1 Year - 2 Semesters
Ontario College Certificate
Campus: Sault Ste. Marie
Start Dates: Sep 2024, Jan 2025, May 2025
Program Code: 3027


Do you love to care for others? Your passion to help inspires us!

The 1-year Sault College Personal Support Worker (PSW) program teaches you the skills to provide personal care for the elderly, the chronically ill and persons with accessibility challenges across many different settings.

Learn how to successfully support and promote the physical, emotional and social well-being of clients in:

• Long-term care facilities
• Hospitals
• Private agencies
• Retirement homes
• Home care settings
• Boards of education (special needs children)
• Palliative care settings
• Senior citizen recreation centres
• Respite settings
• Group homes

Work with clients and families and start making a difference now!

As a student of the PSW program, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in field placements to further your skills, gain valuable experience and increase your confidence level as you enter the workforce.

You were meant to be a vital member of community healthcare. And you will find it here.

Requirements & Program Information

To enter the Personal Support Worker program, you`ll need to have Ontario Secondary School diploma with Grade 12 English (C) ENG4C or mature student status.

A mature student is someone who is 19 years of age or older by the first day of College and has not graduated from high school. If you have graduated from high school but haven`t been to school in a while, you`re an adult learner.

If you`re a mature student, you can still apply to College, and have two options: You can pay $25 to write the Canadian Academic Achievement Test (CAAT) for Math and/or English requirements only or you can take Academic Upgrading for free to get your high school equivalency for any of our college programs.

If you`re an adult learner that, is, have graduated from high school and have been out of school for a while, you still may want to consider free Academic Upgrading to re-fresh your skills before the start of the Personal Support Worker program. Upgrading programs start at the beginning of each month. Call 705-759-2554 ext., 2433 to learn more.

Educational Paths

We really want you to make the best choice possible and make a decision that`s right for you.

Before deciding to study to become a Personal Support Worker, please give us a call to talk about what working in this field will be like.

That way, you`ll know exactly what your future will look like.

We can talk with you over the phone, tour you around the facilities and classrooms, or invite you to sit in on a class.

Call Susan Armstrong, Program Coordinator for PSW at 705.759.2554, ext. 2760 or by email at susan.armstrong@saultcollege.ca to learn more about a future as a Personal Support Worker.

Clinical/Lab and Field Placement Requirements

In order for students to be eligible to complete clinical placement, which is a mandatory component of education, specific clinical requirements must be satisfied, and documentation submitted by the due date identified for the program.

The absence of documentation for any requirements or failure to submit the requirements by the expected due date will result in the student being withdrawn from the course in which clinical placement is an element.   Tuition will not be refunded if access to clinical placement is denied.


  • CPR - Basic Life Support Level (BLS) (annually) with AED, must be for Health Care Providers, no online courses are permitted
  • WHMIS (current)
  • N95 MASK FIT TESTING CARD (every 2 years), requires a clean-shaven face for appropriate fitting (recommended: students can/should attempt to be fitted for two sizes if possible)
  • IMMUNIZATIONS (see required immunizations below)
  • POLICE VULNERABLE SECTOR CHECK (PVSC) (annually), Level 3 Criminal Record Check

Clinical Placement Requirements are due as indicated:

  • Personal Support Worker (3027) - Due Date - 4th week of first semester

College Contact for Clinical Requirements: Jennifer.Williamson@saultcollege.ca

Please Note:

All original placement documentation must be submitted to the appropriate college contact by the program mandated deadlines. It is the responsibility of the student to keep up-to-date placement requirement documentation (and copies) to present to faculty and/or placement agencies as required.  The College does not retain copies of any placement requirements.

Students are responsible for the full cost of obtaining placement requirements. Tuition is not refunded if access to clinical placement is denied or if proof of requirements is not submitted within the required timeframes.

Notice to International Students:

The necessary immunizations for your program can be obtained from your home country and you will need to submit those immunization records along with the College Health Form to the Sault College Health Centre.

All other requirements (Standard First Aid, CPR, WHMIS, N95 Mask Fit, Police Vulnerable Sector Check) must be obtained and completed after your arrival in Ontario.

As per Canadian Immigration policy, all International students completing a program with a practicum (field/clinical placement) component must obtain a Coop/Work Permit from Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada stating that they are permitted to attend practicum as an integral part of their studies. International students will not be able to attend placement without obtaining this permit.

Clinical Requirement Specifics:

Students should endeavor to have all of their requirements completed prior to their program start date.  If unable to obtain all requirements prior to the program start date, a list of available resources in the community can be provided.  Sault College cannot guarantee that appointment dates or course times will be available prior to identified program deadlines.

Standard First Aid, CPR - BLS, and the N95 Mask Fit Test - are offered through Sault College`s Continuing Education Department. You may also access these courses through other providers as long as they meet the clinical/placement requirement specifications.

WHMIS - The WHMIS course is available to registered students free of charge on LMS (Learning Management System). Registration takes place after mid-August and mid-December when tuition has been paid.

