Enhanced Personal Support Worker - Acute Care
2018/19 | Conestoga College
Program Code: 1368
School of Health & Life Sciences
Conestoga College Institute of Technology and Advanced Learning
This is a companion document to the current Conestoga College Student Guide
Program Handbook Guidelines
The purpose of this handbook is to provide students with program-specific details and other important information. The material in this handbook is accurate at the date of posting, and is applicable for the current academic year. Students will be informed of handbook changes that occur, if any, through college email. Program handbooks are updated yearly and students must check their program handbook for the current edition.
To the School of Health & Life Sciences
Your Bridge to Practice
What Can This Mean For You?
- The opportunity to begin, today, to become the professional you aspire to be.
- The opportunity to learn in life-like settings and with real-life scenarios, rehearsing for the day when you will be in these real-life situations.
- A unique inter-professional opportunity, given the number of different disciplines in the school. You will learn with, about and from your future colleagues.
- An opportunity to take advantage of the state-of-the-art facilities, social and study spaces in our Cowan Health Sciences Centre, as well as other unique learning resources such as the Motz Emergency Service Bays in the Regional of Waterloo Paramedic Services Station, or the WeConnect Agora and Simulation Centre (Living Classroom at University Gates).
- Your goal of being viewed by employers as a "preferred graduate" is up to you; your professors, support staff, administrative staff and college services look forward to supporting you as you journey from day one to your graduation.
Top 5 Expectations of You
1. Use MyConestoga to Connect To:
Your Conestoga Email: (e.g. John Smith, Student Number 1234567, email@example.com)
- This is the official communication vehicle regarding your academic requirements. Check it regularly and respond as requested.
eConestoga: (Desire to Learn)
- This is your resource for all course-based program information and course-based communication with your Faculty.
- Make eConestoga your partner in learning; this is your guide to all course activity.
- Find your grade information, college tuition invoices, class schedules and absence reporting.
Practicum Health Requirements: (Go to "Services" and find "Practicum Services Link")
- Keep track of your requirements; know that they are complete to allow you to go on your practicum. (If applicable)
2. Know and Plan Around Your Academic Schedule
- Your schedule has been planned with many people and considerations in mind.
- Classes can be scheduled in the daytime, evening and weekends depending on your particular program or course.
- Please check with your Instructors as he/she will provide you with information related to your academic dates for your courses.
3. Be the Professional You Wish To Become - From Day One
Civility, respect and professional behaviours will be key in the quality of your learning experience—and a future employer's first and lasting impression.
Professional Dress & Conduct: See Professional Conduct section for professionalism expectations for your program. The college's Student Guide sets out Student Code of Conduct for our community at Conestoga.
Pre-practicum Health Requirements: Pay attention to the deadlines listed on your documents. Complete as required; without these, you will not be able to progress to your practicum and your program completion will be in jeopardy.
Social Media: Use responsibly. See Standards of Conduct section of the Handbook.
4. Attend To Enhance Success
Please Review Attendance section in Handbook: Attendance for class, labs and practicum underpins student learning and your experience as a future professional.
Absence from Evaluations: Must be reported in the Student Portal before your absence to be eligible for a repeated evaluation.
Request for Accommodation for Religious Holidays: Must be requested to your Program Coordinator in the first three weeks of each semester.
5. Take Responsibility for Your Academic Status
Student Records if you have questions about your student record, academic status and or program withdrawals, go to the Registrar's Office and speak to your Program Coordinator.
Fee Payments: Payment is required to attend classes. Check your Student Portal for invoices.
Credit Transfer/Exemptions: Conestoga supports the transferability of academic credits between programs and educational institutions through recognized transfer pathways, articulation agreements and course-to-course equivalences. Please refer to the Student Guide for more information.
Student Forms: To access forms go to the Student Forms page.
Academic Policies & Procedures: May be found under Policies and Procedures.
Student Affairs Polices & Procedures: May be found at the Student Affairs page.
Top 5 Resources for You
1. Your Teaching Team
Appointments: Making appointments (in person, by phone, email) helps to ensure your desired resource is available.
Email Inquiries: will be answered within two business days.
Urgent Need for Help: Program Assistants are available to help you reach one of the Teaching Team (contact information in Relationships Section of the Handbook)
2. Counselling and Services for Personal Needs
College Counselling: Professionally-trained counsellors can help you achieve your educational goals—for such common support as stress management, anxiety, depression, transition issues, family issues, etc. Counselling is free, voluntary and confidential. Arrange to see a Counsellor quickly if academic or personal problems stand in the way of your college success. To make an appointment, visit or call Doon-Room 1A101, 519-748-5220, ext. 3360, Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.. Check the counselling services website for more information.
Good2Talk: Confidential 24-hour phone line for stresses big and small. Call 1-866-925-5454.
Conestoga Security: Provides a safe and secure work and learning environment. Call 519-748-5220 ext. 3357. Refer to the Student Guide for Conestoga's Safety and Security Services and procedures.
Student Financial Services: Student Financial Services can help you by providing you with options to finance your post-secondary education. Students who are in need of emergnecy financial assistance, follow this link for more information.
CSI Food Bank: The CSI Food Bank is an emergency food relief program for current Conestoga students.
Health Services: Your family doctor on campus. Check out the services that they offer on their website or call 519-748-5220 ext. 3679. Services available Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. A full-time health nurse is on site.
Facility Information: Refer to the Student Guide for information on after-hours parking, classroom and computer labs.
3. Accessibility Services
Students with Documented Disabilities are encouraged to book an appointment with Accessibility Services to access accommodations –early in your program. Disability-related documentation will be required to book an appointment. Go to the Accessibility Services webpage for more information.
Adaptive Technology Aids and Special Facilities: Adaptive Aids are arranged through Accessibility Services; accessible washrooms are located throughout the campus. Contact the Adaptive Technology Lab for more information on adaptive technology aids.
4. Student Study Spaces and General Supports
Cowan Health Sciences Centre (F-wing)
Student Lounge Space: Enjoy seats on each of the three floors. Plugs for laptops and charging stations are located throughout these areas.
