Social Intervention and Disability
Cod: 41112
Department: DCSG
Scientific area: Social Politics
Total working hours: 156
Total contact time: 15

The curricular unit provides the mastery of the concept of disability and international conventions, recommendations and international instruments on disability, international policies on the subject, with special focus on those of European scope and Portuguese social policies for people with disabilities. It also examines social, cultural and economic factors that lead to the social construction of disability. It also provides theoretical and methodological knowledge of social intervention inherent in the social responses aimed at these people, highlighting the inclusive and preventive perspectives and the human life cycle. Thus, it enables students to develop professional and scientific activity in this field, enabling them to actively participate in the definition of policies and strategies, planning and intervention in this area. Considering the complexity of this type of intervention, special importance is given to teamwork, subjective experience and narratives of people with disabilities through reflection with practical cases.

Social Intervention
Social construction of disability

It is intended that at the end of this course, the student has acquired the following skills:
•    Empower to grasp the concepts of disability and international conventions and international and national disability policies and strategies.
•    Ability to analyze the social, cultural and economic factors that lead to the social construction of disability.
•    Acquisition of theoretical and methodological knowledge of social intervention inherent in the design and implementation of social responses for people with disabilities.
•    Technical-professional and scientific capacity for professional practice in the field of social responses for people with disabilities.


In this course the following themes will be worked:
•    Historical and theoretical-conceptual framework (models) on disability
•    Types of disabilities and International Classification of Functionality
•    International conventions and international strategies
•    Disability in Portugal: state of the art
•    Legal framework, policies and social responses for rehabilitation and social integration
•    Disability intervention (Prevention, early diagnosis and health care and Inclusion of people with disabilities throughout the life cycle)
•    Access and participation in life in society critical view of disability intervention


Fontes, F. (2009)  Pessoas com deficiência e políticas sociais em Portugal: Da caridade à cidadania social, Revista Crítica de Ciências Sociais [Online], 86 | 2009, colocado online no dia 01 Dezembro 2012, criado a 01 Outubro 2016. URL : ; DOI : 10.4000/rccs.233
Gabinete de Estratégia e Planeamento do Ministério do Trabalho, Solidariedade e Segurança Social (GEP/MTSSS) (2016), Estatísticas sobre  deficiências e incapacidades, in
Instituto Nacional para a Reabilitação, I.P. (INR, I.P.)  (2014). Relatório Final de Execução da Estratégia Nacional para a Deficiência – ENDEF,  Unidade de Investigação, Formação e Desenvolvimento
Louro, Cristina; Gronita, Joaquim [Coord.] (2022). Intervenção social e deficiência. Lisboa: Universidade Aberta. [Manual da Unidade Curricular].
Organização Mundial de Saúde (2004). Classificação Internacional de Funcionalidade, Lisboa: Direção-Geral da Saúde.
Organização Mundial de Saúde (2011). Relatório mundial sobre a deficiência. São Paulo: Governo do Estado de São Paulo.
 Organização das Nações Unidas (2006), Convenção sobre os direitos das pessoas com deficiência, NY: ONU.
Pinto, P., Pinto, T., & Teixeira, D. (2014), Relatório sobre Portugal para o estudo sobre políticas dos Estados-Membros relativas a crianças com deficiência. Bruxelas: Parlamento Europeu. Retirado de:íticas-de-portugal-relativas-a-crianças-com-deficiência
Pinto, P. Teixeira, D.  (2012). Avaliação do impacto dos planos de austeridade dos governos europeus nos direitos das pessoas com deficiência. Observatório dos direitos humanos e da deficiência, ISCSP Universidade de Lisboa.
Pinto, P.  (2014). O Envelhecimento das Pessoas com Deficiência: Problemáticas e Perspetivas na óptica do Serviço Social, publicado Carvalho, Maria Irene (coord) Serviço Social e envelhecimento, Cap. 8 , pp123-136
Sousa, J. (Coord) (2007) Mais Qualidade de Vida para as Pessoas com Deficiências e Incapacidades – Uma Estratégia para Portugal, Gaia, Centro de Reabilitação Profissional de Gaia e ISCTE.
Weber, P. (2011). Dinâmicas e práticas do trabalhador social. Porto: Porto editora.

During the lectures will be indicated several authors, magazines, articles, specific links to the theme of Intervention in Disability of compulsory reading.


Continuous assessment is privileged: 2 or 3 digital written documents (e-folios) during the semester (40%) and a presence-based final exam (p-folio) in the end of the semester (60%). In due time, students can alternatively choose to perform one final presence-based exam (100%).