Social pedagogy

from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Social pedagogy names a branch of science from upbringing , education and welfare state intervention. In social pedagogy, attempts are made to strengthen a person's personal responsibility and thus their ability to deal independently with general life situations in society. Since the ability of a person to participate in social and public life is not developed in the same way in everyone, social pedagogy also deals with the possibility of reducing social disadvantages , which have this ability as their goal.

The subject of socio-educational work is socially and professionally considered relevant human "problem situations". These mainly include problems with the everyday coping with the life of children, young people, adolescents and adults, the "life practice" - the everyday "getting along and finding your way around". Social pedagogy looks at the individual in its interrelationship with the social environment. Social pedagogues speak of life situation in order to express the totality of person and social framework.


From the end of the 19th century onwards, almost until the founding of the technical colleges - that is, in 1971 - social pedagogy was exclusively a women's profession . The job title was the same in all federal states: It was “youth leader”. From the beginning, the training centers were called “youth leaders' seminars” and, since 1956, by resolution of the Conference of Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs, “higher technical school for female youth leaders”. On March 13, 1967, in a framework agreement, the ministers of education of the federal states renamed it “Higher Technical School for Social Pedagogy”. The training was also opened up to male students in pilot projects.

The term “youth leader”, which was characteristic of her profession for many generations of socio-educational specialists, is no longer mentioned. This job title seems to have disappeared without a trace.

The term “social pedagogy” was mentioned as early as 1844 in an article by Karl Mager in the Pedagogical Review .

Social pedagogy was also the name of a national journal published from 1959 to 1997 by Albrecht Müller-Schöll in Stuttgart as a diaconal publication.


As a result of the methodological criticism in the 1970s, a number of derived methods developed and internal differentiation increased. A mono-methodical approach is seldom found in professional practice; approaches that incorporate several of the three classic methods predominate.


Social workers and social pedagogues are often employed in the same fields of work. In fact, however, social education and social work differ both in terms of their historical development and in fundamental aspects. While social work mostly uses three classic methods in its training, social pedagogy uses the didactics of mediation and teaching. In the Federal Republic of Germany, the content of the training to become a qualified social pedagogue or qualified social worker falls within the legislative competence of the federal states and are therefore geared differently. In transnational working groups and at the conferences of the education ministers, however, models of uniform training courses and job titles that are based on international standards are discussed . More recent approaches use “ social work ” as a generic term for both, equally important areas of work and use “ social work sciences ” for the teaching and research subject of both.

In some federal states, social pedagogue used to be a synonym for educator .

Social pedagogy and social work are mainly studied at universities of applied sciences , universities or vocational academies . In the past, universities of applied sciences taught the disciplines separately or only one of the two. In some federal states one had to choose one of the two degrees during the main course , in others one received the double title "Dipl.-Sozialpädagoge / Sozialarbeiter". Many universities of applied sciences, which offered both courses, called themselves “University of Applied Sciences for Social Work” or “University of Applied Sciences for Social Work”. Since the Bologna reform at the latest , all universities have merged their courses and now uniformly refer to them as social work . After completing a degree in social work, one receives the title of " BA social worker / pedagogue " and after completing a master's degree " MA social worker / pedagogue ". Some universities also award the title of Master of Social Work in further education master’s courses . All previous diploma courses have been converted to the Bachelor and Master degrees.

Course content

  1. Theories and methods of social work (in the SA degree) and didactics and methodology of social pedagogy (in the SP degree) or theories and methodology of social work (in the social work degree)
  2. Educational science , pedagogy
  3. social cultural work ( aesthetic education , media education , theater education )
  4. Psychology , Sociology , Social Medicine (excerpts from each)
  5. Law , political science
  6. Curative education (also own course)
  7. Administration and organization
  8. Social management , project management
  9. Theology (at denominational universities of applied sciences), ethics
  10. intercultural pedagogy
  11. Company social work

Classic professional fields

Youth welfare
General social service , educational and family counseling, family work , educational support , social group work , educational support and care workers , social educational family help , upbringing in a day group , full-time care , home care and assisted living , intensive socio-educational individual care , child and youth work , early intervention , youth counseling , youth social Work , juvenile court , child and adolescent psychiatry, school-based youth social, Streetworking , pre-school education .
other areas of work
School social pedagogy and school social work , social services of the judiciary , child and youth health service, social services in workshops for disabled people, drug advice , work with migrants, work with asylum seekers and refugee aid , care for people with physical, mental or emotional disabilities, community work , circus education , adventure education as well as administration, research, training and teaching.

A university degree in social pedagogy entitles you to train as a child and adolescent psychotherapist after a phase of professional practice .

Caregivers as the forerunners of social workers


From the 1960s in the Federal Republic of Germany, the previous professional title of welfare worker was replaced; in the GDR it existed until reunification . The work of the welfare workers represented the tasks of the youth welfare office (and also the health office), at this time especially with the focus on the sovereign tasks of the "state guard office", as it was named in the Basic Law.

Social worker

Today the job title is social worker in the general social service (ASD) of the youth welfare office . The social work is based on the KJHG (Child and Youth Welfare Act) and the BGB (Civil Code), as well as criminal law and youth criminal law. The main areas of activity of social workers in the ASD are only briefly mentioned here: youth court assistance, parental custody in the event of separation and divorce, assistance (care) for multi-problem families, protection of the child's well-being and intervention in the event of threats to the child's well-being (removal) as well as the preparation of expert opinions for the family court and the Accompanying family court proceedings.

