Students

SOCI2030 – Introduction to Social Policy

2021 – Session 2, Weekday attendance, North Ryde

Session 2 Learning and Teaching Update

The decision has been made to conduct study online for the remainder of Session 2 for all units WITHOUT mandatory on-campus learning activities. Exams for Session 2 will also be online where possible to do so.

This is due to the extension of the lockdown orders and to provide certainty around arrangements for the remainder of Session 2. We hope to return to campus beyond Session 2 as soon as it is safe and appropriate to do so.

Some classes/teaching activities cannot be moved online and must be taught on campus. You should already know if you are in one of these classes/teaching activities and your unit convenor will provide you with more information via iLearn. If you want to confirm, see the list of units with mandatory on-campus classes/teaching activities.

Visit the MQ COVID-19 information page for more detail.

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Associate Prof in Dept of Sociology | Convenor and lecturer
Shaun Wilson
Contact via email
Room C344, Level 3, 25C Wally's Walk
By email or consultation
Senior Tutor
Dr Brigit Busicchia
Level 3, 25C Wally's Walk
By email or phone appointment
Tutor
Dr Antonina Gentile
Contact via Email
Level 3, 25C Wally's Walk
By email or phone appointment
Credit points Credit points
10
Prerequisites Prerequisites
40cp at 1000 level or above
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
Few areas in sociology generate as many questions and as much debate as the role of social policy and the welfare state. Can we afford generous social policies or is the 'age of entitlement' over? What role should governments, families, the community and individuals play in providing welfare? Does tighter scrutiny of welfare benefits improve efficiency and independence or is it intrusive and unfair? And, how is social policy developed in a world of competing interests and power? This unit addresses these questions as it introduces students to the history, design and institutions of social policy. We look particularly at current Australian social policy and consider how policymakers deal with problems such an ageing population, precarious work and housing, the provision of care, and the targeting and financing of a welfare state. We also explore the role that power, ideas and institutions play in shaping policy debates. The unit is especially useful for students interested in policy practice and analysis, care and human services, social inequality, and political economy.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at https://www.mq.edu.au/study/calendar-of-dates

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, you will be able to:

  • ULO1: Demonstrate an understanding of the conceptual problems in measuring and evaluating social and economic inequality
  • ULO2: Demonstrate an understanding of the different types of social and economic inequality and society’s response to it.
  • ULO3: Apply basic concepts of social policy to a range of contemporary welfare debates, dilemmas and problems
  • ULO4: Assess and analyse the characteristics and potential future problems in relation to welfare states and their design of social policies.
  • ULO5: Demonstrate an understanding of key components and connections between work (labour market), families and social security systems.

General Assessment Information

NB: Unless a Special Consideration request has been submitted and approved, a penalty for lateness will apply – ten (10) marks out of 100 will be deducted per day for assignments submitted after the due date (or extended due date in cases where special consideration is granted). No late submissions will be accepted for timed assessments – e.g. quizzes, online tests.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Hurdle Due
Class participation 10% No weekly
Assignment 25% No Friday 24 September at 9pm
Workbook 5% No Monday 8 November at 9pm
Take home exam 60% No Official exam period (November)

Class participation

Assessment Type 1: Participatory task
Indicative Time on Task 2: 0 hours
Due: weekly
Weighting: 10%

 

Participation in lectures and tutorials.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the conceptual problems in measuring and evaluating social and economic inequality
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the different types of social and economic inequality and society’s response to it.
  • Apply basic concepts of social policy to a range of contemporary welfare debates, dilemmas and problems
  • Assess and analyse the characteristics and potential future problems in relation to welfare states and their design of social policies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key components and connections between work (labour market), families and social security systems.

Assignment

Assessment Type 1: Problem set
Indicative Time on Task 2: 45 hours
Due: Friday 24 September at 9pm
Weighting: 25%

 

An Assignment task consisting of 5 questions on topical questions in social policy and based on readings.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the conceptual problems in measuring and evaluating social and economic inequality
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the different types of social and economic inequality and society’s response to it.
  • Apply basic concepts of social policy to a range of contemporary welfare debates, dilemmas and problems
  • Assess and analyse the characteristics and potential future problems in relation to welfare states and their design of social policies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key components and connections between work (labour market), families and social security systems.

