Graduate Certificate Program
The purpose for offering graduate certificates is to meet the supplemental education needs of professionals. As jobs and job-related responsibilities change, a person often needs additional training in a specific area. For example, an architect who once thought s/he would design new buildings may become involved in preservation of historical districts. If this architect had not taken any historical preservation courses for the primary degree, a graduate certificate in Historic Preservation would provide needed knowledge. Providing graduate certificates for workforce development is a high priority for the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board.
A graduate certificate program is a set of courses that provides in-depth knowledge in a subject matter. The knowledge in the set of courses should provide a coherent knowledge base even if the courses are selected from more than one academic program. The set of courses may be more practice-oriented than the set of courses in a graduate academic program.
General Process for Developing a Graduate Certificate
- Faculty members recognize a need for a graduate certificate program. They document the need and prepare an application for a graduate certificate program.
- The department, by whatever process it has for approving academic programs, approves the application for a graduate certificate program.
- The department sends the application for a graduate certificate program to the college for its approval by the academic program committee or the normal approval process for the college.
- The college sends the application for a graduate certificate program to the Graduate School where it will be evaluated by the Academic Programs Committee of the Graduate Council. Its recommendation will be forwarded to the Graduate Council for formal approval.
- Upon approval by the Graduate Council, the application for a graduate certificate program will be forwarded to the Academic Council for its approval.
- Upon approval by the Academic Council, the application for a graduate certificate is forwarded to the Provost for final approval.
- If the graduate certificate program is over 14 hours and less than 30 hours, the Texas Higher Education Coordinating Board is notified. It does not need to approve the graduate certificate program.