Overview

This program has been designed to meet the needs of those who wish to pursue a career in educational support as an Educational Assistant (EA) or are already working in the field and need to upgrade their qualifications.

The provincially-approved curriculum has been designed to develop the aptitudes, knowledge and skills EAs need to work with, and support children and youth with special needs during their educational experience. Through a carefully designed program of studies that combines theory and hands-on practice in school-based field placements, candidates prepare to work with teachers, and other professionals in meeting a wide-range of exceptional student needs.

The part-time, online format enables you to balance life, career, and education.

Career Opportunities

The Educational Support Diploma program can lead to exciting career opportunities!

Industries of Employment

  • School Boards
  • Private Schools
  • Community Facilities offering Special Education
  • College and post high school programs

Occupational Categories

  • Educational Assistants
  • Support/Learning Facilitators for Children with Special Needs

Entry Requirements

  • Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD) or equivalent with:
    • Grade 12 English: ENG4(C) or ENG4(U)
  • OR Mature Student Status (age 19 or older) with the above prerequisite course(s), their equivalent(s) or appropriate Academic and Career Entrance (ACE) Certificate program credits (see Academic Upgrading).

Filter Classes: In Class     Online     Correspondence     Hybrid     Availability   


Curriculum

EDU101
Placement Preparation
Availability
 

Prepare to participate in field placements. Investigate the role of the Educational Assistant, and collaborate with other professionals through research, interviews and guest speakers.




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EDU102
Foundations of Education
Availability
 

Foundations of Education will review the historical development, legislation, ethical practices, access to services, the special education team, and the EA role. Curriculum documents, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, the AODA , workplace Safety and other legislation will be discussed. Students will develop awareness of the rights, responsibility and supports for working with exceptional students across a variety of settings.




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EDU103
Personal and Interpersonal Dynamics
Availability
 

The student will explore components of interpersonal communication through listening skills, perception checking, dealing with conflict and understanding verbal/non-verbal messages. Personality inventories will be implemented to understand the development of self-concept. Analyze and state the factors for developing a positive lifestyle by implementing case studies. Task analysis will also be explored, which will assist in organizing and analyzing information and situations at various behavioural levels. Learn about various viewpoints regarding behaviour management including philosophy, approaches, specific techniques and how to implement these methods in an educational setting.




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EDU104
Technology in Education
Availability
 

This course will teach technology skills for the Educational Support student's own use and for the effective assistance of students with their own technology literacy and use of technology to access and learn other curriculum.




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EDU105
Math in an Educational Setting
Availability
 

Using an online program, IXL Math, math skills to a grade 10 level will be reviewed, following the five strands of math as per the Ontario curriculum guidelines set by the Ministry of Education. Students will review concepts in Number Sense and Numeration, Measurement, Geometry, Patterning and Algebra, and Data Management and Probability. In class work will focus on creating visual representations of math concepts and problems to assist exceptional learners. A range of hands on and virtual manipulatives will be explored.




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EDU106
Safety in an Educational Setting
Availability
 

Students will develop strategies to manage personal safety concerns and safety issues for students. Relevant to the EA role, students will review Safety legislation, receive training on WHMIS, AODA, safe physical care, lifts, physical restraint, medication, and special conditions (e.g. allergies, mental health). This course must be completed prior to registering for a placement.




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PSY100
Introduction to Psychology
Availability
 

Corequisite(s):

EAC149

The discipline of Psychology is the study of human behaviour. It is concerned with the observation behaviour of an individual and its relationship to unseen mental and physical processes, as well as to external events. Introduction to Psychology will provide a framework within which the student can begin to explore the human personality.




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COM101
Communicating Across Contexts
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

Placement via English Assessment, or successful completion of ESL934, EAP 500, or EAC149.

COM101 replaces EAC150.
Students who have successfully completed EAC150 are not required to complete COM101.

This course introduces students to the core concepts of communication. Students will cultivate an awareness of these concepts by analyzing how they are used in a variety of texts and contexts, and they will apply these concepts strategically in their own writing. Through a variety of writing tasks centred on these core concepts of communication, students will develop the transferrable reading and writing skills essential for success in their post-secondary studies, workplaces, and communities.




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EDU202
Inclusion and Cultural Diversity
Availability
 

Examine opportunities and challenges presented to the Educational Assistant with increasingly diverse educational settings. Develop a knowledge base, sensitivity and awareness of strategies to support inclusiveness and equity in the classroom for all students, especially those from marginalized groups.




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EDU203
Total Communication Part I
Availability
 

Understanding the concepts of Total Communication and its use within Special Needs and/or classroom setting will help support the role of Educational the Assistant the Assistant's needs for recognition of the barriers of hearing loss and how this can affect the learner. Total communication will focus on many combined elements including visual communication, hearing loss, body language interpretation, non-verbal communication and assistant devices.




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EDU204
Behaviour Exceptionalities
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU102, EDU103

Behaviour and Mental Health Challenges will focus on the role of the Educational Assistant in managing behaviour and supporting those with behaviour and mental health challenges. Through the identification and awareness of symptoms, strategies and interventions, students will become familiar with available resources and supports in both the school and community. The development of a continuum of strategies in response to escalating behaviours and evaluating implementation through concrete data collection will prepare students to effectively manage behaviour and support mental health challenges.




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PSY106
Developmental Psychology
Availability
 

Corequisite(s):

Suggested: EAC149

This course introduces the student to the knowledge base developmental psychology provides as a guide to social service practice. Students will become familiar with the range of social, emotional, physical and psychological factors affecting human development throughout the lifespan.




