SW325 Human Diversity & Social Justice

for U1J 2008

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Mission Statement: The mission of Park University, an entrepreneurial institution of learning, is to provide access to academic excellence, which will prepare learners to think critically, communicate effectively and engage in lifelong learning while serving a global community.

Vision Statement: Park University will be a renowned international leader in providing innovative educational opportunities for learners within the global society.


SW 325 Human Diversity & Social Justice


U1J 2008 DN


Bachman, Gary E.


Associate Professor & field Director



Office Hours


Daytime Phone


Other Phone

(913)634-6976 cell



Web Page


Semester Dates

June 3  -  July 22

Class Days


Class Time

5:30 - 9:50 PM



Credit Hours



 Race, Class and Gender in the United States Sixth Edition Rothenberg, P.S. ISBN: 0-7167-5515-7

White Privilege, Essential Readings on the Other Side of Racism Rothenberg, P.S. ISBN: 0-7167-5295-6

International Statement on Human Rights    United Nations (will be distributed at no charge, in class)

These Additional Readings are encouraged:  

The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down by Anne Fadiman 

The Innocent Man   by John Grisham

Three Cups of Tea  by Greg Mortenson & David Oliver

The Kite Runner    by Khaled Hosseini

Additional Resources:

McAfee Memorial Library - Online information, links, electronic databases and the Online catalog. Contact the library for further assistance via email or at 800-270-4347.
Career Counseling - The Career Development Center (CDC) provides services for all stages of career development.  The mission of the CDC is to provide the career planning tools to ensure a lifetime of career success.
Park Helpdesk - If you have forgotten your OPEN ID or Password, or need assistance with your PirateMail account, please email helpdesk@park.edu or call 800-927-3024
Resources for Current Students - A great place to look for all kinds of information http://www.park.edu/Current/.

Course Description:
This course provides a foundation of knowledge for more effective social work practice with a diversity of individuals and groups. It explores the background, world view and special needs of groups which vary in such respects as race and ethnicity, religion, gender, disability, sexual orientation, and age. It is recommended that SO315 Minority Group Relations be taken prior to SW325. 3:0:3

Educational Philosophy:

Social work as a profession emerged in response to the many challenges, inequalities and threats to the world's most vulnerable populations. The demographic of those populations is constantly evolving, as is the nature of challenge's that increasingly confront us all.

It is vitally important that citizens, regardless of their professional identity, be prepared to efficiently and critically consider their environment in order to identify, strategize, and communicate an effective response to the matters before them. This is as true in business, science, education, and government service as it is in social work.

It is the intent of the faculty in the Department of Social Work to facilitate learners in the acquisition of such knowledge as will serve them, their families and their communities, throughout their lives. Through the semester, world and local events will occur which may influence our academic, personal, or professional pursuits. In light of such circumstances, the instructor reserves the right to amend the schedule of study.

Learning Outcomes:
  Core Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate the value of critical thinking as essential for the function of informed and responsible citizenry.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the value of diversity and cultivate an awareness of the similarities and differences among individuals and populations.
  3. Demonstrate a capacity to recognize and respond to social and political injustices.
  4. Demonstrate how understanding and acceptance of people who are different enables us to move toward a society that values rather than tolerates differences.
  5. Demonstrate an understanding that diversity is more than race and recognize that gender, race, and ethnic identity are socially constructed.
  6. Communicate an understanding of the special challenges and skills required for effective practice with diverse and at-risk populations.
  7. Express understanding of the public and private social welfare system related to the service needs of diverse populations.
  8. Describe your own personal values in the context of human diversity and social justice.

Core Assessment:

-Exam (LO 1-3, 6)

- “Letter from Jail” Essay (LO 3,8)

-Article Reviews (4)(LO 1)

-Publishable Article (LO 5,7,8)


-Core Assessment Assignment ;”Faces of Opression” paper

Link to Class Rubric

Class Assessment:

Core Assessment Paper: "Faces of Oppression" Guidelines  will  be distributed in class and posted under “document sharing” on the course e-Companion web site.

Journal – You are expected to maintain and submit eight  weekly “e-Journal” entries in which you identify instances where you have observed or experienced some manner of prejudice or discrimination. This can include anything that discriminates against an individual or group of people. Describe the behavior and make note of your personal thoughts or reaction. You are to identify at least five different incidents each week. You will be expected to present and discuss these observations in class.