Student Meeting Room Space: There is both formal and informal student study space available for use within the Cowan Health Sciences Centre. For more information on the availability of this space, please go to the Interprofessional Resources Office (2F16).
General Access Computers and printers are located in two areas:
- 1st Floor—in the student lounge area with photocopier
- 2nd Floor—at the Customer Service Desk and kiosk area
Open Access Lab, 2nd Floor, 2F18.
This is available on a come and go basis for health & pre-health programs practicing key skills. It is open from 8:00am-4:00pm. Book with an Open Access Staff.
Tech Bar: Drop by the Tech Bar for one-on-one assistance. Information can be found on the Library Services website.
5. Services for Students
Library Resource Centre: Located on 2nd Floor B Wing; Go to the Library Resource Centre page for more information.
International Education Office: Check out the International Education Office for services available to you.
Learning Commons: Your one-stop resource for academic services and resources, such as Math, Writing Skills, Peer Tutors and resources for APA. Check out their website or Access through MyConestoga.
Student Engagement: Get involved and shape your experience. Visit the Student Engagement page or Connect to MyConestoga for your Co-Curricular Record.
Student Financial Services: Your one-stop resource to apply for student awards, bursaries, and scholarships apply early to increase your chances. If you are in a financial crisis, please see the Emergency Assistance website for more information.
Bookstore: Your location to buy books (check out their options including used books), clothing for your program and general supplies. Find it in the A wing, just inside Door 1.
Co-op and Career Advising: Your resource for Co-op Placements (if you are in a degree); your source of help to look for summer jobs or future careers and gain help preparing your resume. Check out the Co-op and Career Services site for more information.
Lockers are available with your tuition; important to store your extra clothes and books, etc. so that you can be at your professional best in the lab. Learn how to obtain a locker.
Information Technology: IT Service Desk—1E12 (provides supports & general assistance with college-related needs such as Email, Network accounts, connectivity & wireless printing. Go to the Web IT Service Desk for more information.
ONE Card: This is your official identification card designed to keep campus simple by offering an all-in-one solution to accessing eligible on-campus services. Check the eligibility on their website.
Letter to Students
Dear Enhanced Personal Support Worker Students,
Welcome to the Acute Care Certificate Program.
This handbook has been prepared to provide further information about academic standards, guidelines and processes specific to the EPSW – Acute Care Certificate Program. Reading, understanding and following the information in this handbook is an important first step in your continued success in this program and your chosen profession. The handbook has been compiled with careful consideration for your personal and professional growth during your time at the college. If you do not understand any of the information in this handbook, please ask the faculty, Program Coordinator or Chair for an explanation.
Use the index in this handbook as your guide and the contents as your continuous reference as you proceed through the program. The EPSW program faculty will refer to the handbook often, but the responsibility for knowing the program standards is ultimately yours.
In addition to the EPSW Program Handbook, the Conestoga Student Guide outlines important policies and procedures for you to follow. The EPSW Program Standards and Procedures Handbook is a supplement to, but not a replacement for, the Conestoga Student Guide.
We are here to help support your success. Should you experience difficulties or need assistance in any area of your studies, please come and speak with us, and we will work with you to help you reach your career goal.
All the very best to you in your studies.
Samantha Brandt (Associate Chair, Nursing Post-Graduate Programs)
Carly Szabo (EPSW Program Coordinator)
The role of the personal support worker is beginning to flourish within all venues of the health care system. In particular there is a considerable focus on the valuable contributions that the personal support worker can bring to the acute care environment. This Certificate program is designed to prepare those currently functioning as personal support workers with the knowledge and capabilities to excel within their role as it pertains to the acute care setting. Grounded in the principles of accountability, diversity, equity and dignity, this program offers students the opportunity to work through case-based scenarios and practice integration exercises designed to embrace person-centred care, enhance skill development, excel in communication, documentation and observational assessment and analyses, and enrich problem-solving, critical thinking and self-reflective practice. In addition, innovative interactive tutorials will introduce and reinforce evidence-informed practice and collaborative team care.
Admission to this program occurs throughout the school year. The program takes 6 months to complete.
- Examine the role, responsibilities and accountabilities of the personal support worker as they relate to the provision of safe and ethical care and the prevention of harm in the acute care environment
- Discuss the implications of a changing patient population, evolving care needs of patients and their families in the community-based care setting and trends associated with a rapidly changing health care system.
- Demonstrate enhanced problem-solving, critical thinking, and observational assessment, analysis and documentation skills within the personal support worker's role and responsibilities.
- Contribute as an integral member of the interprofessional health care team as it relates evidence-informed practice and risk assessment to enhance patient safety and to improve direct patient care.
- Employ enhanced communication skills with respect to decisions related to accountability, and team collaboration/consultation to improve continuity of care and enhance patient safety.
- Explore innovative strategies to promote person-centred care, enhance self-care/self-management, improve quality of life and integrate health promotion and evidence-informed practice within the acute care environment to enrich patient care.
- Develop accountability for own actions while recognizing boundaries of knowledge and skills in accordance with role and responsibilities, applicable legislation and employer expectations.
|Level||Course Code/Version||Course Name||Hours|
|1||HEAL1810||Mental Health First Aid (MHFA)||12|
|1||HEAL1895||Gentle Persuasive Approaches (GPA)||8|
|1||PSW1065||Health Promotion and Wellness||21|
|1||PSW1405||Introduction to the Acute Care Environment||21|
|1||PSW1415||Observational Assessment, Analysis and Documentation||21|
|1||PSW1425||Challenged Health in the Acute Care Environment||21|
|1||PSW1435||Care of the Older Adult and Family||21|
|Total Program Hours||125|
Students can find their program design on the Student Portal by following the steps below:
- Log in to Student Portal
- Click on 'My Courses' tab
- Select 'View Progress Report' button
Courses are listed by level/semester. Students can also view courses for the most current program design for this academic year on the Conestoga College website. To find these courses, students need to scroll down the page to the 'Program Courses'.
