Social Service Worker - 215

Ontario College Diploma
Address the challenges and limitations of individuals, groups, families and communities in real life situations.
Child and caregiver doing arts and crafts

This part-time Social Service Worker Program has been designed to meet the needs of those who wish to pursue a career as a Social Service Worker (SSW) or are already working in the field and wish to upgrade their qualifications.

This provincially-approved curriculum has been designed to develop the aptitudes, knowledge and skills SSW need to work with, and support individuals and families work through various types of challenges and 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

This program is equivalent to the two year, full-time SSW diploma program offered at Mohawk and other community colleges. The part-time, format enables students to learn while continuing with current full-time employment and/or personal responsibilities.

Program Contact
Continuing Education Community Services & Support

Admission Requirements:

  1. Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) OR equivalent (Mohawk Academic Upgrading, GED) OR Mature Student Status (19 years of age or older)
  • 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.
  1. Grade 12 English, C or U or equivalent – 70% guideline
  1. 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
    • Students who struggle with communication or whose first language is not English are encouraged to explore upgrading options available through our Applied Communications Centre
    • These students are also encouraged to take COMM11040 instead of COMMLL041 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 Workshop before applying.

Additional Requirements (for Field Placements only):

  • Formal Police Clearance (Vulnerable Sector Screening) - 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 placement.
  • Communicable Disease Screening - Students may be required to complete various Immunizations and Disease Screening protocols required by some field placement agencies

The part-time SSW program provides students the opportunity to achieve their SSW Diploma in as little as three years. By taking online courses as well as evening face-to-face courses, students can continue to balance personal and professional priorities while completing course work. Where a course is indicated as blended, the number of hours traditionally taught in-class will be reduced and supplemented with online learning expectations and activities. Learn more about blended learning (opens new window).

Registration for core courses in this program cannot be completed online. You must register in person, by mail, or by fax once your application for acceptance has been approved. Click here for more information.

Students may begin taking open courses prior to admission into the SSW Program. These open registrations courses, also know as service courses, are part of the program graduation requirements but are offered by other departments at Mohawk College. Please refer to the catalogue for more information on these courses.

Open registration/service courses include:

  • Communication - COMMLL041, or equivalent Communications D - COMM11040
  • Introductory Psychology - PSYCSS156
  • Psychology of Adjustment - PSYCSS233 or equivalent World of Abnormal Psychology - PSYCSS021
  • Sociology for SSWs - SSCI10047 or equivalent Sociology 1 - SSCISS108
  • 2 General education electives (OPEL XXXXXX)

Textbooks: For information on the textbooks needed for the upcoming term please visit our Textbook Search site.

Course Name

Course Number Hours Prerequisites Equivalent

Interviewing Skills





History & Ethics of Social Work





Intro to Social Service Worker




(HMNSS0126 and SSCISO122)

Community Awareness and Field Placement Preparation





Introduction to Group Dynamics





Sociology for Social Service Workers





Pick One
Communication D COMM11040


Communication COMMLL041


Mandatory Courses
Case Management and Documentation COMM10260


  (COMMSO233 and HMNSSO334)
Professional Development CREDSO123


SSW Advanced Interviewing Skills HMNSSO230


Privilege & Oppression HMNSS0232


Introductory Psychology PSYCSS156


Seminar 1 WORK10120


(HMNS10101 and COMMSO226) WORK10005 or (WORKSOA21 and WORKSOB21) or (WORK10597 and WORK10598)
Field Placement 1 WORK10121


(HMNS10101 and COMMSO226) WORK10005 or (WORKSOA21 and WORKSOB21)
General Education 1 Option Table OPELXXXXX


SSW Methods of Intervention HMNS10097


Advocacy for SSW HMNS10098


Working with Children & Adolescents HMNS10099


Psychology of Adjustment PSYCSS233


Seminar 2 WORK10122


WORK10005 or (WORKSOA21 and WORKSOB21) WORK10006 or (WORKSOC21 and WORKSOD21) or (WORK10599 and WORK10600)
Field Placement 2 WORK10123


WORK10005 or (WORKSOA21 and WORKSOB21) WORK10006 or (WORKSOC21 and WORKSOD21)
General Education 2 Option Table OPELXXXXZ


SSW Community Change HMNS10094


Issues Related to Family HMNS10096


Crisis Intervention HMNSS0231


Practice in Organizations HMNSS0434


Social Policy & Law LAWS10112


Seminar 3 WORK10124


WORK10006 or (WORKSOC21 and WORKSOD21) WORK10007 or (WORKSOF21 and WORKSOE21) or (WORK10601 and WORK10602)
Field Placement 3 WORK10125


WORK10006 or (WORKSOC21 and WORKSOD21) WORK10007 or (WORKSOF21 and WORKSOE21)

In Continuing Education, there are three semesters each year: fall, winter, and spring/summer. If a student is unable to complete the recommended courses per semester then they should still complete core courses in the suggested order.

Students are responsible for ensuring required prerequisites are completed prior to registering in subsequent courses.

As must as part-time studies enable students to work at their own pace, all students need to be aware that, as per the Program Promotion and Graduation Requirements policy, to be eligible for graduation, students are expected to demonstrate mastery of current competencies outlined in the Program of Studies applicable at the time of graduation. In cases where study has been interrupted or a Programs of Studies has been updated to reflect industry standards, the College may require a student to repeat a subject area.

    Learning Outcomes

    Program Learning Outcomes, often referred to as ‘Program Standards', set out the essential learning that a student must achieve before being deemed ready to graduate.

    In many cases these program learning outcomes were developed by the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities (MTCU) in consultation with employers and educators who are experts in the program field. To ensure the outcomes remain current and in line with industry needs, we invite our employers, graduates working in the field and current students to re-examine and update them during regular, ongoing program review focus groups.


      The Social Service Worker Diploma program can lead to exciting career opportunities!

      Industries of Employment

      • Community Agencies
      • Ontario Works and Ontario Government
      • Recovery Homes, Residential, and Community Mental Health Services
      • Addiction Services
      • Youth, Seniors and Women's Shelters

      Occupational Categories

      • Social Service Workers
      • Mental Health Workers
      • Case Managers
      • Employment Counsellors
      • Community Workers

      Graduates of the Social Service Worker Diploma program may also be interested in Degree Transfer or Post-Graduate opportunities! Click here to research these opportunities.