2023-24 Academic Catalog
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Program Certificates

The University of Northern Iowa makes available, in addition to traditional programs, the opportunity for students to earn program certificates. Program certificates provide an alternative to programs leading to a degree, a major, or a minor; they certify that an individual has completed a program approved by the university. For information on any specific program certificates, contact the college or department indicated or the Office of the Registrar, which serves as the centralized registry.

The university offers a variety of interdisciplinary curricula to meet the growing need and interest in work beyond collegiate division. The following undergraduate majors and minors are under the supervision and jurisdiction of several committees, departments, or colleges as indicated. The programs include:

Program Certificates

Certificate in Applied Business Concepts 

The certificate in Applied Business Concepts will provide Bachelor of Liberal Studies (BLS) students as well as other adult learners access to a program that is convenient, flexible and offers an alternative to the traditional path to a certificate program. This program aligns well with the BLS degree since it allows students the opportunity to complete a certificate completely online. Offering a fully online certificate program creates access for BLS students, but also helps to recognize the unique needs of adult learners -- by providing access to education that can be balanced with work and family obligations. Access is one of UNI's strategic initiatives. The student learning outcomes for this program will be tied to course-level and university-level learning outcomes.

Priority registration will be given to Managing Business and Organization BAS students; however, exceptions to the BAS admission prerequisite will be given to BLS students wishing to pursue the certificate. All BLS students must register through the Continuing and Distance Education office (http://distance.uni.edu/enroll).

Select five courses from the following:15
Introduction to Business Economics
Business Analysis Techniques
Accounting Concepts
Information Systems for Professionals
Law, Society, and Business
Entrepreneurship and Opportunity
Topics: Effective Business Practices
Applied Business Finance
Practical Marketing for Organizations
Total Hours15

Certificate in International Business, Culture, and Language

The Certificate in International Business, Culture, and Language is available to College of Business students majoring in Accounting, Economics-Business Economics Emphasis, Finance, Management, Management Information Systems, Marketing, and Real Estate and to students completing the General Business Concepts minor. The purpose of this certificate is to encourage students to seek language and cultural knowledge in order to build a foundation for understanding the global environment in which business operates. For more information students should contact UNIBusiness Advising, CBB 5. To enroll in this program students must declare their intent on a Declaration of Curriculum form. The form may be obtained in CBB 5.

International Business
MGMT 3189/5189International Management3
Cultural and Political Perspectives
Select one of the following:3
Political Science:
International Relations *
Global Geography *
Introduction to Sociology *
Introduction to Cultural Anthropology *
Philosophy and World Religions:
Religions of the World *
Ethics in Business
Foreign Language and History +
Select one of the language options below:9-15

Chinese (14-15 hours)

CHIN 1001Elementary Chinese I **4
CHIN 1002Elementary Chinese II **4
Select two of the following:
CHIN 1011Intermediate Chinese I4-5
RELS 2100Great Living Religions: Hinduism and Buddhism3
RELS 2110Great Living Religions: Confucianism, Daoism, and Zen3
HUM 3124China *3
POL COMP 3162Politics of East Asia3
HIST 4850/5850Pre-Modern Chinese History3
HIST 4860/5860Modern Chinese History3

French (12 hours)

FREN 1001Introduction to French Language and Culture I **3
FREN 1002Introduction to French Language and Culture II **3
Select two of the following:
FREN 2001Intermediate French Language and Culture3
FREN 2002Composition3
FREN 2012Advanced Topics in French Conversation: ____3

German (12 hours)

GER 1001German Language and Culture I **3
GER 1002German Language and Culture II **3
Select two of the following:
ENGLISH/CAP 3148The Holocaust in Literature and Film3
HIST 4460/5460History of Germany to 16483
HIST 4630/5630History of Germany Since 16483

Spanish (12 hours)

SPAN 1001Elementary Spanish I **3
SPAN 1002Elementary Spanish II **3
Select two of the following:
HUM 3123Latin America *3
SPAN 2001Intermediate Spanish3
SPAN 2002Oral and Written Spanish3
SPAN 2053Spanish for Special Purposes: ___________3
SPAN 3001Advanced Writing ***3
SPAN 3006Spanish for Heritage Speakers ***3
SPAN 3020Latin American Culture and Civilization ^3
SPAN 3050/5050Written Communication ***3
SPAN 3052/5052Contemporary Hispanic Culture3-5
HIST 4720/5720Modern Latin American History3
POL COMP 3167Latin American Politics3

English (9 hours)****

Select one of the following:3
History of the United States
Power & Politics in the U.S. *
Select two of the following:
ENGLISH 2520Multicultural Literature3
ENGLISH 2340Survey of English Literature II: Romantics to Post-Colonialism ^3
ENGLISH 2420Survey of American Literature ^3
ENGLISH 4410/RELS 4230/5230Early American Literature ^3
ENGLISH 4420/5420The American Renaissance ^3
ENGLISH 4445/5445American Novel Since 1900 ^3
HIST 4235/5235Popular Culture in the United States3
HIST 4275/5275United States Constitutional History3
HIST 4240/5240History of American Thought3
HIST 4250/5250Religion in America3
RELS 3180Religion and Politics: (Topics)3

A student's native language cannot be used to meet the language requirement of the certificate.


