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Online Graduate Certificate in
Higher Education

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Why Earn a Graduate Certificate in Higher Education with Etown SGPS?

Earning a Graduate Certificate in Higher Education represents a strategic move towards enhancing your career in the educational sector. This program is meticulously designed to equip future leaders and educators with the critical skills needed for excellence in various roles within higher education, training and development, and interdisciplinary industries. The program focuses on developing essential competencies for teaching and leadership, particularly for working with adult learners in various settings, including in-person, online, and hybrid learning environments. By integrating key aspects of equity and diversity into the curriculum, it ensures graduates are prepared to create and lead inclusive educational settings, a necessity in today's global educational landscape.

In addition, this certificate can be completed in less than a year and all credits can be stacked into Etown's M.Ed. in Educational Leadership as well as the Doctorate of Occupational Therapy, providing a clear path to further education.

Program Outcomes:

  • Promote effective instructional leadership through the strategic enhancement of professional development, capacity building, implementing a rigorous curriculum, high-quality instruction, and establishing robust assessment and accountability measures.
  • Foster a climate and culture of inclusive excellence by nurturing a community of care and support, promoting equity, cultural responsiveness, and holistic development.
  • Equip participants with the essential skills and knowledge required to thrive in face-to-face, hybrid, and online environments.
  • Design learning experiences based on the unique characteristics and motivations of adult learners aligning with the theory of andragogy.


Program Format


credits required

to graduate

Can be Completed in

One Year

Or Less

Etown SGPS Ranked in the top


For Best Online

Colleges in Pennsylvania

by Forbes for 2023

Become a Leader in Higher Education

The Graduate Certificate in Higher Education meets a demand for skilled postsecondary teachers and training and development specialists which is on the rise with projections indicating substantial job growth in these areas over the next decade. This growth signals a need for educators and leaders who are adept at fostering engaging and effective learning environments for adult learners. Graduates of this program will be well-equipped to take on these challenges, offering them a distinct advantage in a competitive job market. The program's focus on cutting-edge teaching methodologies, institutional assessment, and fostering equitable learning environments positions its graduates as leaders ready to influence the future of higher education positively.

Understand Tuition Costs and Explore Scholarship Opportunities

The Graduate Certificate in Higher Education is priced at $525 per credit. Scholarships and financial aid are available to make your Etown SGPS education even more affordable. Below are just a few of the scholarships and programs available to students:

  • Alumni Scholarship: 15% tuition discount, available to Elizabethtown College alumni.
  • Affinity Partner Scholarship: 15% discount, offered to employees of organizations partnered with Etown SGPS.
  • Jay Fellowship Referral Program: This is a referral program that benefits both current students/alumni and prospective students. When a student or alum refers a new student, both the referrer and the referred student receive a complimentary credit for their program of interest.

Tuition and fees are reviewed and subject to change annually.

Tuition & Aid 

Online Graduate Certificate in Higher Education

The Graduate Certificate in Higher Education from Elizabethtown College requires 12-credit hours of academic work. The program is offered as a stand-alone certificate or can be applied as a concentration within the Etown SGPS M.Ed. in Educational Leadership or the Post-Professional Doctorate of Occupational Therapy.

Academic Calendar 

Required Courses

Universal Design for Learning explores the principles and strategies for creating adaptable and accessible learning environments. This course is designed for those who wish to make education more equitable by accommodating the diverse needs and preferences of all learners, including those with disabilities. Participants will delve into UDL's three guiding principles and learn how to apply these concepts to create flexible and effective instructional materials and practices, ensuring that education is accessible to everyone.

The following course will examine the principles of adult learning and andragogy in this course. Gain insights into the unique characteristics and motivations of adult learners and learn how to effectively design and facilitate adult education experiences, aligning with the theory of andragogy developed by Malcolm Knowles. Understand adult learning styles and adapt teaching methods to meet the diverse needs of adult learners.

This course will explore the complex and evolving ethical and legal landscape of higher education. Students will examine a wide range of issues, including academic integrity, freedom of speech, student privacy, campus safety, Title IX, and intellectual property.

Institutional Assessment aims to equip participants with a comprehensive grasp of the processes involved in assessing, evaluating, and accrediting institutions within the realm of higher education. Students will acquire knowledge of leading best practices for driving institutional transformation.

Application Requirements & Process

To be eligible to apply to any of our graduate certificate programs you will need to:

  • Have a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited college or university.
  • Have an undergraduate grade point average of 3.0 or higher (waivers can be granted based on professional work experience and other factors).
  • Have a minimum of three years of professional leadership/management experience.
  • Have time to devote to your coursework; in an accelerated program, time spent outside of class is considerable.

  •  Contact or meet with our admissions staff for guidance and to find out more information.
  •  Complete the graduate application via the online portal which includes the submission of a $25 nonrefundable application fee, which is waived for Elizabethtown College graduates.
    • You will need to request official transcripts from all undergraduate institutions you have attended and upload your current resume.
    • Additionally, prepare a 1-2 page essay addressing your motivation for pursuing the graduate certificate, a statement of professional goals, and goals for the application of the graduate certificate to your professional life.
  •  After submitting your application, the SGPS Team will review it and make an admissions decision.
  •  If accepted, you will receive an initial offer letter via the applicant portal, which you must accept to proceed with matriculation.
  •  If there are any questions or concerns, the admissions team will contact you for further discussion.
  •  After successfully completing your Elizabethtown College graduate certificate, students may complete the Advance in Graduate Certificate or Degree form in the JayWeb student portal to apply to a future graduate certificate or graduate degree. Additional materials may be required, depending on the program of interest.

Etown seniors, alumni, and employees may be able to take advantage of our two-step, fast-tracked application process.

Elizabethtown College