Policy Analysis—Section 1: Social Welfare Issue/Policy Selection

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Policy Analysis—Section 1: Social Welfare Issue/Policy Selection
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During this course, you will conduct a policy analysis related to social welfare. The policy analysis will have five sections. You will create your project incrementally throughout the course in Workshops Two through Seven. Each week, you will complete one section of the analysis and submit a piece of the whole so you can receive feedback from your instructor and improve your work before your final submission in Workshop Seven.

As a social worker, you will be expected to demonstrate character, leadership, and scholarship in the arena of policy and its use in clinical practice.

  • Character is the product of constant action, striving daily to make the right choices. Through your work of advocacy toward policy reform, you are demonstrating such qualities as responsibility, fairness, and caring, and proving by example that you value character.
  • Scholarship means a commitment to learning. Applying diligence and effort toward learning about policy and advocacy as a social worker can impact your practice positively as a professional.
  • Leadership at your agency means having a positive influence on your colleagues. In taking the initiative to learn about and advocate for policy reform, you can encourage others to attain the same objective, thus positively affecting your clients and your work toward social justice.

In this assignment, you will identify a social welfare issue of interest and locate a specific current policy related to the issue.

Upon successful completion of this assignment, you will be able to:

  • Identify social policies at the local, state, and federal levels that impact well-being, service delivery, and access to social services. (PO 5)
  • Assess how social welfare and economic policies impact the delivery of and access to social services. (PO 5)
  • Analyze policies with regard to the advancement of human rights and social, economic, and environmental justice. (PO 5, ILO 5)
  • Demonstrate character, scholarship, and leadership in becoming a world changer through application to personal life and professional social work practice.
  • Demonstrate Christ-like attitudes, values, worldviews, and ethical and professional behavior within advanced clinical practice. (ILO 1)


  • Textbook: Social Welfare Policy: Responding to a Changing World
  • File: Final Project.pdf (in Shared Documents)
  • Website: GovTrack: Social Welfare
  • File: APA 6e Guide.pdf
  • File: APA Template for Assignments.docx
  • Academic Writer (in IWU Resources)

Background Information

In this assignment, you will write:

  • Policy Analysis—Section 1: Social Welfare Issue/Policy Selection

It is important to understand the scope of the problem you are going to be researching and analyzing. Homelessness is major issue in our society. It is also a very broad subject. Many causes and many populations are impacted. By deciding on a narrow, specific social problem to analyze, you make it more feasible to influence or develop policy. For example, instead of researching homelessness in general, think about what gender, age, and geographic area you could focus on. For instance, you may be interested in the homelessness rate of young male adults aging out of foster care in San Diego, CA. This could lead you to look at that particular region and its rate of homelessness for this group. You then could explore what support services are available for youth exiting the foster care system and what specific local or national policy is in place related to this issue on which you could focus your research.


  1. Review the rubric to make sure you understand the criteria for earning your grade.
  2. In your textbook Social Welfare Policy: Responding to a Changing World, read Chapter 6, “Policy Analysis: Tools for Building Evidence-Based Social Policy,” pages 114–120.
  3. Read the Final Project file to see the “big picture” for your project in this course and descriptions of the sections that you will be writing.
  4. Review IWU’s APA 6e Guide on how to cite sources properly.
  5. In a two-page APA-formatted document, write Section 1 of your Policy Analysis, clearly labeling each part. Use the APA Template for Assignments.docx to complete your assignment.
    1. Part 1: Identify a social welfare issue of interest, using the guidelines above to narrow your search.
      1. Why did you choose this issue? If you feel comfortable responding, what personal stories can you share about it?
      2. Research facts and statistics about the issue—what do we know about it?
      3. What are current perceptions of the issue?
    2. Part 2: Research various social welfare policies associated with the issue.
      1. Browse bills in the U.S. Congress at the GovTrack: Social Welfare website. You can narrow your focus by drilling down into five subcategories (disability assistance, national and community service, poverty and welfare assistance, social security and elderly assistance, and social work/volunteer service/charitable organizations).
      2. What past and current policies address the issue? (An option is to create a timeline to show that policies are incremental.)
    3. Part 3: Identify a specific current social welfare policy associated with the issue that you will research throughout the course. Explain how knowing more about this specific social welfare policy relates directly to the NASW Code of Ethics.
  6. Before finalizing your work, ensure that you:
    1. Read the assignment instructions carefully.
    2. Use the spelling and grammar check.
    3. Review APA formatting and citation.
    4. Use APA format for organization, style, and source credits, including:
      1. 12-point, double-spaced Times New Roman font
      2. One-inch margins on all sides
      3. Normal character spacing
      4. In-text citations
      5. Title page and reference page
      6. Properly formatted headings (Part 1, Part 2, Part 3)

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