Frequently asked questions

What is professional child and youth care?

Professional child and youth care is a unique approach to working with children, youth and their families. A number of characteristics, taken together, differentiate this professional approach from allied human services disciplines. Learn more about child and youth care at UVic.

What skills do your graduates have?

Our graduates are equipped with key professional skills for working directly with clients, including:

  • case assessment, case management, risk assessment (suicide, sexual abuse and family violence)
  • crisis intervention
  • effective counselling and communication
  • skills for facilitating planned change
  • applied child development
  • critical thinking and ethical decision making
  • advanced training in practice with individuals, groups and families
  • program evaluation

As well, child and youth care graduates are grounded in a developmental perspective, an ecological approach, and a multidisciplinary team-focused orientation to working with others. Learn more about careers in child and youth care.

What types of positions do graduates work in?

Our graduates work in the following postions:

  • infant development, early childhood care and education
  • community-based child and youth development programs
  • parent education/training and family support
  • government child welfare and child protection
  • school-based youth and family counselling
  • community mental health group homes
  • residential day centres and residential treatment
  • recreation Outward Bound programs
  • home-based care
  • psychiatric centres
  • pediatric health care
  • developmental/disability/rehabilitation programs
  • community development
  • child and youth advocacy and juvenile justice

Learn more about careers in child and youth care.

Can I obtain certification as an early childhood educator when I complete my BCYC degree?

We have an arrangement with the ECE Registry that allows graduates with a BCYC degree to be certified as early childhood educators if they meet certain criteria. You must:

  • complete your CYC degree with an early years specialization.
  • complete one additional CYC course in early childhood education programming, beyond your other degree requirements.
  • complete your second and fourth year practica in a child care centre.
  • master a set of ECE competencies specified by the ECE Registry by the time you finish your fourth-year practicum. You'll be assessed by your second- and fourth-year practicum supervisors.

What services are available for Indigenous child and youth care students?

We have created a SILKS committee to support our Indigenous learners. SILKS stands for Supporting Indigenous Learners’ Knowledge and Skills. Learn more about Indigenous initiatives in the school.

I have more questions...

Advising contacts

Kathy Harrison
Student adviser
250-721-7984

Transfer credit

Kathy Harrison at 250-721-7984

About admission, transfer credit and other administrative questions

How and when do I apply?

The full application package is available in December. The application deadline is February 28 each year for entry the following September.

How much will it cost?

See our finance page for information on tuition and other expenses.

I wasn't a very successful student when I was young but feel ready to meet the challenge now. Is it possible for me to be admitted if my early marks were not very good?

You may qualify under UVic’s special access admission category for mature learners who may not meet regular admission requirements. Get more information on the special access category.

Can I take a CYC course for credit in a General Bachelor of Arts degree program?

Non-CYC students are welcome to take many of our first and second year courses. Check the calendar and ask your adviser if you’re not sure.

Do you give credit toward the BCYC degree for certificate and diplomas from other institutions?

Yes, we recognize human service certificates and diplomas from accredited institutions. (Programs with vocational or continuing studies designations are not included.) Certificate/diplomas completed with an overall B average may be eligible for block credit of 15 units for a certificate or 30 units for a diploma upon admission to the CYC degree program. See the British Columbia CYC Consortium for more information or contact Kathy Harrison, our Undergraduate adviser.

Do I need to have work experience in the child and youth care field?

Having some paid or voluntary experience is very valuable. We encourage you to register in in CYC 100 A and CYC 100B Introduction to Professional Child and Youth Care Practice: Parts One and Two -- to learn more about child and youth care. They are offered September-April and can be taken during your first year.

How long will it take me to do my degree?

The BCYC on-campus degree will take four years of full-time study to complete. It may take less time depending on your transfer credit.

Can I take courses in another faculty if I’m a child and youth care student?

Yes, you may take courses in any faculty if you have the prerequisites. We encourage students to take courses from a wide range of disciplines, and often CYC students have a minor in another faculty.

Can a CYC degree qualify me to enter the Teacher Certificate Training Program?

A CYC degree is an asset to practicing teachers. It’s important that you complete foundational subjects, such as math, language arts and/or a lab science. Please see an adviser in the Faculty of Education for more information.

Can I complete a practicum in another country?

Yes, you’ll have the opportunity to complete an international fourth year practicum.

About distance education

Completing your degree through distance education gives you the opportunity to work while you study. While distance education has both financial and educational benefits, it is most appropriate for students who are "self-starters." Learn more about the distance learning experience.

How does distance education work?

Our distance courses blend print, video/audio resources and web-based classrooms. Some courses are complemented by real-time web conferences with small groups of other learners. Learn more about distance education.

Can I complete my BCYC degree without coming to campus?

You can complete most of your BCYC degree by distance delivery. You’ll need to come to campus for a minimum of one ten-day seminar course (CYC 475) but have the option of taking additional on-site courses.

On-site seminars

SCYC requires distance students to attend one on-site ten-day seminar course (CYC 475).  There may also be options to attend other seminar courses that may be configured in one of the following ways: on consecutive weekends, over a two-week or six-day period. All seminar courses are intensive and you’ll need to complete pre- and post-seminar assignments.

Seminar attendance is at the University of Victoria campus. If you need information on affordable accommodation we’ll provide it where possible. Distance students have enjoyed and benefited from seminar courses. They present opportunities to build networks, meet colleagues from other work environments, and exchange ideas in a face-to-face context.

How long does it take to complete a BCYC at a distance?

Most distance part-time students complete their degrees in four to six years, depending on the transfer credit they receive for courses from other institutions. Each course requires approximately four to ten hours of work per week, depending on the individual learner. Most of our distance students are adult part-time learners with job and family commitments, and the program has been designed with their needs in mind.

Do I have to be an expert at using computers to be successful in distance classes?

All of our distance classes have web-based virtual classrooms so you’ll be able to stay connected with other learners. Although each course is unique, you’ll be expected to enter your virtual classroom site a minimum of twice a week to check your email, collaborate with fellow learners and/or complete and submit assignments. The virtual classroom system is very user friendly. If you’re able to turn on your computer and link to the internet, you have the basic skills you’ll need for working on SCYC distance courses.

Learn more about distance education.

Do distance courses require REAL time participation?

Each course is unique. Most CYC distance courses do not require weekly real-time participation and meetings. Many courses include optional real-time meetings with students and instructors through web conferencing, chat, teleconference or other means.  Check the course timetable for details.

How do I get technical help with my online course?

If you have any technical or connectivity problems with your distance course technology throughout the course, please contact the  Onlinehelp Desk. They can also answer any questions you have about the technology's functions.

What services are available for Indigenous child and youth care students?

We have created a SILKS committee to support our Indigenous learners. SILKS stands for Supporting Indigenous Learners’ Knowledge and Skills. Learn more about Indigenous initiatives in the school.

More questions?


Advising contacts

Kathy Harrison
Student adviser
250-721-7984

Transfer credit

Kathy Harrison at 250-721-7984