Disability And Society PUBPOL4028

  • Academic Session: 2023-24
  • School: School of Social and Political Sciences
  • Credits: 20
  • Level: Level 4 (SCQF level 10)
  • Typically Offered: Semester 1 (Alternate Years)
  • Available to Visiting Students: Yes

Short Description

This course will provide students with an understanding of social and public policy and society in relation to disabled people. By looking at the various definitions of impairment and disability, discussion will focus on the constructions of 'disability' as an identity category, issues relating to citizenship and its reflection across a range of policies.


One hour weekly lecture

One hour weekly tutorial

Requirements of Entry

Mandatory Entry Requirements

Entry to Honours Social & Public Policy normally requires a grade point average of 12 (grade C3) over Social & Public Policy 2A and 2B (formerly Public Policy 2A and 2B) as a first attempt.

Excluded Courses





1 essay of 2500 words 40%

1 two hour exam 60%

Main Assessment In: December

Are reassessment opportunities available for all summative assessments? No


Course Aims

The aims of the course are to:

■ explore the contestations relating to how 'disability' is defined and conceptualised across a range of social and political contexts.

■ explore the role of disability activism in securing policy change.

■ explore the social experiences and life chances of disabled people in different policy arenas.

■ critically assess the representation of disabled people in social and public policies and across a range of traditional and new social media.

■ critically examine the representation of 'disability' and related issues in social research.

Intended Learning Outcomes of Course

By the end of this course students will be able to:


■ critically assess the relative strengths and weaknesses of competing conceptual models of disability and their application in social and public policies.

■ understand the way in which policy influences disabled people's social experiences and life chances.

■ understand and critically analyse the social and public policies in place to support the needs and redress inequalities experienced by disabled people.

■ draw on an international examples to compare the social and political participation of disabled people.

■ critically evaluate the key theoretical debates around structure, agency and identity within disability studies.

Minimum Requirement for Award of Credits

Students must submit at least 75% by weight of the components (including examinations) of the course's summative assessment.