Ethics can be applied to a number of different professions and industries, and as such, graduate certificate programs that cover ethics may deal with the general principles or focus on specific areas. For example, there are programs that cover ethics in healthcare as well as the ethical values that should guide leadership. Since these programs are available online, working professionals may be able to complete courses without affecting their work schedule.
Online Graduate Certificate Programs Focused on Ethics
As the title suggests, these programs tend to cover ethical principles in general. Some of the courses that may be covered in these 12 - 15 credit hour programs include ethics, justice, philosophy, and logic. In some cases, students will be required to attend a workshop at the end of the program. Given the course load, most students can complete these programs in a year and a half.
Graduate certificate programs that focus on applied ethics are designed to teach students how ethical principles can be applied in modern situations. These programs usually have around 12 credit hours, and in some cases, offer specialization areas like business, education, and politics. A few of the course topics that students can expect to study are applied ethics methods, professional ethics, digital ethics, and environmental ethics. Completing these programs can enhance careers as behavior analysts, data scientists, and research associates.
Programs of this nature are generally designed for healthcare professionals as well as medical scientists. Students who are enrolled in graduate certificate programs focused on health ethics can expect to learn about healthcare ethics, healthcare law, health policy, and social justice. The programs may require between 12 and 18 credit hours for completion. Some programs may have a consultation practicum as one of the courses that students can take.
Ethics and Leadership
Graduate certificate programs that concentrate on ethics and leadership are meant to educate students on the role ethics plays in leading a team or an organization. For some programs, students may be able to transfer credit from the courses taken to a master's degree program. After completing these 15-credit programs, students should be able to use integrity in leadership and incorporate ethics into their decision-making. A few of the course areas that may be covered in these programs include technology and ethics, shaping an ethical culture, the roles of ethics and law in human rights issues, and foundations of leadership.
General Admission Requirements for Online Ethics-Related Graduate Certificate Programs
Most schools offering an online graduate certificate program in ethics areas require applicants to have an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university. In some cases, prospective students will only be considered if they are already enrolled in a graduate degree program at the same school. Many programs require a minimum GPA of 2.8 in undergraduate coursework. Prospective students may need to submit an application, school transcripts, letters of recommendation, and passing scores on a GRE, GMAT, or LSAT test. Some schools may ask for a writing sample.
Online graduate certificate programs that focus on ethics may cover a range of topics such as general ethics, applied ethics, and health ethics. These programs can have up to 18 credit hours of coursework, and are generally open to applicants with an undergraduate degree from an accredited college or university.