Syllabus

HSV 420OM: American Social Policy

March 18-May 10

3 credits

                                           

Instructor

Dr. Sharon Nazarchuk

Phone

(570) 504-7957

Office

Healey Hall: Room 242

E-mail

nazarchuks@lackawanna.edu

 

11:00am-12:30pm on Tuesday and Thursday and by appt.

I am also available to meet via the online chat on the Portal during a mutually convenient time.

 

 

 

 

Text

Barusch, Amanda Smith, Empowerment Series: Foundations of Social Policy: Social Justice in Human Perspective. (2018). 6th Edition. Cengage Learning.

 

Description

This course provides the student with an overview of the impact of American social policy on the human services field. Emphasis is placed on the interrelationship between government supported, private, and volunteer programs. Problems of service delivery and issues related to family care, child care, health care, drug policy, tax policy and other evolving topics are explored.

Objectives

1. To explore the historical roots, and the social, political, and economic structures that currently form the foundation of social welfare programs and services in the United States.

2. To describe the role of social welfare policy in service delivery, practice and the attainment of optimal individual and social well-being.

3. To be aware of the political process and various sources of information that are useful to understanding contemporary American social welfare policies.

4. To explore the concepts of distributive justice, human and civil rights, and the global interconnectedness of oppression.

 

Requirements

Participation in Online Discussions (including “Let’s Get to know one another”)

 

  • Each week students will be required to participate in online discussions. Initial POSTS will be due by either Wednesday or Thursday each week and must be a minimum of 250 words. These initial posts should be well researched and use APA format to connect the text as well as outside resources.
  • Students are also required to REPLY to at least three (3) students each week by Sunday. These REPLIES should be at least 100 words and should include constructive criticism, clarification, additional questions, or your own relevant thoughts.

 

Academic Honesty Pledge

  • During the first week each student will be required to post an Academic Honesty Pledge in Discussion Week 1.

 

Course Navigation Quiz

  • During the first week each student will be required to complete a course navigation quiz which will evaluate the students understanding of the portal.

 

Syllabus Quiz

  • During the first week each student will be required to complete a syllabus quiz which will evaluate the students understanding of the syllabus.

 Discussions and Weekly Writing Assignments

  • During the semester each student will be required to complete either a writing assignment (250-500 words) consisting of essays that will be answered.

 

Power Point Presentation

  • Each student will be required to complete a Power Point presentation on their own selected topic.
  • Number of slides are 20-25 not counting the title or reference pages so at least 27 slides are required.
  • Speaker notes are required.
  • Topics are suggested to reflect something related to, but not limited to, the topics discussed in the course. (I encourage you to choose a topic of interest to relate to social policies).
  • You will design a policy that you feel is needed in your hometown. You do not have to approve the topic with me but I am willing to discuss your topic with you.
  • It is encouraged to meet with the professor during office hours or send an e-mail regarding any issues you may have.
  • This is due on Thursday, May 9th, 2019.

 

 

 

Evaluation

 

Course Assignment/Activity

 % Value

Due Date

Academic Honesty Pledge

1%

Wednesday 3/20/19

Course Navigation Quiz

1%

Saturday 3/23/19

Syllabus Quiz

1%

Sunday 3/24/19

Participation in Online Discussions 

27%

Initial Posts Due by Thursday each week (Note: Week 1 Initial posts are due Wednesday); Replies to fellow students are due by Sunday each week.

1 Weekly Writing Assignment (7)

60%

Sunday each week.

Final Project: PowerPoint presentation

10%

Due Thursday, May 9th

 

Online Course Attendance Policy

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 courses as well.

 

Attendance is defined by participating in an academic activity within the online classroom, which includes making posts and replies in a course-related graded discussion forum or submitting a course-related written assignment. Activities (Syllabus quiz, Course Navigation Quiz, Academic Honesty Pledge, Autobiography) not related to the aforementioned activities will not count for attendance purposes.

 

Students that fail to participate in an academic activity as described above in the online classroom prior to the last day to drop/add, will automatically be dropped from the course.

 

  • You are required to engage in discussion by making an initial post to your instructor’s prompt by the assigned day of the week, and then submitting the required number of replies by the end of the week.
  • Students who do not participate in any course-related discussions AND who do not submit any course-related assignments for ONE week will be DROPPED from the course. It is the responsibility of the student to formally withdraw from the course at the Registrar’s office.

