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You are here Courses > Undergraduate > Bachelor in Social Studies > Course Structure & Content

Course Structure & Content

The degree is designed as a pyramid, introducing a range of social science as well as social work modules in first year, increasing the ratio of social work to social science modules in second and third years, and concentrating on social work modules in final year. Social work placements also become longer each year. This progressive structure enables students to become academically and professionally confident in their social work identity over a period of time. Teaching methods and forms of assessment are varied and aim to develop a wide range of skills.

**Note** Advanced entry into year two or above of the BSS degree is not permitted.

Year One: Introductions to: Social Work, Psychology, Sociology, Social Policy Concepts and Economic Policy; also Politics and Irish Society. 

Year Two: Social Work Theory and Practice, Introduction to Family Law, Psychology for Social Workers, Introduction to Social Research, Understanding Health Policy, Social Work and Human Rights, Inclusive Disability, introduction to Child Protection and Poverty Welfare and Justice.

Year Three: Child Protection and Disability, Law for Social Workers, Criminology, Global Social Policy and Comparative Welfare States, Biographies of Social Work, Social Work Practice and Family and Child Care Studies.

Year Four: Social Work Practice, Social Work and Mental Health, Groupwork, Perspectives on Social Work, The Professional in Context, Social Work and Child Care and Social Work and Equality Issues.

In each of the four years, students undertake a placement in a different social service agency under the supervision of an experienced practitioner. These placements provide practice experience and an opportunity to develop and apply the skills and knowledge acquired in college. Placements in the first two years take place in the summer vacation. Placements in the final two years run in the first semester of each year. For more information, see Fieldwork Education Unit page.


Student Handbooks 2022–23

Junior Freshman 2022_23

Senior Freshman 2022_23

Junior Sophister 2022-23

Senior Sophister 2022-23



Module Outlines 2022-23

Junior Freshman 2022-23

Junior Freshman 2023-24

Senior Freshman 2022-23

Senior Freshman 2023-24

Junior and Sophister 2023-24


Bachelor in Social Studies Examination Regulations

The BSS Progression and Award Regulations for 2022/23contains information about the regulations governing examinations, as well as the conventions determining the award of grades in examinations, in the Bachelor in Social Studies degree programme.

Degree Award

Bachelor in Social Studies (Honours) which is placed at level 8 on the National Framework of Qualifications.   

Tutorial Support

Social Work students are supported in their professional development by social work course tutors on a one-to-one basis from year three onwards. Tutors visit students on placement and act as mentors.