Pathways and Further Post-secondary Education Opportunities
Conestoga pathways enable students to build on their academic achievements in order to earn a degree or additional credential. Pathways are formed through agreements between Conestoga programs or partner institutions.
There are a number of different opportunities available to students who want to continue studying at Conestoga. Whether you wish to transfer to another program or apply to a new program after graduation, Conestoga has established pathways to help you meet your goals. Conestoga Pathways information is available on Conestoga's website.
Communication and Contact Information
Faculty Commitment to Success
To ensure your success in the program, it is important you become familiar with those who are here to support and help you along your way. If you have any day-to-day questions about your program, courses or school work in general do not hesitate to contact your Program Coordinator, faculty, Chair or Dean.
Samantha Brandt, Associate Chair
Nursing Post-Graduate Programs
(519) 748-5220 Ext. 2503
Kim Myre, Program Assistant
(519) 748-5220 Ext. 3445
Carly Szabo, Program Coordinator
(519) 748-5220 Ext. 3985
Contacting Program Staff
When contacting program staff outside of class time it is advisable to use email or telephone. Your message should include the following information:
- first and last name
- course and level
- brief description of reason for contact
- telephone number where you can be reached
All students are supplied with a college email address. Use the college email address or eConestoga email only when communicating with faculty. Non – college email addresses (e.g. Hotmail) are not acceptable. Students are expected to check their college and eConestoga email accounts regularly as most official communication will be via this method.
We appreciate that concerns/issues may arise during the learning experience. Our goal is to collaborate – students with faculty and staff — to resolve concerns quickly and to learn and improve from these situations to achieve this goal, we need an effective problem-solving environment.
When a concern arises, it needs to be raised immediately and discussed by the individuals involved. This is most important for effective problem solving.
**Problem-solving closest to the individual associated with the learning is the place to start.
Please see the "Student Concerns/Issues" Policy in the College Student Guide regarding the informal and formal procedures for the resolution of concerns and issues.
Please note that issues and concerns related to a placement site, its operation or its employees should first be brought to the attention of the Conestoga Clinical Instructor/Responsible faculty/Field Placement Supervisor, subject to the additional procedures outlined in the Sections on "Professionalism" and "Concerns Regarding Safety or Care/Service for Clients during a Practicum/Field Placement.
CSI and Conestoga agree that a student has the right to invite a member of CSI to a student/faculty meeting, provided that 24 hours advance notice is given to faculty. This advance notice will ensure that all parties will have an opportunity to adequately prepare for the meeting.
PAC (Program Advisory Committee)
Each program at Conestoga has a Program Advisory Committee (PAC), which is made up of industry and academic representatives, as well as current students. They meet several times a year to discuss the direction in which that industry is heading and any improvements that can be made to keep the program current. This helps to ensure that students are learning material that is relevant to their industry.
At the beginning of each year, the Coordinator of the program will ask for student volunteers. The Coordinator will decide which students will represent years one and two. The student representatives are expected to attend the meetings. Students must prepare and submit a report based on guidelines provided by the Program Chair/Coordinator which will be presented at the meeting. Students are expected to be professional, dress in business attire and engage in discussions.
WIHSC (Waterloo Inter-professional Healthcare Student Collaborative)
Conestoga College offers many unique and exciting opportunities for personal and professional growth. One of the things that contribute to the excellence of this college is the host of exciting extracurricular opportunities that add to the culture of this fine institution. WIHSC (Waterloo Inter-professional Health & Community Student Collaborative) is one such club whose members strive to 'learn with, from, and about' each other.
Membership of this active group is comprised of students enrolled in health, community, and social sciences programs at the Doon campus. Some of the most popular initiatives that this group regularly engages in are interactive simulation exercises, peer-mentoring, guest speakers, paper case studies and monthly meetings. To find out more about this exciting opportunity, please visit the WIHSC website. The website includes information on past events (pictures and videos) as well as how to get involved. Get involved, have fun, and learn more about the team members you will work with upon graduation. For more information, please contact your program Coordinator.
Student feedback is an essential component of our continuous improvement process. Our opportunities for student feedback include:
Key Performance Indicators
All college programs in the province are evaluated using Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) through the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Development (MAESD). This survey is conducted each academic year in select classes. Strategic goals to improve the programs are developed from these results. This data and other data specific to the campus and the program/school are collected so that Conestoga College can continually improve quality.
Student Appraisal of Teaching
The Student Appraisal of Teaching (SAT) allows direct feedback from students on teaching for a particular course. Completion of the SAT form gives teachers and academic managers valuable information to use for the improvement of teaching at Conestoga.
The SAT process occurs in the last one-third of the semester. Typically about one-quarter of the faculty is appraised per term, and each has two courses selected by their academic managers for appraisal. All teachers have a SAT review at least once every two years. The SAT process is managed by the Office of Institutional Research and Planning using an online survey system specifically designed for course/teacher evaluations. After all marks for the semester have been submitted, a summary of results goes to the academic manager to be shared with the faculty member. Continuing Education students may have an opportunity to complete a SAT form during thier Continuing Education course.
Class Cancellations Due to Faculty Absence
All class cancellations due to Faculty absences will be posted in the Student Portal on the left hand side of first page which a student sees after logging in. These notices in the Student Portal will be the only general notifications of class cancellations due to Faculty absences.
Although the informal notification comes through the portal, Faculty may also elect to post any absences on eConestoga.
Class Cancellations Due to Inclement Weather
College closure due to inclement weather will be announced on local radio stations (92.9; 88.3; 1460; 96.7, 105.3, and 1240). It is up to staff and students to listen for campus closures. If the college is closed, a message will be left on the campus switchboard after office hours. A notice will also be placed on the college website.
Personal Notifications of Class Cancellations
Students have the option of receiving special emails or SMS text messages notifying them of class cancellations due to faculty absences. To receive such personal notifications students must subscribe to this special service.
- Log in to the Student Portal.
- Select Notifications under the Profile tab.
- Select the method by which you would like to be notified.
- Click Update.
Note: To change the email address to which these notifications will be sent, select My Addresses under the Profile Tab, and change the default email address.
