Location
Start Dates

  • September 01, 2021
  • September 01, 2022
Duration

6Terms

Program Delivery

  • In Class

Domestic: CAD $14,549
International: CAD $40,017

We are no longer accepting applications for both domestic and international learners for the September 2021 intake.

Program Description

The two-year Social Work Diploma program at Bow Valley College will provide learners with comprehensive knowledge and preparation for a career in social work practice, and incorporates a unique multicultural focus enabling graduates to support a diverse clientele. This program is committed to the promotion of social justice, and prepares learners to apply the basic fundamentals of social work practice with individuals, families, groups, and communities. In addition to social work foundations, learners develop intercultural values and knowledge, advocacy skills, and self-reflection. Social Work Diploma graduates work in non-profit and private agencies, including community-based organizations, schools, addiction services, residential settings, senior care facilities, and government organizations.

Mission: The mission of the Social Work Diploma program at Bow Valley College is to prepare learners for generalist practice with individuals, families, groups, and communities through integration of theory to professional practice. The program promotes a commitment to social justice, ethical practice, and advocacy for diverse populations.

Course Listings Request More Information
Domestic Applicants

Welcome Centre
South Campus – Main Floor
info@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-1402

International Learner Applicants

International Education
North Campus – Third Floor
international@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-3476


Admission Requirements

Academic requirements
  • Credit in English 30-1 or a minimum of 65% in English 30-2 or equivalent

Or

  • Successful completion of the General Educational Development (GED) test with a standard score of 520 in Language Arts: Reading and Writing

Or

Pre-practicum requirement

A current Police Information Check (PIC) with a Vulnerable Sector Search (VSS) must be submitted prior to practicum placements. The existence of a criminal record may postpone or prevent clinical, practicum, or field work placements and, subsequently, successful completion of the program.

English language proficiency requirements

Applicants whose first language is not English should see the English language proficiency requirements page for details. 


Transferability

Transfer opportunities are available to a variety of institutions.Transfer credits are reviewed and accepted on an individual basis by the institution to which you apply. Here are the most current transfer agreements:

  • University of Calgary: Bachelor of Social Work
  • University of Lethbridge: Bachelor of Health Sciences in Public Health
Additional certification

Graduates of the program are eligible to apply for the Registered Social Worker (RSW) designation with the Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW).

Course Listings Request More Information
Domestic Applicants

Welcome Centre
South Campus – Main Floor
info@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-1402

International Learner Applicants

International Education
North Campus – Third Floor
international@bowvalleycollege.ca
403-410-3476

Course Listing


Full course outlines are available here.

Curriculum subject to change.

Year 1

Required CoursesCredit

This first-year composition course introduces learners to academic writing and critical thinking. They read and analyze sociopolitical, cultural, and gender issues in texts with an emphasis on experiences of people whose voices were historically silenced, particularly those of Indigenous communities in Canada. Learners develop strategies to communicate their own ideas and integrate them with those of others by quoting, paraphrasing, and summarizing source material. Learners present their written assignments professionally according to APA formatting guidelines.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Blended A mixed course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through a blend of scheduled in-class and scheduled or non-scheduled online delivery methods. Learners ARE required to participate in scheduled in-class and/or online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course is an introduction to Indigenous cultural experience and perspectives. Learners analyze the foundations for stereotypes, bias and false narratives that impact Indigenous ways of being in Canada. Learners consider how legal and social policy impacts Indigenous identity. Euro-Canadian perspectives and beliefs toward Indigenous people are discussed. Learners explore the experience and Indigenous worldview in the Canadian context.

Course Delivery
Any-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place at times and locations of the learners own choosing through the use of online communications technologies. Learners are NOT required to participate in any scheduled learning activities, but scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

In this course, learners examine the core components of health and wellness, health promotion, and disease prevention within the context of the Canadian health care system. In addition, learners explore strategies to promote and advocate for healthy living for themselves and in their professional practice.

