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Diploma in Developmental Services Worker

Humber College’s Developmental Services Worker (DSW) diploma program teaches you skills to effectively promote the physical, mental and emotional health of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities.

Quick Facts

Full-time Duration: 2 years
Starting in: September 2020
Tuition Fee: CAD 7,496 per semester
Location: Lakeshore Campus (Toronto, Canada)

Our faculty team consists of developmental services experts who are active in the field, and our small class sizes allow for individualized attention. Our curriculum is designed with input from developmental services field experts, ensuring courses are current and relevant.

Your studies begin by learning the stages of human development, the types of developmental disabilities and the range of available community support services for this population. Next, you’ll learn intervention techniques, person-centered planning, abnormal psychology/dual diagnosis, basic pharmacology, supporting people with autism and other complex needs, augmentative forms of communication, and effective responses to people who have been abused. Finally, you’ll develop skills in building interpersonal relationships and counselling.

You’ll also build your expertise in our counselling labs which provide an ideal setting to develop abilities in working with individuals with limited verbal skills.

The Humber College’s Developmental Services Worker (DSW) diploma program is also offered part time.

Work Placement

Our program offers a rich diversity of innovative and traditional work-integrated learning opportunities. You will complete 568 hours of experiential education with three separate community partners over the duration of the program.

After consulting with you regarding your interests and preferences, your field placement co-ordinator will refer you to specific agencies for these unpaid work experiences.

Courses include:

  •  Understanding Human Behaviour
  • Intervention Techniques
  • Introduction to Developmental Disabilities
  • Community Orientation
  • Human Growth and Development
  • Interpersonal Communication
  • Educational Strategies

Get started today!


Your career will allow you to help people with disabilities live, work and participate in their communities. You will use your skills to support people with intellectual disabilities, autism, physical challenges or other needs.

You can find work assisting people in a variety of roles including:

  • community support worker
  • educational/teaching assistant in a school
  • classroom assistant in a daycare centre
  • seniors’ case worker
  • residential case worker
  • family worker

Learn more