Orientation to Human Services

This foundational course aims to provide new entrant or early career professionals with an orientation to the field of Human Services. Learners will explore the following fundamental components of Human Services through the contexts of Chronic Care, Crisis Services and Systems Planning: (1) Analyzing the Practitioner’s Role within the System, (2) Understanding the Client, (3) Preparing the Environment, and (4) Practitioner Skills and Approaches to Client Care. Through experiential, collaborative, and reflective learning practices, learners will articulate their Human Services practitioner mission statement, and develop a self-care toolkit to manage ongoing stress and the risk of burnout within their workplace. Learners will also create a plan to transfer and apply their learning from this course to their practice by developing a learning event that can be shared with colleagues within their organization.

Who should attend?

New entrant or early career human services professionals who are seeking to continue to develop their knowledge, skills and professional network. These individuals may deliver community services to individuals and organizations in the contexts of child, elder and vulnerable person care, mental health and counselling, social work, psycho-social support, community engagement and development.

What You'll Learn

Course Outcomes:

This course intends to provide you with the opportunity to:

  • Explore client motivations and experiences for receiving Chronic Care or Crisis Services.
  • Compare and contrast Human Service environmental components and characteristics (Chronic Care, Crisis Services, Systems Planning).
  • Examine requisite skills for practitioners providing services for Chronic Care and Crisis Services, as well as Systems Planning.

Learning Outcomes

Learning Objectives:
By the end of this course, you will have demonstrated the ability to:

  • Discover the clients and stakeholders engaged in Human Services (Chronic Care, Crisis Services and Systems Planning).
  • Identify methods for assessing needs of individuals seeking services, and determine approach for addressing outcomes of client needs assessment.
  • Examine service delivery models (Chronic Care and Crisis Services), and identify the opportunities and barriers to enabling effective care and client services.
  • Determine the connections between learning and wellbeing to explore and apply elements of learning design to facilitate effective client care.

Learning Evaluation Plan:

Methods of evaluation in this course are as follows with 100% of grade as assessed by an OISE Continuing and Professional Learning (CPL) rubric:

  • Collaboration: Discussions and Engagement – 20%
  • Human Services Practitioner Mission Statement – 20%
  • Managing Stress and Burnout in the Human Services Workplace (Self-Reflective Activities and Developing a Self-Care Toolkit) – 30%
  • The Human Services Educator: Creating a Learning Event for Your Organization – 30%

Topical Overview:

  • Reflective Practice – Understanding the Practitioner Within the System
  • Human Service Needs – Client Motivations for Service and Development
  • What is Community? Environmental Considerations for Delivering Human Services
  • Human Services Practitioner – Determine Approaches to Client Care


Materials / Recommended Readings:

All articles and reading material will be provided by the instructor and will be made available online through the course learning environment.


Course Requirements:

The course requires a computer and online access to the OISE course environment, as well as the ability to connect online to other websites and resources as required.