Professional Leadership Education | Online

Program Type
Certificate of Graduate Study (Online)
Certificate of Graduate Study
Mode of Study

E-tuition & fees

Costs include tuition & fees. All students receive our e-tuition rate. See cost details

Credit hours

12 required credit hours. Most courses are equal to 3 credit hours. Browse course list

Program duration

Finish in as little as 1 year. Explore program requirements


Apply for fall, spring, or summer term. View application process & deadlines

Program highlights

  • Balance your schedule while completing a degree: Our fully online program allows you to complete coursework from wherever you are.
  • Save money with affordable tuition: Online students receive our e-tuition rate.
  • Make progress toward a future degree: Apply course credits from your certificate toward a USM master’s degree.
  • Study with faculty who are scholars and practitioners in the fields of leadership, organizational studies, organizational behavior, and organizational development.
  • Develop your capacity to design, deliver, and evaluate leadership education, training, and development programs.
A teacher lectures to a class.

Program requirements

Created to meet the need for professional credentialing of leadership educators, our program offers advanced-level coursework in leadership, group, and organizational theory. There is an emphasis on the design, delivery, and evaluation of post-secondary leadership programs.

A man delivers a presentation during a staff workshop.

Career opportunities

Our graduates are prepared to lead change, drive innovation, and enhance diversity in organizations and communities. They have learned the skills for successful careers in a variety of fields, from human resources and business to nonprofits and government.

An aerial view of the University of Southern Maine Portland campus.

Dedicated to student success

Our highly experienced faculty have diverse areas of expertise and are deeply invested in the success of our graduate students. They actively participate in and present research at international academic conferences and publish in some of the most prestigious academic journals.

Two students work in front of a whiteboard.

Future degree planning

Interested in earning your Master’s Degree in Leadership Studies in the future? The credits you earn through this certificate program can be applied to our Leadership Studies MA program. Some restrictions may apply.

You may also be interested in…
Next steps

Our graduate admissions counselors are here to answer your questions about the admissions process, our academic programs, and student support services.

Get info
Meet us

A student sits at a table and writes on a stack of papers.

Admission information: Certificate of Graduate Study in Professional Leadership Education

Application deadlines

We accept applications on a rolling basis and review them continuously.

Application deadlineFall term startSpring term startSummer term start
FinalAugust 1December 15April 15

Applicants are required to provide the following materials:

General requirements

  • Application: Online application
  • Application fee:
    • In-state, out-of-state, and Canadian applicants: Free to apply
    • International applicants: Submit US $50 fee to apply
  • Transcripts: Official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended, excluding the seven campuses of the University of Maine System (UMS transcripts are accessible to USM). A transcript is official when sent directly from the institution.
  • Resume: Submit a resume or CV that outlines professional, volunteer, and community experience.
  • Students whose first language is not English may be required to take one of the following: Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or the International English Language Testing System (IELTS) or the Pearson Test of English (PTE) or Duolingo. Applicants must submit official scores as part of the application process. See additional information regarding test scores and requirements.

Additional requirements

  • Personal statement discussing your reasons for pursuing graduate study, your professional goals, and how you think this program of study will contribute to these goals.

English proficiency test scores

View test requirements

Where to send application materials

Get our mailing address and email address