Course Description

Hours: 12

This two-day course will help participants broaden their understanding of the unique considerations when working with youth who experience substance use disorder. This course explores how substance use and misuse can influence the developmental stages from adolescence to young adulthood.

We will begin by considering how to build a therapeutic alliance with youth through a diversity, equity, and inclusion lens. We will also discuss how to build inclusive spaces that foster stability and structure.  Over the two days, we will cover the continuum of care beginning with harm reduction approaches and ending with abstinence models. 

This course is being held remotely, which means participants from across Canada will be joining us. You are encouraged to bring information about local resources and treatment options available to youth in your area. Please come prepared to share these resources and discuss potential gaps in youth services.  

This is an interactive learning course! There will be opportunities to practice what we are learning through small discussion groups, class debriefs, role plays, and case scenarios.  

Learning Outcomes:

  • Understand the difference between youth substance use, misuse, and abuse.  
  • Describe the developmental stages from adolescence to young adulthood.
  • Understand harm reduction approaches.
  • Understand different treatment modalities.
  • Understand the stages of change model including tasks for youth and family members.
  • Understand biopsychosocial assessments.

CACCF: 12 continuing education hours


For more information contact the Faculty of Social Work Professional Development office:

Email: fswprofessionaldevelopment@wlu.ca
Phone: 548-889-4967

Cancellations and Transfers
Be sure to carefully review our cancellation and transfer information before registering.

Website: wlu.ca/fswpd

Applies Towards the Following Certificates


This course has already taken place for the current academic year (July 1, 2024 to June 30, 2025).

The 2025/2026 Faculty of Social Work Professional Development course dates will be posted on this website on July 3, 2025.

Thank you for your interest in this course. Unfortunately, the course you have selected is currently not open for enrollment. Please complete a Course Inquiry so that we may promptly notify you when enrollment opens.
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