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Survey of social workers with international qualifications, resident in Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland (including Irish social workers who gained their qualifications internationally)

If you are currently resident in the Republic of Ireland or Northern Ireland and you have gained your social work qualification outside the jurisdiction in which you now reside, you are invited to take part in this anonymous survey, which is part of a research project led by Erna O’Connor and Trish Walsh from Trinity College, Dublin and George Wilson from Queen’s University, Belfast. This study has received ethical approval from the Research Ethical Approval Committee at the School of Social Work and Social Policy, Trinity University, Dublin. The survey is open in June, July and August 2015.


This collaborative study builds on earlier research on social work mobility. The current study aims to examine inward mobility patterns over time and to explore the experiences of social workers with international qualifications, employed in the ROI and NI. The study is part-funded by a grant from TCD Arts and Social Science Benefaction Fund.

Aims and objectives

The purpose is to inform current and future practices and policies regarding the recruitment and retention, induction and continuing professional development needs of social workers in Ireland. The findings of the study will be presented in a fully anonymised form (conference and academic papers) to social workers and relevant bodies, such as employers, professional associations, special interest groups, educators and academics.

What is involved?

Participation is entirely voluntary. However, this survey is not being undertaken on behalf of employers or professional bodies but is an independent scholarly project. The content of individual surveys will not be shared with any employer or government body. There are no questions relating to immigration status.

How long will it take to complete?

The survey should take 15-20 minutes to complete. It covers topics such as profile information (age range/gender/nationality/length of time in ROI/NI), details of qualifications held and work experiences, and views on factors which help or hinder migrant social workers.

Data Protection Policy

All data collected from this survey will be handled and stored in accordance with the requirements of the Data Protection Act 1998. It will be securely stored in TCD and QUB and retained for a period of two years following the completion of the study.


The survey is anonymous. No individual will be identified in the analysis of the data presented in any reports emanating from the study. 

Accessing the Survey

The survey has been created in Survey Monkey and is accessible by clicking here.

We would greatly appreciate your participation.

This survey is the first part of a wider study examining the experiences of migrant and ethnically diverse social workers in Ireland. If you wish to participate in a second part of the study which will take place in 2016, please send us your contact information separately by email to: (ROI) and (NI).

If you would like further information on any aspect of the research please do not hesitate to contact Dr George Wilson, Programme Director, MSc Strategy and Leadership, School of Sociology, Social Policy & Social Work, Queen's University, Belfast.