In partnership with the Ministry of the Attorney General, the Court Support Services program at Durham College was the first specialized court support training program to be offered in Ontario. Whether you are working in criminal, civil, youth, family or provincial offences court, court support services staff carry a lot of responsibility and play a critical role in the administration of justice. As an extension of the bench, courtroom clerks, registrars and court services officers must maintain and ensure proper decorum and integrity while providing high-quality professional customer service. You will gain practical skills and knowledge in all court business lines, including evidence recording skills as a court reporter and obtain a solid foundation in court support services that will prepare you for a career in many areas within the justice sector. The program is enhanced by faculty who share direct court support experience and expertise.
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To help students succeed in programs with remote learning requirements, Durham College’s IT Services department has identified minimum technology recommendations. While these are not program requirements, these suggestions will help ensure students have the right tools to support a quality remote learning experience.
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This program is designed to provide you with the many specialized knowledge and skills required to work in various court support staff capacities for the courts in Ontario focusing on the roles of the Courtroom Clerk/Registrar, Court Reporter and Court Services Officer positions, as well as in agencies, and in administrative positions within the justice sector.
In addition, it will enable you to gain the specialized evidence recording and skills required to work for organizations such as law firms and private court reporting agencies. You will also obtain a solid foundation that will help prepare you for work in many other areas within the justice sector.
You should possess excellent oral and written communication skills; have a high degree of responsibility, punctuality, maturity and conscientiousness; and have the ability to work independently with little supervision and as part of a team.
Prior to admission you should attend a courtroom setting to observe live court proceedings and the persons who work in the courtroom noting their various roles.
Please note: You are required to complete criminal record and judicial matters checks prior to entering into your second semester field placement.
The courses listed below are for incoming students. If you are a current student, please refer to your program of study for the year you began your program. Your program of study can be found on MyDC.
Courses and course descriptions are subject to change. Please note that as a result of COVID-19 the 2023-2024 program of study may be modified to accommodate program delivery changes.
Students get several opportunities to volunteer for experiential learning events which directly relate to learning and performing the duties of a court clerk/registrar in the field. The pictures below show two CTSS students who acted as court clerks during the mock trial for the Project Lord Ridgeback event. The students in the program also act as court registrars at the Durham Courthouse for the Paralegal program college and Ontario wide mock trials learning and working with real judges!
Your learning experience will be complemented by a field placement, which will provide the opportunity to integrate theory with practice under the supervision of an industry professional. Durham College’s Court Support Services certificate program was the first program in Ontario to focus on employment within court services as well as court-related positions in the justice sector. It distinguishes itself from other programs due to the field placement course which allows students to choose placement in specific court support positions.
The most significant part of the program is the field observations in first semester visiting many levels of court and the one-on-one shadowing component in second semester.
Project Lord Ridgeback (PLRB) is multi-disciplinary experiential learning exercise that simulates a local disaster. Interacting with actors who play victims, casualties, emotionally distressed persons and the elderly in a staged, choreographed event, students from a wide range of programs learn by acting and responding as they would in real emergencies. Subject matter experts design injects into disaster-related scenarios which simulate authentic workplace demands.
Following the mock disaster, students participate in follow up exercises to apply learning in mock court testimony, critical incident stress debrief, crime-scene lab work, and form completion specific to their program areas.
Student participants are from a wide range of DC programs including: Practical Nursing, Primary Care Paramedic, Police Foundations, Protection Security & Investigation, Paralegal, 911 Call Centre Communications, Advanced Law Enforcement and Investigations, Journalism Mass Media Program, Social Service Worker, Activation Co-ordination – Gerontology, Court Support Services.
Qualified graduates can go on to take:
Durham College also offers degree completion opportunities with a number of Canadian and international institutions.
Please visit our pathways page to learn more about how you can transfer your credits towards a degree.
To help students have the best remote learning experience possible, Durham College’s IT Services department has identified technology recommendations for each program based on course needs and software requirements. While not required, students may want to consider these suggestions if they are purchasing a computer or laptop for the upcoming academic year.
Storage: 256GB SSD
Operating System: Microsoft Windows 10 Professional or Education x64 SP1
Internet Browser: Internet Explorer 11 or Google Chrome (newest version) or Firefox (newest version)
Network Adapter: 802.11ac 2.4/5 GHz wireless adapter
Camera: Webcam/built-in camera
Questions regarding technology recommendations can be directed to the IT Service Desk or the school office.