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Academic Advising Centre

Social Service Worker diploma

This guide has been prepared with the information you need to successfully register for your first year at UFV. Please review the information provided on this page thoroughly before contacting your academic advisor with questions.



The Social Service Worker diploma is a two-year, 62-credit program that prepares graduates to work in social service settings and schools. Graduates work in community-based corrections, family support, Indigenous services, mental health, residential care, schools, settlement services, substance use, and women’s services.

The Social Service Worker diploma – Indigenous focus prepares graduates to work in social service settings and schools in culturally safe ways with Indigenous Peoples. Working from Indigenous perspectives, graduates will work with individuals, families, groups, and communities on issues of concern to Indigenous Peoples. As Indigenous Peoples assert their right to self-determination – particularly in the areas of child welfare, healthcare, and education services – demand will continue to grow for Indigenous social service workers to work in culturally safe ways with Indigenous communities. At the same time, students will develop an understanding of the social, cultural, and political context of Indigenous communities.

Both streams of the Social Service Worker diploma will provide students with employment-related skills while earning university-level credits towards a Bachelor of Social Work or other degree at UFV. Thus, a student who is interested in becoming a social worker will be able to develop skills and seek employment as a social service worker before going on to complete a degree. The number of transfer credits in each stream depends on students’ choice of courses. Consultation with an Academic Advisor is recommended.

Assessment of prior learning is available for qualified students.



Program structure and requirements

Semester I


CMNS 125

Communicating Professionally to Academic and Workplace Audiences


or ENGL 105

Academic Writing


HSER 120

Interpersonal Communications for Human Services


HSER 140

Introduction to Indigenous-Centred Human Services


Elective or IPK 105

Stó:lō Nation Development


SOWK 110

Introduction to Social Work and Human Services


or PSYC 250

Introduction to Developmental Psychology


Semester II


HSER 130

Social Services Practicum I


SOC 101

Introductory Sociology


PSYC 101

Introduction to Psychology I

Elective or IPK 106 Elective or Stó:lō Traditional Ways of Healing and Helping 3

Semester III


CMNS 251

Professional Report Writing


HSER 200

Interview and Assessment Skills for Human Services


SOWK 225

Human Behaviour and the Social Environment

or PSYC 250 Introduction to Developmental Psychology 3
SOWK 283 Introduction to Social Work Practice with Families 3
Elective or IPK 206 Elective course or Stó:lō Communications and World View 3

 Semester IV


HSER 230

Social Services Practicum II


SOWK 210

Introduction to Social Welfare


SOWK 297

Introduction to Mental Health and Substance Use

Elective or IPK 202 Elective course or Stó:lō Social Structure 3


Where can I find a list of courses for the program?

You can access a list of all approved and required courses for your program in two ways:


First time using MyGRADplan?

Visit MyGRADplan website to get login instructions and review tutorials. Specifically, you will want to learn about the 'What if' and 'Look ahead' features as they will be most helpful in your course planning.





4-5 courses per semester


15 hours per week in class


And at least
15 hours per week
for homework


This program is designed to be completed in 2 years. It is possible (and recommended) to take less than five courses in the first semester and stay on track for graduation if you take courses in the summer semester.

If you plan to take this program part-time for a total of four years, this will create a delay in practicum and graduation.


As part of the program, you also have two practicums to complete:

  • HSER 130 — Social Services Practicum I
  • HSER 230 — Social Services Practicum II

Note: You must complete prerequisites and submit the required documents to take practicum.

Questions about the practicum?
Visit the student practicum page or email



Suggested course plan


  • HSER and SOWK courses are only offered certain semesters.
  • If you are completing the Indigenous Focus program, you will take IPK 105 (Indigenous Peoples Knowledge) in the fall instead of an elective.


Indigenous focus

This program stream prepares you to work in social service settings and schools in culturally safe ways with Indigenous Peoples.

You will need to contact your Academic Advisor to declare the Indigenous Focus concentration if you did not indicate this on your program application.

This declaration will change some of the courses required to complete the program but both program streams require the completion of 62 credits.



Orientation and welcome gathering

Practicum orientation is held in June. If you do not receive an invitation, please email

The School of Social Work and Human Services will also have a welcome gathering in the fall for your specific program. An invitation will be sent to your UFV student email.

Make sure to check your UFV student email regularly for updates.


Next steps

Prepare for registration

Watch tutorials, review information on fee payment, important dates, and more.

Explore courses of interest

Find official course descriptions and outlines in the Academic Calendar.

Track your degree progress

Access your program audit & identify the requirements that are needed for graduation.


Still have questions?

Book an appointment with an academic advisor or email your questions to

If you are starting in the fall, book your next appointment prior to the winter registration (October).

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