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Home > Curriculum archives > Bachelor’s Degree (UAS), Undergraduate Programmes > Social Services (vanha koulutusohjelma) > Degree Programme in Social Services
Bachelor’s Degree (UAS), Undergraduate Programmes

Degree Programme in Social Services

Autumn 2011

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Year of study 1 2 3 4
Search: ECTS 1 2 3 4 1A 1S 2A 2S 3A 3S 4A 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 1 2
Socio-pedagogical orientation
Introduction to Studies 3
Expert and research communication 3
Basics of information technology 3
Orientation to social pedagogy 5
Work and the operating environment of Bachelors of Social Services
Development of the welfare state 5
Work and work orientations within the social service sector 5
Lifestyle and culture 3
Functioning as a team member in the workplace 3
People in society
Individual in society - optional
(Choose one)
Supporting daily life - physical education 3
Supporting daily life - music education 3                                                  
Supporting daily life - art education 3                                                  
Supporting daily life - writing and literature 3                                                  
Supporting daily life in early childhood 3                                                  
Social participation and exclusion 4
Individual growth and development 4
Counselling in social pedagogy
Individual and community counselling 6
On-line encounters and web-based counselling 3    
Professional English 3
Work placement 1 - Orientation to socio-pedagogical work 7
Socio-pedagogical work
Empowerment and social advocacy in socio-pedagogical work 5  
Ethics in socio-pedagogical work 3  
Threatening client situations 3    
Basics of professional research and development 3  
Swedish at Work 3  
Finnish as a Second Language: Finnish at Work 3                                                  
Service system in the social service sector
Producing welfare services 3  
Legislation and the service system 3  
Case management 3  
Basics of research and development methodology 3  
Leading different lives
Mental health 3  
Substances 3  
Disabilities and long-term illnesses 3  
Child protection 3  
Work placement 2 - Socio-pedagogical work with clients 12  
Optional professional studies in social pedagogy
Diverse social counselling
(Select 15 ECTS)
Social security in everyday life 5    
Social counselling of adults 5                                                  
Community work
(Select 0 ECTS)
Socio-cultural inspiring 5    
Community and individual 5                                                  
Creative methods 5                                                  
Early childhood education
(Select 0 ECTS)
Basics of early childhood education 5                                                  
Children's individual growth, development and learning 5                                                  
Content orientations of early childhood education 5                                                  
Professional activity in social pedagogy
(Select 0 ECTS)
Youth as a phase of life 5    
Special education in different phases of life 5                                                  
Work with families 5                                                  
Abusive behaviour and domestic violence 5                                                  
Medication in social services 5                                                  
Strengthening professional growth of Bachelors of Social Services
Work placement 3 - Strengthening professionalism of Bachelors of Social Services 18      
Bachelors of Social Services in the workplace environment
Leadership in the work community 4    
Entrepreneurship in the social service sector 3    
English in social services 3    
Professional growth 5
Work placement 4 - The multifaceted work in the social service sector 8  
Developing of socio-pedagogical work
Final project
Analysing ideas for the final project 3    
Drawing up a plan for the final project 3    
Implementing the final project 6      
Maturity test and publication 3      
Innovation Project 10    
Quantitative research methods 3    
Qualitative research methods 3    
Elective studies
ECTS credits per period / semester / academic year 58.455.458.427.727.730.728.726.730.727.727.713.913.915.415.414.414.413.413.415.415.413.913.913.913.9

The curriculum has been planned so that the student completes 60 ECTS credits per academic year and 30 ECTS credits per semester

Due to the timing of optional and elective courses, credit accumulation per semester / academic year may vary.



The degree programme in Social Services provides students with socio-pedagogical competence and innovative expertise in the social sector which work to meet the changing requirements of the Helsinki Metropolitan area. Bachelors of Social Services act confidently to promote social participation, equality and wellbeing in society. They work in cooperation with individuals and communities to prevent and reduce social deprivation and exclusion. They are capable of demonstrating their competence in their profession and committed to their ongoing development.


The foundation of professionalism for Bachelors of Social Services is built on the socio-pedagogical approach. Bachelors of Social Services are capable of analysing social phenomena and understand their significance to people’s lives and wellbeing. Combining pedagogical (education and learning) and social (societal) perspectives at work is emphasised in social pedagogy. The work is carried out in the daily lives of people of different ages in their own living environment. Bachelors of Social Services show competence in dialogue with different people, which requires appreciation of the diversity of their daily living. By means of socio-pedagogical competence, Bachelors of Social Services can influence a client’s functional ability and sense of empowerment. This expertise manifests itself, for example, in socio-cultural competence as well as client-oriented and participatory actions. Bachelors of Social Services are also capable of taking on tasks requiring development and leadership skills, promoting the social perspective within social services as well as multiprofessionalism and networking within the overlapping areas among welfare providers.


