010.
Finch, J. (2010) “”Why Practice Assessors Find it Difficult to Fail, Failing Social Work Students", Coventry University, Practice Education and Stakeholders Annual Conference, 22nd March 2010
Finch, J (2009) [un] covering bad practice – story telling or collusion, University of Sussex Student Doctoral Conference, 24/6/09
Finch, J (2009) “It’s a fluke”. – Further Education Students Narratives of Themselves as Learners – Implications for Widening Participation Policy and Practice, The Annual FACE conference, University of Staffordshire, 1-3rd July 2009.
Finch, J (2009) Changing Identities – The Practice Assessor as Tragic Hero - Guilt, Anger and Threats to Identities – Why Practice Assessors Find it Difficult to Fail, Failing Students, 11th Joint Social Work Education Conference with the 3rd Social Work Research Conference, University of Hertfordshire, 8-10th July 2009 .
Hyder-Wilson, J. & Finch, J (2009) Voice Centred Relational Method – Methodological Innovation or The Emperor’s News Clothes? - Reflections on the use of the VCR Method in Doctoral Research, 11th Joint Social Work Education Conference with the 3rd Social Work Research Conference, University of Hertfordshire, 8-10th July 2009
Finch, J. (2014) A Critical Exploration of Practice Assessment Panels: Participation, power, emotional and decision making in relation to failing social work students, York, Higher Education Academy, http://www.heacademy.ac.uk/resources/detail/disciplines/hsc/Social-Work-and-Social-Policy/A_critical_exploration_of_PAP_Finch
Finch, J. (2009) “Why Practice Assessors Do not Fail, Failing Social Work Students”, University of Sussex, Research Seminar Series, 26th Nov 2009
Finch, J and Parker, J (2013) Editorial, Special Edition – Failing Students, Journal of Practice Teaching and Learning, Vol. 11 (3) p3-6
Finch, J. and Poletti, I. (2013) ‘It’s been hell.’ Italian and British Practice Educators’ Narratives of Working with Struggling or Failing Social Work Students in Practice Learning Settings, European Journal of Social Work, DOI:10.1080/13691457.2013.800026
Finch, J. and Taylor, I. (2013) The Emotional Experience of Assessing a Struggling or Failing Social Work Student in Practice Learning Settings, Special Edition – Field Education, Social Work Education, 32 (2) pp:244-258 DOI: 10.1080/02615479.2012.720250
Finch, J. (2010) Community Care Magazine “Ask the Expert” How Can I gain a statutory placement? (10/11/10)
Finch, J. (2010) Community Care Magazine “Research Realities” Police Notifications of Domestic Violence – (5/11/10)
Jo currently is working on a BA?Leverhulme small grants award research projecting, focusing on the experiences of parents who have been referred to social services because of concerns about radicalisation and extremism
BA Social Work, MA Social Work, Professional Doctorate in Social WorK, Practice Educators Professional Standards Stage 2., k
Sk7325 PEPS 2
Sk7001 - Critically Reviewing the Literature
Sk7002 - Positioning Yourself as a Researcher
sk8001 - Methods and Methodology
SK8002 - Working Towards Registration
SK7235 Practice Educators Stage 2
SK7107 - MA Social Work Dissertation
SK7101 - Fundamentals of Social Work
Practice Educators Stage 1
MA in Social Work
PhD and Professional Doctorate supervision
PGDip (Step-Up) Social Work
EdD (Education Doctorate)
DSW (Professional Doctorate in Education (Programme Leader)
PhD and Professional Doctorate Research supervision - Completions
Raelton Gibbs, (Second Supervisor), Awarded 2012, “Standing in the Shadows: Faith, Homelessness and Troubled Lives” Professional Doctorate in Social Work, Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust & University of East London
Stephen Jordan, DSW (Director of Studies) Awarded 2014 “An Exploration of Humour, Jokes and their Relationship to Social Work” Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust/UEL
Andrew Whittaker, PhD (2nd supervisor) Awarded 2014 “Decision making in child protection: Psychological processes, emotion and organisational culture” Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust/UEL
Gergana Zaidan, PhD (Former Director of studies, then 2nd supervisor) (Awarded 2015) “The Role of Space in Learning – Spatio-Educational Experiences of Female Students within Emirati Higher Education” UEL
Current Doctoral Supervision:
Khurshid Meehan (director of studies) The Act of Faith: Therapeutic Encounters with a Sample of Adolescent refugee Mental Health Patients
Andrew Richardson, DSW, “It's personal. Personalisation and what it means to service users” Tavistock and Portman NHS Trust/UEL
Ben Taylor, PhD (DOS) “Exploring the impact of pupil premium on looked after children”. UEL
Louise Arnold, PhD (DOS) “The accessibility of
treatment and prescription information in the NHS to young children with
disabilities and their parents; the layers and levels of partnership and
Kim Detjen, PhD (second supervisor0 Domestic Abuse, UEL
PhD and Professional Doctorate supervisions
MA and BA in Social Work