Graduate Certificate programs at Rice are post-bachelor’s degree academic credential programs.
Graduate Certificate programs may be (1) restricted to Rice degree-seeking graduate students, (2) restricted to non-degree-seeking post-baccalaureate students, defined as graduate certificate students, or (3) open to both Rice degree-seeking graduate students and graduate certificate students.
Degree-seeking Rice graduate students may apply for a certificate program through the online graduate application; all application fees are waived. Students must declare the graduate certificate using the Graduate Declaration and Change of University Certificate Form available from the Office of the Registrar. As part of the student’s application for the graduate certificate, the student’s initial graduate degree program will have an opportunity to comment on, or object, to the student’s addition of the graduate certificate, but explicit approval is not required. Students may complete and acquire more than one graduate certificate, provided that the student meets any and all of the requirements for each certificate program. Unless specifically prohibited by the graduate program in the General Announcements, courses taken toward the certificate may additionally count toward a graduate degree. The certificate is awarded at the same time as the conferral of the student's terminal Rice degree, and is included on the academic transcript.
Non-degree-seeking post-baccalaureate students must apply formally for the graduate certificate program via the online application. Minimum requirements and deadlines for admission are consistent with standards for degree-seeking students. Please see Admission. Graduate certificate students who are not also pursuing a Rice graduate degree can only take coursework within the requirements of the graduate certificate.
Students completing a Rice graduate certificate may use the credits earned toward that graduate certificate credential toward a future Rice graduate degree, unless specifically prohibited by the General Announcements. For credits earned toward the certificate to count toward the graduate degree, students must complete the graduate degree within the time to degree boundaries defined in the General Announcements, based on the start term of the graduate certificate.
Graduate certificate programs are intended to recognize students who have achieved a defined level of competence, skill or professional expertise, as well as to encourage students to pursue additional areas of interest in a particular area or field that complements their coursework in the graduate degree-granting program to which they have been admitted. The certificate must include, but not be limited to, the following:
- A minimum of 4 courses (12 credit hours) of standard or traditional (with a course type of lecture, seminar, laboratory, lecture/laboratory) graduate semester credit hours (coursework taken at the 500-level or above) to satisfy certificate requirements, or
- A minimum of 3 courses (9 credit hours) of standard or traditional (with a course type of lecture, seminar, laboratory, lecture/laboratory) graduate semester credit hours (coursework taken at the 500-level or above) and a graduate-level internship or other substantial experiential learning opportunity
- A minimum overall GPA of 2.67 or higher in all Rice coursework
- A minimum GPA of 2.67 or higher in all Rice coursework that satisfies requirements for the graduate certificate with a minimum grade of B- (2.67 grade points) in each course*
- All coursework taken to satisfy certificate requirements with the standard letter grade earned (not on a Pass/Fail basis), with no more than one-third of the coursework taken to meet certificate requirements on a Satisfactory/Unsatisfactory basis and no more than one-third of the coursework taken to meet certificate requirements earned through transfer credit
For degree-seeking graduate students, all requirements for the graduate degree-granting program in which the student is enrolled
Note: Graduate Certificate programs may identify and define in their program's General Announcements Requirements tab stricter minimum requirements to satisfy their program requirements. With approval from the dean of graduate and postdoctoral studies, graduate programs may substitute but not waive local certificate requirements with comparable requirements.