If you have a degree, the College of Education offers certificate options to enhance your education and add to your current credentials. You can also complete targeted subject matter coursework without an additional degree.

Early Childhood Education (Post B.A.)

The Early Childhood Education Program offers those teachers already holding an Elementary Education or Special Education license, a “license only” track that does not lead to a Master of Arts degree. Contact the academic advisor, Cynthia Hutson chutson@govst.edu,  for more information.

Online Teaching and Learning (Post B.A.)

The use of the Internet to teach and learn, in fully online and hybrid formats continues to expand rapidly. As a result, there is a need for professionals with the skills to develop and facilitate high-quality online learning. The Certificate in Online Teaching prepares instructors to design, produce and facilitate online courses. Every course in the certificate is offered online with no on campus requirements.
• The Certificate is designed for graduate students, college faculty, K-12 teachers, community college instructors or anyone interested in teaching online.
• Courses are offered fully online and certificate students will need high-speed Internet connections.
• Courses are offered year-round, but must be taken in sequence.

• Students own what they produce. Everything they develop (media, assessments and content) is theirs to keep and publish online.

Program Details

The certificate is offered at the graduate level. Students must have completed a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited, post-secondary institution. Illinois in-state tuition rates apply to all students enrolling in the Certificate in Online Teaching program no matter where they reside. GSU is the most affordable university in Illinois. Admission applications are available at www.govst.edu/Apply. The completed application, including admission fee, should be mailed to:

Office of Admission, Governors State University, 1 University Parkway, University Park, Illinois 60484.

Send transcripts of all previous college work to the Governors State University Office of Admissions. For more information, contact the certificate advisor at ontladvisor@govst.edu or 708.534.4940.

Certificate Requirements

The Certificate in Online Teaching will be awarded to participants who complete the 12-credit-hour program with a “B” or better in each required course.

Required courses:
  • ONTL 6101 Introduction to Online Teaching (3)
  • ONTL 6201 Facilitating Online Learning (3)
  • ONTL 7101 Designing Online Courses (3)
  • ONTL 7201 Producing Digital Content (3)

Total – 12 Hours

Reading Teacher (Post B.A.)

In our education-driven society, learning to read is the essential first step children must take on the road to successful and productive futures. Helping children become proficient readers makes a huge difference in their lives and boosts a school’s overall quality. The Reading Teacher Endorsement certificate program at Governors State University prepares you to teach reading to K-12 students and make a difference.

Post-B.A. Certificate Program

The certificate leads to an Illinois State Board of Education endorsement. In addition to meeting the university admission criteria, you must hold an Illinois or comparable out-of-state license in Early Childhood Education, Elementary, Secondary, or Special Education. You must have completed two years of teaching before being admitted to the reading diagnosis course.

You will take courses in diagnosis, remediation, psycholinguistic and sociolinguistic foundations of literacy, integrating literature across the curriculum, and narrative and expository writing instruction. Practicum experiences, at either the elementaryor secondary levels, are matched to your existing teaching certificate. You have the option of applying your credits toward the M.A. in Reading and a reading specialist certification. Admission requirements to the M.A. program apply.

Special Admission Requirements

The M.A. in Reading program is offered in an on-campus cohort format. Admission to the M.A. in Reading program is available at two points each year, summer term and fall semester. Applications for summer term admission are due by February 15 and applications for fall semester admission are due by May 15.
Applicants must:
• Meet the university admission criteria.
• Hold an Illinois (or comparable out-of-state) Early Childhood Certificate, Elementary, Secondary, or Special Teaching Certificate.
• Have completed at least two years of appropriate teaching experience or will have completed two years of teaching experience before being enrolled in READ7240 Reading Diagnosis.

• Submit a formal application to this certificate program.

