Community Support Worker – Social Services Program

The growing need for assistance with pregnant teenagers, homeless persons, children with special needs, and those with substance abuse problems will maintain the need for these workers. Growth is also expected in the area of First Nations outreach and community development, especially for youth and in rehabilitation. Employment opportunities are much better for those who have appropriate post-secondary education.

Community and social service workers administer and implement a variety of social assistance programs and community services (life skills workshops, substance abuse treatment programs and other community and social service programs). They assist clients in dealing with personal and social problems. They are employed by social service and government agencies, group homes, correctional facilities and other establishments.

Community and social service workers may interview clients to obtain their case histories and other background information. They may prepare intake reports, assess their clients and investigate their eligibility for social benefits. If necessary, they will refer their clients to other social services. Later they meet again with their clients to assess their progress, give them support and discuss any difficulties or problems. Community and social service workers may work in schools as paraprofessionals assisting with children with special needs alongside occupational therapists or provide respite for families with children with special needs.

This work is done under the supervision of social workers or health care professionals. They also can assist in evaluating the effectiveness of these treatment programs by tracking clients’ behavioural changes and responses to interventions. Community and social service workers maintain contact with other social service agencies involved with their clients to provide information and to obtain feedback on clients’ overall progress.

Learning Objectives

Upon completion of this program, students will be able to:

  • Administer and implement social assistance programs and community services
  • Assist clients in dealing with personal and social problems
  • Interview clients to obtain case histories and background information
  • Prepare intake reports
  • Assess clients’ progress
  • Refer clients to other social services when necessary
  • Assist in evaluating the effectiveness of treatment programs
  • Maintain good working relationships with other social service
    agencies

This program includes two practicum placements. This experience within a workplace enables instructional staff to observe the student in a practice situation while providing the student with the opportunity to gain direct exposure to the chosen career field.

Diploma Program

Total Program Hours:
1040 Hours
Full-Time Program Length:
49 Weeks
(Includes holidays and professional days)
Program content is subject to change.

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Career Opportunities

Community Support Worker
Day Care Assistant
Developmental Disabilities
Residential Support Worker
Admission Requirements:
  • Grade 12 / GED or mature student status (all transcripts must be “true certified copies” or originals)
  • Applicants must successfully complete the admissions interview and may be required to do an entrance assessment with a minimum score of 20/40 in the English Assessment and a minimum score of 20/40 in the Math Assessment (with a minimum composite score of 42/80)
Domestic Students:
  • Domestic students that can provide a Canadian transcript showing completion of English 11 or 12 (or equivalent) with a passing grade of ‘C’, will be exempt from having to write the English Entrance Assessment
  • Domestic students that can provide a Canadian transcript showing completion of Math 10, 11 or 12 (or equivalent) with a passing grade of ‘C’, will be exempt from having to write the Math Entrance Assessment
International Students:
  • International students can meet the Math Entrance Assessment requirement by providing an equivalent to Canadian High School Math 10, 11 or 12 with a passing grade of ‘C’. The credential must be evaluated and verified.
  • International students can meet the English requirement by completing or demonstrating one of the following three options:
    • Sprott Shaw’s English Language Assessment, OR
    • Minimum IELTS Score 5.5 overall or iBT TOFEL Score of 70, OR
    • Completion of an ESL program from one of SSC’s partnered ESL school
Prerequisites:
  • Applicants for this program must also have excellent communication skills (composition)
  • Sign a criminal/medical waiver
  • Obtain a satisfactory certificate of health from a physician
  • Submit a criminal record check (must be Public Safety & Solicitor General Schedule B)
  • Provide evidence of clear TB testing prior to acceptance
  • (All must be done no more than three months before the start date of the program)
Diploma Requirements:
  • 70% average upon successful completion of all courses, including courses given a complete
  • CPR, First Aid, Crisis Prevention (CPI Certified) and FoodSafe will be completed during the program
Practicum Training Information:

Practicum may include any shifts other than day shift (i.e. evenings – 3 to 11 pm or nights – 11 pm to 7 am and possible weekends). Students are responsible for their own transportation to and from designated offsite training and practicum sites. Practicum training is conducted in shifts of a minimum of 5 hours per day for a total of 100 hours or 4 weeks. Placement sites are subject to availability. Practicum sites may require more current CRC and TB testing (to be done at student’s expense).

Note: Students have the option of taking two 100 hour practicums (CS500 and CS600) or one 200 hour practicum (CS700) to fulfill the program work experience hours.

* Community Support Worker – Social Services Program was reviewed and approved by the registrar of the Private Training Institutions Branch (PTIB) of the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills & Training.

Students can expect to complete one to three hours of homework per day.

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Courses List

This 49 week Diploma program requires the student to complete the following courses.

  • Adolescent development
  • At-risk youth issues

  • Role of special equipment classroom attendant
  • Structure of the educational system
  • Lesson plans, instructional aids
  • Classroom dynamics

  • Infection control
  • Feed, toilet and safely lift a child with a disability

  • Define abuse and intimate partner violence
  • Understand the cycle of abuse
  • Differentiate between the types of abuse through using the power and control wheel framework
  • Recognize risk and protective factors related to intimate partner violence

  • Social service systems
  • Child abuse

  • Describe counselling process
  • Theories of counselling
  • Affective, behavioural and cognitive strategies

  • Process of play therapy
  • Counselling special issues
  • Peer/family/education support strategies

  • Critical incident reporting
  • Etiological theories
  • Substance abuse treatment

  • Models of psychosocial rehabilitation
  • Supporting the family
  • Working with children & youth

  • Income security
  • Women's and Aboriginal services

  • Autism
  • ABC Model (antecedents, behavior, consequences)

  • Mental health/mental illness
  • Chronic pain/chronic illness
  • Involvement of family

  • Changes associated with ageing
  • Functional health
  • Social concerns/support systems

  • Cognitive issues
  • Personality and ego development theories
  • Work, leisure, and retirement issues

  • Empathy skills
  • Problem-solving approach
  • Crisis counseling

  • Stress management
  • Self-awareness
  • Assertiveness training

  • Family types and systems
  • Multicultural issues

  • The process of learning and maturation, child growth and development
  • Cultural, economic, and generational influences on development
  • Schedule B needed for child observations in childcare centres
  • See EC100 course outline for details on applying for ECE Assistant Certificate

  • Computer basics/file management
  • Goal setting, note-taking, problem-solving, teamwork
  • Overview of policies & procedures
  • Demonstrate the ability to use MS Word and MS PowerPoint

  • Interview techniques
  • Create a Career Development Marketing Plan
  • Apply aspects of professionalism
  • Identify target markets and employment resources
  • Specialty program coverage in this shortened version

  • 4-week practical experience

  • 4-week practical experience

Practicum - Child / Youth Care or Adult Care Services (Comp/Inc)

  • 8-week practical experience

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