Social Work With People With Special Needs

Degree Program: Social Administration/ Social Work Pathway (7th semester – compulsory)

Teaching hours: 3 per week-ECTS 5

Course Tutor: Sevasti Chatzifotiou, Assistant Professor

Course Description – Objectives

This course examines from a Social Work perspective issues, concerns, and policies surrounding disability, and their impact on individuals, families, communities, and institutions. There is an overview of the social work profession’s role in the policy-making and its historical role in developing social welfare policies. Theories and strategies for policy-practice are discussed for their relevance in promoting effective and positive change. Students are expected to learn about the forces which led to the disability movement in various European countries and the States. In gaining a comprehensive framework of the social, political, economic, and cultural issues that the disability community has contended with, students will understand the various implications of the construct of disability.

Among other things, students are also expected to notify the stereotypes and prejudices that society creates against people with disabilities and how they must overtake them, to be able to analyze theories, strategies, and mechanisms of effective policy-practice and apply social work theory and practice methods in issues of disability, to develop an awareness of how to engage with individuals, communities, and/or organizations experiencing issues around disability in a culturally sensitive and empowering way, and last but not least to learn that social workers are the best advocates in promoting social justice. Additionally, the presentation of a big number of case studies is an added value to the course, so that students can have an empirical aspect of the disability situations together with the social workers’ professional interventions.