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Social Welfare Policy

 Faculty Led
  • Various, Scotland, United Kingdom
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This course offers you the opportunity to develop upon your understanding of international social welfare problems, policies, and programs. You will have the ability to focus your study experience on Scottish and UK policy, clinical practices, and/or human service programs. Visits to social services agencies, educational institutions, and government offices will immerse you in Scotland’s national and local social welfare policies, practices, and program initiatives. 

Application Deadline


Program Start


Program End


Partner University



  • Various, Scotland

Program Term

  • Spring Break

Language of Instruction


Faculty Led


Internship Opportunity

  • Yes!

Program Details

Academic Program

*Program is subject to minimum enrollment.  

The Scotland Social Welfare Policy program offers graduate students in the School of Social Welfare the chance to become immersed in Scottish culture while learning about Scotland’s national and local social welfare issues and related policies. You will work on independently designed learning projects geared toward personal and professional interests. You will also engage in focused learning about Scotland’s social welfare policies, will have the opportunity to meet government officials, and will observe policy applied in social work practice settlings. During the program, you will have the opportunity to visit social welfare program and human service agencies, and will also participate in educational programming arranged via the University of Edinburgh’s Social Work Department within the School of Social and Political Sciences.

You will be required to prepare individual projects prior to travel. The class will require approximately three class meetings prior to the program, and two meetings after the program, upon return to UAlbany. The pre-program class meetings will be scheduled during February and early March, and the post-program class meetings will be held in April.

Course Syllabus

For reference, please see the Spring Break 2019 Syllabus (embedded into the RSSW 705 Spring 2019 course syllabus).

Course Credit

This course (RSSW 705) offers you the opportunity to earn 3 graduate-level credits in the School of Social Welfare.

To request that this course count toward your Advanced Policy requirement in the Masters of Social Welfare program at the UAlbany, please provide a written request to the Associate Dean’s Office via the SSW Help Desk in Richardson Hall, once you are registered for the course. The course may also be taken as an elective graduate level course. Individual research projects will be completed for the course and may focus on a variety of relevant topics, including education, healthcare, mental health, child welfare, substance abuse, homelessness, and criminal justice. 

This course is taught by Professor Eric Hardiman. Professor Hardiman will be the course instructor, and will supervise the individual research projects for each student in the course. Dr. Hardiman has taught this course twice before (2015 and 2017), and was a Visiting Scholar at the University of Edinburgh in 2013.


Information about housing is forthcoming.


Information about meals is forthcoming.

Estimate of Costs

For reference, review the Scotland Spring Break 2019 Estimate of Costs

More Information

Click for more information on Program Costs and Financial Aid.

Remember to speak with the Office of Financial Aid at your home campus to determine how your aid package could apply towards your program abroad.

Academic Requirements

This opportunity is open only to GRADUATE students enrolled at the University at Albany’s School of Social Welfare. Permission of the instructors is required. You must be enrolled in Professor Eric Hardiman’s Spring 2019 RSSW 705 course in order to participate in this program.

Experiential Learning

Experiential learning plays a critical role in your program experience. Both the overall program and individual courses include a number of cultural and historical excursions* to important and influential sites, so you will have the opportunity to experience Scotland’s culture to its fullest.

Past Excursions and Activities*

You will attend one or two social activities designed specifically to encourage interaction with social work graduate students in Social Work at the University of Edinburgh. These activities may include a tea at the University and/or a restaurant dinner in which students from both program intermix.

*Excursions are a mandatory part of the program and specific destinations vary by program and availability.

**Schedule is tentative and subject to change

External scholarships, listed on our website, are a good way to partially fund your study abroad experience. In addition, the Center for International Education and Global Strategy offers two scholarship programs for UAlbany students studying abroad on UAlbany or 4-year SUNY programs.

More information on applying to these scholarships is located on the Scholarships web page.

Program Advisor

Huckleby, Carmeisha

About the City

Edinburgh is located in central eastern Scotland, near the Firth of Forth, close to the North Sea. Thanks to its spectacular rocks, rustic buildings and a huge collection of medieval and classic architecture, including numerous stone decorations, it is often considered one of the most lively cities in Europe.  It has a medieval Old Town and elegant Georgian New Town with gardens and neoclassical buildings.  Looming over the city is Edinburgh Castle, home to Scotland’s crown jewels and the Stone of Destiny, used in the coronation of Scottish rulers.  Arthur’s Seat is an imposing peak in Holyrood Park with sweeping views, and Calton Hill is topped with monuments and memorials.  Recognized as the capital of Scotland since at least the 15th century, Edinburgh is the seat of the Scottish Government, the Scottish Parliament and the supreme courts of Scotland.  The city’s Palace of Holyrood is the official residence of the monarch in Scotland. The city has long been a center of education, particularly in the fields of medicine, Scots law, literature, the sciences and engineering. It is the second largest financial center in the United Kingdom.

Travel Documents

A valid passport is required to participate in this program.  If you are a permanent resident or international student, a visa may be required. More information regarding the visa application process is available upon acceptance to the program.

Application Availability

Applications become available online one semester before the program start date, based on the following timeline:

  • Summer programs: December

Program Dates

03/16/2019 to 03/24/2019

Program Schedule*

Friday, March 15           Depart the U.S.

Saturday, March 16       Arrive in Edinburgh + students meet for group dinner

March 17                       Sightseeing in Edinburgh

March 18                       Educational programming- lectures/meetings at University of Edinburgh

March 19                      Agency visits in AM + Agency visits in PM + evening social event

March 20                      Visit to Parliament, Meetings with MSPs + Agency visits in PM

March 21                      Meeting w/ Scottish Association of Social Workers + Agency visits in PM

March 22                      Meeting with Edinburgh City Council / Local Social work department

March 23                      Sightseeing in Edinburgh

March 24                     Depart from Edinburgh, Arrive in Albany

*Schedule is tentative and subject to change

Flight Information

More information regarding flights is available upon acceptance.


Program Orientations

Upon acceptance to the program, you will be required to attend a mandatory pre-departure orientation. During this time, you will have the opportunity to meet other program participants, discuss in-depth the details of your program, and prepare of the overall education abroad experience. The summer pre-departure orientation is typically conducted on a weeknight in February.

Upon arrival in Scotland, you will attend a mandatory program orientation. This is an important and informative set of sessions organized by the Faculty Leader.  

Support Services

Your Faculty Leader is responsible for guiding all aspects of the program and will be available throughout the on-site portion of the course to manage any concerns or questions you may have while abroad. The faculty accompany you on all program activities and outings.

UAlbany’s Office of Education Abroad staff assists you during the application process, in your preparation to travel abroad, and on-site if necessary.