 

 

Online Course Discussion Policy

In order to understand, remember, and benefit from what we learn in class, discussion and interaction are critical. Responses such as, “I like what you said.” “I agree.” Or “Good thinking.” are NOT acceptable. Also, you should NOT simply repeat what someone else has already said.

Good Discussions in Course Resources will help you, but you should also use this rubric to gain all possible points for your contributions and, more importantly, to get the most out of our class discussion!

Ask yourself the following questions to help guide you in having a great discussion:

  • Did I answer the discussion questions directly demonstrating a clear understanding of the material that promoted conversation?
  • Did I support my answers to the discussion questions with research and reading?
  • Did I make the required number of replies to my classmates?
  • Did I continue the conversation with peers that replied to my discussion?
  • Did I answer any additional questions the instructor may have asked?
  • Are all of my responses detailed and clear?
  • Did I make my initial post and replies by the assigned due dates?
  • Did I relate my responses to the course reading, notes, and/or personal life?
  • Did I provide the class with a response that is non-generic and inspiring – meaning that they learned from what I have contributed and can continue the conversation
  • Did I use proper grammar, spelling and netiquette?

 

Responses that do not move the conversation forward by providing information to which others can respond and build upon will negatively affect your weekly score.

 

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

  • All emails and responses posted in the General Questions section of the forum will be answered within one day.
  • All emails and responses posted in the General Questions section of the forum will be answered within one day.
  • All assignments will be graded within 3 days of the assignment due date
  • Accounting builds on itself. If you miss anything, you will fall behind.
  • All initial posts to the discussion questions MUST be posted by WEDNESDAY.
  • All replies to the discussion questions MUST be posted by SUNDAY.
  • All assignments are due SATURDAY.
  • Hold yourself accountable and try your best. If you are unsure of something, ask me via e-mail or phone me.
  • Please read the chapters and submit your posts on time.
  • Grades are non-negotiable. 
  • Do not phone or 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.
  • 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.  Rubrics will be distributed with each assignment.

Course Assignment/Activity

 % Value

Due Date

Academic Honesty Pledge

1%

Wednesday 3/20/19

Course Navigation Quiz

1%

Saturday 3/23/19

Syllabus Quiz

1%

Sunday 3/24/19

Participation in Online Discussions 

27%

Initial Posts Due by Thursday each week (Note: Week 1 Initial posts are due Wednesday); Replies to fellow students are due by Sunday each week.

1 Weekly Writing Assignment (7)

60%

Sunday each week.

Final Project: PowerPoint presentation

10%

Due Thursday, May 9th

 

 

Grading

 

Letter Grade

Numeric Range

Quality Points

A

96 – 100

4.0

A-

90 – 95

3.67

B+

87 – 89

3.33

B

83 – 86

3.0

B-

80 – 82

2.67

C+

77 – 79

2.33

C

73 – 76

2.0

C-

70 – 72

1.67

D+

67 – 69

1.33

D

60 – 66

1.0

F

0 – 59

0

 

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.  I will not accept any late papers.

 

Academic Integrity

Academic dishonesty in any form, such as plagiarism and cheating, will not be tolerated. 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. Please see the Student Handbook for a complete explanation.

 

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 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 Disability Services 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.

Lackawanna College Notice of Nondiscrimination

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, piggam@lackawanna.edu.

Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action inquiries: Georgia Egan, Affirmative Action Officer/Director of Continuing Education, Angeli Hall, Room 300C, Vine Street, Scranton PA (570) 961-7815, EganG@lackawanna.edu or Gopu Kiron, Affirmative Action Officer/eLearning Director, Angeli Hall, Ground Floor, Vine Street, Scranton PA, (570) 504-7929, Kirong@lackawanna.edu.

Additional information regarding Title IX requirements and how to file a complaint with the Office of Civil Rights: Office of Civil Rights at www2.ed.gov/ocr, 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: OCR.Philadelphia@ed.gov.   

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.

