Addictions & Community Services Worker - BC

"The personal experiences in the field from the instructors are great because there's always an example to everything we learn. Makes learning new concepts easy to understand and remember." - Ashley P., Addictions and Community Services Student

Program Info
Assisting alcohol and drug abuse clients towards a clean and sober life is a challenging, rewarding and diverse career path. If you want to make a difference in the lives of people in your community, CDI College's Addictions and Community Services Worker diploma program is for you.

CDI's instructors are industry professionals who introduce students to a wide range of subjects including assessment and treatment planning, writing and file management. Since addictions and community service workers are required to interact with clients and healthcare professionals, such as social workers, they need a broad understanding of the healthcare and addictions care industry. In addition, students will learn about human psychology, addiction prevention and intervention, pharmacology, and other medical areas. Each student must put their knowledge to the test as part of a 320 hour (eight week) mandatory clinical placement.

CDI College supports graduates to find employment through our Career and Employment Strategies course that teaches job search skills, interviewing techniques, resume writing for social services, and provides job counselling.
This program is 44 weeks in length.
Job Opportunities
  • Child and Youth Services
  • Family Social Service Agencies
  • Group Homes
  • Drug and Alcohol Treatment Facilities
  • Correctional Facilities
  • Community Mental Health Centres
  • Facilities for the Physically and Developmentally Challenged
"The personal experiences in the field from the instructors are great because there's always an example to everything we learn. Makes learning new concepts easy to understand and remember." - Ashley P., Addictions and Community Services Student
Program Courses

The program outline below is for British Columbia.Click here to see the outlines for Manitoba and Ontario.

Code Course Name Hours
  • BPYE Psychology 50

    • This subject provides the student with a basic knowledge and understanding of psychological concepts that can be applied in the subjects that follow.
  • CFME Case File Management and Report Writing 25

    • This subject deals with preparing social work-related written reports to communicate the progress of a client. The student will be introduced to various methods of recording information, along with the requirements for various entries to a file within the parameters of legal and ethical requirements. Basic computer skills are further developed through a series of assignments.
  • ACSW003 Introduction to Intake and Treatment Planning 50

    • This course focuses on developing students’ understanding of the intake and planning processes. Our graduates work in a broad range of settings across the social services and therefore encounter of a wide variety of standardized and in-house intake and psychometric tools. In light of this, Introduction to Intake Procedures and Treatment Planning centers on developing portable and universal “hands-on” skills in interviewing and planning so that our graduates have a solid practical basis from which to start. This module helps the student understand the role of the support worker in intake procedures and treatment planning. Furthermore, the module helps the student understand the purpose of intake and treatment planning, as well as the professional challenges support workers might encounter while doing these tasks.
  • ACSW004 Communications Fundamentals 50

    • This subject provides a comprehensive study of effective communication skills and techniques the student will use both professionally and personally. The subject will sharpen skills to work effectively in a professional helping relationship. Students will also learn how to conduct an effective job search and how to continue their development as an Addictions Worker.

  • ETH150 Ethics 50

    • This subject is designed to provide the student with a framework in which to view helping functions and related skills in a systematic manner. The subject concentrates on the helper’s task of becoming a more aware and effective person. The emphasis is on empowering others to help themselves through the development of communication and coping skills.
  • GPCE Group Facilitation Concepts 50

    • This subject will provide the student with an overview of the nature of group work in a social service setting and an opportunity to explore relevant techniques and exercises designed to enhance group work.
  • CRNE Community Resources and Networking 25

    • The goal of an Addictions Worker is to accurately assess the client’s needs and provide the most appropriate referral in an ethical manner. This subject establishes a framework to assess needs and explores the various services available in the community. This is accomplished by guiding the student through a series of assignments to enhance their evaluation skills and knowledge.
  • ITSE Interviewing Techniques 50

    • This subject will assist the student to define communication skills and demonstrate how to use them effectively in many types of situations. A group of core communication skills is essential to any interview, whether it takes place in counselling, nursing, social work, personnel work, or information gathering.
  • FADE Fundamentals of Addiction 100

