Continuum of Substance Use

Applied Community Studies
Child, Family & Community Studies
Course Code
CFCS 1260
Semester Length
Flexible delivery ranging over 2 to 15 weeks
Max Class Size
Method Of Instruction
Typically Offered


Course Description
In this course, students will explore various theoretical perspectives of substance use and apply a holistic, integrated approach to understanding processes of harm reduction. Students will examine their own conceptualizations of addiction and explore the role of youth workers in supporting positive growth directly and through appropriate referrals to the continuum of addiction services.
Course Content

The following global ideas guide the design and delivery of this course:

  • An awareness of the interconnection of addiction with other risk factors (including homelessness, poverty, mental health, criminal justice involvement, physical health, and family and community connection) results in a creative, collaborative, and human response by practitioners. 
  • Making sense of complex and contradictory information within the field of addictions requires integrating knowledge of theoretical foundations with one’s own experiences, values, and beliefs. 
  • Understanding substance use involves holistic examination of individuals within their social contexts, including biological, psychological, social, and spiritual risk and protective factors. 
  • Addressing substance use concerns involves recognizing the signs of substance use, utilizing the principles of motivational interviewing, and being aware of the continuum of care for persons using substances to refer to appropriate services.    
  • Addiction is a social construct and although the term is widely used, there is a lack of agreement in how addiction is defined, what leads to addiction, how addiction is maintained, and the options for treating addiction.
  • Harm reduction approaches to substance use promote autonomy, self-determination, and human dignity.
Methods Of Instruction
  • Lecture
  • Demonstration
  • Group discussion and exercises
  • Student presentations
  • Blackboard
Means of Assessment

This course will conform to Douglas College policy regarding the number and weighting of evaluations.

Typical means of evaluation will include a combination of:

  • Written assignments
  • Journals
  • Class presentations
  • Examinations
  • Class participation

This is a graded course.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this course, the student will be able to:

  1. Compare and contrast various theoretical perspectives on substance use and apply a holistic, integrated approach to understanding processes of harm reduction.   
  2. Illustrate their own learning, experiences, values, and beliefs about substance use and identify how to manage their preconceptions and build rapport with the people they serve. 
  3. Explain the process of intentional change and explain how a skilled youth worker would support this process. 
  4. Describe the continuum of care for persons using substances and knowledge of available local resources existing along the continuum.
Textbook Materials

TBA, for example:

Herie, M. & Skinner, W. (Eds.). (2012). Fundamentals of addiction: A practical guide for counsellors (4th ed.). Toronto: Centre for Addiction and Mental Health.



No prerequisite courses.


Courses listed here must be completed either prior to or simultaneously with this course:

  • No corequisite courses


Courses listed here are equivalent to this course and cannot be taken for further credit:

  • No equivalency courses

Course Guidelines

Course Guidelines for previous years are viewable by selecting the version desired. If you took this course and do not see a listing for the starting semester / year of the course, consider the previous version as the applicable version.

Course Transfers

Institution Transfer Details Effective Dates
Athabasca University (AU) AU HSRV 2XX (3) 2019/09/01 to -
College of New Caledonia (CNC) CNC SSWK 263 (3) 2012/09/01 to 2017/12/31
College of the Rockies (COTR) COTR HSWR 214 (3) 2013/01/01 to -
Langara College (LANG) LANG SSRV 1XXX (3) 2010/01/01 to -
North Island College (NIC) NIC SSW 209 (3) 2019/09/01 to -
Simon Fraser University (SFU) No credit 2019/09/01 to -
Thompson Rivers University (TRU) TRU HUMN 1XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2009/04/30
Trinity Western University (TWU) TWU PSYC 2XX (3) 2004/09/01 to 2020/04/30
Trinity Western University (TWU) No credit 2020/05/01 to -
University of British Columbia - Okanagan (UBCO) No credit 2008/09/01 to -
University of the Fraser Valley (UFV) UFV SOWK 394 (3) 2004/09/01 to -
University of Victoria (UVIC) No credit 2019/09/01 to -

Course Offerings

Fall 2021

There aren't any scheduled upcoming offerings for this course.