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Mental Health and Addictions Worker

Certificate

Program Overview

Note: This program is suspended effective April 30, 2017

 

Mental Health and Addictions Worker is a certificate program. It provides the knowledge and skill development required to perform the functions of an entry-level mental health and addictions worker. The skills and knowledge presented in the program have been acquired and sanctioned by the Northern Labour Market, the Northern Inter-Tribal Health Authority (NITHA), Northlands College, and Saskatchewan Polytechnic.

This program was requested by the NITHA with two specific requirements. The first requirement was to integrate mental health and addictions core knowledge and practices. The second requirement was to include First Nations philosophy and cultural perspectives as much as possible.

It is intended to provide training to meet the needs of the Northern Labour Market Health Sector. Training will prepare graduates to respond to clients who have substance use and mental health issues, in an integrated holistic manner.

The program is also designed to provide knowledge related to First Nations culture and its role in client recovery. This certificate is the first step in the development of a new program that can be offered by a variety of delivery methods: face-to-face, by distance and blended distance.

The program is delivered through Saskatchewan Polytechnic Prince Albert campus and Northlands College, in a blended online format, with courses offered by distance, online, and workshops that will be face-to-face.

Note:

If you wish to take this program you must be currently working for NITHA members. Students are selected and funded through NITHA. Contact your employer, Northlands College or Saskatchewan Polytechnic (Val Strom at 306-765-1775 or Barb Robinson at 306-765-1730).

You will learn how to:

  • use interpersonal communication skills (including assertiveness and conflict resolution)
  • use an integrated case management approach with mental health and addicted clients and their families while following the best practices philosophy
  • facilitate brief screenings, comprehensive assessments, treatment plans and referrals
  • use basic level one-one counselling skills through an experiential learning lab setting that is monitored and coached by skilled faculty
  • manage client resistance and ambivalence using motivational interviewing
  • use suicide intervention techniques

You will also learn about specialty areas. These include:

  • cross-cultural issues
  • suicide intervention
  • FASD
  • gambling
  • concurrent disorders
  • pharmacology
  • drug abuse history in communities
  • adolescents

You will complete a Wellness Resource Project and an Orientation to Mental Health and Addictions Services.

Career and Salary Information

Your Career

Graduates of the program will work primarily within the National Native Alcohol and Drug Abuse Program (NNADAP) within Northern regional health authorities, where their increased skill set will help them deal with the clients who have substance use issues and mental health problems.

There are 115 job titles for this National Occupational Classification (NOC); however, this certificate program is specific to northern Saskatchewan and only specific titles apply. These include, for example:

  • Aboriginal centre coordinator
  • Aboriginal outreach worker
  • Addictions worker
  • Native centre coordinator
  • Peer support worker
  • Native outreach worker
  • Street outreach worker
  • Substance abuse worker
  • Group homeworker
  • Halfway house worker

The program is recognized by the employers within the Northern labour market and the Northern Inter-Tribal Authority.

Length and Start Date

Start Date(s): February
For more information, contact Val Strom at strom@saskpolytech.ca or 306-765-1775, or Barb Robinson at robinsonb@saskpolytech.ca or 306-765-1730.
Length: 784 hours

Locations

  • Prince Albert
  • Distance Learning options available

Admissions

Admission Requirements

 

  • Grade 12 with English Language Arts A30 and English Language Arts B30, or special admission after successful completion of three courses (CAPL 144, CAPL 145, and HLTH 151)
  • Satisfactory assessment for chemical dependency (nicotine is excluded)
  • Satisfactory Criminal Record Check
  • English Language Requirement

Special Admission

Applicants who do not possess the academic qualifications for a program may be admitted if evidence of probable success can be established through a special admission assessment. Interested individuals should still apply. Applicants are automatically considered for special admission. However, some specific admission requirements may still need to be met. Refer to the ACCUPLACER© cut scores for this program below, and review additional details concerning Special Admission.

ACCUPLACER©

  • 75 Reading
  • 75 Sentence
  • 4 WritePlacer

Admission Method

For information about admission to this program, contact Val Strom (306-765-1775) or Barb Robinson (306-765-1730).

Tuition and Fees

If you wish to take this program you must be currently working for NITHA members. Students are selected and funded through NITHA. Contact your employer, Northlands College or Saskatchewan Polytechnic (Val Strom at strom@saskpolytech.ca or 306-765-1775, or Barb Robinson at robinsonb@saskpolytech.ca or 306-765-1730).