Two Step TB Skin Test or Blood Test - Please be advised that the Step Two TB Skin Test is available locally through Algoma Public Health, however, testing, although offered weekly, is limited. It is our suggestion that you schedule this test early so that you complete the requirements by the deadlines listed on this page for your applicable program. Algoma Public Health contact information is (705) 541-7085. In the event that Algoma Public Health is not offering TB skin testing, please contact your health care provider and watch for information regarding clinics on LMS.


Complete required immunizations prior to the first semester of the program and submit official records, along with the College Health Form, to the Sault College Health Centre.


  1. 2 Step TB Skin Test or TB blood test or Clear Chest X-Ray
  2. Annual 1 Step TB Test (as needed)
  3. Measles/Mumps/Rubella
  4. Tetanus/Diphtheria (within 10 years)
  5. Chicken Pox (documented proof of immunity)
  6. Hepatitis B
  7. Influenza Vaccine (October/November)
  8. COVID vaccine*

* The Covid-19 pandemic remains a global concern. We encourage you to speak to your healthcare provider regarding the decision to be vaccinated. Please note clinical placement agencies may require evidence of vaccination prior to entry to placement. Further, they may refuse a student entry who has not been vaccinated against Covid-19.

Police Vulnerable Sector Check (PVSC):

For your program, a Police Vulnerable Sector Check (PVSC) is required.

The laws, rules and regulations regarding the acquisition of a criminal record check and the Sault College Criminal Record Check Policy shall be enforced and applied in accordance a manner consistent with the Ontario Human Rights Code, the Police Record Checks Reform Act, 2015 and all other applicable statutes or regulations.

Why is a Police Vulnerable Sector Check necessary?

Sault College placements are bound by this policy and the policies of placement providers. Given this, the purpose of a police vulnerable sector check includes but is not limited to the following:


  1. The protection of vulnerable persons;
  2. The protection of the interests of students;
  3. The protection of the interests of the placement agencies; and
  4. The protection of the interests of the College and its employees.

Students will be advised of the process to obtain a Police Vulnerable Sector Check during the first month of the first semester or when field placements are confirmed.

Individuals who have charges, pending charges or a criminal conviction for which record suspension has not been granted, must contact the College Contact listed above for their program. A meeting will be scheduled with the Chair to discuss their ability to participate in experiential learning in order to complete all program graduation requirements. If a student fails to disclose this information, their academic status will be adversely affective. Prospective students should know that if a criminal record exists, the student’s ability to complete the academic requirements and graduate from their program may be in jeopardy.

Student questions about the Police Vulnerable Sector Search and the submission of these documents may be made to the College Contact listed above for their program.

Please visit the Sault College Criminal Record Check Policy and procedural information located on the Student Portal. On the Student Portal, select Support Services, then select Forms and Policies.

Students must also sign a Statement of Confidentiality.

Career Path

The staff and faculty are committed to providing an academic environment that will help you achieve personal and professional success. When you have completed the Personal Support Program here at Sault College you will be able to work in various settings such as long-term care facilities, hospitals, community agencies, and various other settings offering opportunities to work with various age groups.

Dress code

The public we serve and the institutions with which we share contractual agreements expect a neat and well-groomed appearance of the Personal Support Worker student. A professional image communicates respect, caring and inspires confidence and trust with our clients and others.

It is expected that Sault College Personal Support Worker students will follow a dress code when in labs/clinical placements and also adhere to the policies of the agencies they will be placed in.

Fees & Costs


These fees are for the 2024-2025 academic year (year 1 of study), and are subject to change. Please visit your Student Portal to view your Schedule of Fees.


Program Coordinator: Susan Armstrong, 705-759-2554 ext. 2760, susan.armstrong@saultcollege.ca, office D1114.  

The Personal Support Worker program gives you a strong foundation for going on in the health care field of study if you would like to further your education.

After graduating successfully from the program, you can work part-time on week-ends and evenings as a Personal Support Worker at a competitive wage to help pay with your education while going on in school.

To go on to become a Practical Nurse after graduating from the Personal Support Worker program, you will still need two additional courses: Grade 12 Chemistry (C) SCH4C and Grade 11 Foundations for College Math (C) MBF3C to enter the Practical Nursing program.

Both of these are offered through our free Academic Upgrading program and can be done simultaneously if you choose while taking the Personal Support Program. Call 705.759.2554, ext. 2433 to learn more about taking these courses.

If you successfully complete both PSW108 and PSW118 while studying in the Personal Support Worker program, those will be accepted for Grade 11 Biology (C) SBI3C, which is required for the Practical Nursing program. You will also be exempted from the Medical Terminology portion of Practical Nursing if you have completed Medical Terminology in the Personal Support Worker or within the Continuing Education Program.

September and January intakes are available for this program. Please contact the Registrar`s Office for further information.

All Students will be required to have access to a personal computer (Laptop/Notebook) with a minimal 4GB of RAM that accepts a minimal Windows 7 software program to be used for remote learning (eg. on-line class attendance), assignments, and in-class  or on-line evaluation.  Students may also be required to download and use Sault College software through the LMS for use during on-line testing.

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