Community Support Worker – Social Services Program

Change lives and make a difference with our Community Support Worker – Social Services program

A Community Support Worker administers and implements a variety of social assistance programs and community services including life skills workshops, substance abuse treatment programs, support programs, and more.

A career in this field involves working with vulnerable groups including homeless persons, children with special needs, Indigenous peoples, pregnant teenagers, and people with substance abuse problems and addictions.

Our Community Support Worker – Social Services diploma program equips students with the skills and competence needed for a challenging but rewarding career in this field.

Graduates will be trained to help clients manage personal and social complications through one-on-one and group support. Graduates will also be trained to evaluate the effectiveness of treatment programs by tracking clients’ behavioural changes and responses to interventions.

This Community Support Worker program includes two practicum placements so students can gain relevant work experience before graduation.

Demand for Community Support Worker

The demand for community support workers is very high. The increasing population of vulnerable groups in BC will require more workers in this field. Growth is also expected in the areas of First Nations outreach and community development, especially for youth and in rehabilitation.

Why Study at Sprott Shaw?

  • Lifetime access to dedicated Employment Services Specialists (ESS) who can help you with resume and cover letter writing, interview skills, and the overall job search after graduation
  • Lifetime tuition-free access to course refreshers if you ever need to retrain and update your skills
  • Certificates including Nonviolent Crisis Intervention (NVCI), FoodSafe Level 1, and Standard First Aid with CPR-C/AED
  • Practicum opportunities with recognized organizations across BC including the Canadian Mental Health Association, Salvation Army, Positive Living Society BC, YMCA, posAbilities Association of BC, Hope for Freedom Society, Union Gospel Mission, John Howard Society, and more
  • Multiple start dates so you can start your education when you want to without the wait
  • Career and professional development success courses to help create a career development marketing plan, learn the cardinal rules of professionalism, and identify the target markets and employment resources for the community support field  
  • Preparation and orientation courses to teach you how to find credible research, write papers, create proper citation formats including APA, and study effectively for exams
  • All-inclusive program costs where what you see is what you pay. Our costs include registration fees, assessment fees, tuition, textbooks, supplies, course materials, graduation fees, practicum fees, and much more

Community Support Worker Program 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

Where Do Our Graduates Work?

Community support workers are employed by social service agencies, government agencies, group homes, correctional facilities, and other establishments.

Graduates of our program may also work in schools as paraprofessional educators, helping children with special needs alongside occupational therapists or providing respite care for families with children of special needs. This work is done under the supervision of a social worker or health care professional.

Related Programs:

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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Our advisors are happy to answer any questions.

Career Opportunities

Community Support Worker
Day Care Assistant
Developmental Disabilities
Residential Support Worker
Admission Requirements:
Prior to Acceptance:
  • Grade 12 / GED or mature student status (all transcripts must be “true certified copies” or originals).
  • Applicants must successfully complete the admissions interview and entrance assessments with a minimum score of 20/40 in the English Assessment.
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.
International Students:
  • International students can meet the English requirement by completing or demonstrating one of the following four options:
    • Sprott Shaw’s English Language Assessment, OR
    • Minimum IELTS Score 5.5 overall or iBT TOEFL Score of 70 or Equivalent Standardized External Assessment, OR
    • Completion of an ESL program from one of SSC’s partnered ESL schools, OR
    • International students that can provide a Canadian transcript (or evaluated credentials) 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.

Applicants must successfully complete an interview with the Director/Instructor.

Course 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), and 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 distributed equally over a four-week practicum placement.

Clinical placement sites are subject to availability (may be in various areas).

Practicum sites may require more current and/or additional CRC (for instance: RCMP) and TB testing (to be done at student’s expense).

Note that successful completion of any of EC100 individually or as part of a program will allow the student to apply for assistant status. Successful completion of EC100 includes attendance of a minimum of 90 instructional/classroom hours to be eligible for this certificate.

Students can expect to complete 1 – 3 hours of homework per

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.

Contact an Admissions Advisor for More Information Today!

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Our advisors are happy to answer any questions.

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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