Courses

Expand All +
Code
Name/Description
Credits
 
CAPL 144
Not Available
Show course details
Not Available
Prerequisites(s): Not Available
Corequisites(s): Not Available
Equivalent Course(s): Not Available
CAPL 145
Writing Skills
3
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You will review basic grammar and the mechanics of writing. You will also produce examples of technical writing (including basic reports, research papers using the American Psychological Association (APA) format and using reference materials). You will receive instruction and practice in written communication skills.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Equivalent Course(s): COMM 119
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Prior Learning, Web Assisted Delivery Group
CAPL 146
Personal and Professional Development
3
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You will explore personal and professional development as it relates to the addictions and mental health industry. You will be introduced to the concepts of personal and professional development in a holistic and multifaceted approach. You will also be introduced to practical ways of exploring self-concept, self-esteem and raising one's self-esteem using "focusing" and a values clarification process to develop personal and professional goals.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CAPL 144
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
CDEP 155
Behaviour and Drug Dynamics
3
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You will be introduced to the pharmacological and physiological effects of drugs on the body. You will also discuss six major drug classifications. You will examine, in detail, key drugs of abuse encountered as addictions workers. You will also practice presenting information on drugs to education groups.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): MHA 148
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
CDEP 158
Substance Use Disorders/Disorder Patterns
3
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You will discuss the theories, etiology, and best practices of working with clients with substance use disorders. You will also review the addictions and recovery processes for alcohol, cocaine and marijuana for adults and adolescents.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 179
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
CDEP 174
Detoxification Management
1
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You will examine various detoxification programs across Canada. You will examine special considerations needed for withdrawal management, including clients with concurrent disorders and issues related to concurrent disorders in working with clients who may be mandated for services such as those on probation or parole, youth clientele and clients infected with Hepatitis C, HIV or AIDS. You will also be introduced to the detoxification management process that is done by qualified medical personnel.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 18.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 155
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
CDEP 175
The Impact of Substance Use on Families
3
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You will examine the progressive erosion of family functioning as chemical dependency progresses. The effects on the addicted person’s spouse, children, parents and adult children of alcoholics will be given specific attention. You will examine the effect of mental health issues and family laws and policies. You will examine the types of abuses that occur in a family. You will also be introduced to various referral strategies for families entering into the healing process.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): MHA 142
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
CDEP 176
Human Relations in Mental Health and Addictions
2
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You will examine the importance of interpersonal competence and communication in one's personal and professional life. You will study self-disclosure and the various levels needed for personal and professional use. The course content includes trust building, active listening, verbal and non-verbal communication and building relationships with individuals from diverse backgrounds.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 178, CDEP 180, CDEP 161
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
CDEP 177
Conflict Resolution in Mental Health and Addictions
3
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You will introduced to theory and skills for effective anger, fear and conflict management. You will learn how to identify sources of anger, fear and conflicts. You will be given opportunities to practice assertiveness, conflict resolution, confrontation and negotiation skills. You will also explore the implications that arise when working with people affected by addictions and from various cultural backgrounds.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 172
Equivalent Course(s): CDEP 173
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
CDEP 178
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
1
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You will be introduced to the basic concepts of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) and partial Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (pFAS). The course emphasizes the importance of identifying those at risk for FASD neurodevelopmental disorder, early intervention and strategies for working with clients and their families affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD).
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 15.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 155
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
CLTR 148
Valuing Diversity
2
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You will be introduced to a philosophical approach that values diversity, blends multi-spiritual principles and emphasizes the strengths within community. You will examine what it means to be culturally competent when working with clients affected by mental health and substance use/abuse. You will also participate in culture awareness activities with special consideration to Indigenous peoples of Canada.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): MHA 148
Equivalent Course(s): CDEP 167
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
COUN 151
Brief Screenings
2
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You will examine and practice using various brief screening instruments. You will practice administering, scoring, interpreting, and presenting brief screening results.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): ETHC 140
Potential Learning Method(s): Lab/Practical, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
COUN 152
Suicide Interventions
1
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You will receive information on suicide, and suicide prevention and intervention. The course content includes recognizing suicidal behaviour, assessing risk and practicing prevention and intervention techniques. You will also discuss addictions centre protocol.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 15.0
Prerequisites(s): COUN 151(concurrent)
Equivalent Course(s): SPSY 123
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
COUN 157
Motivational Interviewing
2
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You will examine the elements and process of motivational interviewing. You will also explore what motivates a person to change, in particular, to seek and maintain recovery from various conditions. You will practice the motivational interviewing process and working with resistant clients.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 177
Equivalent Course(s): COUN 150
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
COUN 158
Assessments and Recovery Plans
3
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You will examine various comprehensive assessment instruments, the process of assessing clients using the whole person model in treatment modalities, case management procedures, risk assessment and best practices. You will practice both paper and electronic documentation and record keeping.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 178, CDEP 180, CDEP 181, CLTR 148, ETHC 140, HUMD 144, MHA 143, MHA 144
