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Sustainable Social Policy (BA)

A Look into the Modules

Studienberatung Student Studieninfotage 20190926 Lannert
Here you can find more information about the individual modules in the Sustainable Social Policy (B.A.) degree programme.

Module: Fundamentals of Methodology (1st/2nd semester; 10 ECTS)

What characterises scientific work and how do you go about it?
How do you collect empirical data and how can you analyse it?
How do you apply both in practice?
Science and scientific work thrives on seriousness and objective comprehensibility, combined with the willingness to constantly and critically scrutinise the results obtained. Against this background, students learn what distinguishes academic work from other texts. The academic work process is analysed and trained, taking into account both literature-based and empirical work. The latter is concretised through insights into the methods of empirical social research and descriptive statistics. Both are applied within the framework of a small research project.


Module: Specialised English (2nd semester; 4 ECTS)

What are the basic social policy terms in English?
How can I get involved in the international dialogue on social policy?
What English language skills are relevant in everyday working life?
Building on an optional ‘refresher course’ in the first semester (target: B2), in the second semester students learn how to deal with social policy literature in English (reading/understanding) and their own approach in dialogue/presentation as well as in the preparation of their own texts. Students practise ‘English in everyday working life’ with a high degree of practical relevance.


Module: Subject areas of social policy (1st/2nd semester; 6 ECTS)

What is social policy and who pursues it?
In which policy fields does social policy operate?
Which current challenges does social policy have to address?
Students will familiarise themselves with the basic concepts, objectives and players in social policy. They will also find out which factors characterise social policy and what options are available for shaping it. They will then look at the policy areas of social policy. The focus will be on the fact that social policy is not limited to social security systems alone, but can be found much more comprehensively in almost every life situation.


Module: Fundamentals of Political Science (1st/2nd semester; 8 ECTS)

What is politics about and how does it work?
What is political science and what does it deal with?
The so-called ‘political theory’ is explained in terms of its foundations, its history of ideas and its political fields. The academic study of politics attempts to analyse and explain politics using ‘clean’ subject-specific methodology.


Module: Fundamentals of Economics (1st/2nd semester; 8 ECTS)

How do economists classically model the behaviour of economic agents? What results do markets lead to and when do they fail? What problems can arise from a macroeconomic perspective?
What tasks does the state have in market economies and what instruments are available to it?
The focus is on the fundamental models of micro- and macroeconomics to explain micro- and macroeconomic issues, such as price formation on goods and labour markets, economic fluctuations and unemployment. The limits of these models and the role of the state in the free play of market forces are discussed and selected instruments of state economic policy for solving allocative and distributive problems are discussed.


Module: Fundamentals of Sociology (1st/2nd semester; 8 ECTS)

What is sociology about?
What are the foundations of social behaviour?
The essence of sociology is discussed. Basic concepts, fundamental questions and the methodology of sociological research are discussed. The foundations of social action are placed in relation to the establishment of social structures.


Module: Fundamentals of Law (1st/2nd semester; 8 ECTS)

What function does ‘law’ have in a society?
What is the relationship between ‘law’ and the regulation of social needs?
Students learn about the idea and function of law, both in a national and international context, particularly in a European context. The nature of a welfare state is discussed, including the significance of law for social policy. The legal options for shaping social policy are analysed.


Module: Fundamentals of Communication Science (1st/2nd semester; 8 ECTS)

Why is communication ‘everything’ and how does communication work?
How do the media work and what significance do they have for the political system?
How can students develop their own presentation skills?
Students learn about the main communication and media theories, the national and international media structure and their significance for the political system. They also reflect on their own communication behaviour and expand their own options for action in practical exercises.


Module: Advanced module in methodology (3rd/4th semester; 10 ECTS)

How can results obtained from random samples be generalised? And how can correlations between different characteristics be modelled and evaluated?
Which methods of empirical social research can be used for specific questions?
How does evaluation research work?
Students learn the basic methods of inductive statistics, in particular estimation and test methods and econometrics (in particular regression models). The methodology of empirical social research is deepened and selected statistical programmes such as SPSS or MAXQDA are introduced. The programme also includes aspects of evaluation research and its application using selected examples.


Module: Interdisciplinary topics of social and societal policy (3rd/4th semester; 20 ECTS)

What is the subject of international social policy and how does it shape the national context?
How is poverty/inequality measured, analysed and combated?
What does the (constant) change in society and the world of work mean for social policy?
Students learn about the comparative methodology of international social policy, work with different databases and gain an overview of relevant institutions and actors, whether at EU level or worldwide in developing and newly industrialising countries. Students familiarise themselves with the basic concepts of poverty and inequality, are able to measure these empirically and actively engage with national and international poverty reduction strategies. Students learn the methodology of recognising processes of change in society and the world of work as a constant challenge for an active national and international social policy and of developing interdisciplinary concepts to align social security systems accordingly. Some of these modules are offered in English.


