Online certificates

What is a graduate certificate?

(From the Graduate College Handbook)

A graduate certificate provides a mechanism for bestowing formal recognition of focused graduate study in a specialized area that is less comprehensive than required for a master's degree. At Iowa State University, a graduate certificate may be earned either before, after, or concurrently with the master's or doctoral degree. As such, the standards of admission and the standards to which a certificate student is held are equivalent to those expected of a master's student.

Candidates for a graduate certificate must be admitted to the desired graduate certificate program in the Graduate College. All courses for a graduate certificate must be acceptable for graduate credit. Each graduate certificate must require at least 12 graduate credits. A graduate supervisor will be appointed to oversee the certification for each student.

If a person who receives a graduate certificate decides to continue for a graduate degree, the person needs to seek approval from that degree program. Credits earned for the graduate certificate may also be used to meet degree requirements for the graduate degree. The Program of Study Committee must approve these credits.


Graduate certificates offered online through the College of Human Sciences:

Family Financial Planning (FFP) Graduate Certificate

Family Well-Being in Diverse Society Graduate Certificate

Food Safety and Defense Graduate Certificate (administered by the College of Agriculture and Life Sciences)

Gerontology Graduate Certificate

Infant and Early Childhood Mental Health Certificate

Lifespan Certificate

Literacy Coaching Certificate

Youth Development Specialist Graduate Certificate

Youth Program Management and Evaluation Graduate Certificate