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[SI0067] - Social Policy Analysis

Module Code: SI0067
Module Leader: Nick Johns
Year: 2
Semester: Both
Number of Credits: 20

Teaching Method: Lectures and seminars.
Assessment: Written examination 1 hours (40%) - Autumn Semester; Coursework (essays) 4000 words (60%) - Spring Semester
Degree Schemes: Social Science; BPS Social Science


Module Aims

To develop students’ knowledge, conceptual understanding and skills of critical enquiry regarding contemporary social policy in the UK.


Learning Outcomes

Knowledge and Comprehension

  • Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of the dominant terms of contemporary political debate about the welfare state.
  • Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of key theoretical perspectives of welfare.
  • Demonstrate a thorough knowledge of the construction of social policy

Skills (Application and Analysis)

  • Demonstrate analytical skills.
  • Present a reasoned and coherent argument.
  • Employ sustained independent / self-directed study skills.

Understanding (Synthesis and Evaluation)

  • Evaluate the strengths and weaknesses of selected aspects of contemporary policies.
  • Demonstrate critical reflections on dominant ideas and debates about selected aspects of contemporary social policy.
  • Demonstrate an ability to deploy independent judgement in interpreting contemporary social policy.

Transferable Skills

The module will contribute to the development of the following transferable skills: Oral skills of communication developed in seminars and skills of comprehension and presentation displayed in written essays and examination.


Synopsis of Module Content

The module examines the social construction of social policy in the context of central  contemporary themes such as: Policy Complexity and New Governance; conceptualising social and public policy; new contexts of contemporary policy making  – Devolution in Wales; comparative social policy; Different Welfare State Regimes; critical perspectives in contemporary social policy; equality and feminist critiques of social welfare; “Race”, Disability and social policy.


Arrangements for Feedback on Work

Written comment/ oral feedback on essays and examinations.


Indicative Reading

Alcock, C., Daly, G., Griggs. E (2008) Introducing Social Policy, 2nd ed., Harlow: Pearson Longman

Alcock, P., Glennerster, H., Oakley, A. and Sinfield, A. (2001) Welfare and Wellbeing, Policy Press.

Bagilhole, B. (2009) Equal Opportunities and Diversity, Bristol, Policy Press.

Bochel, Bochel, Page and Sykes (2005) Social Policy : Issues and Developments.  Prentice Hall.

Bomberg, E. and Stubb, A. (2003) The European Union: How does it work? Oxford University Press.

Butler, I. and Drakeford, M. (2005) Scandal, SocialPolicy and Social Welfare (Second Revised Edition) Bristol, Policy Press/ BASW

Chaney, P. Hall, T. Pithouse, A. (2002) New Governance – New Democracy, University of Wales Press.

Chaney, P. (2011) Equality and Public Policy, Cardiff University of Wales Press.

Daly, M and Rake, K. (2003) Gender and the Welfare State, Cambridge, Polity Press

Deacon, A. (2002) Perspectives on Welfare, Open University Press.

Drake, R.F. (2001) The Principles of Social Policy,  Palgrave.

Drakeford, M. and Butler, I. (2009) ‘Familial Homicide and Social Work’, British Journal of Social Work,

Esping-Andersen, G. (1990) The Three Worlds of Welfare Capitalism (Oxford: Polity Press).

Fairclough, N. (2000) New Labour, New Language, Routledge.

Farnsworth, K. (2004) Corporate Power and Social Policy in a Global Economy, Policy Press.

Hill, M. J. (2009) The Public Policy Process, fifth edition, Harlow, Pearson

Hills, J., Sefton, T and Stewart, K, (eds) (2009) Towards a more equal society: Poverty, inequality and policy since 1997, Bristol, Policy Press

Kooiman, J. (ed)  (1993) Modern Governance London: Sage.

Lavalette, M. and Pratt, A. (1997) Social Policy: A Conceptual and Theoretical Introduction, Sage.

Levin, P. (1997) Making Social Policy, Open University Press.

Newman, J. (2001) Modernising Governance, (London: Sage).

Oliver, M. (1989)  The Politics of disablement, Longman, London.

Prokhovnik, R. (ed) (2005) Making Policy Shaping Lives, Buckingham, Edinburgh University Press/ Open University Press