Course Delivery

This introductory course provides learners with a basic understanding and an overview of the field of psychology. Attention is given to major psychological perspectives and the fundamentals of scientific thinking, biological factors, sensation and perception, cognitive processes, personality, social influences and human motivation. Learners will be encouraged to apply what they learn to their own lives and the world around them.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course provides a comprehensive overview of human growth and development and typical behavioural responses throughout the lifespan. You will analyze human development across four domains: physical, cognitive, social, and emotional. Emphasis is placed upon the stages of development and their linkage to common events occurring during these stages.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Blended A mixed course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through a blend of scheduled in-class and scheduled or non-scheduled online delivery methods. Learners ARE required to participate in scheduled in-class and/or online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course provides a foundational perspective of the evolution of the social work profession as well as on the discipline's theoretical framework, current roles, practices, and commitment to promoting social justice. Learners explore influences on the profession such as social policy, politics, social pressures, current issues, and diverse populations.

Course Delivery

This course focuses on the foundations of social work practice and the techniques vital to supporting others. Through self-reflection, learners examine the qualities and values of the helping professional with emphasis on diversity and multicultural practice. The course explores setting boundaries, communication techniques, interviewing skills, and the role of professional ethics.

Course Delivery

This course focuses on foundational assessment, interviewing, and intervention skills and techniques within diverse agency settings. Learners engage in practice interviews, documentation, self-assessment, and developing empathic therapeutic alliances.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102

Course Delivery

This course takes a systems approach to the examination of the historical and societal contexts of oppression and resiliency theory. Learners identify various populations, organizational structures, and communities where oppression exists, the power imbalances underlying oppression, and the strategies to support individuals and groups in those circumstances. Learners also explore the use of resiliency and empowerment models.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102

Course Delivery

This course prepares learners for a social work field education experience. Learners use reflective analysis to build competencies working with a variety of populations across a broad range of agency settings. Learners also complete the required documentation and demonstrate skills essential to securing and completing a successful placement.

Course Delivery

This course builds on the skills and competencies of the first practicum preparation course. Learners prepare for interviews through practice activities, as well as identify the attributes of the professional social worker in a variety of agency settings. This course provides opportunities to explore the strategies and techniques for working with a variety of populations.

Prerequisite: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, and SOWR1997

Course Delivery

This practicum course provides opportunity to integrate theory into direct social work practice. Learners work within inter-disciplinary teams to develop skills and intervention strategies to provide services for clients and communities. Utilizing the Canadian Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice, learners are given the opportunity to evaluate their practicum activities through the use of self-reflection and evidence-based practice.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

Year 2

Required CoursesCredit

This course explores the development of Canadian political institutions and political issues in Canada. Learners explore contemporary Canadian politics by examining concepts such as the evolution of federalism, the Constitution, parliament, elections, Indigenous and minority rights, and multiculturalism. Learners will apply political science terms and concepts to the analysis of contemporary Canadian political issues.

Course Delivery

Learners examine the major psychological disorders, focusing on clinical description, causal factors (considering the interaction of biological, psychological, and social influences), treatment, and outcomes. Learners develop a working definition of abnormal behaviour using the DSM-5 criteria as a basis for classification.
Prerequisites: PSYC1101

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

This course focuses on the processes and dynamics of group work in professional practice. Learners explore the theoretical framework of group work and apply that framework to a variety of groups. The course emphasizes group makeup, phases of development, as well as facilitation and intervention techniques.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

This course focuses on assessing, supporting, and advocating for individuals and their families across the life span. Learners examine the family within the Canadian context while identifying issues impacting the nature of family dynamics including reproductive rights, marriage equality, and shifting family demographics. Learners also critically explore the impacts of colonization and intergenerational trauma on Indigenous families, as well as the impact of culture, age, diversity, and socio-economic resources within social work family practice.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

This course focuses on the theories, practical skills, and broader issues guiding practice in the mental health and addiction fields. Learners identify the various types of mental health and addiction issues and their impacts on individuals, families, and communities. Learners also examine culturally-relevant and client-centred treatment approaches and how theory informs mental health and addiction practice within a social work framework.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998, PSYC1101

Course Delivery

This course focuses on the physiological and emotional impacts of violence and trauma on individuals, families, and communities. Learners explore various types of trauma through a trauma-informed lens. Learners also examine the cycle of violence, evidence-based treatment models, as well as strategies to build resiliency among individuals and communities impacted by violence and trauma.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

