Social Policy Studies in Welfare Hons

Course code SPSW4010Units 20Level 4000Faculty of Education and ArtsSchool of Humanities and Social Science

In SPSW4010 students are introduced to key debates and perspectives on theory and methods in Social Policy and Administration. Topics such as the philosophical underpinnings of social research, the links between theory and method, ethical issues, justification of methodology and specific methods are explored. Students attend seminars and complete assessment related to their thesis topic, including literature reviews, a research proposal and an ethics application (where relevant). Students also attend a series of professional development workshops to enhance their scholarly abilities. These courses articulate with the topic-specific readings students do in consultation with their supervisors, and provide the foundation upon which students construct, conduct and write-up their research in the form of a thesis

This course builds advanced knowledge and understanding of historical, ideological, political and economic backgrounds to Australian social arrangements. Introduces students to the social policy processes of formulation, implementation and evaluation. Processes and elements of the policy analysis framework are utilised to closely examine some social policy domains (eg social security, health, education, housing, employment, disability, community mental health, corrections and policing) as well as the impact of several policies on the patterns of welfare experienced by people within major population groupings (eg immigrants, refugees, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples).

The Honours program provides students with an opportunity to pursue their undergraduate studies to a high level in an additional year of research-orientated study. It gives students a strong base from which to pursue further study or to gain employment that requires high-level conceptual, analytic, research and communication skills. Students undertaking the fourth year will expand their knowledge of an area of study to a degree not possible within a three-year course.

Available in 2015

Callaghan CampusSemester 1, Semester 2
OurimbahSemester 1, Semester 2
Previously offered in 2014
ObjectivesBy the end of this course students will have demonstrated through their Honours thesis, mastery of the:

1.Field of Social policy as a domain of social science theory, practice and inquiry.

2.Key intellectual issues, debates and problematics in social policy studies.

3.Techniques of evaluating, analysing and synthesising complex academic and social phenomena.

4.Skills necessary to posit, interrogate and answer a significant research question through the sophisticated use of appropriate theory and method.

5.Skills required to produce and present an insightful and critically reflective thesis in Social Policy Studies after devising and executing a program of study and research to the required Honours standard.

6.Core competencies in the writing of an extensive and sophisticated text deriving from the developed capacity to apply, systemically and rigorously, the principles of critical scholarship within a broad social policy framework.
ContentThe Honours program in Social Policy Studies in welfare consists of both coursework and research elements:

One semester of coursework which provides students with an in-depth coverage of theoretical and methodological study. The theory and research methods framework draws on: historical analysis of the social context and the way societies respond to issues; sociological analysis and critique of wider social structures; processes and ideological debates; post-structuralist critiques; and explores various quantitative, qualitative and combined approaches to contemporary policy research.
Replacing Course(s)NA
TransitionThe Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Social Science Honours programs underwent an external program review in 2008. As part of this review some changes were implemented for all Honours courses.
- Your thesis will be 15,000 to 20,000 words.
- Your assessment will consist of coursework components (50%, comprising the course codes SPSW4010 and SPSW4020) and thesis (50%, comprising the course codes SPSW4030 and SPSW4040).
- You will be given opportunity to give an oral presentation of your work, but this is not mandatory.
Industrial Experience0
Assumed KnowledgeA major in the appropriate discipline with a minimum credit grade average.
Modes of DeliveryInternal Mode
Teaching MethodsSelf Directed Learning
Seminar
Assessment Items
Essays / Written AssignmentsCoursework essays
Contact HoursSeminar: for 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Self Directed Learning: for 18 hour(s) per Week for Full Term
Compulsory Components
Requisite by Enrolment10726 - B Social Science (Hons)
Timetables2015 Course Timetables for SPSW4010