Values, Ethics and Diversity - SOCI3140

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Module delivery information

Location Term Level1 Credits (ECTS)2 Current Convenor3 2024 to 2025
Autumn Term 4 15 (7.5) Eleni Skoura-Kirk checkmark-circle


The module will encourage students to develop their capacities to respect and promote each person as an individual, the independence and quality of life of individuals whilst protecting them from harm, and the dignity and privacy of individuals, families, carers, groups and communities. During the module students will also examine the importance of recognising and facilitating the use of language and form of communication of each person's choice and value, and recognising and respecting the diversity, expertise and experience of individuals, families, carers, groups and communities. They will explore how to maintain the trust and confidence of individuals, families, carers, groups and communities by communicating in an open, accurate and understandable way, and discuss strategies to challenge discrimination, disadvantage and other forms of inequality and injustice.

The module will cover the nature, historical evolution and application of social work values, the concept of professionalism and the role of codes of practice and ethics, and the moral concepts of human rights, responsibility, freedom, authority and power inherent in the practice of social workers as moral and statutory agents. Students will be introduced to the complex relationships between justice, care and control in social welfare and the practical and ethical implications of these, including social workers' roles as statutory agents and in upholding the law. They will consider aspects of philosophical ethics relevant to the understanding and resolution of value dilemmas and conflicts in both inter-personal and professional contexts. The importance of recognising key dimensions of social difference and sources of inequality – class, gender, ethnicity, sexuality, age and disability – in delivering ethical social work practice will also be a key focus of the module.


Contact hours

Total contact hours: 22
Private study hours: 128
Total study hours: 150


BA Social Work – compulsory module

Method of assessment

Main assessment methods
Coursework – essay (1,000 words) – 30%
Coursework – Presentation (approx. 20 minutes) – 70%

Reassessment methods

Indicative reading

Banks, S. (2012) Ethics and Values in Social Work 4th edn. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
Bhatti-Sinclair, K. (2011) Anti-Racist Practice in Social Work. Basingstoke: Palgrave
Gaine, C. (ed) (2010) Equality and Diversity in Social Work Practice. Exeter: Learning Matters.
Gray, M. and Webb, S. A. (2010) Ethics and Value Perspectives in Social Work. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
O' Sullivan, T. (2011) Decision Making in Social Work. Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.
Thompson, N. (2011) Promoting Equality Working with Diversity and Difference (3rd ed). Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan.

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

The intended subject specific learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
8.1 Recognise that social work is a moral activity that has the capacity for benefit or harm, and be able to develop their capacity to apply moral concepts when assessing human situations.
8.2 Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of values and social ethics, including awareness of their own values, prejudices, ethical dilemmas and conflicts of interest and the implications of these on their practice.
8.3 Recognise the powerful links between intra-personal and inter-personal factors and the wider social, legal, economic, political and cultural context of people's lives.
8.4 Understand the impact of injustice, social inequalities and oppressive social relations.
8.5 Apply ethical principles and practices critically in planning, problem-solving and decision making activities, taking into account the views of participants, theoretical concepts, research evidence, legislation and organisational policies and procedures.
8.6 Have an understanding of the role and function of the professional regulator for social work and the professional association of social workers, which provide guidance on conduct and ethics for students and practitioners.

The intended generic learning outcomes.
On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
9.1 Demonstrate basic skills with regard to gathering, organising, evaluating and synthesising information in a clear and coherent manner
9.2 Demonstrate skills in working effectively with others
9.3 Develop and demonstrate their capacity for reflection and personal development


  1. Credit level 4. Certificate level module usually taken in the first stage of an undergraduate degree.
  2. ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
  3. The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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