Ontario has 500, 000 online course registrations which are twice that of other provinces.
As of 2013, there were 18, 000 college and university courses with 1000 fully online programs available.
The good news is that Personal Support Worker Program is available online as well!
There are a wide variety of other educational institutions and course options that are currently available as well.
The focus of this article is online PSW courses.
Before examining the online and distance Personal Support Worker programs offered in Ontario, it is important to understand what specifically, distance education is.
WHAT IS DISTANCE EDUCATION?
Essentially, distance learning can be defined as:
“A method of instruction and, learning that differs from a traditional approach as it involves students not being physically present in the classroom when material is being presented by a facilitator.”
Online and distance education courses can allow you to attend classes virtually from anywhere.
This is a great option for those who require flexibility with respect to their personal schedule.
By having the choice to pursue your education online or through distance courses you will have the latitude that you need which could potentially increase your chances of being successful academically.
The popularity of these type of courses is primarily increasing as a result of the high amount of accessibility it provides prospective students with in addition to the lower participation costs it requires.
There are many academic institutions that offer online PSW courses.
This article will provide you with an overview of the schools that offer online and distance PSW programs throughout Ontario.
ADVANTAGES OF ONLINE AND DISTANCE EDUCATION
There are many benefits to enrolling in a program that is offered either online or through distance education.
Although the most obvious one is that it allows you to enjoy the flexibility of completing your classes according to your own schedule and lifestyle, there are other advantages as well.
- Online courses provide a seamless communication between students and teachers. There are also more opportunities for classmates to contact and subsequently communicate with one another in the event that their facilitator is unavailable for assistance.
- Those who live in smaller, more remote areas have the option to pursue their education without being hindered by the distance they would have to travel to attend classes.
- It allows a larger number of students to enroll as compared to traditional classroom settings. As a result, there are no constraints with respect to class size capacity.
- Online classes allow individuals who are unable to attend traditional classrooms as a result of illness or being disabled, to pursue their education from their home.
- It allows older and mature students with the option to enjoy lifelong learning opportunities that would typically not be available to them.
- The course completion rate is quite high. Statistical reports indicate that the completion of online courses in college institutions is 70% to 79% with a median level of 76% and university online courses boast a 95% successful completion rate.
- Online programs often have lower fees and tuition rates than traditional courses.
- Students can vary their workloads based on their personal schedules.
DEMO ONLINE COURSE
It is a good idea to see how a course is delivered online, especially if you have never taken one.
It is a completely different kind of learning experience and may take some time before you get used to it. It may also be a challenge if you’re not very computer savvy.
Here is a quick video demonstration of how a course is delivered online. This particular video uses Moodle, an online course delivery platform that many colleges use.
IS ONLINE LEARNING RIGHT FOR YOU?
Not everyone can learn online. It comes with its own set of challenges.
Here are a few things to consider before you make your decision:
- You will be taking courses and studying virtually. This may cause you to feel isolated from the instructor and classmates.
- You will have options to connect with your instructor and fellow students however help may not be readily available.
- Not having proper hardware (computer) and software (programs) can make accessing courses frustrating.
- Getting used to the online course delivery software can be challenging especially for those with beginner-level computer skills.
Studyonline is a great website that offers plenty of resources and links for taking courses online.
One of the tools available on this website is a quiz which can help you decide if online learning is for you or not.
It goes through a series of 17 questions and gives you a score out of 100.
Based on your score, it will tell you if online learning is right for you or not.
Click here to take this quiz now!
This page will also give you many other tips on how to succeed while taking online courses.
You will find tips on:
- How to make the most out of your online course?
- How to succeed in an online course? and
- How to manage your time well?
COLLEGES OFFERING PSW COURSES ONLINE
Distance Education PSW courses are offered in real time via software-enhanced audio and video conferencing technology.
The following section will provide an overview of the information you will need to consider when deciding on a PSW program offered through online and distance education. Knowing the specifics of the curriculums with respect to program delivery, duration, fees and contact information will help you to make a choice that will enable you to decide upon a program that is the best fit for you in terms of your lifestyle, budget, and schedule.
Knowing the specifics of the curriculums with respect to program delivery, duration, fees and contact information will help you to make a choice that will enable you to decide upon a program that is the best fit for you in terms of your lifestyle, budget, and schedule.
You have the option to access classes from the comfort of your home, any regional campus or Contact North site on a specific date and time each week.
