Character Education Development Certificate

4 Courses
8 Units
Online Self-Paced
24 Weeks

Bring Character Education, Social, and Emotional Learning to Your Classroom

Character education — emphasized as vitally important in the writings of Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin and other founders — has arguably fallen by the wayside in the modern era. However, the benefits of focusing on character education, and social and emotional learning, in public school education are profound.

Our online Character Education Development Certificate program is a golden opportunity to enhance your skills in this essential yet often overlooked discipline, giving you the opportunity to take an individual course or work toward earning a certificate with multiple courses.

Offered through the ’s Division of Professional and Continuing Education in collaboration with the university’s , the program prepares you to apply best practices to plan, deliver and assess character education in the classroom.

Certificate Requirements

To earn the USD professional development certificate in character education, students are required to successfully complete four individual courses, which can be accomplished in as few as two semesters. Learn more about the ’s Professional and Continuing Education Certificate Benefits and Policies. See course titles and tuition fees in the chart below.

Schedule & Fees

Courses – Enroll in Individual Courses, or Earn a Certificate with Required Courses (8 units)

All courses from this stream are required for completion of this certificate
Course Date Units Price
Instructional Strategies in Character Education (prev #: EDU-521CL) [EDU-X731A] Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled 2 $317
Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled
2
$317
Online Self-Paced
Patricia Meacham

Instructional Strategies in Character Education is a two-unit online course which is part of the Character Education Development Certificate program or can be taken as an individual course

Once you have enrolled in your course, to access the course Welcome Letter, which includes directions on how to access the Online Orientation and your online course.

Character-based Classroom Management: Strategies & Practices (prev #: EDU-523CL) [EDU-X723J] Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled 2 $317
Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled
2
$317
Online Self-Paced
Kristi Birrell

Character based Classroom Management Strategies & Practices is a two-unit online course which is part of the Character Education Development Certificate program or can be taken as an individual course

Once you have enrolled in your course, to access the course Welcome Letter, which includes directions on how to access the Online Orientation and your online course.

Social-Emotional Learning and Teaching: Home, School, Work [EDU-X726L] Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled 2 $317
Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled
2
$317
Online Self-Paced
Patricia Meacham

Character Education Development Certificate program consists of four online courses designed for K-12 educators and others

Once you have enrolled in your course, to access the course Welcome Letter, which includes directions on how to access the Online Orientation and your online course.

The Character Education Teacher as Model, Leader, and Collaborator [EDU-X770R] Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled 2 $317
Start now, you have 180 days to complete this course once enrolled
2
$317
Online Self-Paced
Kristi Birrell

Online two-unit course for K-12 educators that want to promote character education development programs or initiatives, providing leadership-driven and collaborative efforts in their community, district, school and classroom.

Once you have enrolled in your course, to access the course Welcome Letter, which includes directions on how to access the Online Orientation and your online course.

$45
$1,313

Learning Method Information

Online Self-Paced

Our online self-paced courses are similar to online fixed-date courses, but are designed to give you a six-month period from time of enrollment to complete all assignments. Your instructor will provide feedback via written responses on your assignments and exams. Grades are based on completed projects, assignments and exams.

How is the self-paced course structured? Like fixed-date courses, online self-paced courses are asynchronous meaning that you can work on your assignments anytime; the difference being there are no assigned due dates in self-paced courses. The content is divided into learning modules. Each module will cover one or more topics. Within each of the learning modules, you can expect the following components:

  • Module introduction that outlines what you can expect to learn in the module.
  • Required readings (textbook, articles, journals, websites, etc.) and presentations (audio and/or video).
  • Assignments (which may include: written assignments, quizzes, blogs, etc.) based on the readings and presentations.
  • Module conclusion to review the topics and what you should have learned.
  • Typically, there is a final project, paper, or exam due in the last module that culminates all of the topics covered in each of the learning modules. You’ll find that the design of the learning modules has a rhythm to help you manage your time in the course.

What Is Character Education? [Definition]

The describes it as follows: “Character education teaches the habits of thought and deed that help people live and work together as families, friends, neighbors, communities and nations.”

