Program Overview

The Social Service Worker (Fast Track) is a 10-month Ontario College Diploma program for graduate students to start serving the community. You will build on your knowledge of human behaviour, social problems, and gain proven techniques to prepare you for social service work. Graduates will be prepared to work in community development, crisis intervention, and anti-violence, corrections, addictions and education settings.

Program Details

Program Code
Ontario College Diploma
40 weeks
Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2024 September
2023 September
2023 September
Start Dates

Full Time Offerings

2024 September
2023 September
2023 September

Your Learning Experience

The Social Service Worker (Fast Track) program provides an opportunity for university graduates (Psychology, Sociology or Social Work related) and community college Community Studies diploma graduates to complete the requirements for graduation from the Social Service Worker program in three levels.


Over 10-months, you will build a sound knowledge of human behaviour and psychology, individual and social problems, and learn proven techniques to prepare you for social service work in social agencies and social welfare programs. You’ll work with supportive, friendly and experienced faculty and advisors who are committed to help you succeed, and you’ll take part in role-plays, counseling labs and case studies, and take in presentations from professional social workers and clients. You’ll gain invaluable experience in a variety of field placements in London, with its extensive social service and health community resources. When you graduate, you will begin your career with the practical skills and hands-on experience required to be successful in this in-demand field. 

  • Graduates from the Social Service Worker program are eligible for admission to The Ontario College of Social Workers and Social Service Workers and must be members of this regulating body to use the professional title "Registered Social Service Worker".
  • Students who graduate from this program and wish to transfer to another Community Studies program at Fanshawe College, may qualify for some internal credits that have already been achieved.


Career Information

Graduates of Fanshawe’s Social Service Worker program have found employment in many settings from group homes and shelters to health care clinics and youth programs. as well as a wide variety of other social agencies and government departments. The search for social work positions is competitive and the graduate must be prepared to search diligently on his/her own behalf. Additional job search assistance is provided by the College's Career Services Department.


Did you know Fanshawe consistently ranks high in graduation employment rates among large colleges in Ontario? 

Here are some examples of career opportunities for graduates of Fanshawe’s Social Service Worker program:

Mental Health Worker
Provide short-term support to ensure the safety of individuals in need, encouraging empowerment and crisis resolution while maintaining a calm and respectful environment.

Respond to inquiries providing program information to a diverse clientele, the public, advocacy groups and agencies.

Youth Shelter Team Leader

Provide leadership while overseeing activities of the shelter, including case management, recruitment and selection, professional development and monthly statistical reporting.


Photo of Phillip Mock

I left the program feeling fully prepared to enter the field and, most importantly, confident that I was ready to best support the most vulnerable people in our community. I carry and constantly refer to the lessons I learned from my time at Fanshawe College in my everyday work.

Phillip Mock
Graduate, Social Service Worker (Fast Track)
Learning Outcomes

The graduate has reliably demonstrated the ability to:

  1. Develop respectful and collaborative professional and interpersonal relationships that adhere to professional, legal, and ethical standards aligned to social service work;
  2. Record information accurately and communicate effectively in written, digital, verbal and non-verbal ways, in adherence to privacy and freedom of information legislation, in accordance with professional and workplace standards;
  3. Integrate a practice framework within a service delivery continuum, addressing the needs of individuals, families and communities at micro, mezzo, macro and global levels, and work with them in achieving their goals;
  4. Plan and implement accessible and responsive programs and services, recognizing the diverse needs and experiences of individuals, groups, families and communities, and meeting these needs;
  5. Examine current social policy, relevant legislation, and political, social, historical, and/or economic systems and their impacts for individuals and communities when delivering services to the user/client;
  6. Develop strategies and approaches that support individual clients, groups, families and communities in building the capacity for self-advocacy, while affirming their dignity and self-worth;
  7. Work from an anti-oppressive, strengths-based practice, recognizing the capacity for resilience and growth of individuals and communities when responding to the diverse needs of marginalized or vulnerable populations to act as allies and advocates;
  8. Develop strategies and approaches to implement and maintain holistic self-care as a member of a human service profession;
  9. Work with individuals, groups, families and their communities to ensure that service provider strategies promote social and economic justice, and challenge patterns of oppression, discrimination and harassment, and sexual violence with clients, coworkers and communities;
  10. Develop the capacity to work with the Indigenous individual, families, groups and communities while respecting their inherent rights to self-determine, and to identify and address systemic barriers that produce ill-effects, developing appropriate responses using approaches such as trauma informed care practice.