Before completing six credit-hours (READ6210 and one additional READ course), students must submit:
• The certificate in Reading Teacher Endorsement application.
• An additional set of transcripts showing a cumulative G.P.A. of 2.75 or higher in all undergraduate
work attempted and all grades in graduate course work at a “B” or better.
• Syllabi and/or detailed narrative descriptions of previous graduate reading course work to be evaluated for transfer credit, if applicable.
• A copy of a valid Illinois or comparable out-of-state initial, standard, or master teaching certificate.
• Evidence of having passed the Test of Academic Proficiency of the Illinois Certification Testing System, or evidence of possessing an Illinois teaching certificate that required passing this test.

• Evidence of two years teaching experience in a recognized public or private school as directed in the application materials.

Requirements for Transfer of Previous Graduate Coursework

Students with previous graduate reading coursework may be allowed to apply a maximum of six credit-hours to the program requirements. Only courses potentially equivalent to specific GSU Reading courses (READ6190,6200, 6220 or 6230) will be considered. Courses must have been completed no longer than six years prior to application for admission to the certificate in Reading Teacher Endorsement. Petitions and documents for these applied credits must be submitted before or at the same time as application for continuation in the certificate, (i.e. prior to completion of READ6210 and one additional READ course). No courses taken at another institution after admission to the certificate may be applied. All petitions for transfer of coursework will be evaluated by the M.A. in Reading faculty.

Required Courses (24 Hours)

READ 6190 Narrative and Expository Writing Instruction, K-12 (3)
READ 6200 Psycholinguistic and Sociolinguistic Foundations of Literacy (3)
READ 6210 Survey of Reading: Theory and Practice (3)
READ 6220 Teaching Reading in Content Areas (3)
READ 6230 Integrating Children’s and Adolescents’ Literature Across the Curriculum (3)
READ 7240 Reading Diagnosis (3)
READ 7250 Reading Remediation (3)
Select the practicum appropriate to original certificate:
READ 7260 Reading Practicum I: Elementary School Reading (3) or
READ 7270 Reading Practicum II: Middle and Secondary School Reading (3)

Total - 24 Hours

Completion Requirement - Effective July 1, 2012, ISBE requires the ICTS content test prior to being admitted to READ7260 or 7270. Note: Those who complete the certificate in Reading Teacher Endorsement have the option of applying these credits towards the M.A. in Reading and for licensure as a Reading Specialist. Admission requirements and time restrictions for the M.A. in Reading apply.

School Counseling (Post M.A.)


School Counselor Certification

This certificate is designed for those who already possess a master’s degree in Counseling or Psychology and now wish to pursue licensure in School Counseling (Professional Educator License-Endorsed in School Counseling). A minimum of 24 hours meets the ISBE requirements for the Professional Educator License-Endorsed in School Counseling. 

ISBE Licensure

The Illinois State Board of Education has approved the School Counseling program to prepare candidates for the Professional Educator License-Endorsed in School Counseling. Candidates seeking to be recommended for this credential shall either (1) hold or be qualified to hold a teaching certificate from a regionally accredited institution, or (2) have completed the GSU or equivalent teaching competence courses (i.e. EDAD 7801, COUN 7620, COUN 6622 and SPED 6101).  

All School Counseling students must provide evidence of successful completion of the Test of Academic Proficiency [formerly the Illinois Basic Skills Test] OR the ACT (with a score of 22, including the writing portion) OR the SAT exam (with a score of 1030) prior to admission to the program.  All School Counseling students must present evidence of passing the ISBE School Counselor Proficiency Test before they will be recommended for the Professional Educator License-Endorsed in School Counseling.


Student Progress

The faculty monitor and evaluate student progress continuously. The Counseling Department Faculty and Student Handbook provides a specific description of the standards used to evaluate student progress.

Conditional Continuation

The faculty may permit a student to progress conditionally. In such cases, faculty review of the applicant’s record and performance identifies evidence that the student is likely to be successful in the program. The status of all students permitted to progress conditionally is reviewed by the faculty each semester, and students are informed in writing of the conditions necessary for them to be transferred to good standing status.  When conditions are met, the student is transferred to good standing status. Students may not be admitted to the culminating project without achieving good standing status.

