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Session: 2022/23

Last modified: 13/07/2022 14:21:31

Title of Module: Work, Welfare & Society

Code: SOCY09053 SCQF Level: 9
(Scottish Credit and Qualifications Framework)
Credit Points: 20 ECTS: 10
(European Credit Transfer Scheme)
School:School of Education & Social Sciences
Module Co-ordinator:H  Pautz

Summary of Module

Contemporary university students are developing their academic perspectives within a volatile context. The proliferation of precarious employment patterns, ‘deskilling’, automation and the renegotiation of global economic relations have transformed labour markets. The Work, Welfare and Society (WWS) module provides an opportunity for students to apply their ‘sociological imagination’ in a reflexive manner. The portfolio assessment encourages critical reflection on how their own personal experiences are entangled in complex social relations and subjects increasingly viewed as public problems: the balance of power in the workplace; the organisation of the labour market; the role of welfare in an age of austerity; individual, family and collective responsibility for the care of citizens.

The module provides students with opportunities to meet competencies at both the year and programme levels. It has a focus on directly meeting outcomes in the areas of “Applied Knowledge and Understanding”, and “Autonomy, Accountability and Working with Others.” The module compliments the wider programme narrative which is focused on social processes which operate at different geographical scales (local, national and global), internationalization and the contested relationships between citizens (individual and collective), enterprise and the state. WWS accommodates flexibility of work and study and facilitates work-related learning. Students will use their own experiences of paid employment, unpaid work and their daily interactions in the social world to critically engage with industrial sociology, labour process theory and urban geography perspectives. The module will combine familiar lecture styles that introduce with student-led tutorial discussions themed around reflections recorded in a learning journal.

Module Delivery Method
Face-To-FaceBlendedFully OnlineHybridCHybridOWork-based Learning
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Term used to describe the traditional classroom environment where the students and the lecturer meet synchronously in the same room for the whole provision.

A mode of delivery of a module or a programme that involves online and face-to-face delivery of learning, teaching and assessment activities, student support and feedback. A programme may be considered “blended” if it includes a combination of face-to-face, online and blended modules. If an online programme has any compulsory face-to-face and campus elements it must be described as blended with clearly articulated delivery information to manage student expectations

Fully Online
Instruction that is solely delivered by web-based or internet-based technologies. This term is used to describe the previously used terms distance learning and e learning.

Online with mandatory face-to-face learning on Campus

Online with optional face-to-face learning on Campus

Work-based Learning
Learning activities where the main location for the learning experience is in the workplace.

Campus(es) for Module Delivery
The module will normally be offered on the following campuses / or by Distance/Online Learning: (Provided viable student numbers permit)
Paisley:Ayr:Dumfries:Lanarkshire:London:Distance/Online Learning:Other:
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Term(s) for Module Delivery
(Provided viable student numbers permit).
Term 1check markTerm 2


Term 3


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Learning Outcomes: (maximum of 5 statements)

On successful completion of this module the student will be able to:

L1. Demonstrate a critical knowledge and understanding of concepts drawn from political economy, industrial sociology and/or urban geography.

L2. Demonstrate autonomous reflections on personal experience in the workplace and other social settings and refined conclusions through collaborative discussion.

L3. Apply knowledge and understanding of social science concepts to ‘everyday life’ experiences, locating power and agency in experiences of paid and unpaid work and the welfare state with attention to geographical scale.

L4. Demonstrate cognitive skills proficiency in verbal and written formats.

Employability Skills and Personal Development Planning (PDP) Skills
SCQF Headings During completion of this module, there will be an opportunity to achieve core skills in:
Knowledge and Understanding (K and U) SCQF Level 9.

A broad and integrated knowledge and understanding of the scope and main areas of work for Social Science Graduates

Knowledge of work and employability requirements relating to work in the broad range of Social Science related industries

A critical understanding of a selection of the principal theories, principles, concepts and terminology pertaining to the area of work related learning

Practice: Applied Knowledge and Understanding SCQF Level 9.

Ability to apply relevant skills, techniques and knowledge related to Social Science subjects in the work environment

The ability to apply research skills including retrieving and generating information and evaluating sources at a professional standard

To practice in a range of professional level contexts that include a degree of unpredictability

Generic Cognitive skills SCQF Level 9.

Undertake critical analysis, evaluation and / or synthesis of ideas, concepts, information and issues

Identify and analyse routine professional problems and issues

Drawn on a range of sources in making judgements

Communication, ICT and Numeracy Skills SCQF Level 9.

Use a range of IT applications to support and enhance work

Present or convey, formally and informally information on Social Science related topics to a range of audience

The ability to assimilate and synthesise complex information

Autonomy, Accountability and Working with others SCQF Level 9.

Work in flexible, creative and independent ways, showing self-discipline, self-direction, self-motivation and reflexivity

Practice in ways that show awareness of own and other’s roles and responsibilities

Work collaboratively in group

Manage time and recourses effectively by drawing on planning and organizing skills

Pre-requisites: Before undertaking this module the student should have undertaken the following:
Module Code:
Module Title:
Co-requisitesModule Code:
Module Title:

* Indicates that module descriptor is not published.