Workbook

Assessment Type 1: Reflective Writing
Indicative Time on Task 2: 10 hours
Due: Monday 8 November at 9pm
Weighting: 5%

 

Complete workbook tasks related to tutorials & lectures

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the conceptual problems in measuring and evaluating social and economic inequality
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the different types of social and economic inequality and society’s response to it.
  • Apply basic concepts of social policy to a range of contemporary welfare debates, dilemmas and problems
  • Assess and analyse the characteristics and potential future problems in relation to welfare states and their design of social policies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key components and connections between work (labour market), families and social security systems.

Take home exam

Assessment Type 1: Quiz/Test
Indicative Time on Task 2: 2 hours
Due: Official exam period (November)
Weighting: 60%

 

An exam is the main assessment task for this unit. It will be held at the end of the session. See iLearn for more information.

 


On successful completion you will be able to:
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the conceptual problems in measuring and evaluating social and economic inequality
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the different types of social and economic inequality and society’s response to it.
  • Apply basic concepts of social policy to a range of contemporary welfare debates, dilemmas and problems
  • Assess and analyse the characteristics and potential future problems in relation to welfare states and their design of social policies.
  • Demonstrate an understanding of key components and connections between work (labour market), families and social security systems.

1 If you need help with your assignment, please contact:

  • the academic teaching staff in your unit for guidance in understanding or completing this type of assessment
  • the Writing Centre for academic skills support.

2 Indicative time-on-task is an estimate of the time required for completion of the assessment task and is subject to individual variation

Delivery and Resources

COVID-19 teaching arrangements 

  • Lectures will be recorded for Monday 11am and made available beforehand on Sunday. 
  • I may record live lectures on Monday if this improves access and connection to the Unit. 
  • All tutorials are Zoom due to the COVID situation in Sydney. Tuesday classes may change to Macquarie campus later in the Semester. 

Unit Schedule

I. INTRO AND CONCEPTS 

Week 1 (Monday July 26)  Lecture: Greetings and Introduction to social policy No tutorial in week 1  

Week 2 (Monday 2 August) Lecture: Social risks and social policy: class and life-course (Tutorial: Risks over the life-course)  

Week 3 (Monday 9 August) Lecture: Poverty, food security and homelessness (Tutorial: Why are people poor?)  

Week 4 (Monday 16 August) Lecture: The dynamics of inequality (Tutorial: 2016 Census data, inequality and social planning) 

Week 5 (Monday 23 August) Lecture: Power resources of the welfare state (Tutorial: Class, class interests, and social policy) 

II. COMPARING POLICIES AND WELFARE STATES

Week 6 (Monday 30 August) Lecture: Australia's welfare state (Tutorial: Public support for the welfare state) 

Week 7 (Monday 6 September) Lecture: The Nordic model versus the United States (Tutorial: Social policy and pandemic)

**Mid-semester break: Sat 11 September through to Sunday 26 September | Assignment due Friday 24 Sept @9pm **

Week 8 (Monday 27 September) Lecture: Comparative welfare states: typologies and tools (Tutorial: How the Australian welfare state works)

III. AUSTRALIAN SOCIAL POLICY 

Week 9 (Monday 4 October) Lecture: Precarious work, JobSeeker, and workfare (Tutorial: Debating JobSeeker)  

Week 10 (Monday 11 October) Lecture: Indigenous Australia and social policy (Tutorial: A look at the Closing the Gap score) 

Week 11 (Monday 18 October) Lecture: Gender foundations of welfare states (Tutorial: Women's employment, childcare, and social policy) 

Week 12 (Monday 25 October) Lecture: Health & Medicare (Tutorial: Inequality and health)  

Week 13 (Monday 1 November) Lecture wrap: Ageing and social policy + revision (Tutorial: Exam preparation plus release of study guide)

Online Exam in the official exam period   

 

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au). Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Students seeking more policy resources can visit Student Policies (https://students.mq.edu.au/support/study/policies). It is your one-stop-shop for the key policies you need to know about throughout your undergraduate student journey.

To find other policies relating to Teaching and Learning, visit Policy Central (https://policies.mq.edu.au) and use the search tool.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/admin/other-resources/student-conduct

Results

Results published on platform other than eStudent, (eg. iLearn, Coursera etc.) or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au or if you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to help you improve your marks and take control of your study.

The Library provides online and face to face support to help you find and use relevant information resources. 

Student Services and Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

Student Enquiries

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

If you are a Global MBA student contact globalmba.support@mq.edu.au

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Changes from Previous Offering

A closer focus on how social policy works across different levels of government in Australia.