The degree programme is based on the competence areas of Bachelor of Social Services:

1. Ethical competence in social services
2. Communication and interaction competence
3. Counselling and guidance competence
4. Participatory and critical societal competence
5. Research and development competence
6. Work community and leadership competence

1. Ethical competence in social services
Bachelors of Social Services are committed to the values and principles of professional ethics and act according to them. They are competent in the reflection of their work required by the social service profession and their own actions. In addition, they are able to deal with their emotions and are aware of their limits. Graduates recognise the significance of their concept of man and values in their work with clients and different groups of clients. They are able to take into account the uniqueness of each individual and act ethically in situations involving conflicts of values. They understand the significance of power to their actions. Bachelors of Social Services promote human rights, equality and tolerance, aim to reduce differences in social welfare, and prevent social deprivation from the viewpoint of society, community and the individual.

2. Communication and interaction competence
Bachelors of Social Services are capable of creating a professionally interactive and cooperative relationship based on dialogue. This relationship is participatory and applies to both individuals and communities. They possess cross-cultural sensitivity and respect pluralism when meeting individuals. They also embrace and reinforce the existing resources of individuals and communities. Graduates are able to apply different methods of communication and interaction accordingly when working with individuals and communities. They use various means of documentation and reporting in their work, work community and multiprofessional networks. Bachelors of Social Services are able to participate in societal value discussions and have the ability to act as experts of their field in multiprofessional networks.

3. Counselling and guidance competence
The client counselling and pedagogical competence of Bachelors of Social Services comprises goal-oriented support, counselling and guidance of individuals and communities. Students aim to promote empowerment and participatory involvement with individuals, communities and other actors in the field. They are able to help people examine their life situations and living environments critically, as well as to encourage them to change them when necessary. Bachelors of Social Services can observe the development, actions, environment and needs of individuals, groups and communities and analyse them from different theoretical perspectives. Graduates demonstrate competence in supporting and counselling different clients and client groups in their daily life, through different phases of growth and development as well as in life situations in a goal-oriented way. They are able to use various pedagogical methods appropriately. They are familiar with the client process and are able to plan, document, evaluate and develop their actions.

4. Participatory and critical social competence
Bachelors of Social Services comprehend the relationship between individuals and society and are able to analyse it from various perspectives. They understand the relationship between the individuals’ social capacity and social decision-making. Graduates comprehend social problems from a societal and global framework and are able to analyse socially exclusive structures and processes. They are capable of using preventative and structural social work and social advocacy. At the same time, they understand the operational principles of communities and are able to strengthen and create a sense of communality and participation supporting citizenship through communal work. Graduates are acquainted with the official and unofficial structures supporting wellbeing and social security. They have familiarized themselves with legislation, norms and general guidelines as well as their impact on their work. This education enables the graduates to anticipate and analyse changes in social politics and welfare services as well as to participate in the production and development of services. They are able to work as experts of their field in multi-professional work groups and networks as well as to promote the function of the client’s support networks.

5. Research and development competence
Bachelors of Social Services show practical research competence. They have the ability to gather empirical and theoretical information systematically and to foster development critically. Their problem-solving skills enable them to address practice based problems and to develop service models within the work environment. Graduates know how to plan, implement, evaluate and report on development projects related to their work.

6. Work community and leadership competence
Bachelors of Social Services work as members of the work community and as supervisors embracing inde-pendent work planning and decision-making. They are able to take the lead in changing situations where competence and performance are an issue. Graduates understand the significance of economic factors to their work. They know how to maintain their own occupational wellbeing as well as that of their workplace. They develop competence within the social service sector, work communities and services in multi-professional cooperation in a critical and innovative way. They also develop the partnership between social service education and the workplace environment.


Students draw up a personal study plan to develop their competences. In addition to general studies aimed at everyone, students choose socio-pedagogical and optional professional studies, which reinforce their pro-fessional competence. The socio-pedagogical optional studies focus on social counselling of adults, community work and socio-cultural animation, early childhood education, family work, young people, special education, or their own choice of studies to develop their competences. The optional studies enable students to combine successfully their multifaceted competence with the changing needs of the service user being served by the social services sector today. The possibility for individual choice is important for the development of the work in the social service sector. The studies also include 45 cr (app. 30 weeks) of supervised work placement. Part of the studies may be completed during international student exchanges and in the Degree Programme in Social Services (English) at Metropolia. The educational solutions emphasise the interaction of theory and practice, experientialism, action learning as well as focus on research and development.