Standards of Conduct and Professional Practice
This EPSW Certificate Program provides both academic study and professional training to prepare students for careers working in the field of Acute Care. Throughout the program, students are expected to conduct themselves in a professional manner and to apply themselves to academic achievement. Professionals function in an independent and interdependent environment. The fundamental responsibility of the student is to gain additional knowledge and skills to be a competent Acute Care provider upon graduation. As professionals, it is imperative that behaviours and attitudes reflect standards that are endorsed by Conestoga College and your chosen profession. There are three areas of conduct you are expected to follow; Academic Conduct, Professional Conduct, and Social/Behavioural Conduct.
As a student of Conestoga College you are a member of the college community and as such you have received a Conestoga Student Guide that includes Student Rights, Student Responsibilities, and the Student Code of Conduct. The Student Responsibilities section includes detailed information regarding plagiarism, cheating, and academic dishonesty. It is essential that you review this section and familiarize yourself with these Responsibilities. It is expected that your conduct as a student will be reflective of the responsibilities listed. If you have any questions regarding any of them, please contact your Program Coordinator.
In addition to all Student Responsibilities found in the Conestoga Student Guide, EPSW Certificate students have the following obligations:
- Complete the learning objectives, tests, assignments and all other forms of student work, with honesty and professional integrity
- Attend class as scheduled
- Demonstrate ethical and professional behaviour while attending class
- Protect the integrity of the Program and the College
- Maintain the confidentiality of all classroom experiences
- Seek clarification from faculty/administration when unsure of any of these standards
Academic Integrity and Plagiarism
Academic honesty is expected and required of all Conestoga students. In order to maximize your success as a student, it is critical that you familiarize yourself with the Academic Offences Policy found in the Conestoga Student Guide. This guide has been provided to you during orientation and is available on the college website. The Academic Offences Policy provides a detailed description of the following:
- scope of academic integrity,
- what academic integrity means,
- what types of behaviours constitute a breach of academic integrity,
- the penalties associated with breaching academic integrity.
If after reading this information, you do not fully understand what is meant by academic integrity, and what is required by you to maintain academic integrity, please speak with a faculty member or your program Coordinator. Please note that maintaining academic integrity is very serious, and that it is your responsibility as a Conestoga student to know the Academic Offences Policy and to initiate help if you do not fully understand it.
Below are a few hints to help you avoid breaching academic integrity.
- Make sure that you recognize information that requires referencing.
|Milk is good for you.||General information in the public domain. Does not require referencing.|
"According to Health Canada milk beverages provide the nutrients needed for healthy bones and optimal health".
Health Canada. (2008). Canada's food guide: Milk and alternatives. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/choose-choix/milk-lait/index-eng.php
Direct quote right from a published source. Requires a reference.
Consuming milk every day provides the nutrients that you need for healthy bones and optimal health.
Health Canada. (2008). Canada's food guide: Milk and alternatives. Retrieved May 17, 2011 from http://www.hc-sc.gc.ca/fn-an/food-guide-aliment/choose-choix/milk-lait/index-eng.php
|Information that has been put into your own words, but offers information outside of public domain related with specialized knowledge. Requires a reference.|
- Whenever you refer to material from another source, whether book, journal article, video, newspaper, or electronic publications, you must acknowledge your source using proper citations and references. The APA style is the format most often used in the health and social sciences. Please visit the Conestoga Learning Commons for assistance with the APA format.
- If you work collaboratively with others on an assignment, including in class assignments that expect independent submission, make sure that you do not copy words or ideas from others intentionally or by accident.
- Make sure that you read the Academic Offences Policy located in the Conestoga Student Guide, and that you fully understand it. The policy describes additional behaviours that represent a breach of academic integrity.
Copyright – What Students Need to Know
Photocopying and scanning at Conestoga are governed by the Copyright Act, an agreement with Access Copyright, and the Association of Canadian Community Colleges' Fair Dealing Policy.
Under the terms of our Access Copyright license which gives the broadest permission:
You can photocopy or scan the following:
- Up to 10% of most published works.
- One chapter that is greater than 10%, but no more than 20% of the book.
- One article, short story, play, poem or essay from a book, magazine or journal issue containing other works.
- One newspaper article or page.
- One entry from an encyclopedia, dictionary, annotated bibliography or similar reference work.
- One drawing, sculpture, painting, print, architectural work of art or work of artistic craftsmanship from a larger volume containing other works.
If you copy 10% of a book today, 10% next week, 10% the week after that, and so on, this is called cumulative copying and it is not allowed. The copy limits apply to an entire academic year, so once you reach the limit for an item, you can't copy more until the next academic year.
You cannot copy or scan the following:
- Workbooks or study guides that are intended for one-time use.
- Instruction manuals
- Sheet music and original artistic works including photographs or prints.
- Business cases
- Full Textbooks
- Any of the items on the Access Copyright Exclusions list.
You can find all of this information and more on the Copyright for Students web page.
If you have any questions about copyright or the limits of copying on campus, contact James Yochem, Copyright Coordinator, at Jyochem@conestogac.on.ca or 519-748-5220 ext. 3746.
Student Protection Acknowledgement
A Student Protection Acknowledgement confirmation pop-up will appear when a student logs into the Student Portal on a yearly basis. This will direct students to policies and procedures relevant to their academic responsibilities. All Conestoga College wide academic policies and procedures are listed on the college website under "About Conestoga", "Policies and Procedures".
Students are advised to review and comply with all policies and procedures, including the following:
- Academic Credential Procedure
- Academic Dispute and Resolution Policy & Procedure
- Academic Offences Policy & Procedure
- Academic Recognition Policy
- Clearance of Academic Deficiency Policy & Procedure
- Co-operative Education Policy
- Discontinuance Policy & Procedure
- Evaluation of Student Learning Policy & Procedure
- Grading Procedure
- Graduation Requirements and Convocation Procedure
- Honours Policy & Procedure
- Program Withdrawal and Refund Procedure
- Student Code of Conduct Policy
- Student Concerns and Issues Policy & Procedure
- Student Feedback Policy
- Student Fees Policy & Student Fee Invoicing and Payment Procedure
Students must follow all of the policies and procedures for Conestoga College and it is expected that faculty will accept, fulfill and enforce these standards.