Credit hours in these UNIFI/General Education courses may be applied toward the completion of the UNIFI/General Education requirement and the completion of this certificate program.


Students who received credit toward the foreign language competency requirement for UNI graduation from satisfactory performance in high school language courses or students who can pass an equivalency examination do not need to take these courses.


Students may choose only one of the following courses as an elective: SPAN 3001, SPAN 3006, or SPAN 3050/5050


Available only for students who are non-native English speakers.


The following courses have additional prerequisites:

SPAN 3020 has prerequisite of SPAN 3001 or SPAN 3006 or SPAN 3050/5050 or equivalent.

ENGLISH 2340 and ENGLISH 2420 have prerequisite or corequisite ENGLISH 2120.

ENGLISH 4410/5410, ENGLISH 4420/5420, and ENGLISH 4445/5445, have prerequisites ENGLISH 2120 or consent of instructor, and junior standing.


1. International Business3
2. Cultural and Political Perspectives3
3. Foreign Language and History *9-15
Chinese: 14-15 hours
French: 12 hours
German: 12 hours
Spanish: 12 hours
English: 9 hours
Total Hours15-21

Museum Studies Certificate

The Museum Studies Certificate exposes students to the array of occupations in the museum industry and provides them the opportunity to add an experiential component to their academic education. The certificate is available to upper-division undergraduate and graduate students who have completed the introductory course, seminar, internship, and methods and elective courses in their field of study.

The Museum Studies Certificate complements the existing frameworks of department majors. Students will take two or three (depending on variable major requirements) classes (including HIST 4020/5020/ANTH 3440/5440 Introduction to Museum Studies and ARTHIST 4003/5003/HIST 4003/5003 Collections Care and Management hosted by UNI Gallery of Art and UNI Museum), as well as an internship with a community partner. These internships and electives for the Museum Studies Certificate may be counted towards their major electives and/or university electives. For example, Textile and Apparel requires internships as part of the major; the internship requirements of the MSC will complement that major requirement. HIST 4020/5020/ANTH 3440/5440 Introduction to Museum Studies and ARTHIST 4003/5003/HIST 4003/5003 Collections Care and Management with UNI Gallery of Art and UNI Museum will be available every year.

The introductory course is taught by faculty in the History department, the seminar in collections care and management is conducted through the Art department by UNI Gallery of Art in conjunction with UNI Museum. Department faculty liaisons in students’ major departments define the methods and elective curricula and oversee their students’ museum internships.

HIST 4020/ANTH 3440/5440Introduction to Museum Studies3
HIST/ARTHIST 4003Collections Care and Management3
Major Department - External Museums Internship (see internship options below)3-4
Major Department - Methods (see methods options below)3-4
Major Department - Electives (see elective options below)3-4
Total Hours15-18
Internship Options:
(Internships are specific to each department and are conducted at an institution that identifies as a museum.)
ANTH 4485Anthropology Internship3
ART 3179 Cooperative Internship3
ART 4186/5186 Studies in:3
BIOL 3179Cooperative Education3
EARTHSCI 3179 Cooperative Internship3
HIST 3179 Cooperative Internship3
HIST 4030/5030Internship in Historical Studies3
HIST 4186/5186 Studies in:3
TEXDSGN 4195Internship in Textile and Apparel4
RTNL 4510Internship in Recreation, Tourism and Nonprofit Leadership3-4
Methods Options:
ANTH 3450Archaeological Fieldwork3
ARTHIST 4000/5000Research Methods and Writing in Art History3
ART 4300/5300Seminar: Critical Issues in Contemporary Art3
BIOL 3106Vertebrate Anatomy4
BIOL 3112Invertebrate Zoology4
BIOL 3170Entomology3
BIOL 4164/5164Mammalogy4
BIOL 4166/5166Plant Systematics4
EARTHSCI 1100Astronomy3
EARTHSCI 3210/5210Meteorology4
EARTHSCI 3325/5325Sedimentary Geology4
HIST 4010/5010Introduction to Public History3
RTNL 4552/5552Theory and Practice of Outdoor Education3
TEXDSGN 2004EuroAmerican Fashion Design History3
Elective Options:
ANTH 2018Food and Culture3
ANTH 2430Bioarchaeology3
ANTH 3202/5202Human Biological Variation3
ANTH 3501Research Experience in Anthropology3
ARTHIST: Any Art History 4000-level course3
BIOL 2051General Biology: Organismal Diversity4
BIOL 3100Evolution, Ecology and the Nature of Science3
BIOL 3106Vertebrate Anatomy4
BIOL 3112Invertebrate Zoology4
BIOL 3118Marine Biology3
BIOL 3120Plant Diversity and Evolution4
BIOL 3160Field Zoology of Vertebrates4
BIOL 3170Entomology3
BIOL 4164/5164Mammalogy4
BIOL 4166/5166Plant Systematics4
BIOL 4167/5167Conservation Biology3
CHEM 4310/5310Instrumental Analysis3
EARTHSCI 3110/5110Observational Astronomy2
EARTHSCI 3220/5220Weather Analysis and Forecasting3
EARTHSCI 3330/5330Geomorphology4
EARTHSCI 3340/5340Oceanography3
HIST: Any History 4000-level course3
TEXDSGN 1002Textile Science3
RTNL 2130Foundations of the Nonprofit Sector3
RTNL 3121Philosophical Foundations of Recreation, Tourism and Nonprofit Leadership3
RTNL 4320Financial Resource Management in Recreation, Tourism and Nonprofit Leadership3
TEXDSGN 2007Apparel Assembly and Technical Design3

