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Community Service Worker (Gerontology) Program

Community Service Worker - Gerontology Program

LENGTH: 45 WEEKS | LOCATION: NORTH BAY CAMPUS or ONLINE | NEXT INTAKE: JUNE 2018 | FIELD-PLACEMENT: 336 HOURS

Overview

Be job-ready in 45 weeks with NETC's Community Service Worker Program.
The Community Service Worker – Gerontology program integrates the knowledge base, professional values and skill-sets of social service work with a specific concentration on the needs, challenges and concerns of Canada's aging population.
The program focuses on a holistic and strength-based approach to help aging clients maintain a good quality of life. As a student, you will have the opportunity to develop skills such as program planning; individual and group modes of facilitation; interventions with clients; interpersonal communication and skills related to basic counselling and Interviewing.

Field Placement

Students will participate in 336 hours of placement in mental health and gerontology settings. Field placement is a valuable opportunity to gain work experience while meeting the learning outcomes of the CSWG program. You will work in a professional capacity, with specified job responsibilities, record keeping evaluations, time management requirements, contracted hours of work, expectations of teamwork and appropriate interpersonal interaction. You will be evaluated on the basis of an approved three–part learning contract as agreed by you, the approved fieldwork agency and the NETC CSWG program.

Employment Opportunities After Graduation

Graduates may find employment in a variety of care settings including:

  • Adult program/recreation assistant
  • Case worker
  • Community outreach worker
  • Family resource worker
  • Hospice worker
  • Community service worker

Admissions

To be eligible for admission, you must possess the following:

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent OR;
  • Mature student status (19 years of age or older and without a high school diploma at the start of the program). Eligibility may be determined by academic achievement testing.

Prior to Placement

  • Current Standard First Aid and Basic Rescuer (Level C) CPR Certification
  • Negative Police Check, including vulnerable sector
  • Medical form from a Canadian licenced physician stating fitness to complete the practicum and absence of communicable diseases.

Financial Aid

Students looking to start training in this program have a number of options to finance their education. By exploring these options, students will be able to gain financial assistance and support as they are training for a career. Some financing options available to students include:

  • Ontario Student Assistance Program (OSAP) (if Applicable)
  • Ontario Second Career
  • Student Lines of Credit
  • Lifelong Learning Plan
  • RESP
  • Employment Ontario
  • Monthly Payment Plan

Financial assistance may be available for those who qualify. Please contact us for more details regarding Financial Assistance.

 Course Descriptions

Introduction to Community Services Worker

In this course students will be introduced to community service work and to the social work profession. It will explore the history of the profession as well as current trends. The course will also identify and examine current and emerging front line issues within various populations and “communities in need”. The course will focus on areas of community social work where community service graduates are employed and provide opportunities for students to hear directly from front line professionals.

Ethics & Professional in Clinical Practical for CSW

In this course, students will be introduced to the professional, ethical and legal issues facing the Community Services Workers. A process for ethical decision-making will be explored and this process will be applied to a wide variety of complex professional dilemmas.

Introduction to Sociology and Diversity Fundamentals

In this course students will learn that Sociology is the study of people and how they interact with each other and various social groups. Students will look at people’s lives, their relationship to society as a whole, and how people are affected by the society in which they live. Particular emphasis will be on the dynamics of Canadian society and Canadian social problems. Students will also develop a better understanding of the concerns and issues of culturally diverse clients and their communities.

Canadian Social Service System and Social Policy

In this course students will learn concepts that are the basis for CSW knowledge, attitude and skills. Students explore health services in Ontario, values, beliefs, culture, relevant legislation, ethics, work environments, client-centered care, care plans, reporting and recording observations, scope of practice, delegation and restorative care. The focus is on understanding the ethical and legal role of the CSW in the health-care team with an overview of the Canadian social welfare system. An array of current social issues will be addressed with an emphasis on the impact of relevant social policy along with the he various roles of different professionals and the interplay of the social welfare and other related systems.

