Frequently Asked Questions About Graduate Certificate Programs
Q: How do I apply for a graduate certificate?
A: The Truman Institute’s Graduate Certificate in Sustainability and Environmental Studies is preparing to enroll students for the 2015-2016 academic year. Current Truman undergraduates and domestic students should complete a standard Graduate Application and indicate that they are enrolling as Graduate Certificate Student, selecting the option for the Graduate Certificate in Sustainability and Environmental Studies. International Students who are not currently enrolled at Truman (including students from our partnership with the European Center for Peace and Development) should initiate the application process by contacting the Institute for Academic Outreach at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Q: Do I have to have a bachelor’s degree to enroll?
A: Yes, these are graduate certificates and require the completion of a BA or BS degree or its equivalent.
Q: What are the admissions requirements?
A: To be considered for admission, students must meet the following requirements:
Q: What are the requirements to remain continuously enrolled in the certificate program?
A: Students must be continuously enrolled (excluding summer and interim terms) in at least one course per semester and must complete the certificate within six years of the date of admission or matriculation in the first course, which ever comes later. Students may petition the Graduate Dean for a leave of absence, or an extension, should extenuating circumstances warrant.
Q: Can I be enrolled in more than one certificate program at the same time?
A: Yes. However, students should think carefully about the academic load they are able to handle, particularly if they are also working or taking another graduate degree concurrently.
Q: Can I audit the graduate certificate courses?
A: No. Since the courses are offered entirely online, auditing is not an option.
Q: What are the graduation requirements for the certificate programs?
A: The graduation requirements include
Q: What makes a certificate different than other graduate degrees or programs?
A: A graduate certificate is not a degree, but it is an academic program. It is also not a “certificate” in the sense of a paper document. When one completes a certificate program, students are completing a set curriculum designed to confer upon the student specific expertise. Certificates are frequently used by individuals to meet credentialing requirements of their profession, demonstrate to an employer that specific new skills or expertise have been acquired, or to complete prerequisite learning as a stepping-stone toward a full-fledged graduate degree. In a troubled economy, graduate certificates are increasingly becoming the “go to” alternative for individuals seeking quality, yet affordable, professional development and career advancement.
Q: Do I get an actual “certificate” when I complete a certificate program?
A: Your academic transcript will certify your completion of the certificate program and will identify the specific courses taken as part of that program. We do, however, mail students a certificate that they can display as a visual demonstration of their completion.
Q: How much does a graduate certificate course cost?
A: Costs vary by certificate and by whether the student is a Missouri resident or an out-of-state student. A complete table of costs can be found here. Each online course also charges a $25 online course fee. This fee supports the maintenance of the network infrastructure that supports these programs. Other fee structures apply to specific corporate partnerships as well as Truman’s partnership with the European Center for Peace and Development. Please check with your employer, or your program-specific website for more information.
Q: Are certificate programs eligible for financial aid?
A: Yes, provided the student is enrolled in a sufficient number of courses to meet the federal requirements for the loan or grant programs to which they apply. Truman does not offer scholarships or direct aid for its certificate programs. Assistantships are not available for students enrolled solely in these programs. Financial aid only applies to domestic students eligible for federal financial aid.
Q: Are your programs accredited by the Higher Learning Commission?
Q: Are the certificate courses online or taught in a regular classroom?
A: All courses will be taught online, though these programs have been approved with the stipulation that they can be offered in traditional classrooms if future demand suggests a need.
Q: What equipment do I need in order to take a fully online course?
A: In order to participate fully and effectively in an online course, students should have a reliable broadband connection (Cable Model, DSL, Satellite). Students should have a relatively new operating system (Windows XP or newer; Mac OSX, etc.) and employ a compatible browser such as Windows Explorer, Chrome, Firefox, or Safari. Courses use Blackboard Learn (Version 9). For a list of compatible systems and browser types, visit Blackboard.
Q: Do I have access to the same student services as a regular Truman student on the Truman campus?
A: The offices of Truman State University are available to help you with your questions. The IT Services Help Desk stands ready to assist with technical issues associated with your online course. The Institute for Academic Outreach can help you troubleshoot difficulties with applications and registration. Student Accounts can assist students with problems related to bill payment or tuition reimbursement arrangements. All students enrolled in Truman online courses have access to the Truman network, and with it, the same learning tools and library resources that regularly matriculated Truman students can access via the Internet.
Q: I want to talk to a faculty member in the discipline that is running the certificate? How do I contact them for advice and information?
A: Faculty contacts will vary by program and by the time of year. Please contact the Truman Institute directly and we will arrange for a faculty member to call you to discuss your questions. Call us at 660-785-5384.
Q: Can I transfer courses from my certificate into a MA or PhD degree?
A: Truman cannot guarantee the transferability of any courses into another degree or certificate program. Certificate programs are designed to be stand-alone programs. This being said, some graduate programs will allow students to import specified prior coursework into a degree program as satisfying a prerequisite, or even a requirement. It is very important that any student who takes certificate courses with transfer in mind talk to the institution they wish to transfer these credits to before they enroll in the courses at Truman. While we are confident in the value and importance of the courses we offer, each institution has the discretion to establish its own transfer policies.
Courses for the Online Graduate Certificates may count toward a Truman Masters program upon specific approval of the program and the Graduate Dean. These courses are sometimes applicable to the elective requirements of the Masters in Leadership.
Q: Who teaches the graduate certificate courses?
A: Regular Truman faculty, when at all possible, teach our graduate certificate courses. In select instances, adjunct faculty, with special qualifications in their field, may teach program courses. These faculty are required to complete an interview and screen process similar to regular Truman faculty and they have access to the same resources and support as regular Truman faculty.
Q: Are there any tuition discounts for Truman employees?
A: Normal Truman faculty and staff discounts apply to credit-bearing programs, such as the graduate certificates. Contact your human resources representative with questions.
Q: Are there any tuition discounts for Truman alumni?
A: Truman alumni are required to pay normal tuition rates.
Q: Are there any tuition discounts for employees of particular corporations?
A: Truman participates in the Boeing Learning Together Program – an educational preferred provider and tuition reimbursement compact. Boeing employees should contact their human resources representative for more information. Students enrolling through our partnership with the European Center for Peace and Development are also entitled to special rates.
Q: My company would like to develop an agreement for bulk pricing or tuition reimbursement for our employees. Is that possible?
A: Yes, depending on the number of employees involved and the conditions of the reimbursement plan. Contact Kevin Minch, Director of the Institute for Academic Outreach, at email@example.com for more information.