Center for Civic EngagementClass YearCommunity and Service (Learning)First-yearFor CreditJuniorOff CampusPre-LawSeniorSocial Impact, Education, Law & GovernmentSophomoreTheo School Student

PSCI 316H – HONORS: Social Policy and Inequality in America

Professor: Patrick McGuinn
Credits: 4

About the Course:

This course is an upper-level community-based learning seminar on social policy and inequality in America for students interested in an applied learning experience.  The purpose of the course is to provide students with an understanding of American social policy and the politics that surrounds it. The United States has seen a dramatic growth in poverty and inequality in recent years and we will explore the causes and consequences of this development as well as potential government action that might address it. An overview of the existing programs, institutions, and political dynamics for a variety of social policy areas will be provided, with a focus on education, health care, nutrition, and income support. The following questions will guide the course: How do “politics” and “policy” interact around our social welfare system? What are the different values and ideologies that inform debates over social policy?  What are the strengths and weaknesses of markets, governments, and communities as societal problem solvers? What kinds of social policies have federal, state, and local governments enacted to assist low-income citizens? Are these policies adequate? Effective? This is a Community-Based Learning course and will require approximately 20 hours of collaborative research, service, and learning with our community partner the Interfaith Food Pantry. Some of this work will take place off of Drew’s campus. 

About Community-Based Learning:

Community Based Learning (CBL) classes, also sometimes called Service Learning Classes, foster the ability to connect academic learning with action in the world. At Drew, CBL classes strengthen community partners that serves the common good. They fulfill the Off-Campus Experience requirement and qualify as one of the Launch program’s immersive experiences.

Course Schedule:

Wednesday 1:15 – 3:45 PM

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