As a Developmental Services Worker (DSW), you will assist people with disabilities to live as valued, contributing members of the community. By providing support and advocacy, you will work towards full inclusion for the betterment of the entire community. The program curriculum promotes individualized and inclusive approaches, reflective of innovative practices in the field. The distance option through online delivery enables students to complete the entire program via distance full-time or part-time and to complete field placements tailored to students’ individual geographical location.
Diploma requirements must be completed within five years of starting the program.
Find your career
Developmental services workers support people of all ages with disabilities, enhancing their presence and participation in community life. Loyalist grads find rewarding positions:
Providing in-home support to help people maintain independence.
In community agencies as residential counsellors and vocational coaches, helping people find meaningful activities.
In schools as educational assistants and with not-for-profit organizations.
As activation directors in residential programs and long-term care facilities.
Providing respite support for families.
Average starting salaries range from $35,000 to $39,999.*
*Source: Employment Profile Provincial Report, Ministry of Colleges and Universities
Is DSW for you?
People who do well in this program are all ages and come from many different backgrounds. What they have in common are:
A desire to work with people in a caring and compassionate profession.
An interest in social justice.
In many cases, a personal connection to someone with a disability – often a friend, family member, colleague or classmate.
An open mind about what people can contribute and achieve.
Refer to "Important Dates" link for specific dates
Required academic preparation
OSSD/OSSGD or equivalent with courses at the general, advanced, (C), (U), (M) or (O) level, AND
Grade 12 English (C) level or equivalent
Mature applicant (19 years of age or older) with successful Accuplacer testing Contact firstname.lastname@example.org for information about Accuplacer testing.
Students must submit proof of the above admissions requirements prior to program start date. The “original” transcript must be mailed to Loyalist College to the attention of DSW Distance Program. Or the high school can email transcript to email@example.com
Academic Upgrading is available at Loyalist. For more information click here.
Standard First Aid and Level “C” CPR certification.
If you have been convicted of an offence under the Criminal Code for which you have not been pardoned, you may be ineligible for field placement; please contact the Placement Coordinator to discuss your options.
All DSW field placements are block placements, six hours per day, two to three days per week. Students entering the program must be able to arrange their schedules to accommodate these blocks. Up-to-date immunizations are required prior to placement.
Those accessing OSAP must apply and be approved first before being able to register for courses (full time OSAP – 4 or more courses/part time OSAP 2 - 3 courses). You must call in when registering for courses and not use online registration when accessing OSAP.
Out-of-province residents may make an application for financial assistance to the appropriate government department of their home province. The address can be obtained from the financial aid office at the university or college in their home area or from the Loyalist College Financial Assistance Office at 613-969-1913, ext. 2425 or 2226.
You can register online through the website/call in or email. Please ensure you have followed instructions provided for registration in the DSW Distance Community Hub. Click the link below to complete the form to request your approved registration plan. This will help to ensure that you are taking the correct courses and on track for completing the program.
Review the Registration Request Form - RETURNING STUDENTS
If you are accessing OSAP, you must apply each semester and prior to registering for courses as noted above. You must call in to register and not use online registration when accessing OSAP. All registration information is available in the DSW Distance Community Hub.
To register for General Education courses, click here.
Please refer to the video above or the links below the video for additional program information. If you still have questions, please email firstname.lastname@example.org or contact 613-969-1913 or 1-888-569-2547 ext. 2892.
HOW TO GET STARTED:
Courses will be made available on the course start date
Diploma requirements are listed in the Student Information Guide.
*Please Note: There are specific pre-requisites and co-requisites for courses. For more information consult the Student Information Guide. Students that started prior to Fall 2019, please contact email@example.com, for program of study course match.
Program of Study
Take Courses in Listed Order – unless alternate order has been approved by program administrators. *pre-requisites and co-requisites required (see program Information Guide).
College Writing Skills
Philosophy of Support
The Evolution of Developmental Services
Valued Social Roles
Nature of Disabilities 1
Becoming a Global Changemaker
Standards of Practice
Field Placement 1
Person Centred Planning
Positive Behaviour Supports
Nature of Disabilities 2
General Education Course
Disability & Ethical Issues
Medication Administration (Pharmacology for DSWs)
Promoting Health & Wellbeing
Field Placement 2
General Education Course
DSW Career Prep
Leadership & Change
Field Placement 3
Disclaimer: Applicants must have all admission requirements, including pre-requisites and co-requisites listed. Use the above course listing as a guide in registering for courses through the links below (links below are in alpha order by course code, not in required order. Students registering in courses where they do not meet the requirements will be removed and required to make changes to their registration in addition to paying administration fees.
The following courses are currently available and listed in alpha order below by course code.