Graduate Certificates

(Traditional and online options available)


Certificate Program provides an opportunity at the graduate level for current and future professionals and others throughout the country interested in bioethics, including those in medicine, biotechnology, public health, life sciences, the legal field, and religion.

Students pursuing the Graduate Certificate attend courses selected from the Master of Arts program, taking only 12 credits with no thesis requirement. This program is designed to increase the flexibility and attractiveness of graduate study in bioethics for working professionals and others who want to add some basic bioethics knowledge to their professional practice. The addition of online courses increases access for those unable to come to campus

Graduate Certificate options:
Students may enroll in 1 of 3 Graduate Certificate options:

  • Graduate Certificate in Bioethics (12 credits): Customizable to a student’s particular interests, this program provides basic general knowledge and skills in bioethics.
  • Graduate Certificate in Biomedical Research Ethics (12 credits): Designed for future and current professionals engaged in the design, conduct, funding, and oversight of clinical, translational, and laboratory research.  In addition to the required coursework, students may be able to enroll in courses designed to provide supervised observation and experiential opportunities.
  • Graduate Certificate in Clinical Bioethics (12 credits): Clinical practitioners encounter ethical concerns daily, including issues at the beginning and end of life; privacy and confidentiality; decision making by patients, families, and surrogates; and many more.  The Graduate Certificate in Clinical Bioethics focuses on clinical ethics issues while leaving space for students to explore their own areas of interest.  Students may have the opportunity to garner direct observational experiences in clinical ethics settings.

Certificate admission options:

  • Certificate applicants may start in Fall, Spring, or (for students taking online courses) Summer
  • Certificate students have the option of taking courses either online (summer only) or on campus
  • Part time and full time options

Certificate admission requirements:

Certificate completion requirements (12 credits):

  • Complete twelve credits with a final GPA of at least 3.0.
  • Nine of the twelve credits must come from core courses:’
    • Bioethics Theory
    • Bioethics Seminar
    • Clinical Ethics
    • Biomedical Research Ethics
    • Public Policy, Medicine and Justice
  • The remaining three credits may come from core courses, electives, and/or independent study
    • Independent study may include reading, research, and writing-focused work or “practicum”-style supervised experiences with structured reflection
    • Graduate Certificate in Clinical Ethics students must take Clinical Ethics course
    • Graduate Certificate in Biomedical Research Ethics students must take Biomedical Research Ethics course
  • Up to three hours of transfer credit may be considered in place of elective course work (upon approval)

Summer online courses available (mid May-mid August):

  • Summer 2020: Bioethics Theory and Clinical Ethics
  • Summer 2021: Biomedical Research Ethics and Public Policy, Medicine, and Justice

Time to completion:

  • Students are able to complete the certificate program in:
    • As little as two semesters on a part-time basis (i.e. six credits per semester)
    • One semester on a full-time basis
    • All work must be completed within four years of the date of initial enrollment in the program

 Tuition and financial support:

  • Graduate Certificate students are eligible for institutional financial support
    • Federal financial aid is not available to Graduate Certificate students
    • Contact Vicky Zickmund, Associate Director, for more information on aid requirements
  • Tuition information may be found here. Information and application procedures for financial support can be found here.