The Social Service Worker program combines academic study with practical experience to provide graduates with the skills, knowledge and attitudes required to work in the diverse and complex field of community and social services. The program focuses on the development of front-line interviewing and counselling skills that will prepare students to work with individuals and groups in a variety of social service settings, including group homes, women’s shelters, addiction and mental health facilities, employment programs and services for seniors.
Please note: This program may be highly competitive and have a specific selection process and application deadline. Please refer to Admission Processes for details regarding highly competitive programs.
If you begin classes in January, you will complete semesters 1 and 2 (Year 1) from January to August and semesters 3 and 4 (Year 2) from January to August.
View full costs
View all courses
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.
View all recommendations
View all career options
This program combines classroom work with practical experience to provide you with the skills, knowledge and attitudes required to work in the diverse and complex field of community and social services. It focuses on the development of front-line interviewing and counselling skills that will enable you to work with individuals and groups in a variety of social service settings. In addition to theoretical models, methods and skills of social service work practice, you will receive extensive training in:
As a graduate of the Social Service Worker program, you will be eligible to register as a social service worker with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers.
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.
Your learning experience will be complemented by over 600 hours of field placement experience under the supervision of qualified professional practitioners in two different placement settings.
Please note: There are costs associated with Electronic Student Permit Checking (ESPC), immunizations, lab tests and certifications. Be sure to keep all of your receipts for income tax purposes. These costs include:
It is required that students have completed the ESPC with Verified to be eligible for the field placement component of this program. You must (at your expense) provide:
Qualified graduates can go on to take Durham College’s Addictions and Mental Health or Youth Justice and Interventions graduate certificate programs. Graduates are eligible for membership with the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW).
Durham College also offers degree completion opportunities with a number of Canadian and international institutions. Sample diploma-to-degree opportunities include:
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.