Direct Care Practice

18 Credit Certificate Program

Hegis Code: 5506 Admissions: 1-800-724-0833
ext. 5018 or 5022
NYSED Code: 21738

Program Description
The Direct Care Practice Certificate program trains practitioners to supply direct care to individuals, families, or groups in the community. Students learn about the multiple roles direct care workers in public and private sectors are asked to play. Through courses and a practicum provided at a community organization, the program offers tangible ways to gain confidence and competence in specific skill areas identified by potential employers and codified by national performance standards. Skills obtained in the Direct Care Practice program can be applied to many specific populations. Graduates of the program will have skills that are of use in virtually any human services setting. The program incorporates skill standards established on a nationwide basis through the Community Support Skills Standards Project, thereby ensuring consistency in direct care service.

Student Learning Outcomes
At the completion of the Direct Care Practice Certificate program a student will be able to
• Understand and apply the theory and practice of skills in direct care practice;
• Provide direct support services to children, individuals, families, and groups in home or community settings;
• Meet the nationally set skill standards set by the Community Support Skills Standards Project;
•  Critically think and effectively communicate with an ability to apply ethical knowledge and practices to a broad range of situations commonly faced by practitioners within the fields of direct care;
• Apply the strong foundation of knowledge to continued academic and professional education.

Employment Potential
Development of this program was prompted by requests from community agencies to meet their emerging employment needs for individuals trained in direct care practice. A summary of Ulster County direct care agencies and organizations reveals that more than 400 people are hired locally each year in this field.

The Direct Care Practitioner works with a variety of populations, depending on the agency. These may include home-based family preservation services, childcare centers, foster care placements, day treatment programs, residential treatment facilities, elder daycare/respite programs, group homes, jails and alternative correction programs, short- and long-term rehabilitation centers, crisis hot lines and centers, sheltered workshops/day habilitation clinics, assisted living/skilled nursing facilities, and others.

With additional education and/or work experience, graduates of the program may find other opportunities in higher level positions at these facilities.

Requirements for Program Entry

  • High School diploma or equivalent
  • Satisfactory placement in Entering Student Assessment
  • Admission to the Human Services A.A.S. program

Developmental Assistance Available
For students who do not meet basic reading and math requirements, or who have other learning issues, extra assistance is readily available through SUNY Ulster's Learning Center, Patrik Math Center, the Writing Center, the Peer and Friend Tutor Program, and English as a Second Language (ESL) tutors.

For More Information
Deanna Schreiber
Coordinator, Human Services
Office: Vanderlyn Hall, VAN 239
Phone: 800:724-0833, ext 5078 or

To print a copy of the Program Planning Sheet, click here

Click on the Course Number for the course description.
Course Number Description Credits
ENG 101 College English I 3
HUS 103 Introduction to Human Services 3
HUS 202 Persons with Special Needs 3
HUS 205 General Practice with Children, Families and Institutions 3
HUS 207 Aspects of Aging 3
HUS 212 Human Services Field Practicum: General Practice 3
Total Credits 18