Specialist High Skills Major

Student Success Grades 7-12 logo       Specialist High Skills Major logo

What are Specialist High Skills Majors?

Specialist High Skills Majors let students focus on a career path that matches their skills and interests while meeting the requirements of the Ontario Secondary School Diploma (OSSD). Students receive the SHSM seal on their diploma when they:

  • complete a specific bundle of 8-10 courses in the student's selected field
  • earn valuable industry certifications including First Aid and CPR qualifications
  • gain important skills on the job through cooperative education placements.

Who are they for?

sample of a OSSDGrade 11 and 12 students who are:

  • heading for apprenticeship training, college, university or the workplace
  • wanting to identify, explore and refine their career goals and make informed choices about their next steps after secondary school.

Students receive the SHSM's red seal on their diplomas when they complete:

Bundled Credits: Each SHSM program offers students a bundle of 9-11 credits, including:

  • 4 "major" credits in the identified sector in Grade 11 and Grade 12

  • 2 or 3 supporting credits in English, Math or Science that will be delivered in the context of that sector

Contextualized Learning Activities:  Supporting credit, such as English, Math, Science or Business include units and other opportunities for SHSM students to learn in the context of the sector they have chosen

  • i.e. a student taking a SHSM construction program completes a unit in their math course determining the proper measurements to build a construction project

Certifications and Awareness Training:  Sector-recognized certifications related to the major and selected from a list, both generic and specific to support the sector (i.e. WHMIS, First Aid, CAD/CAM Training)

Experiential Learning Opportunities:

  • Job-shadowing, job twinning, work experience

  • Minimum of 2 cooperative education credits linked to the major

  • Field trips, other workplace experiences for students to explore careers related to that sector

Documentation of Essential Skills and Work Habits through the Ontario Skills Passport.

Reach Ahead Experiences:  In the field and sectors considered as a post-secondary destination, ranging from a few hours to full courses (dual credit programs).

Clearly valuing and providing a pathway to all four post-secondary destinations, apprenticeship, college, university and work.

See Guidance for more information about Specialist High Skills Major.

SHSMs at our School

Welcome to Specialist High Skills Majors Construction Brochure 
Information & Communications Technology
 Welcome to Specialist High Skills Majors Information & Communication Technology Brochure
 Welcome to Specialist High Skills Majors Transportation Brochure