NATIVE EDUCATION AND TRAINING COLLEGE
The Native Education & Training College is a non-profit post-secondary college.
It offers programs both online and through distance learning.
Personal Support Worker program is offered completely online. Intake is on a continuous basis on every Monday.
This program runs for 52 weeks or for 3 semesters.
Apart from all the necessary courses, this program also offers clinical practicum at the end of the program.
- Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent; OR
- Academic and Career Entrance (ACE) Certificate; OR
- General Educational Development (GED); OR
- Mature Student status (19 years of age or older and without a high school diploma at the start of the program).
- Students must be in good physical and mental condition and meet the same physical and immunization requirements as those for the staff employed by the agency/facility where the practicum is taking place
- Complete immunization record including immunization against Hepatitis B.
- Valid Standard First Aid and Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation (CPR)-C for Health Care Provider (HCP) certificates
Police Record Check: A vulnerable sector screen/police record check is required. The police record check may have to be renewed every three to six months thereafter.
This is a full-time video conferencing and web conferencing program.
The course features almost 400 hours of supervised practice in health care facilities and meets the Ministry of Health guidelines developed by its Long Term Care Division.
Its course of study mandates that classes including Human Relations, Supportive Care Theory, and Persuasive Writing are completed successfully in order to fulfill certificate requirements.
You can complete the course at your own pace and have five years to finish.
- Ontario Secondary School Diploma(or equivalent) with courses from the College (C), University (U), University/College (U/C), or Open (O) preparation levels.
- Or successful completion of a Mature Student Assessment
- Or appropriate credits from Academic and Career Entrance program (ACE).
- Current Vulnerable Persons Criminal Records Check must be less than 1 year old
- Current Standard First Aid & CPR – Level C certificate (Health Care Provider Level), CPR must be renewed every year
- A completed Health Centre Immunization and Communicable Disease Form, up-to-date immunization record, a two-step Tuberculosis (TB) test, HEP B, and Flu shot
- Mask Fit certificate
This program is designed to provide students with a theory-based knowledge and solid practical skills to meet needs of future clients.
Upon graduation, you will possess the understanding of health related subjects that will enable you to work confidently both in private residences and various health care facilities.
The curriculum also ensures that students are taught effective communication skills which are critical and necessary for all health care professionals.
It is offered part time through distance learning options (Contact north) however there currently isn’t any OSAP funding available for those wishing to enroll in this program.
Ontario Secondary School Diploma with Grade 12 English (C) ENG4C, or mature student status.
As a mature student you have two options:
1. You can pay $25 to write the Canadian Academic Achievement Test (CAAT) for Math and/or English requirements only.
2. You can take get your high school equivalency by doing academic Upgrading for free.
Clinical Placement Requirements
- Police Records Search (current within one year).
- Standard First Aid/CPR (Health Care Provider) with AED
- Immunization and Health Record Form including:
• Two-step Mantou test for Tuberculosis
• Immunity against measles, mumps, and rubella
• Current Tetanus-diphtheria
• Influenza vaccination
- Statement of Confidentiality Form
- Work Education Agreement Student Summary Sheet
Click here to learn how you can apply to this program.
ONLINE LEARNING CENTRES
Online learning centers are located across Ontario.
There are a total of 112 access centers in Ontario.
If you’re considering taking Personal Support Worker or any other course online, it is a good idea to visit one of these centers.
Click here to find out a center close to you.
Each of the 112 online learning centers has everything you need in order to succeed in the courses you have taken.
All centers are equipped with all the multimedia technologies that you will need to successfully complete your online courses.
You can use all these facilities to complete your course work.
Each center is also fully staffed. They are always happy to assist you with:
- Available courses and programs,
- Registration into any of the courses or programs,
- Financial aid options,
- Referrals to community and employment agencies.
- Support and encouragement throughout your education
The best part is…it is all FREE!
Deciding on the PSW course delivery type that best suits your need requires a clear understanding of the options available.
Your decision to enroll in a program is both an important and integral part of the process that you will have to embark on when entering the field.
Personal support workers are in high demand and the field has the potential to become lucrative yet highly competitive in the near future.
Therefore, ensuring that you have a solid education can be a determining factor in your ability to enjoy a fulfilling and successful career.
As evidenced in this article, online and distance learning options can provide you with the education you need to become a PSW without the constraints that traditional classroom teaching involves.
With several Ontario schools opting to examine methods to develop distance education curriculums for more of their courses, you now have more opportunities to pursue your studies as a personal support worker than ever before.