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Graduate Certificate in Postsecondary Developmental Literacy & Language Instruction

This certificate allows current and future educators to demonstrate mastery in five areas related to postsecondary literacy instruction: theory, practice, assessment, research and professional development. Students will be equipped to understand and critically analyze the historical context of developmental literacy instruction; recognize the social, cultural, linguistic and academic diversity of students enrolled in developmental literacy coursework; design and implement appropriate and effective evidence-based instruction; and participate professionally in the field of postsecondary developmental literacy. This certificate prepares current and future college educators to serve a diverse group of students in a variety of postsecondary literacy contexts, including developmental/transitional programs and learning assistance programs in both community colleges and universities.

Delivery Method

Fully online

Admission Requirements

Students apply to NIU's Graduate School as a student-at-large. See https://www.niu.edu/grad/admissions/index.shtml for details.

Transfer Policy

No transfer courses accepted for this certificate program.

Special Characteristics

The preferred start is Summer because the foundation course offered then provides both context and a history of the profession. However, the courses are not sequenced and don't require pre-requisities.


Courses are offered in a similar rotation every year. Students may enroll in one or two courses per semester. Typically, students take one course per semester to complete the certificate in two years. All courses must be completed within six years. There are no practicum requirements.