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What's in a title: Understanding meanings in community care

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What do we mean by 'community', 'care' and 'welfare'? In this free course, What's in a title: Understanding meanings in community care, you will explore the meanings of these words in their historical and cultural settings. The course does not discuss these terms exclusively in terms of social work practice so service users, carers or anyone interested in community care and the ways in which welfare services are provided would find this course useful.

After studying this course, you should be able to:

  • demonstrate an awareness that the words ‘care’, ‘welfare’ and ‘community’ have a wide range of social, cultural and historical meanings.

By: The Open University

  • Duration 4 hours
  • Updated Tuesday 5th April 2016
  • Intermediate level
  • Posted under Health Studies
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What's in a title: Understanding meanings in community care


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The course you are about to study is exciting and stimulating. Working with adults in the community is changing at a pace that can sometimes feel bewildering. Practitioners are being asked to review what they are doing in a critical way and to adopt new approaches. For example, the word ‘community’ is one that we all use quite readily and is at the heart of many social work policies. However, we tend to take it for granted that everyone means the same thing when they talk about a community or the community, and we seldom have time to analyse what we mean and compare this with other people's views. Understanding more about key concepts like ‘community’ and ‘care’ will help you to appreciate why policies such as the introduction of ‘community care’ have raised such complex and controversial issues, and why different individuals can experience them in such different ways.

This OpenLearn course provides a sample of Level 2 study in Health and Social Care [Tip: hold Ctrl and click a link to open it in a new tab. (Hide tip)] .

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