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Graduate Certificates

Certificates involve completion of four graduate courses and a project. Three of the certificates are available completely online (Web Design, Distance Education, and Florida Digital/ Virtual Educator). The others can be completed partially online. Twelve credits earned by a non-degree seeking graduate certificate student for one completed graduate certificate may be applied toward degree programs. The following five Graduate Certificates are offered by the USF Instructional Technology Program:

The Florida Virtual School has endorsed two of our certificates. The FLVS will give students who have earned the Florida Digital Virtual Educator certificate preferential hiring for virtual teaching positions. The FLVS will give students who have earned the Web Design certificate preferential hiring for instructional designer positions.

All students who are enrolled in graduate degree programs at USF may earn Graduate Certificates without additional cost.

Course Requirements

There are some courses that meet requirements for several different certificates. For example, to get your Web Design certificate you will take EDF6284: Problems in Instructional Design for Computers (3). This course is also a requirement for the Instructional Design Certificate. Also, you will be taking EME 6207 (previous EME 6936) — Web Design (3), which is a requirement for the Distance Education Certificate. There are other courses like these. However, one course can only apply to two certificates. No two certificates can share more than one course for completion. This means that if certificate A and certificate B share only one course and certificate B and certificate C share a different course, then you would be able to have all three certificates. However, if you apply EME6053:Internet in Education to both Distance Education and Florida Digital/Virtual Educator, you cannot also apply EME6457:Distance Learning to both.

If you want to complete more than one certificate, it is imperative that you map all of the requirements for all of the certificates that you think you may want to get in order to assure that you take the courses in the correct order.

Our three-year plan for offering IT courses in distance mode and in face-to-face mode are here: 

Course descriptions and prerequisites are listed here:


All graduate certificate students must meet all prerequisites for courses in which they wish to enroll. Students pursuing a graduate certificate will be required to meet the same academic requirements as those defined for degree‐seeking students to remain in “good standing”. Should a graduate certificate student subsequently apply and be accepted to the M.Ed. in Secondary Education: Instructional Technology program, up to twelve (12) hours of USF credit earned for the graduate certificate may be applied to satisfy graduate degree requirements.

All non-degree seeking students and degree seeking students pursuing a Graduate Certificate in a discipline outside of their graduate degree program (major) must apply for the certificate and complete required coursework within five years of taking the first course applicable to the certificate. Students who have completed all coursework within their Instructional Technology degree program (major) are not restricted to the five years. All graduate degree seeking students must apply for admission to the certificate prior to graduation. All students must submit a Completion Form after they have earned grades for all of the courses required for the certificate.

Students not enrolled in graduate degree programs at USF

You must have a bachelor's degree with a GPA of 3.0 from an accredited college or university to enroll in any of the Graduate Instructional Technology Certificate Programs. Follow the steps outlined in the Graduate Certificate Application Process.

Students enrolled in graduate degree programs at USF

If you have already been admitted to a degree program at USF, then there is no additional fee for students to apply for graduate certificates. Just complete the Departmental Approval Form for each certificate, and send it with your resume or curriculum vitae, and your statement of purpose (250-words or less) which explains your interest in obtaining the graduate certificate to the address below. An alternative method is to attach these documents to an e-mail and send them to Kathy Barnes, Coordinator USF Graduate Certificate Program, Please include in your application a request for the Graduate Certificate Office to print out your USF transcripts for you.

University of South Florida
Office of Graduate Certificates SVC1072
4202 E. Fowler Ave.
Tampa, FL 33620

The Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACS) accredits the quality and integrity of the University of South Florida as degree-granting higher education institution and its programs. To meet the accreditation standards the Graduate Certificate Programs for Instructional Technology must document the attainment of outcomes for each certificate. In order to do this, you will need to document your outcome skills from earning your Graduate Certificate. The Instructional Technology program has designated a project created in one of the courses to meet this documentation requirement for each of the certificates.

On your completion form, include the URL for the outcome project to demonstrate your mastery of skills obtained from the certificate. Include on the web page of this URL or within the web site of your project an about page, which explains your role in the project, how your project was created, and how this project demonstrates your skills. If this is a group project, then please include the names of the other members and the tasks that they accomplished as well as the tasks for which you were responsible. Please make sure that you retain these artifacts from the designated courses. Please review the following table to see which project you should retain in order to meet this requirement.

Certificate Outcome Documentation Requirement
Distance Education Final project that consists of working with a client to create a prototype for a website in EME 6207 (previous EME 6936): Web Design
Florida Digital/ Virtual Educator Final course project in EME 6053 (previous EME 6936): Internet in Education demonstrating the integration of technology into teaching and learning
Instructional Design Instructional design project in EME 6613 demonstrating effective design and training methodologies and strategies.
Multimedia Design Interactive multimedia, instructional presentation in EME 6208 (previous EME 6936): Interactive media
Web Design Project in EME 6207 (previous EME 6936): Web Design that demonstrates designing, creating, and publishing effective web documents.

Once you have completed all courses satisfactorily, you have received your grades for all courses, and you have created the required outcome project, fill out the
Certificate Completion Form and submit it to the Office of Graduate Certificates. Be sure to include the URL to the outcome documentation project listed above.

Depending on the time of year that your notification is received, it could take as long as three weeks to process your certificate for mailing (please be patient - several signatures are acquired before your certificate is sent in the mail).

Summary of Certificate Process

The table below outlines the steps for obtaining a graduate certificate.

Activity Support or Process
Select all graduate certificates in Instructcional Technology that you want IT Certificates
Check prerequisites for courses IT Courses
Plan schedule for taking courses 3-year plan online couses 
3-year plan classroom courses  
Enroll at USF Enroll as a non-degree seeking student
Maintain active status in your graduate degree program
Apply for the certificates (1) Attach the completed Departmental Approval Form to an e-mail.
2) Attach your resume or curriculum vitae
(3) Attach your statement of purpose (250-words or less)
(4) Mail official transcripts, or if you are a USF student, then request a transcript be printed for you in the e-mail
(5) Send the e-mail to Kathy Barnes
Coordinator USF Graduate Certificate Program
Register early for courses; request permits Course Schedule Search
Save outcome projects from courses On the completion form, include the links to these projects with the additonal About page.
Complete and receive grades for all four courses Within 5 years unless you are enrolled in an Instructional Technology degree program
Send Certificate Completion Form for each Certificate (1) Submit completed Certificate Completion Form to Graduate Certificates Office, which you can also send via e-mail to Kathy Barnes
(2) Include the URL of the required outcome project

Points of contact

If you need additional information about these or other Graduate Certificates, see or contact the following:

USF Graduate Certificate Program
Coordinator: Kathy Barnes
University of South Florida
4202 E. Fowler Ave., SVC1072
Tampa, FL 33620-7750
Phone: (813) 974-8031

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