Everything You Need to Know About Certificates

Posted by Aisha Asakzai on April 18, 2019

Enrollment | Get In The Know

Many students pursue certificates at York University to add to their personal and professional qualifications, explore a subject outside of their major or to enhance their studies. Pursuing a certificate is an exciting and challenging way to enhance your university experience..  This #YUBlog post provides an overview of what certificates are, the types of certificates offered, and the ways you can earn a certificate at York U.

Did you know? York U offers over 50 certificates!

What is a certificate?

A certificate recognizes a specific grouping of courses that:

  • are cross-disciplinary but with a thematic coherence;
  • form a coherent yet distinctive complement to the major of a degree program; or
  • lead to the acquisition of specific skills or professional expertise that may meet requirements of outside accrediting bodies.

Success Tip: Keep in mind, it is your responsibility to be up to date with courses to take to satisfy your certificate requireents. If you have any questions or concerns, don’t wait to set up a meeting with your academic advisor.

Types of Certificates

York U offers different types of certificates, including:

  • Proficiency:

This certificate type usually focuses on languages and acknowledges a student’s proficiency in a specific area. Some certificates of language proficiency are offered at basic, intermediate and advanced levels and/or specialize on proficiency for business as an option.

  • Professional:

This certificate type focuses on a series of courses that aim to build specific skills often related to professional expertise and can be recognized by an external professional body. For example, courses in the Professional Certificate in Human Resources Management have been approved by the Human Resources Professionals Association of Ontario and count towards the academic component of the Certified Human Resources Professional (CHRP) designation. 

  • Disciplinary:

This certificate is made up of a series of courses in a specific area of study which complement a major. For example, if you’re majoring in English you might consider earning a certificate in the Discipline of Teaching English as an International Language at Glendon.

  • Cross-disciplinary:

Cross-disciplinary Certificates offer students more flexibility through a cluster of courses in a specific area of interest that are not confined to a specific area of study or major.

Learn more about the types of certificates that York has to offer!

Ways to Earn a Certificate

There are two different entry options for earning a certificate at York.

  1. Concurrent

The concurrent option is only open to  students who are currently enrolled in a undergraduate degree program at York. Certificates, similar to your degree program have admission and eligibility requirements, so it is best to consult the University Calendar, your academic advisor, and the academic unit offering the certificate to learn more.  

2. Consecutive

The consecutive option is best suited for those who have already completed a university degree and meet the admission requirements.  To learn more about requirements including admission to your desired certificate, contact York Admissions.

Did you know? Students who successfully complete their concurrent certificate will receive a copy of their certificate at convocation!

Another great part about pursuing a certificate is that you receive a printed copy of the certificate at graduation and a notation is made on your future transcript denoting that your certificates earned. However, it is important to keep note that in order to graduate with a certificate, you must apply to graduate and complete an application and send it to the appropriate academic unit before the specified deadline.

York University students have the option to select a certificate from a large pool of topics that can complement your degree, professional designation or your interest – so tailor your degree to your needs! Hopefully, this #YUBlog post has helped you learn more about the different options York has to offer when it comes to certificates!

            If you have any tips or questions, please leave a comment below or tweet us at @YorkUStudents.


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