Academic School

Program Coordinators:

London Campus:

Robert Owens


Admission Requirements


- An Ontario College Diploma from the School of Community Studies with a minimum 2.0 GPA from Fanshawe College

- A University Degree in Psychology, Sociology, or a related Social Sciences area

- An equivalent qualification from another institution as judged by the College

International Admission Equivalencies
Admission equivalencies for Fanshawe depends on your country of study. Please enter your location to see the requirements for your country below.
English Language Requirements

English Language Requirements

Test Score
IELTS Academic Overall score of 6.0 with no score less than 5.5 in any of the four bands
CAEL Overall score of 60 with no score less than 50 in any of the four bands. score of 80 in listening
PTE Academic 53
Cambridge English Overall score of 169 with no language skill less than 162
ESL4/GAP5 Minimum grade of 80% in Level 8, 75% in Level 9, or 70% in Level 10
Duolingo Overall score of 105, with no score lower than 95


Learn More about English Language Requirements

Applicant Selection Criteria

Applicant Selection Criteria

Where the number of eligible applicants exceeds the available spaces in the program, the Applicant Selection Criteria will be:
  1. Preference for Permanent Residents of Ontario
  2. Receipt of Application by February 1st (After this date, Fanshawe College will consider applicants on a first-come, first-served basis until the program is full)
  3. Achievement in the Admission Requirements
Post-Admission Requirements

Post-Admission Requirements

The following items are applicable to the program and are time sensitive.  Please refer to for important information about preparing for placement by the due date.

- Possession of a Standard First Aid course certificate (either St. John Ambulance or Canadian Red Cross or equivalent) and a Basic Rescuer course certificate (Level "C" CPR)

- Evidence of Good Health

- Police Record Check and Vulnerable Sector Screening, including a check of the Pardoned Sexual Offenders Database

- Placement Agreement

(London Campus)

Guide to Completing your Professional Practice Requirements

Pre-Placement Process

Professional Practice Health Form

Placement Agreement

(Simcoe/Norfolk Regional Campus)

Mandatory Requirements for Field Placement

Placement Agreement

Pre-Placement Health and Immunization Form

More Information

More info about post-admission requirements:

London Campus

Simcoe/Norfolk Regional


Level 2
Gen Ed - Take two 3 credit General Education elective
Take all of the following Mandatory Courses:

Group 1
SOCW-1044Community Resources2
This course will provide the student with an introduction to community resources and capacity building and apply that knowledge through a community mapping project. Students will learn about the diversity of resources that make up a community through exploration of; Individual Capacities/Assets, Local Associations & Organizations, and Local Institutions. Through the community mapping experience, students will be able to identify local resources & services, recognizing the strengths/assets, challenges/gaps and the impact on individuals, families, and neighbourhoods which they will present to their class bringing awareness of the resources throughout the London community. Students will also become familiar with the SSW Program Manual expectations & requirements through review of the SSW Program Manual.
BSCI-1248Group Dynamics3
Group Dynamics is designed as an experiential learning opportunity aimed at developing students' knowledge and understanding of human behaviours within groups, with a focus on the role of 'self' in group dynamics and processes. Students will learn and apply Prosocial Theory Core Design Principles to develop skills related to effective individual and group functioning in essential areas such as; communication, decision making, and conflict resolution.
SOCW-1055Community Development & Social Change 13
This course offers an overview of community development principles, processes and practices with an emphasis on experiences of community organizing in North America. Students will become acquainted with the effects of larger social forces on undertaking social justice work at the community level and be introduced to practical models for community empowerment and social change in relation to a variety of issues and contexts. Students will have the opportunity to experience community-based learning about effective participatory action research methods.
SOCW-1036Community Mental Health 13
This introductory course, will explore mental health social service work practice. Students will be introduced to mental health policy framework and mental health law in a Canadian context. Students will become knowledgeable about types of mental health problems, risk and protective factors, impacts and needs of clients, and options for evidence-based assessment and treatment. Students will learn foundational skills for writing a Social Work Assessment and Treatment Plan.
SOCW-3033Social Work With Families3
This course has been designed to deepen students' understanding of social service work with families and the impact of society's expectations of families as well as the impact of social structures on families. The content assumes that the student has a basic understanding of diverse family structures, family culture and beliefs, family dynamics, and human development across the lifespan. Students will learn fundamental skills to assess family functioning, intervention planning, and the importance of documentation. This course will focus on using family centered and strengths based approaches to work within a variety of family forms, definitions, and experiences. Learning will be facilitated through the application of foundational concepts to case studies and activities, which are intended to stimulate critical thinking and support the integration of theory and practice.
SOCW-1042Social Welfare Policy3
This course is designed as a critical introduction to current Social Service and Welfare Policy in Canada. It will investigate the social, legal and humanitarian origins of social policy, and the implications for social service work will be examined. Federal, provincial and municipal statutes, regulations, policies and practices will be considered and analyzed. This course will also examine service delivery models, funding issues as well as demographic and legislative trends that have an impact on social policy.
FLDP-1028Field Preparation1
This course will prepare students for the forthcoming field placement process and practice experience. Through examination of the program's SSW Field Placement Manual, students will have a comprehensive overview of the requirements and expectations needed to be "field placement ready" and how to conduct themselves professionally in the field placement setting. Students will learn about SMART goals and how to apply them directly the Ministry's 9 Vocational Learning goals for the SSW program in preparation for the Applied Skills Contracts required in their upcoming field placement.
View all courses

Tuition Summary


Canadian Costs
Total Cost of Program
International Costs
Total Cost of Program


Canadian Costs
Total Cost of Program
International Costs
Total Cost of Program

*Total program costs are approximate, subject to change and do not include the health and dental plan fee, bus pass fee or program general expenses.