Professional Conduct – Use of Social Media and Cell Phones
To ensure a quality and respectful learning environment both in the classroom and in field placement, the use of cell phones and laptop computers for social networking can only be used during break times, before/after class and during formal break time in field placement.
Laptops and other forms of technology can be used in the classroom when the use pertains to the content and processes of learning facilitated by the professor. Faculty reserve the right to remove and hold any technology devise that is a disruption to the class processes of teaching and learning until the end of class.
Social Media Policy
- Social media has many advantages for a professional. It can be used to network, to resource information and keep current
- As a student and future professional, it is essential to maintain professional boundaries in all communication, including Social Media.
"Electronic messages are not anonymous. They can be tracked, misdirected, manipulated and live forever on the internet. Social media sites create and archive copies of every piece of content posted, even when deleted from on-line profiles. Once information is digitalized, the author relinquishes all control."
"Online identities and actions are visible to the public and can result in serious repercussions or embarrassment. As the Office of the Privacy Commissioner of Ontario notes, users may intend to share their online existence solely within their own network, but in theory anyone can access the user's musings, photos and information. Further, the words can be altered, forwarded and misquoted.
Ensure that your posts reflect you as the professional you are and wish to become, if a potential employer were to see your posts.
- Many types of social media encourage instantaneous, casual dialogue. It is important to remember that even an innocent comment may be easily misunderstood
- Assume that information you post or send can be accessed or altered by anyone.
- Consider whether any posting may reflect poorly on you, your school, or your profession.
- Avoid online criticism of about other students, colleagues, professors or field placements.
- Avoid impulsive, inappropriate or heated comments.
- Pictures should not be taken without permission from the individuals involved.
- Remember that online sites you visit are not anonymous.
- Make sure your on-line name and email reflect professionalism.
- Ensure that your postings will not be considered harassment or defamation of a peer, colleague, faculty or others.
Maintain privacy of all care and service activities when in practical work experiences:
- Do not take or post any pictures while on placement or involved in lab activities
- Maintain client-provider relationships and boundaries. The addition of a client to a 'friendship" status online is unacceptable.
Please respect the fact that your faculty and staff will not invite you to their personal web pages when you are a current student.
Cell Phone Policy
Students should respect their professors and other instructors by following program policy and not use their cell phones for personal use during class time. This is representative of the professional manner in which you are expected to act as you prepare to enter the workforce.
Students should refrain from bringing their cell phone into a test or examination. Phones should be left in your locker or left in your bag at the front of the classroom. In the event of an urgent need to keep your cell phone with you during a test (parents with young children, students experiencing a family emergency, etc.) please speak to your professor as soon as you enter the examination room. Those who have been permitted to bring a phone into the classroom will likely be asked to either leave the phone with the professor, or he/she may be permitted to leave their phone out on their desk where it is visible to the professor and proctors. In any case, students are not permitted to touch or answer the phone without raising their hand to ask for the professor/proctor's permission. If you are found to have a cell phone in your possession during an examination that has not been declared, you will be asked to leave the examination room, and will be given a zero on the assessment.
 Professional Advisory. 2011. Use of Electronic Communication and Social Media. The Council of the Ontario College of Teachers.
Attendance and Student Success Strategies
- Once a test begins, students may not leave the test room for 30 minutes. If he/she finishes a test before that time, he/she may review their answers but are expected to sit QUIETLY and not disturb others. Once students leave the room he/she may only re-enter when invited back by Faculty.
- Any student found cheating during the course of an examination/test will be addressed according to procedures found in Conestoga Student Guide.
- Faculty is responsible to advise as to the material permitted in the testing room. Personal items and learning materials will be left in an area identified by the Faculty.
- Faculty will advise as to the seating arrangements of students.
- During open book tests, students must bring their own course materials (books, notes, Learning Packages etc.) for individual use only. Students may not share any of these materials. Electronic devices, such as, iPod, text messaging, cell phones, translators, will not be permitted.
Importance of Test and Presentation Dates
Test and assignment dates are scheduled at the beginning of each semester. Unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program, or the faculty may require changes to the course schedule. If this occurs, students will be notified.
Students are required to write all tests during the scheduled in-class test times. Students who make personal commitments that conflict with meeting test and assignment deadlines do so at their own risk. There will be no special arrangements made for students with personal conflicts (e.g. work, family commitments or vacation plans). Students who wish to reschedule a test or presentation because of a religious holiday are required to discuss the situation with faculty at the beginning of the semester.
Academic accommodations are provided to students with documented disabilities through the Accessibility Services Office.
It is expected that students will submit all assignments on time, on the date they are due. Late marks will be deducted from assignments not submitted when requested by faculty.
Students with extenuating circumstances that prevent them from submitting assignments on time should discuss their circumstance prior to the due date. He/she should negotiate with the course faculty alternative arrangements regarding due dates, in person, one week prior to the scheduled date. A form entitled Student Request for Variance Form Course Schedule and Evaluation Methods will be completed and kept on file. Students who initiate this process will not experience the loss of late marks.
If students do not negotiate a variance, he/she risks having late marks deducted from the final grade. Late marks will be deducted at a rate of 10% per day, including weekends, from the total percent value of the assignment.
Under typical circumstances, late assignments will be accepted until that assignment has been marked and returned to the class. No assignments will be accepted after the last day of the semester.
Steps to Follow to Submit Assignments Outside of Class Time
While assignments should be submitted in class on the day they are due, if circumstances require that they be submitted outside a scheduled class, the following procedure should be followed:
- Provide an electronic copy of your assignment to the faculty as per faculty instructions.
Steps to Follow when Missing a Test, Presentation or Workshop
- Email the faculty who teaches the relevant course. (This email is made preferably before class but must be made within 24 hours of the class by the student).
- Students may be asked to present documentation to validate the absence. This documentation must address the day of the absence confirming your inability to participate and attend class.