 

Course Schedule

 

Week

Topic

Course Objective Met

Related Assignment, Assessment, or Learning Activity

1

Syllabus Review

Read Chapter 1; Social Justice and Social Workers

Read Chapter 2; The Government’s Role

Objective 1

Objective 2

Syllabus

Power Points

On line discussions

Chapter 1 and 2 Assignments

 

2

Read Chapter 3; Policy Analysis and Policy Practice

Read Chapter 4; The Social Security Act

Objective 3

 

PowerPoints

On line discussions

Chapter 3 and 4 Assignments

3

Read Chapter 5; Poverty and Inequality

Read Chapter 6; Health

Objective 3

Objective 4

PowerPoints

On line discussions

Chapter 5 and 6 Assignments

4

Read Chapter 7; Mental Health

Read Chapter 8; Disability

Objective 2

Objective 4

PowerPoints

On line discussions

Chapter 7 and 8 Assignments

 

5

Read Chapter 9; Crime and Criminal Justice

Read Chapter 10; People of Color

Objective 3

Objective 4

PowerPoints

On line discussions

Chapter 9 and 10 Assignments

 

 

6

Read Chapter 11; Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Trans

Read Chapter 12; Children

 

Objective 1

Objective 2

Objective 3

Objective 4

PowerPoints

On line discussions

Chapter 12 and 13 Assignments

 

7

Read Chapter 13: Women

Read Chapter 14; Older Adults

Objective 1

Objective 2

Objective 3

Objective 4

PowerPoints

On line discussions

 

Chapter 13and 14 Assignments

Final Project

 

Examinations

Exams will be weekly through writing assignment or answering essays.

Week 1:

Read chapters 1: Social Justice and Social Workers and chapter 2: The Government’s Role

  1. Discussion question: In at least 250 words discuss,

“What does social justice mean to you?” Also, you must respond to at least two fellow students.

Essay: Answer the following essay in at least 400 words:

  1. Chapter 1 Case Study: You Decide on Funding Decisions

In at least 400 words please answer the following scenario. This assignment must be submitted one week after the chapter has been completed. If you are not in class please e-mail me before the end of class when is at 1pm.

 

Allocation of funding, whether to programs or to the individuals served by those programs, is a perpetually contentious issue in social services, especially in periods of funding cutbacks. As a result, the processes involved in funding decisions are undergoing increased scrutiny.

 

Every year, the Department of Human Services (DHS) allocates a limited amount of funding to help individuals who are in danger of having their utilities shut off. Historically, the state has allocated the funds to the county offices proportionally, based on population. However, more recently, several counties have been hit hard by factory closings and other economic blows. Poverty rates, as well as the number of individuals and families needing utility assistance, vary widely from county to county. Therefore, discussions are in progress about modifying the allocation formula to take county-level poverty rates into account.

You are sitting on a committee that will make a recommendation to DHS about whether to modify the allocation formula. You have two options. How do you proceed? Select one answer and discuss it to the fullest.

  1. You recommend staying with the formula as it is, because poverty (as measured by the official poverty rate) is not the sole determinant of whether individuals and families need utility assistance.
  2. You recommend modifying the formula to take both total population and the poverty rate into account.

 

Week 2:

  1. Read chapter 3: Policy Analysis and Policy Practice and chapter 4: The Social Security Act

Discussion question 1: If you could change any policy within Lackawanna college, what would it be and why? Please answer in at least 250 words. Also, you must respond to at least two fellow students.

  1. Essays: Answer each of the following in at least 300 words:
  1. From chapter 3: Social service professionals are often doers who prefer to focus on actually effecting change, rather than on discussing ways to effect change. Meetings, especially meetings involving policy planning, may be viewed as a painful waste of time. What do you think? Why might a systematic approach, including group meetings to discuss ideas and make decisions, be essential to formulating policy?
  2. From chapter 4: Numerous suggestions have been made about reforming Social Security—including privatization, reforms involving women, and changes regarding two-wage-earner couples. Outline the issues each is intended to address. Then select one and consider what it might mean to you, personally, and to family and friends who are retired or close to retirement age. What are the social justice implications?

 

Week 3:

  1. Read chapters 5: Poverty and Inequality and chapter 6: Health

Discussion question: How can we change poverty in Scranton? Please respond in at least 250 words. Also, you need to respond to two fellow students.

  1. Essays: Answer each of the following in at least 300 words each.
  1. From chapter 5: Various theories of poverty affect the way we understand poverty, as well as the programs we do (and do not) propose to remedy it. Select at least three of the conceptualizations of poverty discussed in your text, and compare and contrast them. Illustrate how each of the theories you selected can be seen in today's legislation and programs. Which theories of poverty do you think dominate your current state legislature? What are the implications for the residents of your state?
  2. From chapter 6: What are the key provisions of the Affordable Care Act? Why has it been so controversial? Identify an argument made against this Act by senators or representatives from your state, and then respond to that argument.

