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Lackawanna College

SSC 125: Introduction to Human Services

3 Credits


Instructor:      Joseph Cice                                       


Office:             Room 230 Healy Hall                

Phone:            570-961-7870




Kanel, Kristi & Mallers, Melanie. An Overview of the Human Services, 2nd Edition. Cengage 2016.

All students are required to have a text for this course. You cannot pass this course without a textbook.



This course is designed to help students to be more responsive to individual, group, community, and structure of human services. Concepts of organizing, integrating, and implementing a network of different human services are discussed, as are services in relation to broader social, economic and cultural issues and values.


  1. Students will demonstrate a basic foundation in counseling skills.
  2. To enhance their own career paths through the principles, skills, knowledge, and application of concepts learned in the classroom.
  3. To apply students the appropriate tools to be more effective in organizations.


Study of Social Service Agency & Paper

Select a local social service agency and conduct a comprehensive study of the agency including an interview with one of the staff, and participation through volunteering in one of their service programs. You will need to provide a comprehensive description of the service agency. You will need to theorize/ analyze the agency and link it to 2 contents of the text book readings, or materials discussed in lectures. You will need to include the following: What was your rationale for selecting this agency? What are the mission/goals? What services/programs do they offer? What population do they serve? What need does the agency attempt to meet? Roughly how many people does the organization serve? What does the service cost the consumers? What are eligibility criteria? Where does the money come from? How many and what kinds of human service workers are employed by the human services agency? What services/programs are most utilized and least utilized? Why so? What resources are available or lacking? What did you learn about the agency that you did not know already? What was the volunteer experience like? What dynamics did you observe? How did the experience feel? Did you feel welcomed? Did the service seem to be well organized? How were clients treated by staff? What have you learned from having completed this project and how it changed your consciousness regarding your part as being a human service provider? In addition, include any pictures or handouts you may have collected. You will also share your reflections, challenges, insights, and learning experience in a class discussion about the project. Your Study of Social Agency Paper must be 3 pages or more in length, typed and double-spaced, MLA/APA format and grammar, punctuation and spelling and uploaded to the course portal page.  







Class Participation: Class participation is important and will be taken into consideration when determining a final grade. Class participation includes, but is not limited to; your understanding of the material read, sharing information obtained in readings, raising questions and issues pertinent to the subject matter, discussing individual opinions/attitudes relative to the subject matter, sharing with the class current or past newspaper and magazine articles related to the discussion and readings, and occasional out of class assignments. I weight this heavily because I believe it will provide me with an assessment of not only the content of knowledge in which you have acquired, but also your commitment to being a “professional” in your chosen career. Your demeanor, attitude and manner of participation in class discussions will certainly be valuable to a potential employer as he/she makes a choice to hire you from the many candidates interviewing for the few positions available at an agency. I want you to recognize the importance of this requirement.

Freedom and Responsibility: You are encouraged to express your opinions openly and honestly in class. Intelligent discourse is the cornerstone of learning. However, you must be aware that the freedom of self-expression carries with it the responsibility to treat others with courtesy and respect at all times. You will be expected to make a commitment to excellence in your work, your participation and your interpersonal relationships and communications skills both in and outside of class.


Attention & Courtesy: When you are speaking, you will have my undivided attention. I will never ridicule you or express disagreement with you in an impolite fashion. I will tell you when I do not know the answer to a question and will help you find the answer. Just as I will not be inattentive or impolite to you, I will not tolerate inattention or incivility either to me or to other students. When I am speaking to you or the rest of the class, I expect to have your undivided attention. If you disagree with something that is said in class, you will always be given the opportunity to express your disagreement politely. I expect that you will treat each other, as well as me, with respect consistent with the norm of academic freedom and the principle that all individuals should be treated with dignity.



Attendance Policy: Attendance: Students are not able to earn participation points without attending class; therefore, class attendance is strongly encouraged. Attendance will be taken at the beginning of every class. All classes will start as scheduled and tardiness mat affect your entrance to class. Although circumstances can prevent students from arriving on time occasionally, tardiness will be noted on the sign in sheet. Absences, excessive lateness and unexcused absences will result in a grade reduction. UNEXCUSED ABSENCES include sleeping in, no ride, not feeling well, etc. An excused absence or unexcused absence is NOT an excuse for a late assignment. Without infringing upon your individual rights, you are also expected to:


  • Arrive for class on time
  • Remove all head gear (hates, earphones, etc.) and turn off pagers and cellular phones
  • Remain in class for the entire class time


Students enrolled in credit-bearing courses at Lackawanna College will fail any course(s) in which they accumulate absences beyond the maximum number allowed. This pertains to online classes as well. Attendance is tracked by instructors, so be sure to log on and adhere to the following scale:


Withdrawal Policy:

A student has the privilege of withdrawing from any courses or from the College itself without academic penalty up to and including the final date for withdrawal indicated on the College calendar.