Analytical Book Report – Four books have been identified as “encouraged” readings.   You are to read (at least) one of those books.   You are then to compose analytical paper, addressing the various types of prejudices, discrimination which impacted the circumstances described in the book. You will be expected to identify and describe examples of “the five faces of oppression” as they occur in the book. Similarly you will identify and analyze the socio-political constructs impacting actions of the people. Evaluation will consider you skills in writing, (clarity) analysis and integration of beliefs, concepts, and information discussed in class and the assigned readings. 7-9 pages

Class Participation - An absolute must in this class.   This includes regular and consistent attendance, interactive participation in class, and demonstration of having read materials prior to class. Points will be lost for tardiness, leaving early and absences.

Jail Letter - Imagine that you have been incarcerated following an action of "civil disobedience". Your actions leading to the incarceration were intended on your part to represent your opposition to some unjust aspect in society. This assignment consists of you writing a letter to a family member, close friend, co-worker, public official or the public. Address the following issues in the letter for proper credit. 1. What was the issue you were protesting. This should be something you feel strongly about. 2. What makes this issue so important to you? 3. What did you hope to accomplish with your civil disobedience. 4. Were there other means of protest you did or could have used to get your point across. 5. Do you have a spiritual or ethical element related to your interest in this issue. 6. What further action might you plan to take? 7. Would you ever resort to the use violence to accomplish your goal? You need to follow the guidelines and respond to each point noted. This needs to be typed and in the proper format of a formal letter with address, names and salutations.

Topical Reviews (four)

Class Issues of Wealth and Power Paper:   1. How do you personally define "class" in America? Citing from the readings, describe how your definition fits or differs from that of any other authors. Cite and reference at least two other authors, one of which supports your position and one that does not support your perspective. 2. Useing the article by Gregory Mantisios (Race, Class & Gender: p. 193-207) discuss your thoughts regarding the "four myths" as well as any four of the eight "realities about class in America". 3. Describe your understanding of the wage gap relative to sex, race and education. Provide examples from the text (or other referenced sources) to support your ideas for each item. 4. Briefly discuss how the media portrays images of the wealth and class in America. Do you feel this is a valid and realistic portrayal? Please cite specific examples that support your position. If you use any citations, even from the text, they must be properly cited (APA). (4-5 pages)

Review on Racism: Provide four definitions of racism including your own. Discuss your feelings regarding each definition. Discuss the concept of white privilege based on your readings and personal experience. Give examples and discuss your feelings about each. Describe two examples of racism from your personal experience and two examples of institutional racism that you are aware of personally or that you are aware of from readings. Referring to Beverly Tatum's articl on page 127 of White Privilege what is the distinction she makes between racist and racism. Do you agree or disagree. Discuss this. Provide and discuss three examples of how language perpetuates racism. According to Feagi and Vera, Race, Class and Gender, how do anti-racists come to recognize their own racism. Based on all your various readinsg, what are your suggestions to overcoming racism. (4-5 pages)

Sexism: Describe the concept of sexism from at least three differing sources, including one of your own. These perspectives may be contradictory. Document at least one published source that explains, defends, justifies, or rationalizes each persepctive. Discuss gender roles in our society. Discuss the popular images of men and women and how this contributes or distracts from your own opinion. What do you believe is the solution to sexism in our society. Describe from your own life at least two examples of sexisms that you have personally experienced or observed. (4-5 pages)

Homophobia/heterosexism: Define homophobia and heterosexism. Use your opinion plus another source. Disucss your opinion as to how people become homophobic. Describe at least one rationalization or justification for homophobia. Describe a realistic response that may diminish one's rationalization or justification for homophobia. Based on your own life experiences,k what are some stereotypes of gays and lesbians. Describe some means of refuting or diminishing these stereotypes. How sdo these stereotypes or images of GLBT relate to how they are treated. Describe two examples of the obstacles other than violence that confront GLBT in seeking civil equality and justice. Discuss two examples of the obstacles other than violence that confront GLBT in seeking civil equality and justice. Discuss what you personally can or will do. (NOTE: this assignment is not intended to compel you to lie about or accept a lifestyle that may be contrary to your personal values. It is intended to compel you to think about how we treat others in a civil and just manner.) (4-5 pages)


Core Assessment                                            20%

Jail Letter                                                          5%

Journal                                                             10%

Class Issues of Wealth and Power                 10%

Racism                                                             10%

Sexism                                                             10%

Homophobia/Heterosexism                            10%

Attendance/Participation                                10%

Analytical book review                                   15%

Late Submission of Course Materials:

Assignments are due at the beginning of the class on the date indicated. If late, a valid excuse must be provided such as a doctor's note or tow truck bill, etc. Late papers without this excuse will not be accepted. Even with the excuse, 10% will be deducted.  No assignments will be accepted beyond Friday of the week they were originally due.

