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Student Affairs Administration Graduate Certificate

Credits to Earn Your Certificate
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Certificate Overview Open Accordion
Higher Education Certificate in Student Affairs Administration

Earn a certificate in higher education administration online

Build your skills and knowledge to design programs that help college students realize their learning and development potential through on-campus experiences. This four-course online series will help you become a competent practitioner by developing an understanding of:

  • How and why students develop during their college years,
  • Historical and philosophical foundations of student affairs,
  • Relationships among college students and their social and physical environments, and
  • The finance environment for higher education.

Advance your career in student affairs

No matter if you have experience in student affairs or are seeking to enter into the field, Colorado State University's student affairs certificate sets you apart as a professional with the knowledge to succeed in a broad range of settings on college and university campuses including:

  • Financial aid,
  • Admissions,
  • Student activities,
  • Advising,
  • Residence life,
  • and many other functional areas.

This program can be completed in one year, by taking one class in the spring, one class in the summer, and two classes in the fall, though you do have the option to alter or extend your program of study if needed.

Option to pursue a master's

This graduate certificate is a companion to the Student Affairs in Higher Education Master's Degree. The credits completed as part of this certificate can be applied toward the degree after formal admission per University transfer policies. Note that successful completion of the courses or certificate does not guarantee admission to the degree program.

Get started with a free course

If you’re unsure whether this profession would be a good fit, consider taking the Exploring the Student Affairs in Higher Education Profession free online course. If you’ve ever considered what it might be like to work in areas such as college admissions, campus recreation, enrollment services, housing and dining, or other student affairs departments, take this risk-free opportunity to learn more.

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Curriculum Open Accordion

This certificate comprises four foundational courses introducing you to many facets of the profession. Courses explore the application of college student development theory, the function of student affairs within an institution, the impact of campus environment on student development and learning, and fiscal management in a university and student affairs environment.

You must be admitted to this program for the certificate to appear on your official University transcript.

This program can be completed in one year, by taking one class in the spring, one class in the summer, and two classes in the fall.

A class taken in this certificate program cannot be applied to another certificate program.

How to Apply Open Accordion

Applications are reviewed as they are received. You can expect to be notified of your application status within two weeks of submitting all application materials.

Note: You may enroll in and complete courses before being admitted into this certificate program. However, to earn the certificate, you must be admitted into the program prior to completing the final course.

Start your application online and upload materials directly into the online system. You can save your progress and return any time.

Apply Now

1Review Admission Requirements

  • Bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • 3.0 cumulative GPA from all previously completed coursework

2 Complete Online Application

Complete the online graduate application and pay the nonrefundable application processing fee (payable online). As soon as you have completed the required information, please submit your application. Your application will not be reviewed until it is complete and all required materials have been received.

  • Choose "Student Affairs Administration (Certificate) – Distance" when choosing the Program of Study. (Note: You must first select "Certificate" at the top.)

3 Request Transcripts

Request one official transcript from the institution where you earned your bachelor’s degree. Transcripts must be received directly from the originating institution to be considered official. Transcripts from Colorado State University are not required.

Electronic (preferred):
Digital Transcripts must be submitted by the originating institution using a secure service such as parchment, eScrip-Safe, the National Student Clearinghouse, or e-Quals. Transcripts received via emails are considered unofficial.

Use institution code 4075 for Colorado State University or if the secure service requires an email address.

Mail (if necessary):
Graduate Admissions
Colorado State University – Office of Admissions
1062 Campus Delivery
Fort Collins, CO 80523-1062

Check Your Application Status

View your application status at any time to ensure your application checklist is complete or to check on updates.

Applications are reviewed on a rolling basis. You can expect to be notified of status within two weeks of submitting a complete application.

For International Applicants

Proof of English language proficiency is required for applicants from countries or United States territories where there are official languages other than (or in addition to) English. This includes the U.S. territories of American Samoa, Guam, the Northern Mariana Islands, and Puerto Rico.

Learn more about English language proficiency requirements.


We love learning about your goals and answering any questions you have.

Alex Broz
Prospective Student Support Coach
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Program Details

11 credits
$698 per credit
Same in-state tuition for all.
Learn more about financial aid and scholarships Tuition/fees are just part of the cost to attend CSU. Learn more about the full Cost of Attendance
Certificate Awarded
Graduate Certificate in Student Affairs Administration
Time Frame
Varies based on intensity of study and course availability
Admission Reqs.
  • Undergraduate degree from an accredited four-year institution.
  • 3.0 GPA on all undergraduate coursework

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