Con Ed Certificate

Certificate Course in Critical Youth Work

Overview of Certificate
While concerns of youth violence, disengagement and ‘risk’ behaviors are increasingly becoming priorities within Ontario’s political and social service agendas, issues such as stigmatization and discrimination and lack of opportunities for positive engagement continue to feature heavily in the self-identified experiences of Toronto youth. This unique experiential five-week certificate will explore these issues and challenges of critical youth work through a ‘praxis’ model of action, reflection and integration. Drawing on a diversity of practice-based knowledge, critical dialogues and diverse interactive activities, participants will deepen their knowledge of critical front-line practice, policy analysis, research and collaborative youth-engaged organizing.

Objectives of Certificate
Through active participation and hands-on learning, participants will:
1. Understand the conceptual and theoretical underpinnings associated with core youth work concepts such as risk
and resilience, positive youth development and youth engagement
2. Critically examine how contemporary social, political and academic discourses inform youth work practice and
3. Demonstrate new skills and competencies for critical youth work practice
4. Understand basic processes in policy development and analysis and engage in critical policy analysis
5. Understand basic principles and processes in participatory and youth-engaged research
6. Understand principles and practices in youth-engaged advocacy and organizing

Intended Participants
1. Practitioners (including those working within community based settings, schools, child welfare, youth justice, police services and youth mental health) who are looking to strengthen their critical youth work theory and analysis skills in both micro and macro practice.
2. Students and recent graduates with related degrees and diplomas who are interested in pursuing careers in youth work and to increase their knowledge and professional competency in critical youth work.

1. Conceptualizing Critical Youth Work
2. Issues in critical youth work practice
3. Critical policy analysis and advocacy
4. Critical Models of Program Evaluation and Participatory Research
5. Field Project-Experiential learning in ‘youth-led’ practice and organizing

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