Algonquin College

Developmental Services Worker


Support people of all ages to function better in their day to day lives with this truly rewarding career.
This two-year Developmental Services Worker Ontario College Diploma program prepares you to support children, youth and adults with physical, mental and/or developmental disabilities, through their activities of daily living, behaviour support, personal care and special education. You facilitate the development of skills for people with disabilities to enjoy independence, citizenship and social living.
As a student, you learn strategies for providing support in ways that are respectful of the dignity and individuality of each person with whom you work with.
The Developmental Services Worker program uses both experiential and outcome-based theory to help you prepare to work a variety of educational, community and social service settings.
During your program of study you apply theory and skills in various field placements, with opportunities to experience work as an Educational Assistant and Community Support/Residential Counsellor. Field placements allow you to explore concepts from a hands-on point of view and are an important learning tool to prepare for your profession. Throughout the program, you complete a series of field placements, totaling close to 600 hours of work experience.
You may find work in a variety of roles after graduation, including:

educational assistant
developmental assistant
special needs worker
residential counsellor
employment specialist
life skills instructor
vocational instructor
family support worker
support network facilitator
This program is well-suited for students who:

Are passionate about supporting individuals with developmental disabilities.
Want to work in challenging environments which are physically demanding.
Have fine motor skills required for writing and administering medications.
Are advocates for social justice.
Show integrity, are honest and trustworthy.
Display a positive attitude.

Program Duration:
2 Years
Work Integrated Learning:
PGWP Eligibility:
English Requirement:
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