SA4J9      Half Unit
Social Policy and Development

This information is for the 2018/19 session.

Teacher responsible

Dr Timothy Hildebrandt OLD.2.56, Dr Sunil Kumar OLD.2.55 and Dr Hayley Jones OLD.2.50


This course is compulsory on the MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Development). This course is available on the MSc in International Social and Public Policy, MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Migration) and MSc in International Social and Public Policy (Non-Governmental Organisations). This course is available with permission as an outside option to students on other programmes where regulations permit.

Course content

This course provides the analytical tools needed to understand and critically evaluate the key practical challenges of social development.  A wide range of development contexts will be discussed using empirical research and case studies. Key themes include: linking social policy theory, implementation and practice; making social protection effective; managing sector reform processes; projects and programmes, including design and evaluation; participation and community development; gender analysis; the impact of corporate social responsibility and social enterprises on poverty reduction.  


15 hours of lectures and 15 hours of seminars in the MT.

Formative coursework

The formative work on this course is a mock exam held in the Lent Term.  Students will receive feedback on their mock exam from their academic advisers.

Indicative reading

Barrientos, A. and D. Hulme, eds. (2008) Social Protection for the Poor and the Poorest: Concepts, Policies and Politics. London: Palgrave Macmillan; Dale, R (2004) Development Planning: Concepts and Tools for Planners, Managers and Facilitators, Zed Books; Green, D. (2008) From Poverty To Power: How Active Citizens and Effective States Can Change The World. Oxford: Oxfam International; Hickey, S. and Mohan, G. (2004) Participation, from tyranny to transformation? : exploring new approaches to participation in development. London: Zed Books; Midgley, J. (1995) Social development: the developmental perspective in social welfare. London: Sage; Rondinelli, D. (1983) Development Projects as Policy Experiments: An Adaptive Approach to Development Administration. London: Methuen; Thin, N. (2002) Social progress and sustainable development. London: ITDG; Willis, K. (2005) Theories and Practices of Development. London: Routledge.


Exam (100%, duration: 2 hours) in the summer exam period.

Student performance results

(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)

Classification % of students
Distinction 15
Merit 53.1
Pass 27.5
Fail 4.4

Key facts

Department: Social Policy

Total students 2017/18: 53

Average class size 2017/18: 13

Controlled access 2017/18: Yes

Lecture capture used 2017/18: Yes (LT)

Value: Half Unit

Guidelines for interpreting course guide information

Course survey results

(2014/15 - 2016/17 combined)

1 = "best" score, 5 = "worst" score

The scores below are average responses.

Response rate: 100%



Reading list (Q2.1)


Materials (Q2.3)


Course satisfied (Q2.4)


Integration (Q2.6)


Contact (Q2.7)


Feedback (Q2.8)


Recommend (Q2.9)