Essentials of Abnormal Psychology and Pharmacology

In this course, students will be introduced to the field of mental health and the study of psychopathology. The course focuses upon the description, classification, evaluation and treatment of mental health disorders. In addition, students will study the use of a classification system and evaluate the concept of “abnormality”. Students will focus their additional learning on the topic of addictions including: science/biology of drug use; the difference between physical addition and psychological addiction; the psychology behind addiction.

Communication I – Interpersonal Communications

In this course, students study how to present ideas clearly, concisely and effectively. The course helps students perfect their oral skills so they can perform efficiently in both vocational and social situations. Human relations and interpersonal communications are stressed, and include a component on dealing with clients and professionals in the work setting. Interpersonal skills are emphasized including active listening, questioning, team building, conflict resolution, and learning styles. This course prepares students for field placements and clinical experiences while contributing to employability.

Crisis Intervention Strategies

This course examines crisis intervention theory and its application. The material builds on the student’s general knowledge of counseling and related issues and focuses on concepts central to crisis work. By way of introduction, students learn to distinguish between long-term counseling and crisis intervention. Following this, crisis related assessment techniques and relevant intervention strategies are studied. Potentially violent situations common to Social Service agencies are explored and the concept of professional burnout as a crisis issue is covered in some detail. In conclusion, the course examines various dispositional crises, ranging from suicide to sexual assault.

Basic Counselling and Interviewing Methods

In this course the student will be exposed to broad overview of counselling skills and theory that students can use to respond effectively and responsibly to client needs. Students will learn how to help clients make decisions about behavioral change. Additionally, this course will cover the importance of communication, how to understand and use the process of communication, and how to manage conflict. This course provides the students with an introduction to the basic theory and skills which are necessary for effective interviewing and counselling. A micro-skills approach to intentional counselling will be taken.

Field Placement: Preparation & Observation

This orientation will provide the student with the opportunity to observe CSW’s working in mental health and gerontology settings. It will allow students exposure to individuals working in these fields and increase awareness of the roles and responsibilities of a community services worker. Students will learn about the roles and responsibilities of community service workers, the various agencies and organizations in which they are employed, and the placement opportunities available that will help facilitate progression towards their professional goals and aspirations. Students will be introduced to placement search techniques, field placement learning objectives, roles of agency supervisors, and college advisors and also complete the necessary forms and paperwork required for field placement as well as participate in the selection process for field placement.

Community Mental Health Assessment & Crisis Intervention Skills

This course will allow students to acquire the practical knowledge and skills necessary to conduct mental health assessments. They will learn how to approach client assessments for different age groups. Explore relevant mental health legislation and diagnostic reference sources in order to provide a framework for the assessment process.

Community Mental Health Case Management

In this course, student will build upon knowledge and skills gained in The Essentials of Abnormal Psychology and Community Mental Health Assessment and Crisis Intervention. In this course students will learn about the areas of psychiatric disability both as a primary diagnosis and as a secondary diagnosis in the cases of those with a physical disability. Students become familiar with characteristics of psychiatric disability and the general management of the more common disorders. The role of the assistant is examined, with particular emphasis on the client-centered rehabilitation approach. Students also have exposure to methods of service provision in mental health practice. The Mental Health System is described and related issues are explored, giving a broad perspective on mental health/illness.

Field Placement: Mental Health Setting

This orientation in a mental health setting will provide the student with the opportunity to integrate Community Services Worker theory and techniques into practice with field placements. Students will interact with people with mental health issues, gain experience in working in the mental health services field and increase awareness of the roles and responsibilities of a community services worker in this area. It will focus on a meaningful interaction with people who have mental health issues and the development of strategies that will facilitate a good quality of life. The mental health environment will provide the student with an opportunity to observe and practice the competencies that are required in the role of a Community Support Worker.

Gerontology Foundations & Life Span Development

This course will allow students to gain an overview of the normal aging processes including the physical, cognitive, sensory, communication and psychological needs of older adults. Common pathological problems along with specialized needs in aging are highlighted. Knowledge of community resources and understanding the role of the service provider in promoting health and wellbeing among older adults are discussed.