- Arrange with faculty for alternative presentation/workshop arrangements.
- Tests will be made up In the College Testing Centre on the following Thursday, or by individual arrangement with program faculty.
Important Points to Remember:
- It is the student's responsibility to initiate contact with faculty to make alternate arrangements for missed tests, presentations, and workshops.
- Students who utilize three or more rescheduled evaluation methods may be required to meet with Program Coordinator to discuss program success.
- Students will be asked to show their student cards in the College Testing Centre before he/she is permitted to write the test.
Faculty Returning Tests and Assignments
In order to support student success, students will be given continual feedback on their progress throughout the semester. Individual faculty will inform students in class how/when tests and assignments and/or marks on them will be returned. Please note that some tests will be returned to students and some may be retained by faculty. Under no circumstances are students to enter the offices of faculty or look through papers on a desk without a faculty present. Students who have questions about tests/assignments/grades should follow the process outlined below:
- At least 24 hours after receiving the mark and within seven days, write a note to the faculty, indicating the area(s) of clarification required,
- Initiate a meeting with the faculty to discuss,
- Bring pertinent information (assignment, mark sheet, etc.) to the appointment.
General Guidelines for Quality of Written Work
In the EPSW Certificate program, there are some requirements for written work in a variety of formats (papers, assignments, forms and plans, handouts, etc.). It is expected that all students will meet the standard of English required within the profession. Faculty will identify students who are having difficulty in this area and will approach students to discuss the need for improvement. Students may be referred to the Learning Commons to help them improve the quality of their written work.
General Guidelines for Submitting Written Work
For specific course requirements, refer to the Course Schedule and Evaluation Methods information provided. If you are not clear about course requirements, discuss with individual faculty. Students are encouraged to use spell-check and grammar-check to assist with the editing of written work. The Learning Centre will be an invaluable resource to students who require assistance in organizing and writing an assignment with correct spelling and grammar.
Unless otherwise indicated by professors, generally, assignments should be:
- Word processed
- Double spaced and one sided
- Submitted using font size of 12 dpi, if word processed and proper margins
- Written in a grammatically correct manner (use spell and grammar check)
- Handed in securely fastened with a cover page indicating the course name, faculty's name, student's name, section and date submitted
- Handed in at the beginning of class on the designated due date in class, unless otherwise indicated by professor
- Handed in using the APA@Conestoga format if references are required
NOTE: Faculty does not assume responsibility for assignments not given directly to them in hard copy at the beginning of the relevant course. Students should avoid handing in assignments outside the regularly scheduled class time and should make every effort to hand assignments in to the professor in person.
Academic Progress Through the Program
Registering for Courses
At the beginning of each semester students will receive a Course Notification Letter with instructions to register for courses.
Academic Standing and Promotion
The Conestoga Student Guide is your first source for information concerning academic regulations, policies and procedures. The Conestoga Student Guide is available on the college website and by visiting the "Student Guide" tab in your Student Portal.
In addition to the Academic Regulations found in the Conestoga Student Guide, the following apply to the EPSW Certificate Program:
- Students must attain a minimum "65%" in all EPSW courses.
You can add, change and drop courses from your portal depending on the dates and which program you are in:
- Log in to the Student Portal
- Click on the "My Courses" tab
- Scroll over the icons to the right of individual course listings. It is strongly recommended that students consult their program Coordinator/academic advisor prior to dropping a course.
Students who have been unsuccessful in their field experience, have failed two or more academic courses, and/or have required considerable testing/assignment variances may be recommended for Academic Probation. Academic probation allows students to be promoted to the next level with a special timetable or with academic conditions. Special timetables and academic conditions are designed as part of written learning contract that the student and program Coordinator create together. The goal of these measures is to allow students to continue in the program accompanied by a supportive plan for success.
A student that is unsuccessful in a course may be granted the opportunity to complete supplemental requirements.
Criteria for Eligibility to Write Supplemental Examinations
- No more than two supplementals throughout the program and no more than one supplemental per course will be offered.
- For the purposes of determining supplemental eligibility repeating a failed course counts as a supplemental in that course.
- The student must have passed at least one test/exam in the course.
- The student must have achieved a final course grade of 50% or within 10% of the required pass mark, whichever is the higher standard. Therefore, for courses with 65% pass, the student must have achieved 55%.
- There must be no academic misconduct on record for the semester (e.g. plagiarism).
- A student who attains a course grade of less than 55% for a vocational course will not be offered a supplemental in that course.
In addition, the following will also be considered by the committee:
- Previous academic history
- Current clinical practice performance
- Demonstration of professional behaviour
- Attendance in class, lab, and practice experiences
- A fee is to be paid to the Registrar's Office for supplemental work.
- If the student is successful in completing the supplemental work for the course, the failing course grade will be upgraded to the minimal passing grade of 65% for the Program.
Grants or denies permission for supplemental work.
Meets with the student.
Completes the supplemental form with criteria.
Reviews the recommendation of the Promotion Committee.
Takes completed Supplemental Form and payment to Registrar's Office.
Brings pink copy of Supplemental Form for admission to supplemental as well as photo ID
|Program Chair/Program Coordinator/Instructor||
Sets date for supplemental examination.
Notifies student and Registrar's Office of result of supplemental work.
Failure to successfully complete requirements of the promotion committee will result in discontinuance from the program.
Reason for Student Progress Being Reviewed by Promotion Committee
Students who fail to meet program standards will be reviewed by the Promotion Committee.
Reasons for presentation at Promotion Committee Meetings include:
- Failure of a theory course and/or practice course.
- Patterns of absence from class or practice, which may affect achieving program standards.
- Excessive accumulated absences from class, lab or practice.
- Failure to follow through on previous Promotion Committee recommendations.
A student who has not met the standards will not be promoted to the next level of the Program. The Promotions Committee may decide such a student should be discontinued or may require the student to complete one or more of the following, or an alternative as deemed appropriate:
- Complete supplemental requirements for course failures (see criteria for writing of supplemental examinations). Following successful completion of supplemental work, the highest course grade that can be achieved is 65%.
