This module focuses on poverty and inequality and how such social security policies impact upon them. Students will analyse the nature, extent and causes of poverty and inequality, with reference to the UK. The module will make students aware of current issues in welfare reform as it relates to groups vulnerable to poverty including: people who are unemployed; people who are sick or disabled; older people; children; lone parents; people from Black or minority ethnic groups. The module also shows how social security policies encompass different principles of need, rights and entitlement for users of welfare services.
Total Contact Hours: 22
Private Study Hours: 128
Total Study Hours: 150
Method of assessment
Main assessment methods
Coursework - assignment 1(essay 2500 words) 50%
Coursework - Assignment 2 (short answer assignment) 50%
Alcock, P. (2006). Understanding Poverty. 3rd edition. Palgrave
Ridge, T and Wright, S eds (2008) Understanding Inequality, Poverty and Wealth: Policies and Prospects. Policy Press
Spicker, P (2011) How Social Security Works. Policy Press
See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)
The intended subject specific learning outcomes are as follows. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1.Demonstrate understanding of competing perspectives on poverty, inequality and welfare rights and how these are reflected in social security policies;
2.Demonstrate some knowledge of the historical development of social security;
3.Demonstrate knowledge of social security policy concerns in several substantive areas;
4.Demonstrate an awareness of social security policy as it relates to key groups vulnerable to poverty;
5.Demonstrate understanding of the potential and limitations of social security in maintaining income security;
6.Apply this knowledge to analyse and evaluate critically the potential for and constraints on future reform of social security.
The intended generic learning outcomes are as follows. On successfully completing the module students will be able to:
1.Demonstrate an ability to make oral arguments (through participation in seminars);
2.Demonstrate an ability to write in a clear and coherent manner (through essay writing);
3.Demonstrate an ability to analyse and interpret numerical data; progression in ability to integrate numerical and non-numerical information (through data presented in lectures and seminars);
4.Demonstrate an ability to produce written documents (through essay writing and note-taking);
5.Demonstrate an ability to work co-operatively on group tasks (through tasks in seminars).
6.Explore personal strengths and weaknesses (through reflection on essay feedback);
7.Demonstrate an ability to identify and define problems; explore optimal and alternative solutions (though application of theory and research evidence to understanding of social policy).
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Credit level 6. Higher level module usually taken in Stage 3 of an undergraduate degree.
- ECTS credits are recognised throughout the EU and allow you to transfer credit easily from one university to another.
- The named convenor is the convenor for the current academic session.
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