Communication II: Strategies within a Multi-Disciplinary Team

In this course students will build on the skills and techniques learned in Interpersonal Communication Skills to develop communication skills necessary to function appropriately and professionally in the field as accurate recorders and as advocates. Students use available technology to research and prepare reports and presentations, both individually and collaboratively. The course will provide the opportunity for students to develop greater understanding of the dynamics of communication within the development of professional relationships. The course covers the theory and practice necessary for the planning and presentation of short, workplace-related reports, formal reports, and proposals.

Mental Health and Cognitive Aging

In this course, will build on skills and knowledge gained in The Essentials of Abnormal Psychology as well as Gerontology Foundations and Life Span Development. In this course the student will explore the changing face of mental health care in Canada and the evolution of care for those who suffer with cognitive impairment. The student will learn about challenges experienced by individuals and their families who are coping with cognitive impairments such as delirium, dementia and delusions and selected mental health challenges such as depression, suicide ideation, bipolar disorder, anxiety, obsessive-compulsive-disorders, schizophrenia and substance abuse. The student will explore strategies for communicating with and caring for individuals with these health issues using different models of care to manage the challenging behaviors in a safe and respectful way. Additionally, the student will become familiar with individual and community resources available to support the families and caregivers of those coping with cognitive impairment and/or mental health issues.

Activation and Programming for Older Adults

This course will build upon foundations skills and knowledge gained in Gerontology Foundations & Life Span Development and Mental Health & Cognitive aging. In this course you will learn that maintaining an active lifestyle as we age is an essential component in enhancing our quality of life. With a goal of maintaining overall wellness, the importance of the role of activation professionals will continue to grow as the Canadian baby boomer population increases. In this course you will learn to apply a holistic activation approach in programming of care and services, which incorporates knowledge of the various physical, mental and social effects of the normal aging process, which is designed to maintain overall wellness.

Group Methods including Gerontology

This course will build upon skills and knowledge gained in Social Services – Family and Group Dynamics, Interpersonal Communication, Basic Counselling and Interviewing Methods and Community Mental Health Case Management. In this course students will develop skills in the application of group work required for community service work practice. Students examine important aspects of group work, including organization of groups, group leadership, stages of group process, and group interventions. Students also learn how to develop a group program geared to the needs of their group participants. Student group simulation and participation in small groups provide opportunities to practice techniques and develop skills in facilitation.

Contemporary Social Issues in Gerontology

This course will build upon skills and knowledge gained in Ethics & Professionals in Clinical Practice, Introduction to Sociology and Diversity Fundamentals, and Canadian Social Service System and Social Policy. In this course students explore selected current topics of interest and relevance to Community Service Worker – Gerontology professionals. Students will learn evidence-based strategies for working with older adults and their caregivers in a variety of settings. Topics will vary depending upon current trends in the field. Student learning is supported through lectures, in-class experiential exercises/simulations and videos. This course will also introduce students to the helping process. Students will understand the concepts, theories and research that exist around interpersonal dynamics. Listening skills, non-verbal communication, self-awareness and issues of confidentiality will be covered. Students will become aware of and gain practice in various types of helping and will appreciate the value of helping.

Field Placement: Gerontology Setting

This orientation in a mental health setting will provide the student with the opportunity to integrate Community Services Worker theory and techniques into practice with field placements. Students will interact with people, gain experience in a Gerontology setting and increase awareness of the roles and responsibilities of a community services worker in this area. It will focus on a meaningful interaction with people in a long term care setting and the development of strategies that will facilitate a good quality of life. The long term care environment will provide the student with an opportunity to observe and practice the competencies that are required in the role of a Community Support Worker.

Community Service Worker Professional Development

This course will support the student in understanding the importance of taking care of oneself in order to be the most effective care giver to others. Students will examine their own social, emotional, mental and physical health and wellness. The topics discussed will include stress management, nutrition exercise, personal physical care, addictions, mental and emotional stresses and social supports. Students will have an opportunity to develop a wellness plan in order to be optimally prepared to move forward in the helping professions.