A hallway at Sheridan's Hazel McCallion Campus

School Within a College (SWAC)

What is a 'School Within a College' (SWAC) Dual Credit Program?

In a SWAC program, secondary school students take all their classes, including secondary school courses and dual credits, on a college campus. The program is offered to students from Dufferin-Peel Catholic District School Board. They will be registered as St. Oscar Romero students once accepted into the program. All classes are at Sheridan’s bright, modern HMC campus in Mississauga.

What Students Are Saying About This Program

“I chose to take the Dual Credit course because I wanted a more mature environment. I came every day to school and many days even stayed after school to finish my assignments. I love the teachers, how they support you and help you from failing. I think this program is great. This program definitely changed my outlook on college. I am no longer scared about going to college, the ‘nervousness’ I’ll feel next time is going to be excitement not ‘scaredom’. This program encouraged me to pursue my dream to get a college diploma.”

“I took this program to help me graduate. I like the teachers and the experience.”

What Will I Learn/Do?

As a student registered at Sheridan, you’ll be part of college life, just like other students on campus. You’ll have access to college services, but at the same time, you’ll retain the benefits and supports of a secondary school student. Your teachers and professors will work together to support your learning and help you to be successful. Being in a SWAC is a great way to find out what it’s really like to be at college – you’ll be able to fit right in and get a head start on college by taking up to four general education elective courses as dual credits.

*How it Works:

In addition to your high school courses, you will have the opportunity to take two college courses in each semester. Depending on the total number of credits you need to graduate from high school, you may be in the program for one semester or two. Classes run five days per week from September to June, following the normal high school calendar, but dual credit courses will normally be delivered over a 14 week period in both Semester 1 and Semester 2.

Course Descriptions:

Agony & Ecstasy: Addictions

In this course students use a sociological and science-based approach to explore historical and psychosocial issues related to a variety of common addictions such as smoking, alcohol, gaming and shopping. In addition, students examine addictions to psychoactive drugs. Topics include concepts of addiction, political approaches to substance abuse, and an examination of specific addictions. Through interactive lecture, video, in-class activities, and investigating current trends in addiction research through internet readings and group presentations, students explore the impact of these problems from a societal and biological perspective.

Creative Thinking

Students explore creativity as a discipline of study, cultural myths about creativity, and the psychological conditions conducive to creative thinking. Through interactive lectures and discussions, they develop an understanding of the context, history, and major theories of the discipline. By engaging in experiential techniques, their competence and confidence to creatively address practical challenges is expanded. Students examine their own creative processes through reflective journaling, and they demonstrate their learning through exercises, a mid-term assessment, designing a project, and the development of a course e-portfolio.

Human Relations: The Interpersonal Experience

This course is designed to provide students with an introduction to interpersonal relationships. Healthy interpersonal relationships are central to our well-being, familial and workplace success. Effective communication skills are critical in any relationships. This course helps students become more self-reflective and self-aware of their communication capabilities through topics such as the foundations of interpersonal communications, creating and responding to messages and the dynamics and contexts of interpersonal relationships. Attention is given to verbal and nonverbal communication, listening skills, perceiving others, managing conflict and interpersonal relationship within family, work, groups and teams.

Perspectives on World Issues

Boundaries between local, national, and international issues have become increasingly blurred in the age of globalization. Issues such as trade inequities, environmental protection, climate change, the scarcity of resources, poverty and the rise of 'tribalism' and religious fundamentalism transcend national borders. How do we reconcile principles such as sustainable growth, human rights, and democracy with the demands of industry, global financial institutions, and the market system as a whole? This discussion-based course will provide you with an overview of the key issues that affect you, your community, Canada, and the world. You will have an opportunity to select the issues that interest you the most and learn more about them through your own research. This is a must course for those who really want to know what is going on in the world around them and how it can affect their lives.

Profiles in Crime

Students critically analyze the Canadian criminal justice system and the impact of crime on victims and our society. Students explore criminal typologies, the causes of crime and the changing definition of crime and criminals. Through in-class activities, presentations, group discussion, relevant readings and multi-media presentations, students gain a deeper awareness of current issues facing the criminal justice system including police discretion, the role of the criminal court system, the plight of victims of crime, and proposed solutions to crime.

The Science of Popular Diets

Students explore concepts of human nutrition as they relate to fad diets and cultural norms, while gaining an understanding of the impact nutrition has on wellness and disease. A range of popular and culturally-specific diets are critically examined and assessed based on current practice and scientific evidence. Using a variety of interactive learning tools, students investigate the links between the major nutrients and personal health. Further, comparison of individual diet and nutrition standards allows for a thorough understanding of connections between nutrition and health. Students use existing knowledge to evaluate the benefits and consequences of popular "fad" diets. Cultural diet norms and popular diet trends are explored with a focus on the overall impact on individual and population wellness. Finally, through scientific investigation of emerging literature, the impact of scientific change is appreciated.

Wellness & Healthy Living

Students investigate their own personal well-being through the exploration of the fundamental principles of physical and mental health. These principles are applied to various day-to-day activities or issues, allowing the student to make positive decisions that lead to a healthy lifestyle. Topics covered include: dealing with stress, exercise and physical fitness, nutrition, sexual health, substance and non-substance addiction, personal safety, and environmentally-friendly health choices. Through interactive lectures and online activities, students use this information to self-reflect and learn more about themselves on a personal level.

Pathways to Full Time Sheridan Programs:

Opportunities to connect with Recruitment, Career Services and other Student Services representatives are arranged so that you can explore your college and career options. Many SWAC graduates have gone on to enroll in a Sheridan program and find that having the SWAC experience is a big asset to them as they make the transition to post-secondary learning. You may want to check out the story of one of our recent SWAC grads (link to success story).

Further Academic/Career Pathways:

Your General Education courses will give you a wide range of college program options because they are part of every certificate or diploma program. Whether you enjoy technology, business, social services, the arts or anything in between, there’s a world of opportunity out there for you as a graduate of the Sheridan-Archbishop Romero SWAC Dual Credit Program. It’s a great first step into a whole new future for you!

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