This course focuses on asset-based community development within a critical theory framework. Learners explore assessment and evaluation of community change and advocacy; collaborative practice with diverse populations and communities; outcomes-based evaluations; theories of change; and logic models.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

This course focuses on the relationship between social policy, political and societal trends, and professional practice. Learners apply the Canadian Association of Social Workers' social policy principles to a variety of current Canadian policy issues. Learners are challenged to evaluate social policy through an evidence-based lens and explore the use of policy as an advocacy tool for diverse populations.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998, POSC1201

Course Delivery

This course focuses on the leadership roles available to social workers. Learners explore the various aspects of human services organizations, including administration and management across a broad range of settings. Learners also examine theories of organizational structure and function, and the various leadership styles impacting organizational culture and practice.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998

Course Delivery

In this course, learners build on previous learning and practice to develop advanced social work diploma skills. The practicum placement provides further opportunity to integrate theory into increasingly independent professional practice. Learners continue to work within inter-disciplinary teams to develop advanced skills and intervention strategies for clients and communities while adhering to the Canadian Association of Social Workers Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice.

Prerequisites: SOWR1101, SOWR1102, SOWR1201, SOWR1301, SOWR1997, SOWR1998, SOWR1999

Course Delivery

This interdisciplinary course provides an introduction to women's and gender studies. Significant historical developments of the women's movement are presented as well as the different theoretical feminist perspectives to explain and challenge the gendered nature of social relations. Through the exploration of texts and social issues, learners use an intersectional approach to critically analyze women's lives in differing social locations based on, but not limited to, race/ethnicity, religion, class, age, sexuality, and ability.

Course Delivery

Electives

ElectivesElective

In this course, learners study novels, short stories, and poetry. Works are representative of various historical periods and cultural contexts, including perspectives from Canada's Indigenous communities. Learners engage in critical analysis of those readings and compose critical essays and formal written assignments totaling not less than 3000 words.

Course Delivery

This course provides an introductory overview of the discipline of Sociology. Learners explore human behavior, stratification, social institutions, and sociological theory and methods. Learners examine how social positions shape lives, and how people adjust to social and cultural environments.

Course Delivery
Real-time Online A course delivery mode where learning activity takes place through scheduled interaction through the use of online communications technologies at locations of the learners own choosing. Learners ARE required to participate in online learning activities at scheduled times, and scheduled exams may be required. Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

Aging, while an individual experience, is also an experience that is heavily influenced by social structures and social processes. Using the sociological perspective, this course explores contemporary aging by examining choices and experiences that transcend the individual and incorporate larger social groups and processes. In doing so, learners build a foundation in sociological concepts and theories to apply this knowledge to age-related issues. Learners consider demographic factors leading to population aging; the role of social structures and processes in shaping experiences of physical aging; as well as aging in relation to health systems, retirement, social engagement, and family in Canadian society.

Course Delivery
Combined Online A course delivery mode that combines elements of non-scheduled and scheduled activity. Learners will be able to participate partly at times of their own choosing and are also required to participate in some scheduled online learning activities. Scheduled exams may be required. In Class A course delivery mode where learning activity is scheduled and takes place in a classroom or similar setting at a college facility. May include lecture, laboratory, and seminar components.

Program FAQs

To be successful in the social work field, learners are encouraged to have a strong commitment to the community and to the empowerment of others while engaging in their own personal reflection and self-care. In addition, graduates of this program are strongly encouraged to register with the Alberta College of Social Workers and participate in continuing education to stay current in the field.

Many people choose to enter the helping professions because of their own personal experiences. Some of the content in the program can be difficult and bring up various emotions. We encourage students to ensure they have adequate supports in place whether through BVC’s Learner Success Program (LSS) or on their own.

If you have prior work experience or have taken courses comparable to those required under this program at another institution, you may be eligible for Prior Learning Assessment (PLA) or transfer credit. For more information, please contact our Registrar's Office at (403) 410-1400, or by email.