To withdraw officially from a course or from the College, a student must obtain the proper withdrawal form from the Student Affairs Office or from your Center Director, complete this form and submit it to the Registrar's Office before the final day for withdrawal without academic penalty as indicated on the College calendar. If a student stops attending a course for which he/she is registered after the published census date (end of drop/add) without having officially withdrawn from the course, the student will be assigned an AW (penalty-grade failure) for the class. No exceptions will be made.

Students who violate the College's Academic Integrity Policy and fail a course in consequence may not exercise the withdrawal privilege in that particular course.


Financial obligations to the College will be determined according to the Refund Policy.


Instructor Policies:


Grades are non-negotiable. 


Do not e-mail me at the end of the semester and ask for a grade change.  You grade will reflect exactly what you have earned. I will not give any extra credit assignments for students who did not do well all semester and then need a higher grade for whatever reason.


Do not come into the classroom late.


I will not tolerate students coming into the classroom late.  If you are late you will not be allowed in class and this will count as an absence.  You know when class begins so make provisions to be here on time.  Students cannot just enter the classroom whenever they feel like as it is disrupting to the class in progress.


There will not be any electronic equipment in use during the class.


All cell phones are to be put away when entering this classroom. I will not tolerate any student text messaging during class.  If you are caught doing this, you will be asked to leave the room and not return.  Headphones are to be removed before entering the classroom.


Hoods and baseball hats are to be removed when you enter the classroom.








 Assessment Rubric for Paper


   (9-10 pts)

Very Good    

 (7-8 pts)


(5-6 pts)




Two or less errors in the following:


Times New Roman 12 font

1” page borders

Double spacing




Two to four errors in the following:


Times New Roman 12 font

1” page borders

Double spacing




Four to six errors in the following:


Times New Roman 12 font

1” page borders

Double spacing




Six  or more errors in the following:


Times New Roman 12 font

1” page borders

Double spacing





0-2 spelling and/or punctuation errors

3-5 spelling and/or punctuation errors

6-9 spelling and/or punctuation errors

More than 10 sp. or punctuation errors

Word Choice:

Language is natural, interesting, figurative and precise.

Language is functional sometimes goes beyond the ordinary

Language is predictable and/or repetitious.

Language is limited, monotonous, and/or misused

Sentence Fluency:

Sentences are well-constructed, strong and varied. Flows easily when read aloud.


Sentences are somewhat varied. Fairly easy to read aloud.

Sentence structure mechanical and sometimes clumsy.


Sentences are difficult to follow. Incomplete, run-on or awkward.




Paper is clear and well developed. Strong introduction and conclusion with thoughtful use of transitions. Flows smoothly from one idea to the next.

Organization is present though rather predictable; transitions are used which enable the reader to follow the flow of thought.

Organization is emerging so reader can follow some of the text, but introduction and conclusion

No clear introduction or conclusion. Organization is lacking which causes confusion in reader







Throughout the course, you should keep a record of all grades received so you know how you are doing during the semester. I do not change grades and you will get exactly what you earn as described in this syllabus.

Class participation                                             10%

Exams                                                               50%

Study of Social Service Agency & Paper         20%

Group Project                                                   20%

Your grade for the course will be based on an average of the scores that you earn on each assignment. Below, the first table shows the allocation of your course grade. The second table shows the value of each grade as determined by Lackawanna College.


Letter Grade

Numeric Range

Quality Points


96 – 100



90 – 95



87 – 89



83 – 86



80 – 82



77 – 79



73 – 76



70 – 72



67 – 69



60 – 66



0 – 59


Due Dates and Late Penalties:

You will be responsible for any work or assignments you miss.  Your class schedule lists the dates and the material that will be covered.  Sometimes, we deviate from the schedule or we may have class in a different area, so it is your responsibility to know what is happening in class.  I suggest you get in touch with a fellow classmate if you miss class.  It is your responsibility to find out what you missed in class. The dates of the exams are clearly marked on the class schedule, but if for some reason you cannot take the exam, you must see me ahead of time to make alternative arrangements.  I do not give the same exam for make-ups nor do I give any make-up exam for the final unless you miss for a very good reason.  If you miss an exam, you have 24-hours to get in touch with me and schedule a make-up.  Do not come into class after the exam and ask for a make-up.  Again, e-mail me to schedule a make-up exam and to give me your reason for missing the exam. It is the student's responsibility to initiate this discussion.

The grace period for late assignments is as follows:

         1 day late-10% deduction off of the assignment grade

         2 days late-20% off of the assignment grade

         3 days late-the assignment will receive a grade of 0%.


