Program Description

Designed to meet the needs of those who wish to pursue a career as a Social Service Worker (SSW) or who are already working in the field and wish to upgrade their qualifications.

The provincially-approved curriculum has been created to develop the aptitudes, knowledge and skills an SSW needs to support individuals and families working through various types of challenges and help them enjoy more stable and fulfilling lives. Through a carefully designed program of studies that combines theory and hands-on practice in community based field placements, candidates prepare for their careers by applying their skills in a variety of competencies such as advocacy, crisis intervention, documentation, counseling and case management. You will address the challenges and limitations of individuals, groups, families and communities in real life situations.

This program is also offered through Full Time Studies. The part-time format enables students to learn while continuing with current full-time employment and/or personal responsibilities.

Continuing Education students usually complete this program in three to four years.

Courses in this program cost approximately $100 to $690 each. Textbooks are extra.

Potential and in-progress students must be aware that most agencies accepting clinical/placement students require you to be fully vaccinated with Health Canada approved vaccines. If you are not fully immunized, it may have a significant impact on your ability to participate in clinical/field placement.

Additional Details

Admission and Registration

You must apply, and be accepted, to this program prior to registering for courses.

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Intakes are available in the Fall (September), Winter (January), and Spring (May).

You must submit an Official Grade 12 transcript showing Ontario Secondary School Diploma or equivalent (GED, College and Career Preparation) including Grade 12 English, C or U or equivalent (70% guideline).

All applicants who do not meet or are missing the academic eligibility requirements for this program may take a pre-admission test. The pre-admission test is done on a referral-basis only. You need to indicate on your application that you require a pre-admission test, included your date of birth, and our admissions secretary will send a referral to the testing centre for you and let you know your next steps once a referral has been made. Please do not indicate that you require a pre-admission test if you plan on submitting an original transcript.

All applicants submitting prior academic history completed outside of Canada must provide confirmation of equivalence to an Ontario Secondary Diploma. This can be coordinated through any of the following:

Applicants should note that some employment opportunities require that certain physical standards must be met as a condition of employment

Recommended Requirements

  • Volunteer experience in a community or social services setting is strongly recommended
  • Excellent oral and written communication skills.

If you struggle with communications or your first language is not English, you are encouraged to explore upgrading options available through our Applied Communications Centre. You are also encouraged to take COMM11040 instead of COMLL041 for added understanding and support. Both meet the graduating requirements of the Program of Studies

  • Computer Skills (e.g. word processing, data management, internet access).

Students should be familiar with computers, word processing, and email based systems prior to considering this blended program (a mix of online and in class learning). To upgrade computer skills, consider a CE introductory 'Computer Basics' course or a Learning Support Centre workshop before applying.

Financial Assistance

green checkmark OSAP funding may be available. Learn more about Financial Assistance Options for Continuing Education Students.

Learning Outcomes

Program learning outcomes outline what graduates need to know, and be able to do, after they complete a program.

Review the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) program learning outcomes.


Academic Opportunities

View the Educational Pathways.

Career Opportunities

View future career options and industries of employment.

For details on related occupations, job market information and career opportunities, visit the Government of Canada Job Bank (opens in new window).

Next Steps

Wait for your application to be approved. Once approved, you can select and register for your courses.

Field Placement / Clinical

Field Placement Requirements

  • Formal Police Clearance / Vulnerable Sector Screening (opens in new window) - Registered students who have been convicted of an offence under the Criminal Code for which they have not been pardoned may be denied the opportunity to enter field placement.
  • Communicable Disease Screening - Some placement agencies require that candidates undergo some disease screening such as tuberculosis testing.

Additional Information

Frequently Asked Questions

College Resources

Program Contact

Continuing Education
Health, Nursing and Community Studies
Email Us

Completion Requirement

29 Course(s)

Professional sitting with client


This program of studies applies to students starting the program in the current academic year. Students who began in other academic years may require different courses to be eligible to graduate. If you have questions regarding a strategy for completion email the Program Contact listed at the bottom of this page.

Click on the course names to view current availability.

A selection of courses will be offered each term. Visit our course schedule page for a tentative list of future offerings.

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