Undergraduate Certificate Proposal

The CLAS undergraduate certificate program provides students with the opportunity to organize their elective courses in concentrated areas of expertise to develop depth and breadth in professional or interdisciplinary knowledge. Students may use the certificate program to add new skill sets, add depth and application to existing knowledge, explore minor options in various departments, and/or learn about various areas of interests from diverse disciplinary standpoints.

The certificate program offers departments across CLAS the opportunity to create certificates that attract students across the College to their courses while adding value to the existing degree majors and minors that the College offers. Moreover, students majoring within departments and those seeking experiences in areas outside of their departments have the opportunity to explore interdisciplinary approaches to scholarship and to increase the value of their degrees in the global marketplace by focusing on application of their skills.

We encourage departments proposing certificates to consider curricula to include: mastery of skill sets, applied practice, and general knowledge sets. Departments propose courses that complement and enhance their given curriculum in other areas of CLAS that help the students branch out to explore new ways of accessing, creating, and applying knowledge in their desired professions. Certificate proposals should meet the following criteria. Variations from these criteria will be considered by CUSA with appropriate justification.


  • Proposals must contain a thematic goal and clarification as to how that goal is completed through the curriculum. Departments are encouraged to emphasize how the theme/concept contributes to student’s post graduate work by illustrating the knowledge and/or skill sets that may be gained by completing the certificate.
  • Minimum of 12 hours with no more than 14 required hours. (Courses in the certificate program may have prerequisites that are not part of the certificate)
  • 6 hours must be at the JR/SR level
  • All certificate coursework must be completed at KU. Students who complete certificate requirements at other institutions may substitute one course only in the instance that the course is a direct transfer articulation equivalent to KU. Exceptions to this are reviewed by CUSA on a case by case basis and must contain department endorsement.
  • Minimum 2.00 KU GPA in coursework which may apply to the certificate (departments may propose a higher GPA).
  • A certificate program should be a focused collection of courses that either spans multiple disciplines, complementing one or more majors, or develops specialized expertise.
  • For approval by CUSA a certificate proposal must demonstrate evidence that the coursework addresses a common theme through multiple disciplines or that it develops specialized expertise that will benefit students in graduate or professional studies or careers.
  • One course may be taken from a Professional School.
  • Each department with included coursework must indicate their approval to have their course(s) included. Example: The Department of Theatre proposes an arts management certificate that includes course options from WGSS, AAAS, and AMS. All three departments approve the inclusion of their courses in the certificate. This can be done via email from the department chair with the full proposal of the certificate.
  • Proposals will need to include a guarantee that courses will be offered routinely