Documentation for Community and Social Services

Documentation for Community and Social Services 

Faced with the choice of working with a client or completing paperwork, what would you choose? Based on the misconception that it is of greater value to the client and your agency, you may choose working with the client rather than spending time on paperwork. However, if your paperwork is not up-to-date, how would you demonstrate the work you have done? How would someone else know how to work with the client if you are away? How would you meet legal requirements for privacy and confidentiality? Incomplete documentation can result in clients not receiving appropriate services, supervisor concerns about your performance, and legal issues for your agency. For these reasons, it is important that you document your work appropriately. The main goal of this course is to teach you what documentation you need to provide, the associated timelines for when it needs to be done, and how to do so in ways that are meaningful to the client. You will learn what constitutes typical documentation in community and social services, in addition to why it is important. By taking this training, you will gain the tools you need to meet documentation standards at each stage of service delivery. You also will learn the types of documentation required as a result of incidents in order to communicate with clients, and to meet legal obligations. Strategies for completing documentation consistently and thoroughly will be taught. Through interactive exercises and vignettes, you will be able to apply the information to real-life situations. This course is appropriate for anyone working directly with clients in community and social services. This training will help you to maintain documentation that is thorough and accurate in addition to meeting client, organization, or professional needs.


Hours: 2.75


Certificates provided by accrediting body (0 Match)

Course Details

Course Code: EL-DOCU-CAN-0
Hours: 2.75
Type: Online Course
Learning Objectives:
Describe the documentation required in community and social services.
Explain how to complete documentation throughout service delivery and in other circumstances.
Demonstrate how to complete documentation that is timely, accurate, up-to-date, and comprehensive

I. Section 1: Introduction A. Course Contributors B. About This Course C. Learning Objectives II. Section 2: The What and Why of Documentation A. Ian's Issue B. What Is Documentation? C. Why Is Documentation Necessary? D. Why Is Documentation Important? E. Factors Influencing Documentation F. Why Must I? G. General Documentation Requirements H. Types of Documentation I. More with Ian J. Section Summary III. Section 3: Documentation Requirements in Client Services A. New Referrals B. Client Consent C. Service Notes D. Client Profiles / Assessments - Overview E. Client Profiles / Assessments - The Phases F. Let's Document! G. Service Plans H. Reports I. Requests and Complaints J. Lara's Learning K. Section Summary IV. Section 4: Other Documentation Requirements A. Legally Required and Agency-Specific Documentation B. Incident Reporting C. Communication Logs D. Let's Practice E. Medication Administration F. Clients with Special Needs G. What Should They Do? H. Section Summary V. Section 5: Strategies for Effective Documentation A. Remembering the Purpose B. Allocating Time C. Let Values Guide You D. How Do I Get It Done? E. Creating Meaningful Documentation F. Creating Documentation that is Understandable G. Writing Tips H. Carole's Plan I. Section Summary VI. Section 6: Conclusion A. Summary B. References C. Congratulations!

Staff Writer: Jeanine McDonald, B.A.
Ms. Jeanine McDonald has more than 15 years of experience in direct service and management positions in the community and social services sector, specializing in services to children with special needs, their families, and the community. She has worked with children, families, and child care programs as a supported child development consultant and supported programs as a manager, executive director, and regional advisor. Ms. McDonald also has been an instructor at post-secondary institutions, has provided private consulting services to help organizations with grant writing, staff training, as well as developing programs, policies, and procedures. Ms. McDonald has an Honours B.A. in Early Childhood Education and Psychology. She is currently completing the University of Victoria Certificate in Adult and Continuing Education with emphasis in online learning. Disclosure: Jeanine McDonald, B.A. has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Expert Reviewer: Joanne Granek, M.A.
Joanne Granek is a consultant in organizational planning and accountability, community engagement, and leadership development. Joanne has worked in non-profit social services for almost 40 years, including 13 years as executive director of a multi-service organization. Joanne has served on boards of directors and has led many community initiatives related to poverty reduction. She has a Master's Degree in Community Psychology, has trained and worked as a family therapist, and worked and trained others in critical incident debriefing. Joanne is a CARF accreditation surveyor and is currently managing the development of Canadian content for Essential Learning course work while continuing her consulting practice. Disclosure: Joanne Granek, M.A. has declared that no conflict of interest, Relevant Financial Relationship or Relevant Non-Financial Relationship exists.
Target Audience:
The target audience for this course is: Entry, Intermediate level General Staff.
Relias will be transparent in disclosing if any commercial support, sponsorship or co-providership is present prior to the learner completing the course.
Course Delivery Method and Format
Asynchronous/Online Distance Learning; please see certificate details for specifics on delivery format.
Relias has a grievance policy in place to facilitate reports of dissatisfaction. Relias will make every effort to resolve each grievance in a mutually satisfactory manner. In order to report a complaint or grievance please contact Relias.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Support by completing the web form ( or by using the chat functionality.
All courses offered by Relias, LLC are developed from a foundation of diversity, inclusiveness, and a multicultural perspective. Knowledge, values and awareness related to cultural competency are infused throughout the course content.
Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, service mark, manufacturer or otherwise does not constitute or imply any endorsement, recommendation, or favoring of, or affiliation with, Relias, LLC.
All characteristics and organizations referenced in the following training are fictional. Any resemblance to any actual organizations or persons living or dead, is purely coincidental.
To earn continuing education credit for this course you must achieve a passing score of 80% on the post-test and complete the course evaluation.
If you require special accommodations to complete this module, please contact Relias Customer Support here.