Certificate Requirements

Students must meet all university requirements for a certificate. See the internship manual or materials for additional information. In addition, candidates must complete all relevant requirements in the "Teacher Education and License" section of the University Catalog. A 600-hour internship is required for all counseling students. Prior to receiving the university recommendation for the Professional Educator License-Endorsed in School Counseling, students must provide evidence of having passed the School Counselor content area examination of the Illinois License Testing System.

I. Required Preparation/Prerequisite Courses (30 Hours)            

Counseling Course Prerequisites
  • COUN6630 Counseling Theories (3)*
  • COUN7720 Social and Cultural Foundations (3)* 
  • COUN7725 Family Systems: Theory and Practice (3)* 
  • COUN7730 Lifestyle and Career Development (3)* 
  • COUN7847 Group Dynamics (3)* 
  • COUN 6610 Research and Assessment (3)*
Teacher Competency Prerequisites
  • COUN7620 Life Span Development Issues (3)*  
  • COUN6622 Applied Learning Theory for School Personnel (3)* 
  • EDAD7801 Organizational Leadership (3)*
  • SPED6101 Survey of Students with Exceptionalities (3)*

 *or equivalent courses


II.  School Counseling - Hybrid (24 Hours)

Required Certificate Courses

  • COUN6638 Introduction to School Counseling (3)
  • COUN8844 Practicum School Counseling (K-12) (3)                    
  • COUN8851 Consultation and School Staff Development (3)         
  • COUN8852 College Career Coaching Academy (3)                     
  • COUN8853 Parent Education: Prevention and Intervention (3)
  • COUN8858 Development of School Counseling Programs (3)
  • COUN8868 Counseling Internship I: School Counseling (3)                     
  • COUN8869 Counseling Internship II: School Counseling (3)                                 

    Total – Minimum of 24 Hours



    In addition to the GSU graduate certificate requirements for admission, applicants must:

    1. Provide evidence of having completed a master’s degree from a regionally accredited institution of higher education in counseling or psychology.
    2. Provide evidence of having passed the Test of Academic Proficiency (formerly the Basic Skills Test) of the Illinois Certification Testing System, the ACT exam or the SAT exam.
    3. Have a graduate GPA of 3.0 or higher.

     1.  Fill out a  GSU Certificate Application located online. A $50 fee required.
         a.  Please write "SCCC" in the spot that asks for the certificate code.

    2.  Fill out and attach to the above Certificate Application a Counseling Supplemental Packet:
         a.  Counseling Application (No fee required. Includes a Statement of Character)
         b.  Three Personal Reference Forms 
         c.  Checklist  
         d.  Test of Academic Proficiency results [formerly the Illinois Basic Skills test] or ACT results (score of 22, with writing portion) or SAT exam (score of 1030).
         e.  Copy of teaching certificate(s) if applicable
         f.   One official copy of all transcripts (graduate work only)

    Once the faculty have reviewed your application you may be asked to campus for an interview.

    Send (or drop off) the materials (preferably as one packet) to:

    Admissions Processing Office
    Governors State University
    One University Parkway
    University Park, IL  60484

    Mindfulness in the Helping Professions

    The Mindfulness in the Helping Professions Certificate Program is a 14-credit hour multidisciplinary program offered by the College of Health and Human Services and the College of Education.



    The program combines classroom instruction, labs, and integrative seminars. It will prepare post-master's level practitioners and advanced graduate students to integrate mindfulness practice and theory into their clinical practice. Although mindfulness has been practiced for centuries, psychotherapy has more recently incorporated this evidence-based practice to enhance healing and psychological unfolding.

    If you are interested in applying to the Mindfulness in the Helping Professions Certificate Program, we ask that you first read the Instructions for Certificate Application Process. We suggest that you begin the process early and follow up with the individuals and institutions who must submit supporting documentation on your behalf.

    Note:  Please Do Not Use Google Chrome to download these documents. Use Internet Explorer or Firefox.

    Remember:  Please read the Instructions for Certificate Application Process first!

    For additional information, visit the current GSU Catalog.