Module: Specialisation in Political Science (3rd/4th semester; 6 ECTS)

How do political development processes work?
How do corresponding decisions become reality, especially in the socio-political context?
In order to deepen the skills acquired in the basic module, the focus is on the institutional context, organisational principles, strategies and procedures of political decision-making processes. To this end, the ‘becoming reality’ of political decisions, particularly in the socio-political context, is brought into focus.


Module: Specialisation in Economics (3rd/4th semester; 6 ECTS credit)

What role do foreign trade relations play in the prosperity of an economy?
What other explanatory approaches for socio-politically relevant issues does economics offer beyond the ‘classical theories’?
In order to deepen the competences from the basic module, the focus is on foreign trade theory and policy, exchange rates and currency systems as well as growth and prosperity in a networked global economy. Beyond the so-called mainstream, approaches from behavioural economics, heterodox economics and socio-economics are considered and discussed.


Module: Specialisation in Sociology (3rd/4th semester; 6 ECTS)

What logic do social subsystems follow?
How do social change processes work?
In order to deepen the competences from the basic module, the focus is on the processes of cooperation and conflict within and between social subsystems. Against this background, the focus is on processes of social change, including related communication, especially in the socio-political field.


Module: Specialisation in Law (3rd/4th semester; 6 ECTS)

What is behind the legal subject matter of labour and social law?
What is the relationship between the two - especially in times of social change?
change processes?
In order to deepen the skills acquired in the basic module, the focus is on individual and collective labour law and thus on the factors influencing gainful employment as well as on the social law structure of the social security system. Processes of social change are problematised in this context by analysing the corresponding interdependencies.


Module: Specialisation in Communication Studies (3rd/4th semester; 6 ECTS)

How does political communication work?
Why do we need crisis management?
How do you negotiate without losing sight of your own goals?
This specialisation focuses on the actors, media and impact of political communication. It is about the ability to recognise ‘issues’ and to set up optimal crisis and campaign management. It is also about the ability to optimise your own negotiating skills, including argumentation techniques and discussion skills.


Module: First and second specialisation (5th/7th semester; 15 ECTS each)

Specialisation subjects I and II offer the opportunity to choose two out of a total of three specialisation subjects. It is about:

‘Society’ - with a focus on sociological and political science issues and concepts
‘Economics’ - focussing on economic issues and concepts
‘Communication’ - focussing on communication and media science issues and concepts
The courses within the specialisation are not fixed, but can vary from year to year. In all specialisations, the focus is on topics and issues in the context of ‘Sustainable Social Policy’ - more so than in the foundation and specialisation modules. Individual courses are offered in English.


Module: Supplementary subjects (5th semester; 15 ECTS in total)

The supplementary subjects offer students the opportunity to follow their inclinations and interests when choosing individual subjects. For example, the following subjects can be offered or taken:

Project Management
Intercultural competence
Rhetoric and presentation
Social psychology
Search engine optimisation and social media; Photoshop
Foreign language course


Module: Practical semester (6th semester; 30 ECTS)

‘All theory is grey, dear friend, and the golden tree of life is green.’ (Faust 1, Goethe)

With this in mind, students are given the opportunity to put the knowledge and skills they have already acquired during their studies to the test in practice. In organisations of their choice (including abroad), they will spend 20 weeks working on socio-political, including communication and media science tasks in a specific professional context. Key competences in areas such as transfer knowledge, time management, teamwork and language are also developed and promoted.


Module: Final module (7th semester; 15 ECTS)

Everything has an end, including this degree programme.

The Bachelor's thesis is about the independent preparation of a scientific, application-orientated, written work. Students demonstrate to themselves and the reader that they can independently develop a well-founded answer to a research question of their own choosing from the field of social policy, apply scientific theories and methods appropriately and present this in writing. As part of an accompanying research colloquium, students have the opportunity to present their (interim) results in a professional manner and to assess the academic work of their fellow students from a technical and methodological perspective and to develop constructive proposals for solutions.

Below you will find documents relating to the curriculum, study plan and module overview to give you further insight into the content of the programme.


Patrick Baues (DE)

Patrick Baues

Research Associate


Sankt Augustin


F 203


Grantham-Allee 2-8

53757, Sankt Augustin

Contact hours

Presence: Tuesdays, 10:00-12:00 (by appointment)

By phone: Thursdays, 14:30-16:00


+49 2241 865 669
abdelrahman.fatoum.jpg (DE)

Abdelrahman Fatoum

Scientific staff member


Sankt Augustin


F 203


Grantham-Allee 2-8

53757, Sankt Augustin


+49 2241 865 9948
Friederike Windhofer (DE)

Friederike Windhofer

Research Assistant, Programme Coordinator of the Bachelor Programme "Sustainable Social Policy" (BA)


Sankt Augustin


F 203


Grantham-Allee 2-8

53757, Sankt Augustin

Contact hours

Presence: Wednesdays, 14:30-16:00 Uhr

By phone: Mondays, 09:30-11:00 Uhr


+ 49 2241 865 9530