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Course Description

Andrea Tamburro

Andrea Tamburro, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor

Office: Dunes Medical / Professional Building 3170
Phone: 219-980-6703

Online Course Offered:
Fall Semester

Course Description  

This second course in social welfare policy builds on S251 by exploring in depth the current social welfare delivery system through policy analysis using a variety of frameworks and developing policy practice skills. 

The course also develops beginning policy practice skills so that students will know how to work toward social change congruent with social work ethics and the profession’s commitment to social and economic justice. The course emphasizes critical thinking and beginning policy practice skills to help students both understand and influence global, national, state, local, and agency policies that affect delivery of social services in local communities.  The course develops policy analysis and policy practice skills within the context of social work ethics and the profession’s commitment to social and economic justice.

The Council on Social Work Education (CSWE), the accrediting body for School’s of Social Work, requires Social Work Programs to demonstrate how each course in the curriculum helps students develop competencies expected of all who seek entry into the profession.  Programs must document a match between course content and CSWE competencies defined in Educational Policy and Accreditation Standards (EPAS).  This course, required in the BSW curriculum, draws upon basic knowledge and understanding of our diverse society. Course content contributes to building knowledge and skills for students to demonstrate the following CSWE competencies: EPAS 2.1.2 Apply social work ethical principles to guide professional practice; EPAS 2.1.4 Engage diversity and difference in practice; EPAS 2.1.5 Promote human rights and social justice; EPAS 2.1.8 Engage in policy practice to deliver effective social work services; and EPAS 2.1.9 Respond to and shape an ever-changing professional context.

Course Goals and Objectives  

Through active participation in the learning experiences and completion of the readings, assignments, and learning projects offered throughout this course, students are expected to demonstrate the ability to:

352-1. Analyze social welfare policies and delivery systems using different frameworks. [EP 2.1.8]

352-2. Frame the social work role in basic policy making processes, including the use of advocacy and empowerment. [EP 2.1.5; 2.1.8]

352-3. Describe the roles and relationships of governments, businesses, and the not-for-profit sector in the provision of human services. [EP 2.1.8]

352-4. Evaluate the influence of politics, economics, and cultural and social values, including the perspectives of all vulnerable populations, in the development and implementation of social policy decisions. [EP 2.1.4; 2.1.8]

352-5. Analyze the relationship between social work values and beliefs, current delivery systems, and current social policy issues. [EP 2.1.2; 2.1.8; 2.1.9]

352-6. Evaluate the impact of social policies and programs on individuals, families, groups, organizations, communities, and professional practice. [EP 2.1.8]

352-7. Use a broad array of beginning policy practice skills to initiate and attempt to influence the development of social policy within agencies and the broader community. [EP 2.1.8]

352-8. Determine potential allies and opponents in initiating a policy change through analysis of the forces supporting and opposing different policy options. [EP 2.1.8]

352-9. Write policy briefs, advocacy letters, and other documents to impact policy discussions and public perception. [EP 2.1.8]

352-10. Communicate with elected officials, agency leaders, and other decision makers and effectively advocate for people who lack access to those in power. [EP 2.1.8]

352-11. Analyze the use and impact of technology and globalization in social policy with a focus on Indiana [EP 2.1.4; 2.1.7; 2.1.8; 2.1.9]


Activities in S352 Social Welfare Policy Practice

1) Quizzes

There will be a total of 3 quizzes to test your knowledge of the content from the assigned chapter readings.  The quizzes will be posted in tests & surveys. (4 points each)

This course has one major project with group components and individual components. You will be learning how to influence state policy. The project is described below.

Influencing State Policy (ISP) Project [EP 2.1.2, 2.1.4, 2.1.8, 2.1.9]: 

Description of the project:

The goal of this project is to put into practice the concepts and theories discussed this semester.  In your teams, you will plan a semester-long project which you will design, implement, and report on how you influenced an existing policy or proposed legislation at the state level. Each team will develop tangible outcomes (products or artifacts) from the project and a timeline. Periodic updates on project and the progress of your project and a group presentation will be provided to the rest of the class throughout the semester. An individually written report of your project will include an analysis of your policy and a report of your advocacy individual activities.  Each team will present their project to the class via Oncourse. 

For a complete list of Activities for this course, click on the Course Syllabus tab.

Course Syllabus  


SWK S352: Social Welfare Policy Practice

Online Course Syllabus

Time: Online

Place: Online

Instructor: Andrea Tamburro, Ph.D.

Office: 332 Dunes/Medical Professional Building

Phone: (219) 980-6703

Email: atamburr@iun.edu