Classroom Rules of Conduct:

Due to the sensitive nature of the material covered in this class, it is important that an environment conducive to open discussion of potentially uncomfortable and emotional issues be promoted. If any student feels they cannot adhere to any of these rules, they may want to consider another course. Any breech of these standards may impact the final grade. The following are the rules of conduct for this class.

1. Class attendance is imperative. Failure to attend class regularly means a student loses out on the valuable information provided by other students.

2. Tardiness is disruptive to the class and will result in points being deducted from the final grade.

3. Active participation is imperative in the classroom. In order to actively participate, the student must come to class prepared for that class. This means the reading needs to be completed.

4. All papers are to be written in 12-font, double-spaced, using APA style. Sources must be used and adequately cited. Wikipedia is not considered an appropriate source.

5. Personal perspectives including differences will be valued. Degrading or discriminatory remarks or behaviors are not acceptable.

6. Due to the sensitive material, courtesy and respect must be maintained at all times. This includes students not having private conversations while others are talking.

7. If a student's behavior in the classroom is disruptive, the instructor will allow the student an opportunity to correct the behavior without consequences. If the behavior continues to be disruptive, the student may be asked to leave the classroom and may be referred to the Office of Academic Affairs.

8. In this class, we will be acknowledging that discrimination exists in many forms.

9. We will acknowledge that any critical discussion of the many "isms" involved in discrimination may mean that we need to recognize that we have learned and believed misinformation about our own respective groups as well as members of other groups.

10. We cannot be blamed for the misinformation we have learned, but we may be held responsible for propagating information that we know to be untrue or malicious.

11. We will actively pursue information about our own group and those of others.

12. We will share information about our own groups with other members of the class, and we will not demean, or devalue, or in any way negate another's experience.

13. We each have an obligation to actively analyze, understand, and confrong unjust and inaccurate stereotypes in the interest of domestic and international justice.

14. We will create a positive atmostphere for open discussion, even though learning may at times be frightening, painful or uncomfortable.

15. We will focus on the solution, not the individuals.

Course Topic/Dates/Assignments:

Week One  (6/3)   Review of course objectives and assignments.

Review of the global and domestic nature of human diversity. 

Dimensions of “social justice,” and “human rights.”    Introduction to “the Faces of Oppression.”

Week Two (6/10) (Domestic & International) Dimensions of “social justice,” and “human rights.”      Letter from Jail due   

Week Three (6/17) “Diversity in America, historical and emerging influences”                                          “Class in America”   assignment due  

Week Four  (6/24) The influence of race on matters of social justice. “Racism” assignment due

 Week Five (7/01) The influence of gender on matters of social justice. “Sexism” assignment due


Week Six  (7/08)The influence of sexual identity on matters of social justice.   Opening our eyes to the nature of diversity we seldom notice.            “Homophobia” assignment due


Week Seven   (7/15) Expanding the dialogue: injustice in a shrinking world.            Book Analysis due


Week Eight   (7/22) Pulling all together and preparing for the road ahead.”

Core Assessment due    An anonymous course assessment will be completed in class.

Academic Honesty:
Academic integrity is the foundation of the academic community. Because each student has the primary responsibility for being academically honest, students are advised to read and understand all sections of this policy relating to standards of conduct and academic life.   Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85-86
Social Work Majors are reminded that they are accountable to abiding by the NASW Code of Ethics. You are further advised to review the CoE as it relates to honesty and the appropriate crediting  work performed.

Plagiarism involves the use of quotations without quotation marks, the use of quotations without indication of the source, the use of another's idea without acknowledging the source, the submission of a paper, laboratory report, project, or class assignment (any portion of such) prepared by another person, or incorrect paraphrasing. Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 85

Attendance Policy:
Instructors are required to maintain attendance records and to report absences via the online attendance reporting system.

  1. The instructor may excuse absences for valid reasons, but missed work must be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  2. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment.
  3. Work missed through unexcused absences must also be made up within the semester/term of enrollment, but unexcused absences may carry further penalties.
  4. In the event of two consecutive weeks of unexcused absences in a semester/term of enrollment, the student will be administratively withdrawn, resulting in a grade of "F".
  5. A "Contract for Incomplete" will not be issued to a student who has unexcused or excessive absences recorded for a course.
  6. Students receiving Military Tuition Assistance or Veterans Administration educational benefits must not exceed three unexcused absences in the semester/term of enrollment. Excessive absences will be reported to the appropriate agency and may result in a monetary penalty to the student.
  7. Report of a "F" grade (attendance or academic) resulting from excessive absence for those students who are receiving financial assistance from agencies not mentioned in item 5 above will be reported to the appropriate agency.