In practice, the federal agency says: “Character education is a learning process that enables students and adults in a school community to understand, care about and act on core ethical values such as respect, justice, civic virtue and citizenship, and responsibility for self and others. Upon such core values, we form the attitudes and actions that are the hallmark of safe, healthy and informed communities that serve as the foundation of our society.”

Historically, America’s public school’s used to focus on character education and civic virtue,” according to the Department of Education. “The founders of this country, including John and Abigail Adams, Thomas Jefferson, James Madison and Benjamin Franklin, wrote about the importance of character education in maintaining the new republic. Those founders would likely be horrified by the loss of this goal, as they all cite character education as the way to create an educated and virtuous citizenry.”

Principles of Character Education

Character.org, a national organization founded in 1993 to foster character development in U.S. schools and communities, lists the following 11 Principles of Character Education, which it describes as guideposts for schools and educators seeking to implement character education:

Character Education Development Certificate – Curriculum

The four courses that comprise the ’s Character Education Development Certificate are:

Enroll in individual courses of your choice or start the certificate program with any course to earn graduate level extension credits. Online self-paced courses are available anytime and allow for six months from enrollment date for completion. Key points about your online learning experience include the following:

What You Will Learn

Educators who complete the online Character Education Development Certificate program will greatly enhance their ability to:

Who Should Attend

The ’s online Character Education Development Certificate program is designed to engage and inspire K-12 teachers and administrators who are interested in learning how to plan and implement character development education in their classroom, school or district.

Benefits of the Character Education Development Certificate Program

The benefits of character education in public schools and classrooms are incredibly significant, according to Jessica Lahey, a writer and English teacher who relates her experiences teaching character education and “core virtues” in an . Schools that teach character education, she says, report the following positive outcomes:

Additionally, she notes, “From a practical perspective, it’s simply easier to teach children who can exercise patience, self-control and diligence, even when they would rather be playing outside.” Such teachings, she says, make a huge difference in children’s “emotional, moral and intellectual development.”

Experienced Instructors

Our instructors, most of whom hold advanced degrees, are experienced subject matter experts who engage each student in a stimulating and participative learning environment. Click on individual course listings to learn more about our primary Character Education Development Certificate program instructors.

Careers Outlook

Employment opportunities in the education field — including adult education — are expected to grow by almost 1 million new jobs by 2030 according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). With so many new and emerging opportunities, adult learning institutions and programs are going to have to compete heavily to attract and retain the most talented educators.

This makes furthering your education and diversifying your teaching skill set all the more important. By growing your expertise in a wide variety of educational concepts, you will broaden your career prospects and become a valuable asset in any learning environment.

Industry Insights

10 %

Job growth

$57,220

Median salary


Career Opportunities

District Level Professional Development Provider
Instructional Coach
Academic Director
Conference Speaker
Workplace Trainer
Continuing Education Instructor
Anyone interested in leading other adults through trainings, workshops, or presentations.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the requirements for completing a certificate program?

Requirements for completing a certificate can be found on the certificate page.

Are the continuing education courses transferable to a master degree program?

Professional and Continuing Education courses that are transferrable to a USD master degree will be stated on the course or certificate page. If you wish to transfer credit, it is your responsibility to confer with the receiving institution before enrolling, as each
individual academic institution decides whether or not to accept USD Professional and Continuing Education credit.

How long do I have to complete the Certificate?

You have five years to complete the certificate.

What are your registration/drop/refund policies?

Click here for complete details regarding our refund, drop and transfer policies

What if I can’t get into a course because it is full?

Prospective students can request to be placed on a waitlist. Should a space open up in a course, those on the waitlist will be notified. We encourage you to register early for courses.

Why USD?

The Professional and Continuing Education program nurtures key partnerships on the local, national, and international level. The goal is to better serve working professionals who seek to enhance or build their careers and help achieve their highest value and potential. Contact us today to learn more.

Informative Stats and Facts

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5 REASONS WHY CONTINUING EDUCATION MATTERS FOR EDUCATORS

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