All requests must be submitted prior to the start of the program.
The Social Work Diploma program at Bow Valley College has a block transfer agreement with University of Calgary’s BSW program. Therefore, all courses in the Social Work Diploma program directly transfer into the BSW program, allowing learners to enter directly into the third year of the four-year program if accepted. In addition, there is currently a transfer agreement with University of Lethbridge’s Bachelor of Health Sciences program.
The diploma can be completed full-time over six terms (two years). Some learners choose to take an additional term or year to complete the program.
All learners in the Social Work Diploma program must complete two practicum placements in order to graduate. The first practicum takes place in the spring term following the first-year courses and the second practicum takes place in the spring term following the second-year courses. Learners are able to choose from a variety of placements, including community-based agencies, mental health programs, residential settings, schools, and on reserves in the Calgary and surrounding areas.

Learners must successfully complete certain courses to be eligible to enrol in the practicum courses.
Learners will have to complete a Police Information Check (PIC) and an Intervention Record Check prior to their first practicum.

Learners do not need the PIC in order to be accepted into the program. They will be directed as to when to complete the PIC, prior to their first practicum, by the Practicum Coordinator and their instructors.
Social Work Diploma learners registered for the social work practicum courses will work directly with the Practicum Coordinator in order to find a practicum placement. All learners will be provided with an Agency Guidebook outlining the various agencies that will typically accept Social Work Diploma practicum learners.

Learners will meet individually with the Practicum Coordinator to discuss the best agencies for their learning needs, and will then be encouraged to apply to multiple agencies decided on between the learner and coordinator with hopes that the learner will receive requests for interviews by the agencies and eventual offers.

**While the Practicum Coordinator and Addiction Studies team will provide guidance and support to the learner, practicum placements are not guaranteed, as interviews and offers are dependent on agency needs at that time.
While there are several agencies that will not accept a practicum learner with a criminal record, there are agencies that will. Learners who are concerned about their background checks are encouraged to reach out to the Practicum Coordinator early in the program to discuss what options might be available.
Social Work Diploma graduates tend to work in non-profit and private agencies, including community-based organizations, schools, addiction services, residential settings, senior care facilities, and government organizations.
Planning your course schedule according to availability and prerequisites requires some consideration.

Learners can access Academic Advising for questions regarding scheduling. Once you are a registered learner in a program, one of the Academic Advisors in the Office of the Registrar can also assist you with planning.

Regardless of whether you are taking an online course, it is important to have access to a computer, as all face-to-face and online courses require regular access to D2L, our online learner software program.

Microsoft Teams which will be our mode of delivery for virtual courses. Learners are encouraged to login to D2L and their mybvc email daily to make sure they are receiving up-to-date information from instructors and college announcements.

As the College will be delivering all traditional face-to-face courses virtually for the fall term due to the COVID-19 pandemic, MS Teams will be utilized. You will need to ensure that you are familiar with using MS Teams prior to the start of the term. Online tutorials will be available for learners prior to the start of the fall term. you should make sure your computer has the following applications:

Learners should ensure they have access to a computer with the following:

  •  Reliable internet access – DSL or cable connections are highly recommended.
  • We recommend Windows 7 or 10 (preferred) or Mac OS software; Microsoft Office 2013 (minimum), Microsoft Office 2016 or 365 preferred; Adobe Acrobat Reader; and a media player such as Adobe Flash Player, QuickTime, or Windows Media Player.
    - BVC students have access to free Microsoft Office through their mybvc account.
  • Access to a webcam and microphone capabilities to ensure participation in virtual classes
  • We recommend Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome, and Safari as browsers. D2L does not work well with Internet Explorer.

The approximate cost of textbooks and other supplies is estimated at $750 per term.
Please visit the full-time course credits pages at www.bowvalleycollege.ca for details for each program or contact an Academic Advising Advisor.
Related Programs
  • If you are currently studying in a post-secondary program at BVC, please register for your courses via mybvc to ensure your enrolments and fees are processed appropriately.
  • Cart total based on domestic tuition rates. For information about International Tuition rates please see Fee Information
  • If you anticipate applying for a student loan, your payment will be refunded to you based on your loan award once your funding has been received by BVC.

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