Social Service Worker Make a difference! Channel your passion for helping others. Develop clinical skills. Advocate for human rights. Empower communities.

General information

Program code
4 Semesters (2 Years)
Ontario College Diploma
Academic area

Intake information

Start date Campus
Fall 2018 South Georgian Bay, Orillia
Winter 2019 Orillia

Program description

The program provides the opportunity to gain knowledge and skills required to effectively assume the role of a helping professional in the diverse and complex field of social services. Students are challenged to examine their beliefs and values; to develop interpersonal communication skills; and to promote values of social justice, human dignity, and equality.

The program philosophy is based on a fundamental belief in the dignity, worth and potential of all people, emphasizing knowledge and skill development in interviewing, communication, and relationship building; effective membership and leadership in groups; working with families; and utilizing evidence-based decision-making. Students practice the skills involved in case management, community development and advocacy. There will be opportunities to engage in the community through community service learning and field placement.

Admission information

Admission requirements

OSSD or equivalent with

  • Grade 12 English (C or U)

Admission details

You must meet ONE of the following requirements to be eligible for admission to these programs:

Secondary school applicants:

  • OSS curriculum: OSSD or equivalent, with Grade 12 English (C) or (U) (ENG4C, ENG4U)

Non-Secondary school applicants (19 years or older):

  • Any credit Communication course taken at Georgian College
  • College preparatory programs including those taken at Georgian College: Human Service Foundation, General Arts and Science*
  • Equivalent courses in English taken through secondary school or Independent Learning Centres (at the general, advanced, college or university level)
  • Academic and Career Entrance Certificate (ACE) program with communications
  • Mature student testing in English that meets the minimum standards for admission (available through most testing services)*
  • Ontario High School Equivalency Certificate (GED)
  • English, Literature or Communication credit courses from accredited colleges/universities

Home school applicants:

  • Applicants can write the mature student testing in English that meets the minimum standards for admission (available through testing services)*

* available from Georgian College. For a complete listing please contact the Office of the Registrar.

Reference check

Placement agencies require an up-to-date clear criminal reference check and vulnerable sector check prior to going out on placement. Students should obtain their criminal reference three months prior to placement; checks conducted earlier may not be considered current. As some jurisdictions require longer lead-time for processing, please check with the program coordinator to ensure you allow for sufficient turn-around time. It is the student's responsibility to provide the completed document prior to placement start.

NOTE: A record of criminal offences, for which a pardon has not been granted, may prevent students from completing their placements, thereby affecting their ability to graduate.


View the Social Service Worker articulations on the Credit Transfer Centre page.


Mandatory Courses

  • SSWK1000 Human Development Across the Lifespan
  • SSWK1001 Introduction to Social Service Work
  • SSWK1002 Family Sociology for Social Service Work
  • SSWK1003 Principles of a Helping Relationship
  • SSWK1006 Case Management
  • SSWK2000 Diversity and Multiculturalism in Canada
  • SSWK2006 Community Development: Advocacy for Social and Economic Justice
  • SSWK2007 Consolidating Techniques in the Helping Relationship
  • SSWK2009 Field Placement Seminar 1
  • SSWK2010 Field Placement Seminar 2
  • SSWK2005 Ethics, Professionallism, and Wellness in the Social Services
  • SSWK1010 Field Placement Preparation
  • SSWK1011 Group Facilitation and Dynamics
  • SSWK1012 Mental Health and Addictions in Social Service Work Practice
  • SSWK1013 Social Welfare and Political Ideologies
  • SSWK2013 Practical Techniques in the Helping Relationship
  • SSWK2014 Community Practice in Social Service Work

Communications Courses

To be selected at time of registration from the College list, as determined by testing.

Field Placements

  • SSWK1014 Introductory Field Placement
  • SSWK2015 Field Placement 1
  • SSWK2016 Field Placement 2

General Education Courses

To be selected from College list