Social policy is about understanding and addressing social problems in society. It examines the formation and implementation of policy, and how this affects people’s well-being. The subject is diverse and exciting, and plays a crucial role in contemporary politics. The programme aims to develop your ability to critically evaluate the effectiveness of social policy, widening your understanding of social issues and the position of people in society. Across the three years, you will have the opportunity to take a comparative approach, studying policy both in the UK and in other parts of the world. Consideration will also be given to how members of different groups within society, such as those defined by gender, social class and ethnicity, are affected by policies and measures. You will study policies at local, national and international levels and in many different kinds of organisations ranging from international bodies and central government agencies to non-governmental organisations (NGOs) and informal networks of mutual aid. We also examine the making of legislation, such as Acts of Parliament, European Union Directives and international instruments, and the taking of public expenditure decisions.