Curriculum Guideline

Introduction to Community

Effective Date:
Course Code
CFCS 1110
Introduction to Community
Child, Family & Community Studies
Applied Community Studies
Start Date
End Term
Semester Length
Flexible delivery ranging over 2 to 15 weeks
Max Class Size
Contact Hours
60 hours: Lecture
Method Of Instruction
Methods Of Instruction
  • Lecture
  • Group Work
  • Student Presentations
  • Guest Speakers
  • Audio-Visual Presentations
Course Description
This course will focus on the development of a personal, professional identity through the examination of professional roles in education and human services. Students will explore and reflect on historical perspectives and ethical decision making. Current legal and policy trends will be discussed in relation to significant social and cultural issues such as gender roles, multiculturalism, poverty and empowerment.
Course Content

 The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:

  1. Economic justice, appreciation of diversity, encouragement and respect for self determination, the ethical use of power, and the absence of violence combine to form a strong and healthy community.
  2. Exploring and reflecting on one’s own experience as a member of a community is fundamental to determining how a person will work with others because acknowledging and sharing one’s experiences leads to claiming personal power and precedes the empowerment of others.
  3. Communities have many resources.  Through collaborative work, communities have power, the capacity to effect change, and the ability to take care of their own members.  Before one can engage in collaborative relationships, however, s/he must have moved from dependence, through independence, and into interdependence.
  4. Analytical thinking (i.e., making comparisons, analyzing information, making and reflecting on choices, and drawing conclusions) and clear, effective articulation of ideas in a variety of formats and settings are essential to effective practice and community involvement.
  5. In addition to knowing the standards of the field or the expectations of one’s employers, it is critical that practitioners reflect on the life, educational experiences, values, and beliefs of themselves and others to develop a personalized set of values they can apply to their practice.
  6. Professional practice requires an understanding of ethical principles and their application to decisions and actions taken.  Ethical decision making requires continual reflection, self-examination and ongoing values clarification.
  7. By making a commitment to become active, ethical change agents within the political, educational and social service systems, practitioners can contribute to the development of a healthy community.
  8. The knowledge of how systems function facilitates the building of stronger communities since practitioners work and live within systems.
  9. The systems within which practitioners work are imperfect and frustrating.  Practitioners need to actively keep abreast with, reflect on, and apply trends in their fields of practice, develop a personalized model of professional practice, and maintain balance in their lives in order to sustain and renew themselves in their work.
  10. It is critical that practitioners understand recognized lines of authority, their personal and professional limitations, as well as their abilities and responsibilities.  They must effectively use a myriad of community resources and appropriately refer clients and colleagues.
  11. Knowing the history of the human service field and service delivery is necessary to understand what has been what is, and what is to come.
Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate critical thinking in written and oral forms
    • Articulates and uses a theoretical framework for critical thinking
    • Actively listens, in a fair-minded way, to views different from own
    • Describes various positions on a given issue
    • Considers the impact of critical thinking on practice
  2. Describe the impact of values, both individual and societal, in field of human services
    • Identifies own key values
    • Identifies cultural and political values
    • Articulates potential impact of own values on practice
    • Articulates core values of CFCS programs at Douglas College
  3. Approach decision making ethically
    • Articulates steps to ethical decision making
    • Describes the difference between an ethical dilemma and a breach of ethics
    • Applies field specific codes of ethics to dilemmas
    • Explains the relationship between values and ethical decision making
    • Considers general principles of ethical decision making in approaching ethical dilemmas
  4. Articulate the impact of history on current social attitudes and policies
    • Explores current practices in human services through the use of historical perspectives
    • Identifies significant historical changes in the treatment of people who are “labeled” or marginalized
  5. Apply general systems theory to a specific social issue
    • Describes component parts of a system and their interactive dynamics
    • Conducts primary research into the configuration of municipal, provincial and federal systems of government
    • Identifies key components and processes on Canada’s electoral system
    • Explains the impact of different political systems in human service delivery on individual and program levels
  6. Explore issues of social justice and diversity
    • Identifies inherent human rights
    • Describes a variety of circumstances where individuals’ and groups’ rights have been compromised
    • Describes the impact of different social policies on social justice.
Means of Assessment

This course will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations.

  • Written Assignments
  • Group Presentations
  • Self Assessment
  • Classroom Activity Participation
  • Other
Textbook Materials


Which Prerequisite

CCSD 240 or CCSD 1240 and CFCS 410 or CFCS 2410