module specification

SW7059 - Social Work Theories and Perspectives (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module status DELETED (This module is no longer running)
Module title Social Work Theories and Perspectives
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 10
School School of Social Sciences and Professions
Total study hours 300
40 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
215 hours Guided independent study
45 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 100%   Critical analysis (words 2500)
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
No instances running in the year

Module summary

To provide students with an opportunity to learn social work theory, applied to different social contexts in order to promote effective, ethical and anti-oppressive social work practice.


An overview of the political history of social services delivery  LO 1,2

Structural issues related to the role of the social worker  LO 1,2,3

Sociological concepts related to anti-oppressive practice and their usefulness in working with service users LO 1,4

The location of contemporary social work both within its historical and comparative perspectives including European and international contexts LO1,3,4

Foundation and contemporary social work research and theories and their relevance to practice will be explored including psychosocial theories, behaviourism, systems theory, attachment theory and crisis intervention theories. LO 2,3,4

Comparative evaluation of a range of theoretical perspectives and their practice impact upon diverse user groups  LO1,2,4

The use of theories, models and social work methods. LO 1,2,4

A critical evaluation of social work policy, research-based evidence and the use of theory as it informs these. LO 3,4

Locating policy, research-based evidence and theory within an anti-oppressive framework LO 3,4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Students will attend lectures, workshops and seminars that will facilitate the integration of learning from lectures and reading.


Learning outcomes

By the end of this module student should be able to:

1. Analyse theoretical perspectives that recognise the importance of social systems community resources, groups and networks

2. Evaluate different theoretical perspectives in relation to power and anti-oppressive practice in social work having a critical awareness of their implications for service users

3. Examine concepts and theoretical approaches to social work practice in the context of organisational settings as well as from socio, economic and political perpsectives.

4. Demonstrate a critical knowledge of social work theory, research and evidence, and evaluate how they inform interventions with service users including practice responses to the contexts of poverty and social exclusion

Assessment strategy

The assessment strategy will require students to undertake:

Faciliate students literacy skills and ability to search for and appraise apporpriate journal articles

Students will complete a critical analysis of selected theoretical perspectives relevant to understanding and intervening with services or service user groups. Particular attention will be paid to how these perspectives inform the application of anti-oppressive practice.



Core Text:
Adams, R., Dominelli, L. & Payne, M (eds) (2009) Critical practice in social work
(2nd ed.), Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan

Other Texts:

Adams, R., Dominelli, L. & Payne, M (eds) (2009) Social work: themes, issues and
Critical debates (3nd ed.), Basingstoke: Palgrave Macmillan
Adams, R., Dominelli, L., Payne, M. (eds) & Campling, J. (consultant ed.) (2005) Social work
futures : crossing boundaries, transforming pracitice (3nd ed.), Houndmills: Palgrave
Lavalette, M. (2011) Radical Social Work Today , Bristol Policy Press
Garrett, P.M. (2013) Social Work Theory: Making Connections, Bristol: Policy Press
Gray, M. & Webb, S. (eds.),(2012) Social work: theories and methods (2nd ed.), London:
Horner, N. (2012) What is social work?: context and perspectives (4th ed.), London: Learning
Howe, D. (2011) Attachment across the lifecourse : a brief introduction, Basingstoke: Palgrave
Parrish, M (2009) Social work perspectives on human behaviour, Open University Press
Payne, M (2005) Modern social work theories (3rd ed.) Basingstoke : Palgrave Macmillan
Okitikpi, T (2011) Social Control and the Use of Power in Social Work with Children and Families, Dorset: Russell House
Stepney, P. & Ford, D. (eds.), Social work models, methods and theories: a framework
For practice (2nd ed.), Lyme Regis: Russell House
Teater, B. & Baldwin, M. (2012) Social Work in the Community: Making a Difference , Bristol Policy Press
Victor, G. (2012) Major thinkers in welfare : contemporary issues in historical
perspective, Bristol: Policy Press