• University of Leeds

Social Model of Disability

Explore the social model of disability and learn how to create a more equitable society with the University of Leeds.

317 enrolled on this course

Visually impaired man chatting with a lady in a wheelchair and another lady in an open space.

Social Model of Disability

317 enrolled on this course

  • 2 weeks

  • 4 hours per week

  • Digital certificate when eligible

  • Introductory level

Find out more about how to join this course

  • Duration

    2 weeks
  • Weekly study

    4 hours
  • 100% online

    How it works
  • Unlimited subscription

    $244.99 for one whole yearLearn more

Gain an introduction to the social model of disability

More than one billion people are disabled globally. There is evidence that disabled people experience significant inequalities compared to other people in society. This is because they face barriers that stop them from taking part in society in the same way as non-disabled people.

The social model of disability is a way of viewing the world, developed by disabled people. On this two-week course, you’ll learn what disability is and learn to identify the barriers that disabled people face around the world.

Discover the history and impact of the social model of disability

You’ll start by exploring the origins of the model and learn about the significant contributions of disabled activists around the world.

Next, you’ll focus on how the model can be used as a tool for removing barriers and promoting/creating social inclusion.

Through case studies, you’ll reflect on why barriers even exist in society and how the model’s insights can be put into practice.

Learn how to achieve diversity and inclusion

The model will enable you to view disability in a different way. Its transformative nature will help you understand how we need to act individually and collectively to create a more inclusive society.

Understanding disability from a social perspective, rather than an individual one, changes the way people think about themselves, and they are viewed by others.

By centering the voices and lived experiences of disabled people, you will see the impact the social model of disability is already making. Through this, you’ll also understand how it can inform personal and professional contexts and be used to shape policies and practice to help build a fairer future for all.

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Skip to 0 minutes and 3 seconds Globally, one in seven of us are disabled people. Yet, disabled people face ongoing barriers and discrimination in all areas of life. The social model of disability is a way of viewing the world developed by disabled people. This course explores how disability is shaped by social and cultural context and introduces the principles of the model, and its huge political, economic, cultural, and social implications. You’ll learn about the contribution of the Disabled People’s Movement to the creation of the model and explore how it has been empowering people individually and collectively. Finally, you’ll reflect on how the model’s applications can shape policies and practices to make societies more inclusive.

Skip to 0 minutes and 50 seconds This course will give you a taste of the approach to disability adopted by the University’s Disability Studies Online Master’s and prepare you to start creating a fairer and more inclusive future. If you want to learn how to build a more equitable and just society, join this course today.

What topics will you cover?

The social model of disability;

The social creation of disability that have transformed attitudes and approaches to disability;

The historical development and the present-day implications and impact of the social model of disability to consider what a transformative inclusive society could look like;

Week 1: the social model of disability, its historical roots, how it is being used and its implications;

Week 2: the effect of the social model on people, personally and collectively, on policy and professional practice and its wider implications for society.

When would you like to start?

Start straight away and join a global classroom of learners. If the course hasn’t started yet you’ll see the future date listed below.

  • Available now

Learning on this course

On every step of the course you can meet other learners, share your ideas and join in with active discussions in the comments.

What will you achieve?

By the end of the course, you‘ll be able to...

  • Describe how disability is shaped by social and cultural contexts.
  • Explain the main principles of the social model of disability and its implications.
  • Explore the disruptive and transformative nature of the social model.
  • Investigate the contribution and influence of the disabled people’s movement in establishing the social model
  • Reflect on how the application of social model ideas and approaches can shape policy and practice.

Who is the course for?

This course is designed for anyone interested in furthering their knowledge of disability and how the social model has affected the experiences of disabled people and society as a whole.

You may be considering studying disability studies at postgraduate level or work with disabled communities in professional or advocacy contexts. Whatever your background, this course will give you a taste of the approach to disability adopted by the University’s Disability Studies online masters.

Completing this course can help improve your university application by broadening your understanding of disability studies.

Who will you learn with?

I am a Disability Studies academic at the University of Leeds and a member of its Centre for Disability Studies. Much of my work looks at the role of professions in the lives of disabled people.

Who developed the course?

University of Leeds

As one of the UK’s largest research-based universities, the University of Leeds is a member of the prestigious Russell Group and a centre of excellence for teaching.

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Ways to learn

Choose the best way to learn for you!

Subscribe & save

$244.99 for one whole year

Automatically renews

Develop skills to further your career

  • Access to this course
  • Access to 1,000+ courses
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Digital certificate when you're eligible

Cancel for free anytime

Buy this course

$109/one-off payment

Fulfill your current learning need

  • Access to this course
  • Learn at your own pace
  • Discuss your learning in comments
  • Printed and digital certificate when you’re eligible

Limited access

Free

Sample the course materials

  • Access expires 15 Mar 2024

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 4 March 2024 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

Find out more about certificates, Unlimited or buying a course (Upgrades)

Sale price available until 4 March 2024 at 23:59 (UTC). T&Cs apply.

Learning on FutureLearn

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  • Learn through a mix of bite-sized videos, long- and short-form articles, audio, and practical activities
  • Stay motivated by using the Progress page to keep track of your step completion and assessment scores

Join a global classroom

  • Experience the power of social learning, and get inspired by an international network of learners
  • Share ideas with your peers and course educators on every step of the course
  • Join the conversation by reading, @ing, liking, bookmarking, and replying to comments from others

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  • Whenever you’re ready, mark each step as complete, you’re in control
  • Complete 90% of course steps and all of the assessments to earn your certificate

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