Build Your Future With High-Demand Skills

Cutting-edge research, interdisciplinary collaboration, and experiential learning are all at the heart of our work in the College of Social Sciences and Humanities at Northeastern University. That’s why we offer an array of graduate certificates designed to engage with the latest thinking in fields such as public policy, nonprofit leadership, information ethics, urban analytics, and security and resilience.

Earn your certificate in one year by taking courses on campus, online, or in a hybrid modality. Our stand-alone graduate certificate programs are ideal for busy professionals seeking to expand their skills, and current Northeastern graduate students can also choose to supplement their education by pursuing a specialized credential.

In a CSSH certificate program, you will prepare to make an impact in the real world and take on new career opportunities by learning from our faculty of internationally recognized experts. You will become a member of Northeastern’s worldwide professional network, including more than 255,000 alumni and 3,300 corporate partners.

To learn more about applying to a certificate program, please contact us at publicaffairs@northeastern.edu or request information using the form below. If you are a current or admitted student and would like to add a certificate, please contact Julie Switkes, sppua@northeastern.edu, for MPP or MPA and Dakotah Kennedy, d.kennedy@northeastern.edu, for MSCJ.

Graduate Certificate Programs at a Glance

  • Certificates available both as standalone programs and as supplements to graduate degree programs for current Northeastern students
  • Flexible options to take courses online or on campus.
  • Finish a 12-credit certificate program in just one year.
  • Two opportunities to start each year, in the fall and spring semesters. The upcoming start date is: January 18, 2022.

Computational Social Science

The Graduate Certificate in Computational Social Science helps students understand how Big Data, computational analysis, and related technologies can be used to shed light on theoretical and real-world policy questions within the fields of public policy, public health, sociology, criminal justice, political science, economics, computer science, and network science. Our computational social science certificate empowers students with a better understanding of how to collect, analyze, and interpret insights from applying computational analyses in social science domains. Coursework also focuses on the ways in which computational analysis can be used to develop policy and evaluate policy outcomes and results.


Information Ethics

The Graduate Certificate in Information Ethics is intended to help students build a working knowledge of the primary theories, frameworks, concepts, and issues in information ethics, as well as develop robust skills in ethical analysis and evaluation. Students who complete the certificate will be able to conduct comprehensive analysis and assessment of emerging issues related to data collection, management, and use; design and implementation of artificial intelligence and machine learning; development and deployment of autonomous systems; and online, networked, and digital experiences and systems.


Nonprofit Sector, Philanthropy, and Social Change

The Graduate Certificate in Nonprofit Sector, Philanthropy, and Social Change responds to recent developments in social change theory, practice, and funding that are placing new demands and expectations on social change actors in the nonprofit, public, and private sectors. The certificate is a professionally oriented, application-based program for students seeking leadership positions in nonprofit organizations or in a public agency that deals extensively with nonprofits. The curriculum is designed to address the distinctive features and practices of the nonprofit sector and emphasizes management techniques helpful to nonprofit leaders.


Public Policy Analysis

Not available to Master of Public Policy students.

The Graduate Certificate in Public Policy Analysis provides an opportunity to obtain the tools necessary to analyze and to shape public policy at the local, state, and national levels. Students gain an understanding of the political and legal processes of policymaking, develop skills central to conducting research on policy questions, and learn techniques for evaluating the effectiveness of competing policies.


Security and Resilience Studies

The goal of the Graduate Certificate in Security and Resilience Studies is to prepare students to manage contemporary transnational risks through a systematic understanding of the principles and policies for enhancing the security and resilience of communities and critical systems. Students will meet these goals by studying synthetic approaches to managing transnational risks and taking courses in cyberspace policy, security administration, or counterrorism. Students will also exercise leadership through team projects and develop applied learning skills through group assignments and projects that focus on how to respond to man-made threats and naturally occurring hazards.


Sustainability and Climate Change Policy

The Graduate Certificate in Sustainability and Climate Change Policy is designed to prepare students to understand and shape the policies that determine how organizations and governments address sustainability and climate change. There is a growing need for specialists with advanced training in this field across the public, private, and nonprofit sectors. Students can gain interdisciplinary expertise as well as the skills to critically evaluate policy and regulatory frameworks in climate and sustainability. The sustainability certificate is a collaboration between the School of Public Policy and the School of Law and is open to current Northeastern graduate students as well as professionals who aren’t currently enrolled in one of Northeastern’s graduate programs.


Urban Analytics

The Graduate Certificate in Urban Analytics prepares students to manage the complex issues involved with rapidly expanding data and technological resources in cities. Students learn the practical and theoretical knowledge necessary to understand the intricacies of interconnected urban systems and to analyze how these systems work together to create sustainable, resilient, and just cities. The curriculum emphasizes the expertise needed to bridge emerging technological capacities and traditional policymaking processes. Students cultivate applied skills in visual presentation, analysis, and modeling of new datasets—all of which inform investment and policymaking.


Urban Studies

Available only to students currently enrolled in a Northeastern graduate program.

Cities are at the center of many of today’s most pressing issues, including climate change, social inequality, lack of access to housing and education, and the challenges of economic development in a globalizing world. The Graduate Certificate in Urban Studies provides a foundation in urban and regional policy theory and research methods, culminating in an applied capstone project.


Required Application Materials

  • Completed online application
  • Application fee
    • U.S. $75.00
  • Personal statement
    • One to three pages reflecting on the applicant’s research, curricular interests, and professional goals.
  • Transcripts from all institutions attended
    • Minimum GPA: 3.0
    • Unofficial transcripts should be uploaded to the ApplyYourself system as part of the application.
    • Admitted students will have 30 days after classes start to provide an official copy of all degree-bearing transcripts.
    • Transcripts from international applicants must be in English and, if applicable, also in the language of instruction. English translated transcripts must be from the institution, or an officially certified translator, or an educational credential evaluation agency.
  • Letter of recommendation
    • One letter of recommendation to be submitted via the ApplyYourself system.
    • Not required for the Nonprofit Sector, Philanthropy, and Social Change certificate program.
  • Résumé
  • TOEFL scores
    • Only required for international applicants who have not attended a university where English is the primary language of instruction.

Tuition Information

Tuition listed below is for standalone certificate students only. Please refer to the Student Financial Services webpage for tuition associated with CSSH degree programs and “Special Student” status.

*Tuition is subject to change

Program Cost Per Credit Hour Total Cost
– Computational Social Science
– Information Ethics
– Nonprofit Sector, Philanthropy, and Social Change
– Public Policy Analysis
– Security and Resilience Studies
– Sustainability and Climate Change Policy
– Urban Analytics
– Urban Studies
$1,250 $15,000

Graduate Certificate Programs

Get Started Now

To learn about the application requirements and tuition for our graduate certificate programs, download a brochure by filling out the form.

You can also get in touch with an admissions counselor by emailing us at publicaffairs@northeastern.edu or calling us toll-free at +1 877.377.2739 or at +1 617.655.6736

† Graduate Certificate in Urban Studies (available for current NU grad students only) * All Fields are Required. Your Privacy is Protected.
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