Social & Human Services - Course Planning

As a student in the Social and Human Services program, you’ll have access to a wide variety of courses that allow you to explore your interests within the field. Gain the skills you need to begin a rewarding career right away, or prepare to continue your studies in a bachelor’s degree program.

Students interested in substance abuse and mental health counseling may also choose to pursue a Chemical Dependency Specialist certificate as part of their studies. This certification, combined with your Social and Human Services degree, will help you qualify for the Washington State Department of Health’s Chemical Dependency Professional license.

Note: the majority of our classes are offered hybrid at Seattle Central's Capitol Hill campus. We hold classes day and evening, as well as hybrid.

Related Instruction

CMST& 101: Introduction to Communication
5 credits
Intro to communication as a transactional process, with attention to personal, cultural, group and public communication. Covers verbal and nonverbal messages, listening, self-concept and perception.

PSYC& 100: General Psychology
5 credits
Intro to the scientific study of human behavior, including learning and thinking, development, perception, motivation, emotion, personality and individual differences, social and abnormal behavior and research methods.

SOC& 101: Introduction to Sociology
5 credits
Covers human social interaction with emphasis on group aspects of human behavior. Includes culture, socialization, family, education, urbanization, gender roles, social class, deviance, race, sexuality, demography and social change.

First Third of Program

ENGL& 101: English Composition
5 credits
Covers academic writing and major strategies of reading and writing analytically. Focuses on engaging and responding to a variety of texts. Through revision and reflection, develop skills as readers, writers and critical thinkers.

BTM 111: Business Applications I
4 credits
Intro to microcomputer applications for Windows. Includes an overview of Windows, the Microsoft Office System featuring Word, Excel, Access, PowerPoint, Internet Browsers, email, along with emerging software application topics and concepts.

SHS 100: Introduction to Human Services
5 credits
This course provides an overview of the social and human services field from the perspective of the individual human services worker. Societal conditions, assumptions and needs that impact delivery of services will be explored. Areas of knowledge, professional values and skills will be discussed. The characteristics of the human services agency will be examined, including professional roles, career opportunities and challenges. Prerequisite: eligibility for ENGL& 101 and MAT 084.

SHS 103: Social Welfare Policy
5 credits
Introduction to social welfare policy, social justice and systems. Emphasis on social welfare policies, systems and services designed to respond to social issues: public welfare, child welfare, mental health, chemical dependency, aging, poverty, health, disabilities and corrections. Prereq or corequisite: SHS 100 with a minimum 2.0 grade point average; Eligible for ENGL& 101 and MATH 084.

Second Third of Program

ENGL& 102: Composition 2
3 credits
Intro to working with children and families in designing welcoming, safe, healthy and supportive learning environments.

SHS 106: Principles of Interviewing & Counseling
5 credits
Intro to beginning–level interviewing and counseling skills in multicultural settings. Demonstration of human services values and knowledge of diverse populations' needs through counseling techniques: developing relationships; identifying problems, solutions and goals; and evaluating progress. Prereqisite: ENGL& 101, SHS 100, & SHS 103 with a minimum 2.0 grade point average. Eligible for MAT 084.

SHS 108: Group Dynamics & Counseling
5 credits
Intro to group work, including group processes, communication patterns, group and individual goal–setting, leadership and decision–making. Includes group participation, role–playing and simulations. Prereq or corequisite: ENGL& 102;

SHS 210: Intro to Diversity in Human Services Practice
3 credits
This course examines U.S. society and the diversity within it as well as the effects of societal structures on clients. Topics include an overview of general principles of cultural diversity and cross–cultural services delivery to individuals from many diverse backgrounds. Prerequisite or corequisite of ENGL& 102; prerequisite SHS 100, 103 with a minimum GPA of 2.0; eligibility MATH084.

Last Third of Program

SHS 197: Field Placement: Social & Human Services
3 credits
Supervised community–based field experience in which students apply knowledge and develop skills by working in public and private agencies and organizations.

CDS 197: Field Practicum: Chemical Dependency
3 credits
This is an alternate to SHS 197.

SHS 198: Field Placement: Social & Human Services
3 credits
Work experience in human services agencies, with individual and group supervision provided by agency professionals to share experiences and further develop work–related skills.

CDS 198: Field Practicum: Chemical Dependency
3 credits
This is an alternate to SHS 198.

SHS 199: Field Placement: Social & Human Services
5 credits
Work experience in human services agencies, with individual and group supervision provided by agency professionals to share experiences and further develop work–related skills.

CDS 199: Field Practicum: Chemical Dependency
4 credits
This is an alternate to SHS 199.

Associate of Applied Science (AAS) Degree

Total Program Credits: 90

Associate of Applied Science - Transfer (AAS-T) Degree

Complete the coursework for the AAS degree in addition to the following courses: 

  • College-level MATH with MATH 098 (or equivalent) prerequisite (5 Credits)
  • Humanities Elective (5 Credits)

Total Program Credits: 100

Class Schedule

* Eligibility determined by COMPASS placement testing. Enrollment in MATH 084 is not required for the AAS program only eligibility.

** 23 Elective Credits required. Courses other than SHS Electives related to human services content or professional development may be approved through academic advising.