    • This subject provides the foundation for further in-depth subjects in the study of addiction. The basic pharmacological nature and effects of a range of psychoactive chemicals are presented, with an emphasis on challenging the myths of which chemicals cost society the most in terms of economic costs and social burden of human suffering. Specific target populations are explored, focusing on women, children, adolescents, ethnic minorities, elderly, the disabled and those suffering from mental illness. Assessment, intervention strategies, and treatment options are presented, along with the most common problems encountered during treatment.
  • PHAE Fundamentals of Pharmacology 25

    • This subject provides basic drug information including the basic pharmacological nature and effects of a range of psychoactive chemicals. Students will build knowledge relating drug treatments/usage to various body systems and associated states of disease.
  • PHPE Preventive Health Promotion 50

    • The student is introduced to various health and relationship concerns that are relevant in chemically dependent individuals. The student will learn to evaluate the effectiveness of program delivery and begin to create new ideas for promoting healthier lifestyle choices within a range of settings and diverse populations.
  • RPIE Relapse Prevention and Intervention 75

    • This subject will provide the student with an understanding of relapse as a natural part of the recovery process. The student will study a range of strategies and techniques to assist in minimizing and preventing the effects of prolonged periods of relapse during the journey of recovery. Students are guided through the entire relapse process by considering the application of some basic principles introduced in the CENAPS Model of Treatment (CENAPS is an acronym for Center for Applied Behavioral Research).
  • STSE Secondary Traumatic Stress 25

    • Secondary traumatic stress results from helping or wanting to help a traumatized or suffering person. Students will gain insight into their personal strengths and weaknesses and will explore methods to prevent/reduce secondary traumatic stress.
  • ISAE Introduction to Software Applications 25

    • This subject educates the student about the software applications that are commonly used in document preparation, report writing and presentations. The student will learn how to use a computer’s operating system; perform basic file management tasks; use a web browser to explore the Internet and perform searches for information; create, edit, and format documents; and prepare a slide show presentation.
  • WWFE Working with Families 50

    • This subject will provide students with an overview of how addiction can impact the family unit. Understanding the family reaction is critical to providing caring support to the recovering addict and their loved ones. A recovery program that does not address issues of co-dependency may increase the likelihood of persistent patterns of relapse for both the addict and their family.
  • ACSW016 High Risk Populations 75

    • High risk populations provides the foundation for further in-depth examination of the relationship between substance abuse and a specific population in society. The purpose of this course is to gain a realistic perspective of drug-related problems affecting different sub-populations in society. To understand the complex issues surrounding drugs in our society, we need to recognize the enormous diversity that exists within the general population. This course will provide the student with the basic knowledge around being a multicultural counsellor and working specifically with sub-populations that are regularly encountered.

  • ACSW017 Youth Issues 50

    • This course is designed to give students an overview of the issues that our youth are facing in today’s society. The course looks at three general areas of concern related to youth issues. The first part of the course is aimed at describing what is meant by at-risk and who these at-risk youth are. This is essential in order to better understand what the common risk factors that contribute to youth becoming at risk are. Secondly, the student will learn about the different at-risk categories in order to explore the various issues and problems. Finally the course will look at the different intervention, prevention and treatment strategies or models.

  • SSSE Student Success Strategies 25

    • This course will introduce students to skills and concepts that will help them achieve personal, academic, and career success.
  • PSKE Professional Skills 25

    • This course is designed to equip students with interpersonal skills identified by employers as essential for success in the professional world. Using a variety of instructional methods including case studies, group exercises, and discussion, students learn and practice key communication skills.
  • CESE Career and Employment Strategies 25

    • This course looks at the planning, preparation, execution, and follow-up stages of an interview. Students will learn about how people find jobs, employment expectations, transferable skills, effective telemarketing, job search management and many other helpful, career strategy topics.
  • CRFE Final Comprehensive Exam 5

    • This 5-hour multiple-choice exam is based on all sixteen Core Skills courses.
  • ACSW021 Mandatory Clinical Placement 200

    • This program includes eight weeks (200 hours) of a full-time clinical placement.