EXTRA CREDIT:  Throughout the semester, I give group work in the classroom for extra credit that is applied to the next exam. You must be in class to earn this extra credit which is not announced. If we have time before the class is over this is when I give this work. DO NOT come to me at the end of the semester asking for extra credit to bring up your grade for whatever reason. The extra credit is given during the semester


Academic Integrity

Academic dishonesty in any form, such as plagiarism and cheating, will not be tolerated either in the online or traditional classrooms. Sanctions will include an automatic F for plagiarism, but the severity or frequency of the violation may result in dismissal from the College as well.


The following are among the forms of dishonesty, in a classroom of any type, for which sanctions may be applied:

  • Using books, notes or other materials during an examination, unless expressly permitted;
  • Using purchased essays, term papers or preparatory research for such papers;
  • Copying others' work or engaging in unauthorized cooperation during an assignment or examination;
  • Allowing another student to copy from an examination or other assignment intended to be performed independently;
  • Borrowing from published works, whether material is taken verbatim or with minor alterations, without proper and/or sufficient acknowledgment;
  • Submitting as one’s own work originally done by someone else;
  • Submitting the same written report in more than one course without prior approval from the instructor(s) involved;
  • Stealing examinations or assignments;
  • Supplying or selling examinations or assignments;
  • Misrepresenting statements concerning work submitted;
  • Falsifying or fabricating experimental data or results;
  • Falsifying or fabricating the need for extensions on papers or make-up examinations.
  • Misrepresenting identity in an online course

            (Please see the student handbook for more information.)


Disability Statement

Lackawanna College is an Affirmative Action, Equal Employment Opportunity institution.  Students with disabilities and other needs should feel free to contact the instructor privately if there are services and adaptations which can be made to accommodate specific needs.  Students who are having difficulties with class material are strongly advised to seek assistance in the reading and writing lab.  If you feel that you have a disability that has not been formally documented, you may meet with Mrs. Christine Kiehart in the academic development office to discuss your options. Please note that disability services do not include exemption from participation requirements in courses considered part of the School of Distance Education, including online and hybrid courses.

Equal Opportunity Statement

Lackawanna College will not discriminate in its educational programs, activities, or employment practices, based on race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, disability, age, religion, ancestry, union membership, or any other legally protected classification. Announcement of this policy is in accordance with State Law including the Pennsylvania Human Relations Act and with Federal Law including Titles VI and VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Sections 503 and 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Age Discrimination Act of 1975, and Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990.


Title IX of the Education Amendment of 1972 is a federal civil rights law that prohibits discrimination on the basis of sex in federally funded education programs and activities. Lackawanna College is committed to providing an educational and work environment that is free from unlawful sexual discrimination including sexual harassment, sexual violence, and gender based harassment. 


In accordance with Title IX of the Education Amendments of 1972, Lackawanna College will not tolerate any forms of sexual misconduct including but not limited to: sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual violence and gender-based harassment by employees, students or third parties. This includes prohibiting discrimination against pregnant and parenting students. The College also prohibits retaliation against any person who makes a claim of discrimination or harassment or who provides information in such an investigation. This policy applies to admissions, employment, treatment and access to all programs and activities that take place either on or off the campus at Lackawanna College. 


Lackawanna College will fully and promptly investigate all allegations of sexual misconduct and will take action reasonably designed to resolve the complaint in an equitable manner, end a hostile environment if one has been created, prevent its recurrence, and, when appropriate, take steps to remedy its effects on individuals and the college community.


Lackawanna College complies with Title IX and all other federal laws and regulations that prohibit discrimination in education programs or activities receiving federal financial assistance.


Reports or inquiries regarding nondiscrimination should be made to:

Title IX Coordinator/ Executive Director of the Student Wellness Program, Marsha Pigga, Angeli Hall, Room 102, 501 Vine Street, Scranton PA, 18509 (570) 955-1466/ (570) 677-7589,


Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action inquiries: Anita Cola, Affirmative Action Officer/Dean of Continuing Education, Angeli Hall, Room 300C, Vine Street, Scranton PA (570) 961-7815, or Dan LaMagna, Affirmative Action Officer/Dean of Students, Angeli Hall, Room 104, Vine Street, Scranton PA, (570) 504-1579,  


Additional information regarding Title IX requirements and how to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights: Office of Civil Rights at, 800-421-3481. Philadelphia Office: Office for Civil Rights U.S. Department of Education, The Wanamaker Building,100 Penn Square East, Suite 515, Philadelphia, PA 19107-3323 Telephone: 215-656-8541, Email:   


Portfolio and Coursework

Lackawanna College will empower you to experience learning by inspiring your critical thinking, accessing your talents and skills, motivating you toward a career choice, and encouraging you to make a difference. In evidence of this learning, the College requires a graduation portfolio containing Career Documents, including a résumé, two letters of recommendation, and a career exploration; Core Coursework, including a research paper from College Writing; three sample papers or projects from Major Coursework; and a Lackawanna College Reflection Paper.