- Follow through with counselling (academic and/or personal).
- Follow through with health measures as recommended.
- Complete makeup work for missed learning experiences. Total time lost will be assessed on an individual basis. Additional time may be required to complete program objectives.
- Complete the requirements of Probationary Status.
- Complete compulsory practice remedial assignments.
Students who have failed to meet all program standards or who have failed to meet the standards set out in the Conestoga Student Guide and/or the EPSW Program Handbook involving academic dishonesty, student responsibilities, or unacceptable behaviour, attitude or conduct may be discontinued from the EPSW – Acute Care Program.
Students not planning to return to the EPSW Program the following semester are expected to complete a Withdrawal Form available from the program Coordinators, the registrar's office, or on the college website.
Prior to transferring to another program, it is recommended that the student meet with the program Coordinator or academic advisor. Students who decide to change programs may do so by completing and submitting a program application form to the Registrar's Office. If considering transferring to a program outside the school in which he/she is currently enrolled in, students may want to discuss options with a career advisor. When a student moves from one Conestoga program to another and where courses numbers/codes are identical or equivalent, automatic credit is given if passing grades are met.
Students have the right to appeal any academic decisions as set out in the Conestoga Student Guide. It is recommended that students begin this appeal process by first meeting with the faculty and/or program Coordinator and/or program chair.
Clearance of Academic Deficiency
Please refer to Conestoga Student Guide for the procedure and criteria regarding Academic Deficiency. Please note that following the end of semester, contact with any student eligible to write a supplemental will be made either by phone or email. A specific date, time and room number will be given to each student. If a student cannot be reached or is unavailable at the specified date and time, the student forfeits the opportunity to write a supplemental. The maximum number of supplementals during the program is two per student.
Students are expected to respond to their invitation through their Student Portal. Convocation ceremonies are held in the spring and fall of each academic year. Students, who take longer than the advertised program length, are responsible for completing any new or additional courses due to a program design change. Students who complete their program after the scheduled completion date are required to fill out an Application to Graduate form and submit it with payment to the registrar's office. Students who are discontinued or have withdrawn and then return to the college will be placed in the current program design and must meet all requirements to graduate.
Process for Solution of Student Concerns
In order to resolve any concerns which may arise during a course, field placement or relating to the program overall, students are encouraged to resolve issues or concerns informally at the program level (i.e. faculty, program Coordinator) prior to proceeding to a formal appeal.
If attempts have been made, and a successful resolution has not been reached, students are encouraged to refer to their Conestoga Student Guide, and to follow the procedures outlined under the "Academic Dispute Resolution and Appeal Procedure" section.
General Education / Breadth Electives
School of Liberal Studies
The purpose of diploma General Education electives and Degree Breadth electives is to provide graduates with the skills and knowledge to succeed not just in their chosen career fields, but in all life paths. Working collaboratively with your program, General Education and Degree Breadth elective courses help develop the critical and creative thinking skills, civic engagement and knowledge of the broader world of arts, culture and science that helps make you more reflective, creative, and effective in your own life.
All Ontario College Diploma, Ontario College Advanced Diploma, and Degree programs at Conestoga require students to complete general education electives / interdisciplinary breadth.
More information on these courses can be found at www.conestogac.on.ca/electives.
Maintaining Student Files
- Official records of each student's education are maintained electronically by the Registrar.
- Administrative records related to your experience in the Program are maintained to demonstrate compliance with external and college requirements. This information is as follows:
|Student Information||File Location and Student Access||Retention|
Pre Practicum Health Requirements (if applicable)
In H.S Trax, by individual student access
**accessed through My Conestoga
Acknowledgement of WSIB Understanding (if applicable)
Student Consents Signed on Admission electronically (varies per program)
- Academic Files are set up as required for a student to document important matters relevant to a student's progress or to document and monitor resolution of concerns.
|Student Information||File Location and Student Access||Retention|
A. Documents related to academic progress
||For 1 year following graduation or as required by accrediting body.|
B. Records of Competency Attainment
|As above||As above|
C. Documents related to areas of Concern
|As above||As above|
- Students may review the contents of their academic file by:
- Requesting this in writing to the Program Coordinator.
- Reviewing the file in the presence of the Program Coordinator.
Student Consent Forms
Students are required to complete program specific consent forms. To access the forms, students should go to the Practicum Services Community on myConestoga and open the Consent Forms tab. Students can then electronically sign-off all applicable consent forms after reading each document.
Additional Information for Students
Below is information to supplement the information found in the Conestoga Student Guide.
- Your Student Guide provides detailed information about dropping courses. If you are planning to drop a course, you must do so within the time period. If you have missed that time period, please see the Program Coordinator and she will advise you as to your options. Not attending does not constitute an official dropping of a course and will result in a grade of "F".
- If you have completed courses from a college or university that you think may be very similar in content to courses in the EPSW Certificate program you may be eligible for a course exemption. (Please note that to receive an exemption, courses must have been completed within the past 7 years and with a mark of at least 60 %.). If you would like to proceed with a request for exemptions, please contact the Credit Transfer Officer or your Program Coordinator. Please note that exemptions will not be processed until a student is registered in the Program. The exemption process will take some time (two-three weeks), and students should attend all scheduled courses until he/she receives the exemption as he/she will be responsible for all material covered in class should the exemption be denied.
Field Placement Experiences
This section does not apply.
Conestoga has more than 400 awards, bursaries, scholarships and academic grants available to Conestoga students. These funds are made available to our students through the partnerships we have established with local business and industry leaders. To be considered for an award, complete the General Application available through your Student Portal. Notifications and instructions to complete the application are sent to all full-time students' email accounts in the fall semester (Deadline: First Friday in October) and winter semester (Deadline: First Friday in February). Visit the Student Financial Services on Conestoga's website.
Full-time courses at Conestoga are typically delivered during the following hours:
- Monday to Thursday, 8:00 AM to 8:00 PM
- Friday, 8:00 AM to 6:00 PM
In some instances, classes will be scheduled outside of this time frame to accommodate course, program, and college requirements.
