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Social Service Worker | Certificate


In 2021/2022 sections may offered in-person or via Distributed Learning. Learn more about Distributed Learning at CMTN. Individual sections may vary, please contact if you have any questions.

Do you wish to become a skilled social services practitioner, helping and supporting people with different needs? 

The Social Service Worker (SSW) program integrates university credit courses with social service career courses, and combines classroom theory with the practical skills necessary for employment in a broad range of social services occupations.

Practicum opportunities available in Northwest communities allow you to practice what you learn in workplace settings and gain valuable practical experience. SSW Certificate graduates are prepared to work at the para-professional level or to continue their education to diploma and degree levels of education. SSW Diploma program graduates can either work at the para-professional level or continue their education to a degree.


Apply to CMTN

Visit Apply to CMTN for an Admissions Checklist and to apply online.

Our Educational Advisors are here to help if you have any questions or need guidance along the way.

Dates and locations

Intake Location
Full-time studies September 2022 Terrace Campus
Part-time studies available September 2021 Terrace Campus

Program length

  • Full-time students starting in September can complete the certificate in 1 year
  • For part-time studies please contact Marja Burrows, the program coordinator

Speak with an Educational Advisor or Marja Burrows, the Program Coordinator, for assistance with course selection.


Faculty Member Campus Location
Marja Burrows Terrace
Christopher Gee Terrace
Jacqui Tucker Terrace

The Social Service Worker (SSW) program is offered on a full- and part-time basis. Students must maintain an average GPA of 2.0 to receive the credential.

SSW certificate

The one-year SSW Certificate includes two semesters plus a practicum. 

LPAT 100Learning Pathways1
ENGL 101University Writing3
CPSC 111Introduction to Computer Science3
SSW 112Interpersonal Communication3
SSW 191Introduction to Social Service Agencies3
PSYC 101Introductory Psychology I3
SOCI 101Introductory Sociology I3
ANTH 112First Nations of B.C.3
SSW 113Helping Skills3
SSW 192Introduction to Social Service Practice3
PSYC 102Introductory Psychology II3
SOCI 102Introductory Sociology II3
SSW 197Social Service Wkr Pract I3
Total Credits37
  1. Apply direct to Social Service Worker (SSW)
  2. Submit proof of English 12 or equivalent
  3. Once admitted, register in the courses required for the SSW program

Certificate program prerequisites include:

Admission to this program is on a course-by-course basis.  Applicants to this program must meet the prerequisites for the individual courses in which they wish to enroll.  

Course prerequisites include:

  • Math 11
  • English Studies 12 , English First Peoples 12 or equivalent

The prerequisites for individual courses are outlined in the course descriptions. Students missing prerequisites may enrol in Career & College Preparation (CCP) upgrading courses while completing the program.

English proficiency is required for all students entering CMTN programs.  Please visit our English Language Alternatives page to see how this requirement can be met.  All students admitted to the SSW program will be required to take the CAT 3 English Assessment test. 

Note:  Grade 12 high school graduation is recommended.

Note:  Applicants planning to apply to a School of Social Work (e.g. UNBC or UVic) or Child and Youth Care should consult with the institute in order to take the appropriate university credit electives.

Additional certificate requirements

  • A work/volunteer experience résumé and a written statement describing career goals, special interests and reasons for seeking entrance to the program
  • Two reference forms from an employer, volunteer supervisor, teacher or human service professional, attesting to the applicant's personal suitability for work in human services
  • Documentation of a minimum of 45 hours of satisfactory work or volunteer experience in a human service agency related to the training program within the last three years
  • Completion of a Criminal Record Check (CRC) is required before the practicum placement.  The presence of certain crimes on the record will prevent practicum placement, graduation and subsequent employment.  Note that CRC’s may take up to eight weeks

SSW year one

Fees Domestic International
Full Time: 37 Credits 37 Credits
Tuition: $3,656.71 $15,542.59
Student Union Fees: $125.97 $125.97
Extended Health and Dental*: $250.00 $548.75
Mandatory Fees: $279.72 $327.36
Tuition Total: $4,312.40 $16,544.67
Additional Costs:
$2,000.00 $2,000.00
$250.00 $250.00
$250.00 $250.00
Total Program Cost: $6,812.40 $19,044.67

 Fees are effective as of August 1, 2021 for the 2021/22 academic year.


Please note that these are approximate costs and may vary depending on courses taken and location of practicum.

The Coast Mountain Students Union (CMSU) is pleased to announce that Extended Health and Dental Insurance has been approved by student referendum held in March 2021. Additional information will be provided by CMSU July 2021, including details of the coverage and directions for the opt out process for students with equivalent coverage. For any inquiries about the plan or referendum, please contact Golnoosh Namazi,

Basic Health insurance is mandatory for all international students. Health insurance costs will be charged every term until students provide proof of MSP.

Career opportunities 

Opportunities for graduates from this program include:

  • Child and Youth Workers
  • Financial Assistance Workers
  • Teacher Assistants
  • Support Workers
  • Family Resource Workers
  • And much more

Diploma graduates may continue their education to further a professional career in human and social services, including:

  • Social Worker
  • Family Counsellor
  • Probation Officer
  • Corrections Officer
  • College Counsellor
  • And any other professional position in the human service field

All successfully completed university credit courses in the program are transferable.

Under the collaborative agreement between UNBC and CMTN, students who complete the Social Service Worker Diploma program are eligible to receive credit as determined under the agreement. UNBC's Bachelor of Social Work Degree can be obtained at UNBC's Terrace Campus. The University of Victoria awards, on an individual basis, additional transfer credits for a SSW diploma or certificate.