The Graduate Diploma in Youth Work gives you an understanding of the various approaches and practices used in the field, combining the latest principles of youth development with training in clinical interventions. You will develop the skills needed to support young people aged 10 to 30 while gaining exposure to a variety of professional settings. Under the guidance of our faculty members you will learn about a wide range of clinical approaches with young people, including an emphasis on relational, emancipatory and psycho-educational techniques. Montreal’s culturally diverse population offers work opportunities with groups in need such as First Nations and refugee youth, as well as programs in addiction and residential care. Our courses are designed to help you build a portfolio for an application to Quebec's Ordre des psychoéducateurs et psychoéducatrices, based on their "application par equivalences" program.
Prerequisites at the undergraduate level include at least three credits in adolescent development and three credits in social science research methods.
Evidence of some volunteer or work experience with children or youth is required.
Proficiency in English. Applicants whose primary language is not English must demonstrate that their knowledge of English is sufficient to pursue graduate studies in their chosen field. Please refer to the Graduate Admission page for further information on the Language Proficiency requirements and exemptions.
Note: Candidates must be aware that a Police Check is required prior to an internship placement.
Fully-qualified candidates are required to complete a minimum of 33 credits.
24 credits – Required Courses
AHSC 510 - Advanced Research Methods in Youth Work (3 credits)
AHSC 520 - Psychoeducation and Youth Work Ethics in Practice (3 credits)
AHSC 522 - Fundamentals of Child and Youth Care Work (3 credits)
AHSC 525 - Individual and Group Intervention with Youth (3 credits)
AHSC 527 - Advanced Youth Work Intervention: Case Management and Supervision (3 credits)
AHSC 530 - Community Youth Development (3 credits)
AHSC 540 - Mental Health and Addictions: Youth Work Perspectives, Policies and Practices (3 credits)
AHSC 565 - Parent-Child Relations (3 credits)
Electives (Credit count variable)
AHSC 512 - Sexuality in Human Relations (3 credits)
AHSC 513 - Family Communication (3 credits)
AHSC 551 - Counselling Skills and Concepts (6 credits)
AHSC 560 - Health Promotion (6 credits)
AHSC 598 - Special Topics in Youth Work (3 credits)
AHSC 599 - Independent Study (3 credits)
Required Fieldwork (Credit count variable)
AHSC 533 - Internship I in Youth Work (3 credits)
AHSC - 537 Internship II in Youth Work (6 credits)
AHSC - 538 Extended Internship in Youth Work (9 credits)
Chosen in consultation with the program advisor.
The internship component of our program provides you with the opportunity to gain first-hand experience in a clinical or community youth work setting. The aim of the internship is to allow you to fully assume the duties and responsibilities of a youth worker in a designated placement site. Under the supervision of an on-site field supervisor, you are required to successfully complete 320 to 420 hours in an approved internship setting.
Sectors where students usually complete their internships include child protection, schools, rehabilitation centres, community organizations, hospitals, youth and family centres and clinics. A selection of sites placements are organized by the program or selected in consultation with the Graduate Program Director.
Our research-active faculty members are practitioners who are actively involved in a wide variety of fields, including child and youth care, counselling, family life education, human relations, leisure sciences, psychology, social work, organizational and community development, and therapeutic recreation.
Our alumni are highly sought after by youth and family centres, hospitals, school boards, community organizations, clinics, and drug rehabilitation centres. Recent graduates are working as child and family workers, behaviour specialists, social counsellors, therapeutic interventionists, educators, and human relations agents.
Examples of organizations our alumni are currently working for include:
“The biggest thing I took from the program was how hands-on it is. Even before our internship placement, we were interviewing youth, visiting schools and community centres, and doing projects that really built my confidence.”
“This is definitely a place where you’ll experience some personal and professional growth, and where there’s value for whoever walks through the door.”
“The professors in the program really challenge your own belief systems and the ways that you engage with child and youth work as a professional.”
“The sense of community begins in the class because the program allows us to work in groups and learn from one another. We get to engage with each other inside and outside the classroom.”
1. Can the Graduate Diploma in Youth Work be completed on a part-time basis?
Yes. But the minimum recommended course load is 2 courses (6 credits), which would allow the completion of the diploma in 5 semesters.
2. What does an internship mean? How is it different from the undergraduate one? Are there limits on the duration of the internship (over what time period?) Can I take my internship before completing all courses?
An internship is an apprenticeship in Youth Work where you assume a professional role with the support of a site supervisor and a program instructor. The internship in the Diploma provides an opportunity to assume professional roles in Youth Work that differ from your previous work experience and build on the courses in the program. The internship may be completed full time over one semester, or half time over two semesters. You cannot start the internship without completing all of your course requirements.
3. Can the internship be paid?
Internships are not paid positions. If your place of work has opportunities for you to take on a new role, that may be an acceptable internship but must be negotiated with the Graduate Program Director. The intent of the internship is to provide an opportunity for developing new skills, rather than provide credits for a job you are already engaged in and to provide for a learning experience.
4. Can I take courses in the program in the evening or online?
Some courses in the program will be offered in the evening. There will also be courses that are scheduled intensively, in complete days rather than weekly over the course of the semester. However, it will be necessary to take a significant proportion of the courses in this diploma during the day. Working full time may not be possible for the whole length of the program.
5. Can I apply without having my research methods? What if I take it over the summer?
You must complete the required prerequisite to the program before you begin in September. If you can provide evidence that you will be taking the research methods course over the summer, you may be considered for Conditional acceptance pending the successful completion of the course.
6. Can in-service training or professional workshops count as the prerequisites for admission?
If you have taken professional training or workshop in Human Development or Research with Youth, you can ask for those trainings to be considered towards the prerequisite for the program. To do so, you must submit documentation about the training, either a written outline provided by the trainer or a letter from the organization.
7. What if I don’t have any experience working with youth?
An important prerequisite of this program is some experience with children or youth. This can be volunteer experience, work at a camp or even babysitting, and can be a time limited experience. Please avail yourself of the many volunteer experiences in the local community.
8. When will notices for acceptance be sent out?
You will be notified of our decision by mid-late April.
9. Will you have interviews?
We will be conducting telephone interviews when the admissions committee judges that an interview is required to clarify some aspects of the application.
10. What do I include in my letter of intent?
The letter of intent is your opportunity to explain your reasons for coming in to the program, and how your background has prepared you for this program. It is your opportunity to communicate anything you think is important for us to know when we are considering your application.
11. Can my reference letters come from out of country? Can they deal with work with young children?
Your reference letters can come from anywhere as long as they arrive in time to complete your file. Experience with young children is considered relevant for admission.
12. What are the job opportunities for graduates of this program?
There are a range of job opportunities for graduates of this program, depending on their interests, their choice of internship and the experience they bring to the program. Qualified youth workers are in demand in the community sector as well as in youth mental health, education and child welfare. An important consideration as you build your program will be to develop your application for membership in the professional Ordre of psychoéducateurs et psychoéducatrices. To do this, you will need to take additional courses, beyond the basic requirements of the Diploma.