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DRPS : Course Catalogue : School of Social and Political Science : Social Policy

Undergraduate Course: Social Policy and Society (SCPL08004)

Course Outline
SchoolSchool of Social and Political Science CollegeCollege of Humanities and Social Science
Course typeStandard AvailabilityAvailable to all students
Credit level (Normal year taken)SCQF Level 8 (Year 1 Undergraduate) Credits20
Home subject areaSocial Policy Other subject areaNone
Course website Taught in Gaelic?No
Course descriptionThe course explores how welfare issues are constructed and debated in contemporary society. It revolves around three main themes: social needs, social problems and social rights, and how different debates about welfare have been influenced by these themes. It focuses on the implications of social change for debates about welfare, considering some of the major contemporary issues in social policy. This half course is complementary to Politics of the Welfare State.
Entry Requirements (not applicable to Visiting Students)
Pre-requisites Co-requisites
Prohibited Combinations Other requirements None
Additional Costs None
Information for Visiting Students
Displayed in Visiting Students Prospectus?Yes
Course Delivery Information
Delivery period: 2013/14 Semester 1, Available to all students (SV1) Learn enabled:  Yes Quota:  203
Web Timetable Web Timetable
Class Delivery Information Plus tutorials.
Course Start Date 16/09/2013
Breakdown of Learning and Teaching activities (Further Info) Total Hours: 200 ( Lecture Hours 20, Seminar/Tutorial Hours 9, Summative Assessment Hours 2, Programme Level Learning and Teaching Hours 4, Directed Learning and Independent Learning Hours 165 )
Additional Notes
Breakdown of Assessment Methods (Further Info) Written Exam 60 %, Coursework 40 %, Practical Exam 0 %
Exam Information
Exam Diet Paper Name Hours & Minutes
Main Exam Diet S1 (December)Social Policy and Society2:00
Resit Exam Diet (August)2:00
Summary of Intended Learning Outcomes
By the end of the course students should:
- have begun to develop an understanding of the main social issues and problems facing societies
- have an understanding of how social policy issues are constructed and contested in contemporary society
- have an understanding of how contemporary societies recognise and manage social change
- have an understanding of some key concepts in social policy debates, such as needs, rights and responsibilities
- be able to explain why needs, rights and responsibilities are central to social policies, and why they are contested concepts
- be able to cite examples of policies which raise such issues
- have an understanding of the differences between universal and targeted social provision, and be able to critically assess the arguments for and against these
- be aware of different perspectives in relation to debates on these concepts
- be able to evaluate the tensions and balances between the needs and rights of different social groups, drawing on policy examples
- be able to compare and contrast theories about responsibilities and welfare with theories of need and of rights
- have begun to acquire some of the skills that are integral to studying social policy, such as assessing arguments and evaluating evidence
- have an enhanced awareness of the social values and institutions that shape our lives, and of the choices that socially aware members of our societies have to confront.
Assessment Information
1 essay of 1500 words; essay = 40%, degree exam = 60%. A pass in the exam is necessary to pass the course. If the examination is failed at the first sitting and is passed at the re-sit examination, the maximum mark obtainable for the course oveall is 50.
Special Arrangements
Additional Information
Academic description Not entered
Syllabus Not entered
Transferable skills Not entered
Reading list Not entered
Study Abroad Not entered
Study Pattern Not entered
KeywordsNot entered
Course organiserDr Paul Norris
Tel: (0131 6)50 3922
Course secretaryMiss Victoria Machirant
Tel: (0131 6)51 1480
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