Certified User for Child & Adolescent Needs & Strengths (CANS)

Course Code:


Start Date:

24 Jun 2019

Course Category:

Children, Youth and Family

End Date:

26 Jun 2019

Duration (hours):



Social Service Institute

Application closing date : 20 May 2019

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Name Fee (Excludes GST) Fee (Includes GST)
Course Fee (Before Funding) $ 680.00 $ 727.60
Nett Fee (after SSG funding) $ 204.00 $ 218.28

Numerous researches have suggested clients respond favourably when the right level of care is accorded to their needs. Too little care leads to service inadequacy and negates effectiveness; too much care causes resource wastage and deprives the more needy others.

How do we quantify and measure the level of needs and strengths for the clients when each individual is different and unique? How do we measure the needs and strengths and use the information for service planning, intervention, respond to new needs as individual case workers, agency level or even at a system level?

For this simple reason – their needs and strengths must unfold rightly before the appropriate care and services could be determined. Encapsulated in the Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) communimetric assessment tool, professionals working collaboratively have a common assessment tool for service planning and intervention. The CANS communimetric assessment tool not only help caseworkers on the holistic assessment, to target the area of interventions bearing in mind the strengths of the C&Y and their families, the information will also be useful at the agency and system level planning, resourcing as well as research which will help in evidence informed service delivery.

In alliance with the Ministry of Social and Family Development (MSF), Social Service Institute (SSI) offers the CANS certification training – a critical step towards the renewed approach to the C&Y Service Model. Through our signature Task-based Learning approach, you will acquire critical competencies in administering CANS.

Learning Outcome:

By the end of the course, you will be able to:

1. Illustrate how the TCOM framework is used in working with children, youth and families.

2. Relate the applications of TCOM in the local context

3. Rationalise the use of standardised assessment tools for communication

4. Analyse the characteristics of the CANS assessment tool

5. Quantify client’s needs and strengths using the CANS assessment tool

6. Analyse the needs and strengths to be prioritised in a case plan.

7. Formulate a case plan to address prioritised needs and strengths

Target Participants:

All social service professionals who work with children and young person such as Social Workers, Youth Workers, Heads of Children and Young Person Homes and School Counsellors.

Trainer Profile:

Ms Madeline Heng has been working as a research psychologist in the Clinical and Forensic Psychology Service since 2012. She currently holds a Masters (by Research) in Social Sciences (Psychology). Through her involvement in the Child and Adolescent Needs and Strengths (CANS) tool workgroup and training team, Ms Heng has conducted CANS certification training for more than 150 staff and more than 10 supervisors. She has also presented CANS research findings at the International Conference on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology in 2014. Ms Heng is a Master User in the YLS/CMI and Train-the-Trainer certified in the CANS.

Ms Perrine Hung has been working with youths-at-risk in the Probation and Community Rehabilitation Service since 2013. She holds an Honours Degree in Psychology and a Graduate Diploma in Social Work. During her experience as a Senior Probation Officer, Ms Hung worked with high-risk youths in hostels and other community settings, using the YLS/CMI tool to effectively guide case planning. As a member of the Diversionary Programme team, Ms Hung also implemented and managed the Triage System for youth offenders though planning training curriculum and conducting trainings for triage officers and supervisors.

Ms Joycelin Ng has been involved in youth-at-risk work with various VWOs since 2007. She currently holds an Honours Degree in Psychology. During her experience as a Senior Probation Officer, Ms Ng managed high-risk youths in hostels and community settings through the use of the YLS/CMI in case planning. Ms Ng had also conducted curriculum planning and trainings for Volunteer Probation Officers. Ms Ng is currently involved in the evaluation and coaching of social workers from VCHs and Social Service Organisations in the use of both the CANS and YLS/CMI tools.

Mr Kevin Tan started his career supporting secondary students as at MOE. He later became an Educational Psychologist which brought him to work as a Cluster Educational Psychologist in MOE HQ, before moving to MSF where he worked in various capacity in the Office of the Chief Psychologist and Clinical Forensic Psychology Service. The different roles had provided him a wide range of experience from supporting children to adults with disabilities to supporting children-in-care and youth-at-risk in both protection and rehabilitation sectors. In area of TCOM tools, Mr Tan is a certified TCOM Trainer who adapted and conducted the Train-the-Trainer in FAST for Social Workers in 2016 and 2017. He has also presented at the International TCOM Conference, Princeton on implementation of CANS and FAST in Singapore in 2016. Currently, Mr Tan is working with a team of trainers who are building the capacity of Social Service Professionals in the use of both CANS and YLS/CMI Tools.


Assessment is conducted on Day 3 of the course and takes 4 hours.
You will be expected to administer the CANS tools on a vignette provided, followed by a written test.

As there is an assessment component for this course, grading and processing of results can only take place after course completion.

E-mode of delivery:
• Learners will receive online access to courseware instead of printed materials
• Learners will complete an online course evaluation and receive an e-certificate

As there is an assessment component for this course, grading and processing of results can only take place after course completion. Learners who pass the assessment(s) will be awarded with an electronic Certificate of Achievement from SSI. You will receive an email notification when your e-Cert is ready for download in your NCSS e-Services account.

Fee Remarks:

SSG funding is available for Singapore Citizens and Permanent Residents only. For more information on SSG Training Grants, please visit:
SkillsFuture Singapore Funding.
SkillsFuture Credit.

VCF funding is available for foreigners who are staff of member VWOs of NCSS via Direct Training Application.

Terms and conditions apply. Applicants of above training grants should inform SSI upon submission of your application.


CHUA Jermin / Jermin_CHUA@ncss.gov.sg / 65895562

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