Social Service Worker

The Social Service Worker program at Algonquin College prepares students to work effectively with disadvantaged individuals, groups and communities in a variety of social service settings.


Mobile DeviceBring Your Own Device (BYOD): As a student in this on-campus program, you will require a mobile computing device that meets the specifications outlined by your program at

(Please note this was previously referred to as a Mobile Learning Program)

Another Mobile Device ImageeTextbooks: As a student in a program that has adopted etextbooks, your required texts and digital resources will be provided to you at the beginning of each term (with the exception of general education electives). For more information and associated fees, go to

Ontario College Diploma
2 Years

Program Code: 0432X01FWO
Academic Year: 2014/2015

Our Program

This two-year Ontario College Diploma program prepares students to work effectively with disadvantaged individuals, groups and committees. The program consists of four levels where learning occurs in both the classroom and practical settings. The curriculum includes courses in social work methods, social welfare systems, addictions, community development and the humanities. In order to gain exposure to working with a wide range of client groups, students are required to complete field placements in Levels 02, 03 and 04.

Bring Your Own Device (BYOD): Students are expected to have and use a laptop or mobile computing device when registered in this on-campus program. Hardware and software specifications required by your program are outlined at Mobile devices/laptops and supplies can be purchased directly from Algonquin's New Technology Store at educational rates.


This program is well-suited for students who:

Police Records Check Documentation:

Successful completion of field placement is a requirement for graduation from the Social Service Worker program. Agencies that provide placement opportunities require you to have a clear Police Records Check for Service with the Vulnerable Sector (PRCSVS). Your acceptance for placement is at the discretion of the agency. If you do not have a clear PRCSVS you will need to meet with the chair of the program. If you register in the program without a clear PRCSVS and as a result are unable to participate in placement, you will not be able to graduate.

Students are required to complete field placement within levels two, three and four to meet program requirements. A criminal record does not preclude placement, but agencies have the right to deny placement, and to be informed of the contents of the criminal record.

Field Placement Eligibility:

To be eligible for placement, you must submit proof of a PRCSVS, which will be retained on your departmental file and used only for purposes related to your placement. You will be required to disclose the contents of the PRCSVS, including all notations, to the placement agencies.

It is your responsibility to obtain the PRCSVS from your local Police Department prior to the the first day of class and to pay any associated costs. It may take anywhere from six weeks to three months to obtain this documentation. Apply for the PRCSVS between May and July - it is due by the first day of classes.

All second year students are responsible to renew their PVCSVS so that it is valid until the end of May, and provide proof that immunizations are up to date. Any second year student not providing the required documentation will not go out to placement and as a result may risk failing the co-requisite courses, field placement and seminar. Should you require further information, contact the Program Chair.

Application Information

Applications to full-time day programs must be submitted with official transcripts showing completion of the academic admission requirements through:
60 Corporate Court
Guelph, Ontario N1G 5J3

Students currently enrolled in an Ontario secondary school should contact their Guidance Office to apply. For all other applicants, applications are available online at A $95 fee applies.

Applications for Fall Term, Winter Term and Spring Term admission received by February 1 will be given equal consideration. Applications received after February 1 will be processed on a first-come, first-served basis as long as places are available.

International applicants applying from out-of-country can obtain the International Student Application Form at

or by contacting the Registrar's Office.

For further information on the admissions process, contact:

Registrar's Office
Algonquin College
1385 Woodroffe Ave, Room C150
Ottawa, ON K2G 1V8
Telephone: 613-727-0002
Toll-free: 1-800-565-4723
TTY: 613-727-7766
Fax: 613-727-7632

Additional Information

This Full-time day program is also offered on the Pembroke and Perth Campuses. While the learning outcomes at the Woodroffe, Pembroke and Perth Campuses are the same, the curriculum order and subject delivery are reflective of the local circumstances which affect program delivery.

There is also an Intensive offering delivered at the Woodroffe Campus. This latter program is for individuals who have completed a university degree or diploma (from an Ontario College of Applied Arts and Technology) in the humanities. University degrees outside of the humanities may be considered on an individual basis. The College also offers the two-year Social Service Worker program on a part-time basis at the Woodroffe Campus.

"Social Service Worker" is a registered professional title which may only be used by members in good standing of the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers (OCSWSSW). This relates to Ontario legislation entitled "The Social Work and Social Service Worker Act". Graduates of the Social Service Worker program are required by law to join the OCSWSSW after graduation in order to use this professional title. The OCSWSSW grants or denies membership. See for more information.

Students are required to have access to a computer. Applicants are encouraged to have basic word processing, power point and Internet skills.

NOTE: The program has a heavy workload. Students need to be prepared to make a full-time commitment to their studies and field placement in order to be successful.

SSW students are expected to attend all classes. Anyone who is unable to make this commitment should consider the Part-time offering where courses are offered in the evenings. There is no flexibility in the assigned timetable.

Courses are delivered in a variety of formats including face-to-face in a classroom and hybrid (combination of classroom and online learning). Students participate in both types of learning.

This profession requires mature, flexible workers who commit to personal wellness and self-care. Students are expected to develop personal awareness concerning their biases and current social and political issues.

ACADEMIC PROBATION Students who have two or more F grades in a given term or whose term grade point average falls below 1.7 (D+) are considered to be on academic probation (Directive AA14 Grading System). This requires the student to meet with their academic advisor or coordinator to sign a learning contract which identifies the conditions which must be met to continue in the program. Students who do not meet the terms of their learning contract will be withdrawn from the program.

For additional information, contact the School of Health and Community Studies at 613-727-4723 ext. 7776.

Every attempt is made to ensure the accuracy of the information in this publication. The College reserves the right to modify or cancel any course, program, fee, timetable, or campus location at any time