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3. Certificate Programs

Certificate programs provide opportunities for postgraduate training to those with undergraduate degrees. Certificate programs are narrower in scope and shorter in duration than master’s degrees. Certificate programs are not “degree” programs.

Admission Requirements

Applicants who are currently enrolled in a graduate degree program at UTSA have already met University requirements for admission. In this case, no formal application process is necessary. The applicant should contact the Certificate Program Advisor and complete a form requesting permission to enter and complete the certificate program. If the request is approved, this form will be signed by the Certificate Program Advisor and the Dean of the College or Director of the Center in which the certificate program is housed. A copy of this form will be sent to the Graduate Advisor of Record for the student’s degree program, the department in which the applicant’s program is housed, and the Graduate School.

Applicants who are not currently enrolled in a graduate degree program at UTSA will be required to apply for admission to UTSA as a special (non-degree-seeking) graduate student and to indicate their intent to seek admission into a certificate program. Applicants will be required to meet University admission requirements for special graduate students. If admitted as a special graduate student, the applicant should contact the Certificate Program Advisor and complete a form requesting permission to enter and complete the certificate program. The form will be signed by the Certificate Program Advisor and the Dean of the College or Director of the Center in which the certificate program is housed. A copy of this form will be sent to the Graduate School.

If it is determined by the Certificate Program Advisor that an applicant requires prerequisite background courses to adequately prepare for the courses included in the certificate program, this will be noted in the applicant’s file. The applicant will be notified that the prerequisite courses must be taken before enrolling in certificate program coursework.

Any applicant who is admitted into a certificate program without being currently enrolled in a graduate degree program is considered to be a special graduate student. If the applicant wishes to be admitted into a degree program, they will be required to apply to that program as a degree-seeking student. Admittance into or completion of a certificate program is not considered to be qualification for entry into a graduate degree program.

Applicants who are pursuing a certificate as special graduate students will not be eligible for financial aid.

Applicants who are admitted into a certificate program while also pursuing a graduate degree will be classified as degree-seeking students.

Course Restrictions

All courses offered in a certificate program must be approved graduate-level courses. See individual certificate program descriptions for program-specific requirements. The following graduate certificate programs are offered:

Certificate of Professional Development in Geographic Information Science

Department of Geological Sciences

The purpose of the Professional Certificate in Geographic Information Science is to train individuals from a broad range of academic disciplines to be competent users of Geographic Information Science and the related tools of Remote Sensing and Web-based GIS data publication and sharing. Although the program is generally oriented toward geological sciences professionals, individuals with business, social science, medical, engineering, computer science, criminal science or education backgrounds will benefit from this professional certificate. Individuals completing this certificate will gain a practical and hands-on knowledge of Geospatial Science. See Department of Geological Sciences section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis

Department of Educational Psychology

The Certificate in Applied Behavior Analysis provides students with focused training in the area of applied behavior analysis as it relates to educational psychology and special education. The certificate provides educators with specialized skills in the application of behavior analysis to support the social behavior needs of students. See Department of Educational Psychology section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Bilingual Reading Specialist

Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies

The Certificate in Bilingual Reading Specialist offers specialized training for those who possess a valid teaching license and wish to become better prepared to provide appropriate reading instruction to students in bilingual programs in public schools. See Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Business of Health

College of Business

The Certificate in Business of Health is designed to equip healthcare and business professionals with the knowledge and skills needed to lead in today’s rapidly-changing healthcare environment. The program includes coursework in areas such as healthcare organization and management, Medicare regulation and payment systems, legal and tax strategies for healthcare organizations and professionals, and healthcare economics and policy, among others. See College of Business section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Creative Writing

Department of English

The Graduate Certificate in Creative Writing adds interdisciplinary breadth to a student’s course of study while increasing the depth and coherence of a student’s work in creative writing. Given the growing interest in creative writing in nontraditional disciplines of medicine, sociology, and psychology as well as in liberal arts, many students find this formal recognition of their work in creative writing to be a valuable credential in both academic and nonacademic job markets. This certificate demands an active engagement in graduate-level creative writing classes. Students who are pursuing the Graduate Certificate also receive first consideration for graduate workshop registration. See Department of English section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Digital Learning Design

Department of Educational Psychology

The Certificate in Digital Learning Design is designed to meet the needs of the working professional responsible for designing digital instructional materials or learning processes. This certificate will have basic theoretical foundations in learning theory along with specialized design knowledge that is customized to support professional work and career goals. The focus of the coursework is putting learning theory into practice as students are engaged in real-world cases, problems, and decision-making. See Department of Educational Psychology section in the catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration

Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies

The Graduate Certificate in Higher Education Administration will provide an opportunity for higher education professionals working or seeking to work in the myriad of higher education institutions in the region to develop their knowledge and skills in higher education administration. With a large and expanding four-year university and community college student population, this certificate program will enhance the professional preparation and development opportunities for current and prospective higher education administrators. See Department of Educational Leadership and Policy Studies section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Historic Preservation

