POLI08004 2016 Comparative Social Care Policy and Practice

General Details

Full Title
Comparative Social Care Policy and Practice
Transcript Title
Comparative Social Care
N/A %
Subject Area
POLI - Policy Studies
SOCS - Social Sciences
08 - NFQ Level 8
05 - 05 Credits
Start Term
2016 - Full Academic Year 2016-17
End Term
9999 - The End of Time
Mary Clarke
Programme Membership
SG_WSOCI_H08 201600 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Social Care Practice SG_HEARL_H08 201700 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Humanities in Early Childhood Care and Educ SG_HSOCI_H08 201700 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Social Care Practice SG_HEARL_H08 201800 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Early Childhood Care and Educ SG_HSOCI_H08 201900 Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Social Sciences in Social Care Practice

This aim of this module is to provide an international comparative analysis of social care practice and childhood studies. In years 1, 2 and 3 of the social studies and early childhood degrees, the focus has been on Irish and European public and social policy. This module provides an opportunity to explore best practice in a wider international context. Services compared include childhood services; life span alternative care; youth work, disability, intercultural services, justice, education, and social inclusion initiatives. The countries selected for comparison are Ireland, Europe, Scandinavia, USA, Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. This comparative analysis aims to enable students to integrate the knowledge of social care policy and practice in the 4th year of the BA Social Care Practice and BA Early Childhood Care and Education and to build on work placement experiences in Irish and international settings.


This module maps to the CORU Standards of Proficiency below:

Domain 5: Professional Knowledge and Skills

Learning Outcomes

On completion of this module the learner will/should be able to;


Carry out a comparative evaluation of social care practice in an international context (Domain 5.15).


Create and give and appraisal of social care practice in Ireland and compare with 2 other countries or states from Europe, Scandinavia, USA, Canada, New Zealand and Australia (Domain 5.14).


Integrate comparative knowledge and present in seminar form for discussion, analysis and evaluation(Domain 5.14). 


Give a critical commentary on the creation and management of high quality services in social care practice in Ireland in the light of international best practice.

Teaching and Learning Strategies

Lecture format and case study analysis of a comparative project including Ireland and 2 other countries using problem-based learning and seminar evaluation.

Module Assessment Strategies

Case study analysis of a comparative project including Ireland and 2 other countries with a problem-based learning format.

This modules assessment allows for assessment of CORU standards of proficiency as follows:

CA: Domain 5.14 & 5.15

Repeat Assessments

Repeat case study

Indicative Syllabus


Ideologies and models of international social policy comparison

Social, economic, political, cultural, policy and practice challenges

Legislation and United Nations conventions

Childhood services, life span alternative care, youth work, disability, intercultural practice, justice, and social inclusion initiatives
Movement of social care and childhood workers across national borders and the professional, equality and social justice, cultural and communication challenges

Quality of life, power, and participation, health, well‑being and professionalization of social care and childhood work

Quality services and international best practice

Coursework & Assessment Breakdown

End of Semester / Year Formal Exam
100 %

Coursework Assessment

Title Type Form Percent Week Learning Outcomes Assessed
1 Problem-based case study Continuous Assessment Individual Project 100 % OnGoing 1,2,3,4

Full Time Mode Workload

Type Location Description Hours Frequency Avg Workload
Lecture Lecture Theatre Lecture 2 Weekly 2.00
Problem Based Learning Flat Classroom Seminar 1 Weekly 1.00
Total Full Time Average Weekly Learner Contact Time 3.00 Hours

Module Resources

Non ISBN Literary Resources

Module Book Resources

Alcock, P. & Craig, G. (2009) (2 Ed) International social policy: welfare regimes in the developed world . Macmillian Publishers Ltd.

Cochrane, A., Clarke, J. & Gewirtz, S. 2 nd ed. (2002) Comparing welfare states ‑ family life and social policy . Sage and Open University, 2002.

O'Connor, T. & Murphy, M. (2006) Social Care in Ireland ‑ Theory, Policy and Practice . CIT Press.

Adams, B.N. & Trost, J. (ed), (2005). Handbook of world families. Sage publications.

Bradshaw, J. (2006) 'Child benefit packages in fifteen countries', in Lewis, J (ed) Children, changing families and welfare states. Edward Elgar.

Castles, F. (2004) The future of the welfare state, Oxford University Press.

Coussee, F, Roets, G and De Bie M. (August 2009) Empowering the powerful: Challenging hidden processes of marginalization in youth work policy and practice in Belgium Critical Social Policy August 2009 29: 421‑442.

Erikson, R. and Jonsson, J. (1996) Can education be equalized? The Swedish case in comparative perspective . Boulder [CO]: Westview.

Goode, J & Maskovsky, J. (eds) (2001) The new poverty studies: the ethnography of power, politics and impoverished people in the United States, New Poverty Studies.

Busemeyer, M. R. (2009) From myth to reality: Globalisation and public spending in OECD countries revisited’, European Journal of Political Research , 48(4): 455-482.

Hausman, R., Tyson, L. D. & Zahidi, S (2010) Global Gender Gap. World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland.

Hill, M. (2006) Social Policy in the Modern World ‑ a Comparative Text . Blackwell Publishing, 2006.

Roopnarine, J. L. & Gielen, U. P. (2005) Families in Global Perspective . Pearson, Allyn & Bacon.

Snowden, C. J. (2010) The spirit level delusion ‑ fact checking the left's new theory of everything. Little Dice.

Zahidi, S & Ibarra, H. (2010) The Corporate Gender Gap 2010. World Economic Forum, Geneva, Switzerland.





URL Resources

Websites recommended as appropriate on a yearly basis to keep current.