Singapore University of Social Sciences

Introduction to Social Services

Introduction to Social Services (SWK107)


This course serves as a foundation module for Social Work students and will provide an overview to students an understanding of the development, nature, purpose, values, principles, theories and other major concepts of the Social Work profession. It will also introduce students to the different roles, functions and core skills of the Social Work profession. The course will also provide students with an understanding of the core concepts relating to social policies and social welfare.

Level: 1
Credit Units: 5
Presentation Pattern: EVERY REGULAR SEMESTER
E-Learning: BLENDED - Learning is done MAINLY online using interactive study materials in Canvas. Students receive guidance and support from online instructors via discussion forums and emails. This is supplemented with SOME face-to-face sessions. If the course has an exam component, this will be administered on-campus.


  • Development of Social Services in Singapore
  • The Social Service Sector
  • The Role of Voluntary Welfare Organisations
  • Health Services
  • Challenges to the family
  • Vulnerable Groups in Singapore
  • Services for Children
  • Services for Adolescents and young adults
  • Needs of an ageing population
  • Needs of people with disabilities
  • The Widening Income gap
  • Funding of Social Services

Learning Outcome

  • Explain Singapore’s welfare approach and its relationship to how the social service sector is developed.
  • Identify the major government and voluntary sector players in providing social services in Singapore and their specific roles.
  • Demonstrate how the different roles played by the different stakeholders complement each other in the Singapore social service sector.
  • Describe the different needs faced by different population in the Singapore society.
  • Analyse societal trends and identify gaps in social service provisions in Singapore.
  • Discuss how Social policies and Social services responses had been able to address the needs and issues faced by the different population group.
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