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Fundamentals of Addiction Online Course


​This eight-week course is intended for professionals working with individual who may be facing mental health and addiction issues or for those who have an interest in this field.  It aims to help those learners further their understanding of addictive behaviour, which in the current Diagnostic and Statistical Manual includes both substances use issues and problem gambling.  We present the biopsychosocial plus (BPS+) model of addiction, which provides a multidimensional way of understanding this complex field.

The main themes in this course include:

  • social determinants of health
  • harm reduction
  • screening and assessment
  • treatment
  • legal issues and ethical considerations

This course covers key concepts and frameworks in the field of addictions and addiction services.  It is intended to familiarize course participants to these concepts at an introductory level.

The goal is to balance an emphasis on substance-related and behavioural addictions and to discuss the commonalities between the two.  As such, different types of drugs and other substances, their effects, and the different approaches to treatment are presented briefly throughout the course.  While this course presents an overview to the topic of addiction, specifically substance use and gambling issues, it also makes reference to mental health issues and to concurrent disorders.

Participants who would like to delve more in these topics are encouraged to review other comprehensive courses provided by CAMH at:

Learning objectives

After successfully completing this course, learners will be able:

  • recognize the key characteristics of addiction and theories of its causes
  • discuss the social determinants of health, diversity and cultural competence
  • explain trauma-informed practice and recovery-oriented care
  • describe the BPS+ model and the reasons for this multidimensional approach to addiction
  • identify key concepts in harm reduction and related strategies
  • describe screening and assessment processes
  • describe common types of treatment and guidelines for practice
  • interpret legal and ethical principles governing assessment, treatment and the therapeutic relationship.


This course includes instructional activities throughout, including case scenarios for group discussion, interactive review quizzes and embedded self-reflection questions to help link content to practice.

Delivery Method





This course is suggested as a preparatory course for the Concurrent Disorders Certificate Program


April 23 - June 16, 2018
Please click on the link below to register:
Refunds for advance (prior to start date) cancellation will be subject to an administrative fee of $100.00.

Withdrawals from a course are accepted within one week from the course's start date and is subject to an administrative fee of $100.00
Cancellation notice must be communicated in writing by email.


Robyn Steidman

Education Assistant

416-535-8501 x36640

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