Poverty & Population: How Demographics Shape Policy (Coursera)

Poverty & Population: How Demographics Shape Policy (Coursera)
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Poverty & Population: How Demographics Shape Policy (Coursera)
This course has four modules, or foci. The first is to understand the categories of social welfare—populations, income, earnings, and assets— and some related concepts that play a very large role in shaping policy decisions: unemployment, inflation, and the minimum wage. The second deals with the central institution of social welfare—the labor market, which largely determines how many resources a person has.

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The labor market also establishes hierarchy, both through meritocracy and through categories of privilege. The third is poverty: the differing ways we define who is poor, and how effective U.S. anti-poverty efforts have been. The final module looks directly at federal decision making, the political organization of ideas, the structure of U.S. government, and the legislative process that shapes much of our social policy. This course addresses issues of power, oppression, and white supremacy.

The course is part of a sequence in social policy that has an HONORS TRACK. This track will prepare the learner for masters-level work in policy, which involves reading the literature, writing concise summaries and probing critiques. Over the sequence the learner will develop a policy analysis that will create a foundation for professional policy analyst assignments.

WHAT YOU WILL LEARN

- Understand the the US population: age, family structure, education and race/ethnicity to interpret where US social policy is being pushed.

- Explain poverty & inequality in the US that results in differing levels of privilege, and opportunity to address the needs of those left behind

-Describe the policy process – legislative, executive, judicial and voluntary – to act to improve US social policy

- Honors: Report on research of practices on the ground in preparation for a professional policy analysis.

Course 3 of 5 in the Social Policy for Social Services & Health Practitioners Specialization


Syllabus


WEEK 1

Populations, income, poverty and policy

This module will remind the reader of basic social welfare concepts: population variables, earning, income, assets as well as inflation, unemployment and the minimum wage.


WEEK 2

Causes of Poverty and Discrimination

This module will probe the most important social welfare programs in moderns societies, the workplace and will evaluate who is advantaged and who is disadvantaged and why


WEEK 3

Gender, Race and oppression

In this module, the learner will differentiate the different measures of poverty, understand the significance of measuring poverty and question the place of various demographic groups in their relative poverty


WEEK 4

Formulating social policy in the U.S.

In this module, the learner will review the US Government structure and process and explain how policies are formulated using the legislative structure.



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