Park University 2007-2008 Undergraduate Catalog Page 87-88

Disability Guidelines:
Park University is committed to meeting the needs of all students that meet the criteria for special assistance. These guidelines are designed to supply directions to students concerning the information necessary to accomplish this goal. It is Park University's policy to comply fully with federal and state law, including Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973 and the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990, regarding students with disabilities. In the case of any inconsistency between these guidelines and federal and/or state law, the provisions of the law will apply. Additional information concerning Park University's policies and procedures related to disability can be found on the Park University web page: http://www.park.edu/disability .


CompetencyExceeds Expectation (3)Meets Expectation (2)Does Not Meet Expectation (1)No Evidence (0)

•Identifies the 5 “Faces of Oppression” relative to each of the assigned 4 areas of risk.

•Contribution in class discussion reflects interpretation & awareness of oppression  related to the reading,  to self, and to similar but unrelated world events.

•Responds to comments by others in a matter that leads to exploration of new or unique perspectives..


•Identifies the 5 “Faces of Oppression” relative to each of the assigned 4 areas of risk. CO1,3,6,7

•Contribution in class discussion reflects interpretation & awareness of oppression  related to the reading and to self.

•Responds to comments by others.


•Identifies one of the “Faces of Oppression” relative to each of the assigned 4 areas of risk.

•Contributes in class only by direct prompting or by responding to comments by others.


•Fails to link the “Faces of Oppression” to the areas of risk.

•Does not contribute verbally to discussion.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Multicultural                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
•Identifies three or more distinct risks/challenges/actions in each of the 4 areas of risk.

•Relates the reading to personal and contemporary values & behaviors.

•Identifies two distinct risks/challenges/actions in each of the 4 areas of risk. CO1,3,6

•Relates the reading to personal and contemporary values & behaviors. CO2,4,6,8

•Identifies a risk/challenge/action in each of the 4 areas of risk.

•Relates the reading to a single personal or contemporary values or behaviors

•Fails to identify risks / challenges / actions in any one of the 4 areas of risk.

•Relates a single personal or contemporary value without linking to the reading.

1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Multicultural                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
•Relative to women and children: Identifies & applies knowledge from  multiple historical or culturally isolated event to multiple  contemporary domestic and/or world issues. •Relative to women and children: Identifies & applies knowledge from a historical or culturally isolated event to a contemporary domestic or world issues. CO2,4,5,6 •Links a historical or culturally isolated event to a contemporary domestic or world issues. •Identifies a contemporary or historical war or conflict. 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Multicultural                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
No factual errors No more than 2 factual errors relative to the assigned reading. 3 to 4 factual errors 5 or more factual errors 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Multicultural                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
Appropriately identifies and links the “faces of oppression” to circumstances described in the reading. Extrapilates on the circumstances to understand or anticipate other forces of oppression not specifically described. Appropriately identifies and links the “faces of oppression” to circumstances described in the reading. Identifies “faces of oppression” without establishing a link to events described in the reading. Inappropriately identifies or misinterprets the “faces of oppression.” Does not link the “faces” to events described in the reading. 
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6 Multicultural                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
Identifies two or more potential barriers or negative outcomes.

Identifies an alternative intervention to counter any barriers or negative outcomes.

Clearly describes personal insight, values and judgements relative to the events described. Describes a personal judgement or opinion relative to the events described. Relates a personal judgement without linking it to the reading.

Whole Artifact                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             
No errors in writing conventions 1 to 5 errors in spelling or grammar 6 to 10 errors in spelling or grammar 10+ grammatical or spelling errors. 
Contains no errors in the following paper format items:



-Page numbers

-Works cited

-Internal documentation

Contains only 1 error in the following paper format items:



-Page numbers

-Works cited

-Internal documentation

Contains 2 to 3 errors in the following paper format items:



-Page numbers

-Works cited

-Internal documentation

Contains 4 or more errors in the following paper format items:



-Page numbers

-Works cited

-Internal documentation

•Exhibits an awareness and concern for matters of social & economic justice.

• Exhibits an awareness as to how matters of human diversity influence the application of the forces of justice with individuals and groups. (Micro)

• Exhibits an awareness as to how matters of human diversity influences the development and application of social and economic justice in the establishment of law. (macro)

•Exhibits an awareness and concern for matters of social & economic justice.

• Exhibits an awareness as to how matters of human diversity influence the application of the forces of justice with individuals and groups. (Micro)

• oes not demonstrate a consistent awareness or concern for significant issues or threats. •Does not demonstrate any awareness or concern for significant issues or threats. 


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Last Updated:5/13/2008 10:30:32 AM