Academic Advising


The Graduate Certificate in Academic Advising is intended for practicing academic advisors and those who plan to enter the field. The curriculum addresses an array of relevant topics including student development theory, issues of diversity, and other challenging characteristics of students who participate in academic advising services. Upon completion of the certificate program, student should be able to:

  • Promote student success
  • Apply various approaches based on individual student need
  • Understand institutional and government laws and policies that affect their ability to advise effectively
  • Refer students to institutional and community resources
  • Recognize differences among students and respond to student issues accordingly

Course Location/Delivery

The Certificate is offered fully online.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must have a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution with a minimum 3.0 GPA.

Application Process

New USF Students Applying to a Certificate Program

To apply for admission to USF, you must:

Complete the online application for admission.

  • Pay the non-refundable $30 application fee.
  • Upload the following documents:
    • Letter of interest
    • Resume
    • Unofficial transcripts from each college or university you attended, to include military credits and CLEP scores.
  • Mail official transcripts to:
    • University of South Florida
      Graduate Certificates
      USF Innovative Education
      4202 E. Fowler Ave., SVC 1072
      Tampa, FL 33620

Existing USF Graduate Students Applying to a Certificate Program

To apply for admission to your Graduate Certificate program, you must:

Existing USF Graduate Students are not required to pay the non-refundable $30 application fee or submit transcripts.

Submit Other Required Documents to USF

If you wish to take classes on campus, you must:

  • Submit the Immunization Health History Form to the Immunization office prior to registration. If this is not done, a hold will be placed on your account.
  • For additional information, please review the Student Insurance page, or call 813-974-5407 or e-mail:

NOTE: Admission to a graduate certificate program does not imply automatic acceptance into a graduate degree program.


None are required.

Requirements (12 Credit Hours)

  • SDS 6648 Introduction to Academic Advising (3)
  • SDS 6645 Student Development Theory (3)
  • SDS 6700 Advising Diverse Populations (3)
  • SDS 6702 Issues in Academic Advising (3)



Time Limit for Completion of Certificate

Per University Policy, all Certificates have a five year time limit; however, the approximate time to complete the Certificate is two years.

Credit Toward Graduate Degree

Up to 12 hours of certificate course credits may be applied to a graduate degree with departmental approval.

Standardized Tests

International students must submit a TOEFL score when English is not the native language. A minimum score of 550 on the paper-based test or 79 on the web-based test is required.


Jeany McCarthy
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College of Education Department Website