Professional requirements

Carrying out this activity requires a quick grasp of the situation, sound legal knowledge, crisis resistance, high psychological resilience and good ability to delegate. Because social workers in the ASD must be able to quickly recognize, classify (also legally) and understand situations as well as be able to stimulate help that is coordinated at most in the initial phase, but is then carried out by the help system used, whereby the (also criminal) responsibility for the Measures here lies entirely with the ASD social worker. He must check and act again if necessary. In addition, a good ability to cooperate with a wide variety of specialist disciplines (own professional group, police, court, doctors, psychologists, psychiatrists, lawyers, etc.) is required. An ASD social worker must not be anxious or unclear in type. Such work is not possible without a stable character, because as a rule he works alone in socially marginal areas and with corresponding families.


Up until 2007, social work and social pedagogy were always separate in training. There are now various forms of training and focus areas, which are often summarized under the title "Social Work". The training in social work includes both the area of ​​social work and social education, depending on the provider in combination or as a single focus (possible training centers: FH Wien Campus, FH St. Pölten Department Social). In the course of history, both professional groups have claimed certain areas for themselves and so i. d. Usually, for example, social pedagogues do not work at the youth welfare office and social workers do not work in the "inpatient youth welfare". In practice, however, there is a strong overlap in the fields of action.

The training courses for social workers are organized as courses at universities of applied sciences, such as the Salzburg University of Applied Sciences or the St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences. The training concludes with a bachelor's or master's degree .

The training as a qualified social pedagogue is organized as a five-year secondary training, as a university course or as a college (two years or - part-time - usually three years) and concludes with a professional qualification. The locations are Baden, St. Pölten, Stams, Linz, Graz, Salzburg and Vienna. These trainings are either publicly (free) or privately (with semester fee) and are given public rights through the Federal Ministry of Education and Women , after fulfilling state criteria . In Vienna, three private schools offer training as an extra-occupational college: Wiener ARGE für Sozialpädagogik, the Bildungsakademie, Institut Dr. Rampitsch. In Graz, a separate master’s degree is offered at the Karl-Franzens University. The St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences offers practical basic training in an extra occupational academic course in social pedagogy. A master’s course (Master of Arts) is also available as further training for social pedagogues.

Unlike in Germany , in Austria “social pedagogy” in the form of “ social learning ” is also practiced in schools and for every age group. Austria's school system is very different from the German one; it is mostly used with the inclusion of so-called autonomous and open learning .


  • L. Böhnisch: Pedagogical Sociology. An introduction . 2., revised. and exp. Edition Juventa, Weinheim 2003, ISBN 3-7799-0353-9 .
  • Andreas Cieslik-Eichert, Claus Jacket: Creative action in technical schools for social education . Bildungsverlag E1NS, 2nd edition (October 2005), ISBN 3-8237-3466-0 .
  • KA Geißler, M. Hege: Concepts of socio-educational action. A Guide to Social Professions . 11th edition Juventa, Weinheim, Munich 2007, ISBN 978-3407558565 .
  • A. Heimgartner, K. Lauermann (Ed.): Culture in social work . Mohorjeva, Klagenfurt 2006, ISBN 3-7086-0262-5 .
  • Paul Kaller (Hrsg.): Lexicon social work, social pedagogy, social law . UTB, Wiebelsheim 2001, ISBN 3-8252-2181-4 .
  • Norbert Kühne : Think about learning. . . The history of learning as a methodology in the daycare center, in: klein & Groß No. 11/2007, Oldenburg Schulbuchverlag, Munich , pp. 40–41; ISSN  0863-4386
  • Carsten Müller: Social pedagogy as education for democracy . Klinckhardt, Bad Heilbrunn 2005, ISBN 3-7815-1422-6 .
  • C. Niemeyer: Classics of social education. Introduction to the theoretical history of a science . 3rd, revised. Edition Juventa, Weinheim 2010, ISBN 978-3-7799-0358-1 .
  • Winfried Noack: Social Pedagogy. A textbook . Lambertus, Freiburg im Breisgau 2001, ISBN 3-7841-1335-4 .
  • Hermann Röhrs , Ed .: Social pedagogy and its theory. Selection of representative texts, pedagogy. Frankfurt 1968
  • Hans Thiersch: Lebensweltorientierte Social Work. Practical tasks in the face of social change . 9th edition. Beltz Juventa, Weinheim 2014, ISBN 978-3-7799-1298-9 .
  • Katrin Zimmermann-Kogel, Norbert Kühne: Practical Book Social Pedagogy - Working Materials and Methods . Volume 1 and 2, Bildungsverlag EINS, Troisdorf 2006, ISBN 3-427-75409-X .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Elke Ostbomk-Fischer. Cologne University of Applied Sciences, Faculty for Applied Social Sciences.
  2. Historical and current developments in social pedagogy. Women act - men write their story.
  3. Studies and further education> Social , website of the St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences, accessed on July 29, 2018
  4. ^ Academic course in social education , St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences, accessed on February 6, 2020
  5. Master's course in social pedagogy , St. Pölten University of Applied Sciences, accessed on February 6, 2020