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Learning and Teaching
Students will be assessed through coursework including reflective portfolio and presentation. This is in line with the philosophy of the Social Science Degree Scheme through promoting collaboration and multiple methods of assessments. Through the engagement with reflective portfolio, students will be introduced to the concept of reflective practice. Thus, acknowledgement will be given to the importance of students being able to reflect upon some of the skills and knowledge they have acquired during the completion of this module, and how this relates to their PDP.

This module will support the acquisition and development of graduate attributes and employability, lifelong learning and citizenship competencies by: -Encouraging students to critically appraise number of data sources. -Stimulating a global citizenship understanding of societal and economic changes. -Assisting students in developing information processing and assignment planning skills
Learning Activities
During completion of this module, the learning activities undertaken to achieve the module learning outcomes are stated below:
Student Learning Hours
(Normally totalling 200 hours):
(Note: Learning hours include both contact hours and hours spent on other learning activities)
Lecture/Core Content Delivery22
Tutorial/Synchronous Support Activity14
Independent Study164
200 Hours Total

**Indicative Resources: (eg. Core text, journals, internet access)

The following materials form essential underpinning for the module content and ultimately for the learning outcomes:

Braverman H. (1975) Labour and Monopoly Capital, New York, Monthly Review Press

Hall P.A. and Soskice D. (eds) (2001) Varieties of capitalism : the institutional foundations of comparative advantage, Oxford University Press

Harvey D. (2007) A Brief History of Neoliberalism, Oxford University Press

Park Ch. (2003) ‘Engaging Students in the Learning Process: the Learning Journal’, Journal of Geography in Higher Education 27 (2) 183-199

Standing G. (2011) The Precariat: The New Dangerous Class, London: Bloomsbury Academic

Academic Journals:
Work, Employment and Society Sociology of Work

(**N.B. Although reading lists should include current publications, students are advised (particularly for material marked with an asterisk*) to wait until the start of session for confirmation of the most up-to-date material)

Engagement Requirements

In line with the Academic Engagement Procedure, Students are defined as academically engaged if they are regularly engaged with timetabled teaching sessions, course-related learning resources including those in the Library and on the relevant learning platform, and complete assessments and submit these on time. Please refer to the Academic Engagement Procedure at the following link: Academic engagement procedure

Where a module has Professional, Statutory or Regulatory Body requirements these will be listed here:
All fulltime students (part-time and distant learning students should check with their programme leader for any queries) are required to attend all scheduled classes and participate with all delivered elements of the module as part of their engagement with their programme of study. Consideration will be given to students who have protection under the appropriate equality law. Please refer to UWS Regulations, Chapter 1, 1.64 – 1.67, available at the following link:

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Supplemental Information

Programme BoardSocial Sciences
Assessment Results (Pass/Fail) No
Subject PanelUG Social Sciences - Sociology & Social Policy
ModeratorV Fuertes
External ExaminerR Ryder
Accreditation Details
Version Number


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Assessment: (also refer to Assessment Outcomes Grids below)
Assessment 1 (20%) A 5-minute presentation at a research symposium. Students will choose one topic, demonstrating a reflexive capacity to link their own experiences with a social science concept and contemporary policy debates.
Assessment 2 (10%) Seminar contribution
Assessment 3 (70%) is a portfolio exercise. Students are tasked with writing a critical report that utilises concepts explored in the module.
(N.B. (i) Assessment Outcomes Grids for the module (one for each component) can be found below which clearly demonstrate how the learning outcomes of the module will be assessed.
(ii) An indicative schedule listing approximate times within the academic calendar when assessment is likely to feature will be provided within the Student Handbook.)

Assessment Outcome Grids (Footnote A.)

Component 1
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Presentation  check markcheck mark200

Component 2
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Performance/ Studio work/ Placement/ WBL/ WRL assessmentcheck mark   100

Component 3
Assessment Type (Footnote B.) Learning Outcome (1) Learning Outcome (2) Learning Outcome (3) Learning Outcome (4) Weighting (%) of Assessment ElementTimetabled Contact Hours
Portfolio of practical workcheck markcheck mark check mark700
Combined Total For All Components100% 0 hours

A. Referred to within Assessment Section above
B. Identified in the Learning Outcome Section above

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  1. More than one assessment method can be used to assess individual learning outcomes.
  2. Schools are responsible for determining student contact hours. Please refer to University Policy on contact hours (extract contained within section 10 of the Module Descriptor guidance note).
    This will normally be variable across Schools, dependent on Programmes &/or Professional requirements.

Equality and Diversity
Aligned with the overall commitment to equality and diversity stated in the Programme Specifications, the module supports equality of opportunity for students from all backgrounds and with different learning needs. Using Moodle, learning materials will be presented electronically in formats that allow flexible access and manipulation of content (part-time and distant learning students should check with their programme leader for any queries). The module complies with University regulations and guidance on inclusive learning and teaching practice. Specialist assistive equipment, support provision and adjustment to assessment practice will be made in accordance with UWS policy and regulations. The University’s Equality, Diversity and Human Rights Policy can be accessed at the following link:

Our partners are fully committed to the principles and practice of inclusiveness and our modules are designed to be accessible to all. Where this module is delivered overseas, local equivalent support for students and appropriate legislation applies.
UWS Equality and Diversity Policy
(N.B. Every effort will be made by the University to accommodate any equality and diversity issues brought to the attention of the School)

2014 University of the West of Scotland

University of the West of Scotland is a Registered Scottish Charity.

Charity number SC002520.