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Policy Analysis The major assignment for the course involves a social welfare p

by | Aug 29, 2022 | Social Work | 0 comments

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Policy Analysis
The major assignment for the course involves a social welfare policy analysis that will be
the basis of a policy brief to be completed for the last course in the macro sequence, SW 5304.
The policy chosen must be one that was/is a key piece of legislation in social welfare and is
fairly recent. If you are receiving a stipend (e.g., UCCF, CalSWEC), you must choose a law in
the related topic area (e.g., public child welfare, mental health).
The following is a guideline to be used in organizing the paper. The paper should have
headings similar to those in the guideline, but please do not use the Roman numerals, etc., in the
paper. The paper will be about 10-12 pages in length. Please see the Appendix at the end of this
syllabus for the rubric.
I. Identification (5 points)
A. Identify the policy to be analyzed.
B. When was it proposed?
C. When was it enacted?
D. What was its overall purpose?
II. Defining the social problem addressed by the policy (20 points)
A. What social problem is the policy attempting to address?
B. What makes it a social problem? Provide background and statistical information that
elucidates the causes, scope, dynamic and trends relevant to the underlying problem.
C. Are there any differences in what research suggests are the causes of the problem
compared to what the policy suggests are the causes of the problem?
D. Who does the problem affect? Does it affect different populations differently?
E. What is the history and development of the policy over time? Have there been any
similar policies introduced in the past? If so, what were they and how do they relate
to the current policy being analyzed?
F. Apply a perspective or theory (e.g., Critical Race Theory, Conflict Theory, the
Functionalist Perspective, Philosophies of Social Justice, etc.) to the social problem
being addressed by the policy.
G. Make sure to incorporate the major concepts learned in the course to your
understanding of the policy and the problem being addressed by the policy (i.e.,
manifest vs. latent goals, world views, values, social institutions,
residual/institutional/other perspectives, social justice, etc.)
III. The basis of social allocations (20 points)
A. What are the stated goals and objectives of the policy in terms of who it is designed to help?
B. Is it a universal policy/program or a selective policy/program?
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C. What are the rules/criteria for eligibility of benefits/services?
D. How are eligibility rules for benefits/services determined?
E. What are the core values embedded in the design of the policy? For example, describe any
issues that emerge from the policy regarding the notion of the “deserving vs. undeserving.”
F. Based on the stated eligibility criteria/rules, who is intended to benefit from the policy?
G. In comparison, who actually benefits from, uses, or has access to this policy?
H. What factors might explain the gap between eligibility and use/access?
IV. The nature of social provisions (20 points)
A. What is the form and substance of the social provisions offered through the policy?
Specifically, identify the type of benefits (cash, goods, etc.) and dimensions of
transferability.
B. Discuss the substance of the social provisions expressed in the policy in terms of their
degree of ambiguity (e.g., vague and abstract versus substantive and clear).
C. To what extent were issues of equality, equity, and adequacy addressed in the policy?
D. How did the creation/expansion of the benefits affect social work?
V. The design of the delivery system (15 points)
A. How was the policy implemented? In other words, how were benefits/services
provided? Were there new services/systems created? If yes, please describe. If not,
what existing services/systems were used?
B. Under what auspices are services delivered, through a public government bureaucracy
or directly through a private contracted agency/provider? If services are contracted,
are they delivered by a private agency or a local community-based agency? Discuss
issues surrounding privatization.
C. Discuss the organizational arrangement of services within the delivery system. Are
services centralized or decentralized? Are services offered as combined services or
single services? Are services located in one facility or multiple facilities?
D. Discuss the issue of coherency and accessibility in service delivery. Specifically,
discuss any issues of fragmentation, discontinuity, accountability, and accessibility in
the delivery of services.
E. How did implementation of the policy affect social work?
VI. The mode of finance (10 points)
A. What was the source of funding (i.e., fees for service, taxes, charitable donations,
philanthropic contributions, mandatory contributions to social insurance, or some mix
of these sources)?
B. What is the amount of funding allotted for the policy and is it adequate given the
extent of the problem and the objectives of the policy?
C. What are the controls employed to protect the use of funds allotted for the policy? To
what degree does the federal government regulate the use of funds?
D. What are the mechanisms for accountability?
VII. Evaluation (5 points)
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A. How can the policy be evaluated when it comes to achieving its objectives? What
kind of outcomes should be examined?
B. What is the social effectiveness of the policy?
C. Discuss any unintended consequences of the policy.
VIII. Implications for Social Work Practice (5 points)
A. To what extent does the policy reflect the social work imperatives of increasing social
and economic justice and addressing the needs of oppressed populations?
B. Did/would NASW support the policy? Why/why not?
C. To what extent are your own personal values reflected in this policy? How do they
coincide with dominant American values and the NASW Code of Ethics?
D. How can social workers advocate for or against continuation of this policy?
All papers should be typed, double-spaced, in 12 point Times New Roman font, with
one-inch margins all-around. Preparation of this paper requires library and Internet research. All
referenced material should be properly cited in APA style, with a list of references at the end of
the paper. Please provide a cover page with your name written last name then first name. The
cover page should also have the title of the policy. Any deviation from these formatting and
citation requirements will result in loss of points. The paper is due Week 15 at the beginning of
class.

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