Department of Architecture

Historic Preservation is a process of design for continuity and the management of change within an existing historic context. The Graduate Certificate in Historic Preservation offers specialized education in historic preservation design, technology, planning and management through graduate-level courses. See Department of Architecture section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Keyboard Pedagogy

Department of Music

The Certificate in Keyboard Pedagogy is designed for the active pre-college piano teacher who is interested in continuing their education through a program that is focused on practical courses in their field. See Department of Music section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Keyboard Performance

Department of Music

The Certificate in Keyboard Performance is a graduate option that allows exclusive focus on the performance aspects of musicianship. See Department of Music section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Administration and Leadership

Department of Public Administration

The Certificate in Nonprofit Administration and Leadership provides students with the opportunity to develop essential technical and analytical skills for leading and managing nonprofit organizations. These skills include: fundraising, grant writing, financial management, strategic planning, collaboration, and advocacy. The Certificate prepares students in the business skills required to manage social and human service, arts, religious, advocacy, and educational nonprofit organizations. The program also has a strong focus on the importance of leadership in preserving the unique role and purpose of the nonprofit sector in American society. This focus emphasizes the role of the nonprofit sector as a mechanism for participation important to preserving democracy. See Department of Public Administration section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Real Estate Finance and Development

Department of Finance

The Certificate in Real Estate Finance and Development will benefit professionals in the real estate and construction community who desire knowledge in real estate finance and development. See Department of Finance section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Rhetoric and Composition

Department of English

The Certificate in Rhetoric and Composition offers coursework in advanced, interdisciplinary study of language and language instruction, encompassing theoretical, applied, and pedagogical aspects of discourse. The certificate will also enhance students’ employment credentials as college and university writing instructors or as professional writers in corporate, nonprofit, and educational settings. See Department of English section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Security Studies

Department of Political Science and Geography

The Graduate Certificate in Security Studies is a program that mainly serves the needs of San Antonio regional professionals, such as leaders in military and civilian contract functions, who require advanced education short of full degree programs and in areas directly connected with their work in homeland security and defense at national, state, and local levels. The Department of Political Science and Geography is responsible for all coordination of students participating in the Certificate program. See Department of Political Science and Geography section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Spanish Translation Studies

Department of Modern Languages and Literatures

The Certificate in Spanish Translation Studies focuses on the language skills necessary to perform translation. Translation is defined as the rendering of a written text from a source language into another, while interpretation is the rendering of spoken language from a source language into another. Although this program concentrates on the former rather than on the latter, both draw on the same type of general linguistic skills as those gained by studies in literature, language, and culture. This certificate focuses more closely on practical applications in modern day life than does the more comprehensive Master’s degree. See Department of Modern Languages and Literatures section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language

Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies

The Certificate in Teaching English as a Second Language offers specialized training for people who would like to begin working in the field of English language teaching (ELT), either as a first job or a mid-career change. Completion of the certificate prepares individuals to work in areas including but not limited to community-based language schools for immigrants and refugees, private language schools abroad, corporate training/consulting, missionary/aid work, or private tutoring. See Department of Bicultural-Bilingual Studies section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Technology Entrepreneurship and Management

Department of Entrepreneurship and Technology Management

The Certificate in Technology Entrepreneurship and Management is designed for current graduate students in technology and science-related disciplines who wish to expand their skills at translating new technologies into new products and companies. See Department of Entrepreneurship and Technology Management section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Urban and Regional Planning

Department of Architecture

The Certificate in Urban and Regional Planning provides students with an introductory understanding of the historical, social, international, and physical context of comprehensive land use planning and sustainable urbanism. See Department of Architecture section in this catalog for more information.

Graduate Certificate in Voice Pedagogy

Department of Music

The Certificate in Voice Pedagogy is designed for the active private voice teacher who is interested in continuing their education through a program that is focused on practical courses in their field. This certificate has an exclusive focus on the pedagogical aspects of singing. See Department of Music section in this catalog for more information.


Completion of Requirements for Certificate

Completion of a certificate program, with or without completion of a degree program, will be recorded on the student’s transcript if the following conditions are met:

  1. The student’s Certificate Program Advisor has prepared a Certificate Degree Plan, which will be sent to the Office of the Registrar prior to the end of the semester in which the student completes the requirements of the certificate.
  2. The student has applied officially, by submitting an Application for Graduate Certificate (application is available online at http://utsa.edu/registrar/forms.html) to the Enrollment Services Center, no later than September 15 for the Fall Semester, February 15 for the Spring Semester, or June 15 for the Summer Semester. The application of any student applying for a certificate after the established deadlines will be processed the following semester.

It is the responsibility of the student to meet with the Certificate Program Advisor during the last semester of certificate coursework in order to determine that all requirements of completion have been met. It is also the responsibility of the student to apply for the certificate by the established deadline by submitting a paper application to the Office of the Registrar, as explained above.

If a student has graduated from one of UTSA’s approved graduate degree programs and then wishes to apply for a certificate using hours previously earned, the student must apply for admission to UTSA as a special (non-degree-seeking) graduate student and indicate their intent to seek admission into a certificate program. See admission policy for certificate programs.

The student’s completion of a certificate program, with or without completion of a degree program, will be recorded on the student’s transcript.

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