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FLD701
Placement 1
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU101, EDU102, EDU103 & EDU106

This course is the first of three field placements. Through onsite learning opportunities and experiences, the student will become familiar with the role of an Educational Assistant in a school setting. The student will be able to summarize the roles, goals and functioning of a school and its staff. The student will gain an appreciation for professionalism, ethical behaviour, positive attitudes and team work as they relate to the educational setting. With the guidance of a supervising teacher or the school team, she/he will prepare and put into practice, strategies to support the learner, and develop cooperative working relationships with the staff.




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General Education Option General Education Option
EDU301
Adaptive Technology
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU104

This course will provide an opportunity to become familiar with adaptive devices, both hardware and software, that will provide the Educational Assistant with valuable skills when working with students.




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EDU302
Total Communication Part II
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU203

Understanding the concepts of Total Communication and its use within Special Needs and/or classroom setting will help support the role of the Educational Assistant and the Assistant's needs for recognition of the barriers of hearing loss and how this can affect the learner. Total communication will focus on many combined elements including visual communication, hearing loss, body language interpretation, non-verbal communication and assistant devices.




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EDU303
Classroom Skills
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU102, EDU103, EDU204

Designed to familiarize the Educational Assistant with Literacy, Mathematics and other subjects areas of the Ontario Curriculum. Lessons focus upon the strategies and skills EAs may use to assist students' development of curriculum expectations. Issues related to concrete materials and technology will also be addressed.




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EDU304
Communication Exceptionalities
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU204

Details the types of communications exceptionalities (e.g. autism, L.D.) and implications of these for students with communication challenges in an educational setting. It will cross reference related, previously-learned material (e.g. behaviour management) and other aspects of communications.




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FLD702
Placement 2
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

FLD701, EDU204

Students will be placed at a high school or special class setting to gain experience as educational assistants. With the guidance of a supervising teacher or the school team, she/he will prepare and put into practice, strategies to support the learner, and while so doing, develop cooperative working relationships with the staff.




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General Education Option General Education Option
EDU401
Autism Spectrum Disorder Assisting Student Development
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU304

A comprehensive examination of the Autism Spectrum Disorder, this course will provide educational staff with the tools they need to work successfully with children diagnosed with this complex condition. Pulling content information from a team of professionals including school boards, Hamilton Health Sciences Corporation, and including International Autism authorities Dr. Peter Szatmari and Dr. Lonnie Zwaigenbaum, a strong emphasis will be placed on communication, social skills, behavioral challenges, family, sensory and educational issues.




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EDU402
Learning Strategies
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU103, EDU303

The main objective of this course is to prepare Educational Support students to assist students by understanding how we learn. Students will acquire knowledge about how we learn and remember information. They will develop problem-solving skills. They will develop strategies for identifying and assessing learning styles and preferences and gain experience in differentiating curriculum based activities to meet the needs of a variety of learners.




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EDU403
Transition Planning
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU304

Transition Planning will develop the skills and awareness of supports available to assist the exceptional learner with transitions throughout school, and ultimately to adulthood. Learning will focus on maximizing the exceptional learners potential and autonomy through developing basic life skills, vocational training and job readiness. As an EA or job coach, ES students will collaborate to support the transition to successful living; including vocational, residential, social and recreational opportunities. Portfolio development and job search skills for the EA and for the exceptional learner, will also be a major component of the course.




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EDU404
Physical and Multiple Exceptionalities
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU304

Intellectually Challenged: will describe intellectual challenges, team roles, expectations, skills and supports for individuals who are intellectually challenged. Physically Challenged will describe various types of physical challenges and how to effectively assist students with physical challenges. Multiply Challenged will describe multiple challenges, roles, exceptions, skills and supports for individuals with multiple challenges.




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FLD703
Placement 3
Availability
 

Prerequisite(s):

EDU303, EDU304

This is the final of the three field placements, presenting onsite preparation for the position of educational assistant. The student will acquire and apply the appropriate attitudes, knowledge and skills to work successfully as a member of an educational team in assisting students with learning exceptionalities. During the placement period, working under the direction of a teacher, the student will focus on a variety of exceptionalities. The student will support the needs of students in the implementation of their IEPs throughout the duration of the placement.




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Program Outcomes

  1. Promote and model positive and prosocial behaviour in all aspects of their role with the learners, peers, supervisors, members of the educational team, and where requested members of the learners' family and/or guardians.
  2. Implement, under the direction of or with support from school personnel, individualized educational plans to assist and accommodate the varied strengths and developmental needs of learners
  3. Adapt to the learning environments that support and accommodate the varied strengths and the developmental needs of all learners.
  4. Assist learners and team members to use assistive devices and/or technology and other educational resources as recommended or prescribed to support learning
  5. Respond to/and assist with personal care needs of learners in consultation with the educational team, specialists, and family members.
  6. Maintain a safe and professional environment that promotes the interests, protection, and well-being of learners and members of the educational team.
  7. Observe, track/record, and report information related to the learner and the learning environment as identified by school personnel.
  8. Act in a manner consistent with the professional requirements related to all aspects of their work
  9. Assist the student in attaining essential life and job related skills, work related vocabulary, money concepts, personal hygiene, and appropriate social skills

Graduation/Convocation

When you meet all program requirements and become eligible for a certificate, diploma, or degree, you must inform the Registrar by completing a Graduation Application form and paying the graduation and alumni fee. Certificates, diplomas, and applied degrees are issued twice a year in the Fall (October) and Spring (June).

For further information including deadlines and fees, please visit the  Convocation website or contact the Convocation Office at 416-491-5050 ext. 77461.

Program Contacts

Georgina Ioannou
Program Assistant
Georgina.Ioannou@senecacollege.ca
416.491.5050 x22946


Joanne Bonnet
Academic Program Manager
Joanne.Bonnet@senecacollege.ca
416.491.5050 x22528