Social Work 611

SOWK 611: Social Welfare I. Policy is Practice

Prerequisites: Admission to the Graduate Program in Social Work or permission of the instructor

Credit Hours: (3)

The course covers frameworks to understand the formulation/analysis of Social Work policies and programs. The significance of contextual factors, values and history are examined from a “policy is practice” perspective with emphasis on social/economic justice, diversity and populations-at-risk.


Detailed Description of Content of Course

Major units of the course include understanding:

I. The emergence of policies affecting women and children: The State =s Maternalist Turn and the Grounding of the Social Work Profession
II. Policy Analysis and policy fundamentals including federalism, policies, and the budgetary process, and policy formulation
III. The Courts: Adjudicating Values and Interests in Conflict


Detailed Description of Conduct of Course

I. Students perform oral and written assignments, class exercises, and quizzes on the reading and class discussions.

II. The course will utilize a variety of teaching techniques. Lectures, videos, discussions, outside speakers, and library assignments and in-class reports will used as appropriate.


Goals and Objectives of the course

The goals of the course are to help students:

  • Possess a critical understanding of the historical events, values, and concepts that have influenced contemporary social welfare policies and services.
  • Be able to analyze the significance of political, economic, cultural, and social factors in the development of social policies.
  • Be sensitive to and capable of evaluating the impact of social welfare policies on diverse segments of society, particularly at-risk populations.
  • Possess the skills necessary to perform independent study and prepare a professional report on a specific social problem and policy response within a historical framework.


Assessment Measures

Students progress in achieving goals and objectives through a variety of ways including writing and class participation.


Other course information