Attendance at Evaluations
Working Together to Plan Your Success
Your success matters! As an emerging professional, it is important that you demonstrate the same professional attitude to your program that you will be required to demonstrate to your future workplace. Regular, punctual attendance, and active participation in scheduled classes, field and clinical placements, labs and any on-campus and off-campus activities scheduled by your program will help you to understand and master the learning complexities of your program.
If extenuating, unplanned circumstances require you to miss a class, please note that it is your responsibility to follow up with individual faculty members and to acquire any missed information.
Attendance for Evaluations
Evaluations are critical components of each course and your overall success in your program. An evaluation is defined as a test, exam, presentation or any other formal assessment that contributes to your course mark that requires your presence, in class or on-line. Please note that in many programs across the College, every field placement, clinical day, and lab/shop day is considered crucial to your overall learning and success and the expectation is that you attend. If you are in a program that includes field or clinical placements, labs/shops, or any other on or off campus activities, it is essential that you discuss attendance requirements with your program faculty in order to understand expectations and consequences.
Your attendance for all evaluations is a requirement. If there is a concerning pattern of absence from evaluations across your program, you may be asked to meet with the Program Coordinator and/or Student Advisor to discuss strategies for success.
While circumstances such as religious holidays and academic accommodations may necessitate rescheduling of evaluations and will be accommodated, please note that there will be no special arrangements made for rescheduling evaluations due to personal conflicts such as work or vacation plans.
In order to facilitate a smooth implementation for all scheduled evaluations, both you and your program faculty have responsibilities which are listed below:
- To communicate all course obligations to you at the beginning of each semester through the Instructional Plan, including evaluation and presentation dates.
- To communicate, in writing, any unplanned extenuating circumstances involving the college, the program or the faculty members that may require changes to the course schedule.
- To provide alternative evaluation arrangements for missed evaluations/work due to recognized religious holidays as defined by the College Employer Council and documented accommodations through the Accessibility Office.
- To accept alternative evaluation requests in good faith and examine based on the unique circumstances and students' individual needs.
- To facilitate alternative evaluation arrangements as described below.
- To be informed about all course obligations and due dates.
- To inform your faculty member in writing of the need to reschedule evaluations due to a religious holiday as defined by the College Employer Council.
- If you have to be absent from any scheduled evaluation, report your absence on the Student Portal using the procedure below. You must do this prior to the start of the evaluation or risk receiving a mark of zero.
How to Report Absences on the Student Portal
- Log into the Student Portal and click on the 'Absence tab'.
- Indicate whether or not there is an assessment scheduled on that day by clicking 'Yes or No', as well as the reason for the absence (illness or other).
- Click 'Continue' to report the absence.
- Click 'I agree' to confirm the absence.
- You will receive a confirmation email that your absence has been recorded.
Important! Please note the following:
- The earliest you can record an absence for a particular day, is after 8:00 p.m. the day before. You must report each day you are absent.
- The Absence Recording System will show you as being absent for the day, starting from the time that you recorded the absence. For example, if you record your absence on a specific day at 11:00 a.m., the system will show you as being absent for all classes starting after 11:00 a.m. that day.
- If you are going to be present for any other classes on the day for which you recorded an absence, please let the faculty member know by attending or following up by eConestoga or college email.
- When you return to campus, make eConestoga or email contact immediately with the faculty member associated with the evaluation you missed in order to arrange appropriate follow up.
Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations Less than 20%
Conestoga recognizes that unexpected circumstances such as brief illness do arise during the semester and that a visit to a health practitioner may not be necessary. A valid absence from a scheduled evaluation worth less than 20% of the final grade which is not documented through the Accessibility Office or previously arranged due to religious holidays, will be accommodated once per course during the semester, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above. If the evaluation cannot be rescheduled, (for example an experiential activity, lab or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks to another evaluation item will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via email to their eConestoga or college email address, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.
Absence from additional scheduled evaluations worth less than 20% in the same course may require documentation for verification.
Valid Absence from Scheduled Evaluations 20% or More
Absence from scheduled evaluations worth 20% or more of the final grade that are not documented through the Accessibility Office or arranged due to religious holidays, will require appropriate documentation for verification, subject to proper communication as described in the Student Responsibilities section above.
Alternative Evaluation Arrangements
- Faculty members will determine alternative evaluation arrangements as appropriate.
- Students will complete any necessary forms.
- Students are required to complete the alternative evaluation as scheduled. If an evaluation cannot be rescheduled (for example an experiential activity or participation in a group presentation) reallocation of marks will be determined by faculty and communicated to student via eConestoga or college email, or documented on an interview record and signed off by both faculty member and student.
- Tests will be made up in the Conestoga Test Centre in the following week, or by individual arrangements with course faculty member.
- If the evaluation is to be conducted in the Conestoga Test Centre, students will be asked to show their ONECard* before permitted to write the test.
* Students taking part-time courses or in programs where OneCard is not provided such as Apprenticeship may be asked to show alternate ID.
Program Handbook Revision Log
|Last Revised||By Whom|
|July 9, 2015||Nicole Dorscht|
|July 19, 2015||Carly Szabo|
|June 13, 2016||Carly Szabo|
|June 5, 2017||Brett Gibson|
|June 7, 2018||Brett Gibson|
Conestoga College is dedicated to promoting an equitable environment where students have the opportunity to participate in all aspects of College life. In accordance with the Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act (AODA) and the Ontario Human Rights Code, Conestoga College recognizes its responsibility and legal obligation to provide education, information and services in an accessible manner.
The Program Handbook is intended to provide general information with respect to program expectations. There may be individual accommodations and/or medical circumstances that require exceptions. For example, students may need to be accommodated for a missed assignment or evaluation. Students who are registered with Accessibility @ Conestoga are not required to provide an additional doctor's note for a missed or late evaluation. For more information about Accessibility @ Conestoga please drop in or visit our website.
We recognize that other extenuating circumstances may apply. Consult with your Professor. All exceptions based on extenuating circumstances must be approved by the Chair.