module specification

SS4011 - Principles of Community Work (2021/22)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2021/22
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Principles of Community Work
Module level Certificate (04)
Credit rating for module 30
School School of Social Professions
Total study hours 300
90 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
40 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
170 hours Guided independent study
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Community profile
Coursework 50%   Reflective report
Running in 2021/22

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Year North Thursday Afternoon

Module summary

This module aims to:
1. Introduce students to the principles of community work, drawing on national occupational standards;
2. Explain the history of community work and the current policy context;
3. Outline the opportunities and challenges of regenerating communities and areas;
4. Explain key concepts such as empowerment, participation, social justice and sustainability; and
5. Enable students to critically reflect on their own work practice


Topics include:

• Community Development National Occupational Standards (CDNOS) (LO1)
• Principles of Community work and reflective practice (LO1)
• Young people and community work (LO3, LO4)
• Community profiling and semi structured interview technique (LO5)
• Key concepts of community work – social justice, participation etc. (LO1)
• Reflective writing (LO1)
• Transnational communities (LO2, LO3)
• Youth-led CD work (LO3, LO4)
• Models of CD work (LO1)
• Diverse communities and community work (LO4, LO2)
• Politically engaged community work (LO3)
• New forms of community work (LO1)
• Community work and refugee community organisations (LO4)
• Freire, Alinsky & Gramsci (LO1)

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

The module is based on lectures, seminars and workshops. Students engage in independent learning in the development of a community profile, and are assessed on their reflection of the subjects in the module.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students will be able to:
1. Outline the principles of community work, and how these inform practice in the current policy context (LO1);
2. Identify the key opportunities and constraints in regenerating communities and areas (LO2);
3. Address issues of empowerment and participation in developing sustainable communities and regenerating areas (LO3);
4. Explain inequalities in health, housing, education and crime and evaluate policy solutions (LO4); and
5. Carry out introductory community profiling (LO5)

Assessment strategy

The assessment allows students to start the process of community profiling, which is completed in the research module in year two. This is 2000 words (50 per cent of mark). Students then reflect on the content of the module and their progress (2000 words, 50 per cent of mark). The assessments are linked to professional standards, and together form a basis of further development of research, reflection and professional development.


Core reading

Craig G, Mayo M, Taylor M and Shaw M. 2011. The Community Development Reader: History, themes and issues. Bristol: Policy Press.

Gilchrist, A & Taylor, M. 2011.  The Short Guide to Community Development.  Bristol: Policy Press
Endorsement and Quality Standards Board for Community Development Learning. 2015. National Occupational Standards for Community Development Work. Available at:
Ledwith, M (2011) Community Development: A Critical Approach.  Bristol: Policy Press
Popple, K. (1995 / 2015) Analysing Community Work: its theory and practice.  Buckingham: Open University Press
Twelvetrees, A. (4th Ed). 2008. Community Work. Basingstoke: MacMillan
Additional reading
Hawtin, M. (1994) Community Profiling.  Maidenhead: Open University Press
Henderson, P. and Thomas, D (2002) Skills in the Neighbourhood. London: Routledge
Dominelli,L. ( 2006) ‘Compiling a community profile. Pp90-98, in Women and Community Action, Bristol: The Policy Press
Dawson, C. (2009). Introduction to research methods. A practical guide for anyone undertaking a research project (4th ed). Oxford: How To Books. Chapter 7

Freire, P (1996). Pedagogy of the Oppressed. 2nd ed. London: Penguin. ..
Schon, D. A. (1983). The Reflective Practitioner: How Professionals Think In Action. London, Temple Smith
Community Development Journal