Ontario College Diploma | 4 semesters | Barrydowne Campus

This two-year Social Services Worker - Indigenous Specialization diploma program will offer a culturally relevant, client-centered approach that provides Indigenous and non-Indigenous students with the opportunity to prepare for work in the human services field.  The Social Services Worker is a regulated profession, with standards of practice and established professional ethics regulated by the Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers.  Students will learn to demonstrate consistent ethical, legal, and professional responsibility and adherence to the social work values and principles.  The Indigenous specialization option will provide graduates with enhanced knowledge, skills, and the cultural competencies to work effectively within First Nations and with Indigenous populations.


Students who meet the requirements, will have the opportunity to complete community placements.  Students will be responsible for any expenses incurred related to placement, such as Paramed consultation, transportation, meals and accommodations.

Agencies will require students to have additional medical and non-medical documents prior to the start of any community based placement.  

Minimum required documentation includes:

  • Criminal Records Check - Vulnerable Sector Screening
  • Health documentation 
  • First Aid/CPR
  • Field certifications - Bill 18 requirements
  • Required documents will vary with agency requirements

Quick Links

How to Apply

Community Services

Admission Requirements

For graduates of the new curriculum (OSS): Ontario Secondary School Diploma (30 credits) or equivalent or mature student status, including:

  • Any grade 12 English (C) or (U)


  • Computer competency in relevant software

Additional Requirements

  • First Aid Certificate prior to field placement

  • Criminal record check completed at least one month prior to field placement.

  • Two-step TB test and flu shot (for some placements)


Program Delivery


This program will be delivered in the following terms:

Fall Term Start

  1. SEMESTER 1 Fall 2023
  2. SEMESTER 2 Winter 2024
  3. SEMESTER 3 Fall 2024
  4. SEMESTER 4 Winter 2025

For specific term start/end dates and other key dates/deadlines, please see the Academic Schedule on our website.

Program of Study for 2023-24 Academic Year 

Plan of Study Grid
Semester 1Credits
ENG 1002 College Communications 3
IND 1003 Introduction to Indigenous Studies 3
PSY 1003 Concurrent Disorders, Mental Health & Addictions 3
WES 1010 Professional Com/ Giigadowin I 3
WES 1111 SWPractice/Oshkaabewis I 4
WES 1002 Anishnabeg/Indigenous Social Services I 3
One General Education Course. 1 3
Semester 2
ENG 1242 Speaking/Writing Comm. Services I 3
WES 1003 Anishnabeg/Indigenous Family and Community Dynamics 3
WES 1211 SWPractice/Oshkaabewis II 4
WES 1241 Professional Com/Giigadowin II 3
WES 1295 Field Work I 2
One General Education course. 1 3
Semester 3
WES 1004 Anishnabeg/Indigenous Social Services II 3
WES 1063 Anishnabeg/Indigenous Social Work Practice III 4
WES 1251 Ethics 3
WES 2053 Community Development 3
WES 2320 Group Dynamics 3
One General Education course. 1 3
Semester 4
WES 2491 Field Work II 20
 Total Credits79

For more information regarding General Education courses, click here.


Tuition and Ancillary Fees

Please see our fees page for the breakdown of tuition and mandatory ancillary fees by program and semester for both domestic and international students.

Books & Supplies

The cost of books and supplies is under review for Year 1.  The information will be updated on the website upon further review of the program.

Graduate Options

Employment Opportunities

Graduates may seek employment for casework and counselling positions within:

  • Social agencies of the municipal, provincial, and federal governments
  • Urban Indigenous agencies
  • First Nation Communities
  • Childcare agencies
  • Non-government services and agencies
  • Charitable organizations
  • Group homes
  • Residential homes 
  • Half-way houses
  • Long term care and retirement homes
  • Employment
  • Homelessness/Poverty/Housing
  • Addiction and Mental Health Agencies
  • Child Welfare agencies 
  • Children, Youth and Families 

College/University Degree Opportunities

Graduates from this program may continue their studies at college/university and may receive credit for their prior College education.

Refer to College/University Agreements for further information.

Please note: Cambrian College strives to ensure the accuracy of the information on this website. Please note that the academic curriculum is continually reviewed and revised to ensure that Cambrian's programs and courses remain relevant. The College reserves the right to cancel or make changes to any course or program, fee, procedure, or campus location at any time.