Equivalent Course(s): COUN 149
Potential Learning Method(s): Lab/Practical, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
COUN 159
Counselling Theory
2
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You will receive an orientation to the complete skilled helping process. You will examine establishing rapport, foundational counselling skills, assessing client problems, the process of facilitating client self-exploration, assisting a client in developing new perspectives and setting goals. You will also examine the skills of challenging clients when they are stuck and the process of facilitating clients in designing their treatment plans.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): ETHC 140
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
ETHC 140
Ethics in Mental Health and Addictions
2
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You will examine the purpose and ethical basis for being a skilled helper with particular emphasis in the addictions industry. You will be introduced to the Problem Management Approach to Helping. You will learn how to apply the codes of ethics and confidentiality in the human services industry, notably the addictions industry.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 177
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
HLTH 151
Stress Management in Helping Profession
2
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You will examine the various types, causes and effects of stress on an individual. You will learn how to assess stress levels and apply stress management techniques personally and for those experiencing stress as a result of mental health and chemical dependency. You will explore the use of cultural activities to manage stressors.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 24.0
Prerequisites(s): CAPL 146
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
HUMD 144
Life Span Issues
3
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Using a holistic approach, you will examine culture in human development and the influence of substance use and/or abuse and mental health issues in each stage of the life span.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 158, CDEP 178
Equivalent Course(s): HUMD 143
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
MHA 140
Mental Health Issues and Mental Health Disorders
3
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You will examine the history, services, Aboriginal perspectives, and the role of the twelve core functions in mental health. You will learn about the basic signs and symptoms of mental health issues contained in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th Edition (DSM IV). You will learn about the continuum of mental health and mental well-being and the prevalence rates of mental health disorders in the general population. You will examine the effects of stigma as it relates to mental health and substance use disorders and its effect upon the client. You will learn about the Canadian Mental Health Strategy. You will also be introduced to the concept of the “Recovery Model.”
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 40.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 158
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
MHA 141
Medical Issues in Mental Health
1
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You will be provided with basic information regarding pharmacological treatment of mental health issues and concerns, and client concerns that may arise with the use of medications. You will be provided with an introduction to a First Nations philosophical approach to medication and issues that may arise between conflicting philosophies of First Nations and the medical model.
Credit Units: 1
Course Hours: 12.0
Prerequisites(s): MHA 140
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
MHA 142
Recovery and Wellness Models
2
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You will examine addictions and treatment processes as they relate to non-First Nations and First Nations traditional healing practises in recovery. You will also explore the dynamics of relapse and methadone programs in the recovery process.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 24.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 158
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online
MHA 143
Concurrent Disorders
3
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You will be provided with foundational knowledge regarding the relationship between mental health and substance use, risk factors, and treatment models for concurrent disorder clients. You will study prevalence rates of concurrent disorders. You will be introduced to the Saskatchewan Mental Health Act. You will use brief screening instruments and referral procedures.
Credit Units: 3
Course Hours: 45.0
Prerequisites(s): CLTR 148, HUMD 144, MHA 149
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Web Assisted Delivery Group
MHA 144
Process Addictions
2
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You will examine the nature and extent of process addictions including problem gambling and Internet use, the phases of problem use, and the signs and characteristics of individuals who experience problem use. You will be introduced to entry level screening, assessment tools and referral sources used for process addictions, relapse and the recovery process. You will recognize the differences, similarities and relationships between gambling, other addictions and mental health issues.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): CDEP 179
Potential Learning Method(s): Lecture/Lab, Online, Prior Learning, Web Assisted Delivery Group
MHA 145
Wellness Resource Project
2
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You will shadow a mental health or an addictions counsellor in your community and through collaboration and networking you will develop resources to assist clients in working towards wellness and balance. You will examine the Recovery Model, the Whole Person Model and incorporating traditional healing practices into the recovery process.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): COUN 159
Potential Learning Method(s): Clinical/Practicum, Online
MHA 146
Orientation to Mental Health and Addiction Services
2
Show course details
You will use the core function of consulting with another professional to assist clients in their wellness and recovery journey. Using the Recovery Model, the Whole Person Model, and traditional healing practices, you will practice integrated screening, referral and treatment plan procedures to address the clients’ concerns.
Credit Units: 2
Course Hours: 30.0
Prerequisites(s): COUN 159
Potential Learning Method(s): Clinical/Practicum, Online

PLAR & Transfer Credit

Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition

Saskatchewan Polytechnic recognizes that adults learn in many different ways and through many different means. This includes acquiring knowledge and skills through life and work experience or non-formal training.


Transfer Credit

Many Sask Polytech students benefit from transferring course credit. You may be eligible to transfer credit from or to another college or university. Learn more about Transfer Credit.


Transfer credit options vary over time; this information is subject to change. Transfer credit options for this program include:

some transfer credit to the Saskatchewan Polytechnic Addictions Counselling program

Student Awards

Thanks to the generosity of donors and alumni, Saskatchewan Polytechnic gives away more than $2 million in student awards during the academic year.

Saskatchewan Polytechnic offers student awards for every certificate and diploma program at every campus. You don't have to be a brainiac to receive a student award. Not all student awards are based on marks - some are based on financial need or things like community or volunteer involvement.

More about scholarships

Related Programs

Part-Time Delivery

Some courses in this program might also be offered through part-time programming.

View the program page for a complete list of courses and additional information.

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