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Child and Youth Care (BA)

Undergraduate Program Overview

As a Ryerson-trained child and youth care practitioner, you will design and implement theoretically sound and evidence-informed therapeutic interventions, programs and services that aim to partner with young people, their families and their communities in the process of bringing about positive change — for young people, families, neighbourhoods and communities. Your practice will include life-space work, advocacy at the individual and system levels, and a children’s rights perspective that seeks to ensure young people’s participation in the decisions that affect them.

Why Study Child and Youth Care at Ryerson?

Ryerson is the only university in Ontario that offers a Bachelor of Arts in Child and Youth Care.

Our curriculum draws upon the latest trends and knowledge in the field. It is relevant and responsive to community needs and the changing context of professional practice.

Internship placements enable Full-time, Four-year students to apply knowledge to practice in child welfare, children’s mental health, health care, family support, education, community and youth justice settings.

Direct Entry students to build on their knowledge and experience through challenging classroom learning and independent study opportunities to prepare them to take on advanced clinical and supervisory roles.

Our faculty members are dedicated teachers, researchers and strong advocates for social change. They continually adapt their teaching and pedagogic methods to equip you with the knowledge and experiences to contribute, lead and adapt.

Program Details

Program Name: Child and Youth Care
Start Date: September entry
Degree earned: Bachelor of Arts (BA)
Tuition & Fees
Faculty: Community Services

Program formats:

High school and college graduates can complete a Bachelor of Arts in Child and Youth Care at Ryerson using the pathway relevant to them.

For High School Graduates: The full-time program starting in year 1

  • Program length: Four years of full-time study
  • Program entry: Year one
  • Course delivery: Classroom delivery in first and second year, with options for online and classroom delivery in third and fourth year
  • Eligibility: High school graduates with an Ontario Secondary School Diploma (or equivalent), a minimum of six university-level credits, including university-level English, and mature students embarking on a career change.

Transfer Students: The full-time program starting in year 1 plus transfer credits

  • Program length: up to four years of FT study, but it depends on how many transfer credits completed at another institution may be granted
  • Program entry: Year one or year two, depending on transfer credits
  • Eligibility: same as High School students, but already completed post-secondary credits will be considered as potential transfer credits

Full-time, Direct Entry:

  • Program length: Two years of full-time study
  • Program entry: Year three
  • Course delivery: Classroom (daytime and/or evening) and/or online
  • Eligibility: Completed three-year Child and Youth Worker/Child and Youth Care Advanced Diploma from an Ontario public college. Out-of-province applicants with similar diplomas will be considered on an individual basis.

Part-time, Direct Entry:

  • Program length: Up to seven years of part-time study
  • Program entry: Year three
  • Course delivery: Classroom (daytime and/or evening) and/or online.
  • Eligibility: Same as Full-time direct entry program

Our up to date curriculum will immerse you in the latest trends, knowledge and practices in the professional field of child and youth care.

A blend of academic studies and professional opportunities outside of the classroom will challenge you to develop a strong foundation in both theory and practice.

Required courses will enhance your understanding of the issues that children, youth and their families confront today. You will learn about child and adolescent development, child abuse and neglect, children's rights and more.

Professionally-related courses will engage you with the psychology of addiction, social innovation, violence and the family and more.

Internship placements provide Four-year students with the opportunity to apply knowledge to practice in child welfare, children’s mental health, family support, health care, education, autism and developmental services, as well as youth justice settings.

Opportunities to explore other disciplines, whether by pursuing a minor or taking elective courses, will challenge you to broaden your horizons.

Our Full-time, Four-year program is designed for students interested in beginning a career in child and youth care, while our Direct Entry programs support College-trained child and youth care practitioners to advance their professional careers or to prepare for graduate school.

See more: Common worksplace settings