Week 4:

Read chapters 7: Mental Health and chapter 8: Disability

  1. Discussion question: In at least 250 words, respond to the following question: How do you feel about deinstitutionalizing mental patients? Also, respond to at least two fellow students.
  2. Essays: Answer each of the following in at least 300 words:
  1. From chapter 7: Homeless individuals have about four times the rate of mental illness as does the general population. Why do you think this is? What specific problems are faced by individuals with mental illness who are homeless? Suppose you were to propose a program for these individuals. What would you propose, and why?
  2. From chapter 8: In the 1990s, the U.S. federal government eliminated coverage of severe alcohol or drug dependence as a disability under the federal SSDI program—a decision that, in part, reflected punitive attitudes towards addiction. More recently, the same approach has been taken with obesity. To what extent do you think excluding disabilities that stem, in part, from individual behaviors (such as use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs; poor dietary or exercise choices; or failure to follow physician recommendations regarding medication or other care) is reasonable?
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Week 5:

  1. Read chapter 9: Crime and Criminal Justice and chapter 10: People of Color

Discussion question: Do you think The War on Drugs helped or hindered the use of illegal drugs? You need to respond in at least 250 words and must respond to at least two fellow students.

 

  1. Essays: Answer the following in at least 300 words:
  1. For chapter 9: Faced with reports of growing heroin addiction among U.S. service personnel in Vietnam, and with a mandate to "get tough" on crime, Nixon declared "war" on drugs in 1971. The War on Drugs escalated in the 1980s under Reagan. By the 21st century, this initiative had come to be viewed as a failure. Identify and discuss at least two problems associated with the War on Drugs. What would you do differently, and why?
  2. For Chapter 10: Already a racially and ethnically diverse nation, the United States is projected to become even more diverse in coming decades. Some have argued that the recent increase in bias incidents and outright hate crimes can be traced, in part, to individuals who fear the loss of privilege associated with being white and (often) male. What are hate crimes? Does the explanation involving the fear of loss of privilege ring true to you? What other factors might play a role in hate crimes? What do you think can and should be done to reverse this concerning trend?

Week 6:

  1. Read Chapters 11: Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Trans Individuals and Chapter 12: Children
  2. Discussion question: In at least 250 words respond to the following:

Don is a social work student who is completing his practicum. He is also a deeply religious individual who sincerely believes that homosexuality is a matter of choosing to live in sin, rather than an inherent sexual orientation. He understands that social work ethics call for him not to discriminate based on sexual orientation, but he also worries about compromising his religious beliefs. Don is currently working with a gay man who is experiencing considerable depression after coming out to family members, some of whom, like Don, view homosexuality as sinful. His supervisor expects Don to provide "gay affirmative" therapy that will focus on helping his client develop a positive gay identity. Don does not think he can do so without compromising his religious beliefs.

How would you advise Don? Please respond to at least two fellow students, also.

  1. Answer the following in at least 300 words:
  1. For chapter 11: Consider the meaning of the terms "gender" and "gender identity" as they relate to trans individuals. What does it mean to be trans? Why do you believe there is so much hostility and discrimination regarding people who are trans? Why, for example, have bathroom bills—forcing trans individuals to use restrooms associated with the sex on their birth certificate—have gained popularity?
  2. For chapter 12: Your text notes that children are disproportionately affected by poverty. Why is poverty especially dangerous to children? Identify a situation in your community that illustrates this disproportionate impact and the dangers of poverty. Describe the issue, and then propose a way to potentially help reverse the trend.

Week 7:

  1. Read Chapters 13: Women and Chapter 14: Older Adults
  2. Discussion question: Please answer the following in at least 250 words and respond to at least two fellow students.

When Brittany Maynard was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer, she weighed her choices and decided that she wanted to control the time and manner of her own death. She took the necessary steps to become part of Oregon's assisted suicide program. Her openness about her decision and her willingness to publicly discuss it, as well as her young age (29 at her death), were unusual, because many individuals who consider assisted suicide are very private about it and substantially older. However, the topic of assisted suicide is a significant one, and Brittany Maynard's life and death have encouraged discussion of it. Outline the arguments for and against assisted suicide. How might social workers think about assisted suicide in light of social work values and ethics? What is your personal position on assisted suicide, and how have you arrived at it?

 

  1. Essay: In at least 300 words, answer the following:

Medicare currently offers health coverage to elders of al income levels, and this coverage is better than most policies that low-and many middle-income workers could afford to purchase on their own. Yet funding for Medicare comes from a tax on wages.

Do you think this is fair? Why of why not? Would you propose to finance health care this way? Or would you recommend a different approach?