Sustainability Certificate

Certificate Overview:

Sustainability encompasses a broad spectrum of interdisciplinary topics that address how to promote human prosperity while protecting the planet. The Certificate in Sustainability equips students to:

  • Understand the ways in which the economy, environment and human welfare can operate in harmony
  • Understand how to apply a systems thinking approach
  • Recognize and address the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)

The certificate provides undergraduate and graduate students with interdisciplinary course offerings while also allowing students to tailor their program to unique interests and needs. The certificate framework consists of on required course (TECH 1015 Introduction to Sustainability (3 s.h.) and 12 hours of electives chosen from the content streams, for a total of 15 credit hours. The required course provides a conceptual and theoretical framework for understanding how society addresses sustainability issues. After taking the foundational course, the certificate offers a number of specialized content streams from which students may choose courses (12 total hours) pertinent to their personal goals and/or professional interests. Students select electives from at least three of the following content streams: natural and biological environments, mathematical and economic dimensions of sustainability, urban environments and technology, sustainable tourism and outdoor recreation, social, philosophical and political dimensions of sustainability, and teacher education in sustainability and environmental literacy.

Both undergraduate and graduate students pursuing the Certificate in Sustainability must choose electives in consultation with a sustainability faculty advisor, with plan of study to be approved by the Certificate's faculty oversight committee. Students may seek approval from the committee to include alternative courses among their proposed electives. The course list is updated each semester based on ongoing reviews by the Certificate Curriculum Committee - students and advisors must check with the Certificate Coordinator for the most current list of courses.

Required Course:
TECH 1015Introduction to Sustainability3
Content Area Electives - four electives must be chosen from at least 3 content streams using advisor's guidance 11-12
Natural and Biological Environments
Wildlife Ecology and Management
Biodiversity Conservation Policy
Conservation Biology
Introduction to Geology
Modern Climate Change: Evidence and Predictions
Geographic Information Systems I
GIS Applications: (Variable Topic)
Environmental Health Science
Toxins and Health
Mathematical and Economic Dimensions of Sustainability
Principles of Managerial Accounting
Cost Accounting
Environmental Economics
Distribution and Logistics
Global Supply Chain Management
Applied Statistical Methods for Research
Urban Environments and Technology
Environment, Technology, and Society
Environmental Geography: Variable Topic
Climate Action Planning
Laboratory Methods in Environmental Geography
Introduction to Interior Design
Introduction to Electronics
Physical Computing
Metal Removal Processes
Living in Our Techno-Social World
Living in Our Techno-Social World
Machine Design
Lean and Sustainable Operations
Sustainable Tourism and Outdoor Recreation
Community Based Tourism
Managing Recreation Impacts on the Natural Environment
Eco, Adventure and Sport Tourism
Teacher Education in Sustainability and Environmental Literacy
Sustainability Applications in Elementary STEM
Theory and Practice of Outdoor Education
Social, Philosophical, and Political Dimensions of Sustainability
Perspectives on Death and Dying
Environmental Literature
U.S. Environmental History
Environmental and Occupational Health Regulations
Environmental Ethics
Bio-Medical Ethics
Note: electives must be selected in consultation with an advisor.
Total Hours14-15

Graduate Certificate in Women's and Gender Studies

The Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies is under the jurisdiction of the College of Social and Behavioral Sciences.

The Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies (WGS) provides students the opportunity to be exposed to the rapidly expanding interdisciplinary scholarship on women’s and gender studies. This program is designed for students currently enrolled in a graduate program at UNI and are seeking a graduate certificate in WGS. The WGS graduate certificate requires 12 credit hours, which must be successfully completed during a five year period to earn the certificate. At least nine hours have to be completed at UNI and at least six of the 12 hours have to be at the 6000-level. Courses fulfilling the certificate program may be used to meet the requirements in a degree program in accordance with the policies of the Graduate College.

Curriculum requirements consist of one core course and a minimum of nine credit hours of electives. Students must take at least six credit hours of elective course work outside the degree-granting program. Students may petition the Director of WGS to add a relevant course. For more information, contact the Women’s and Gender Studies office, Sabin 225, wgs@uni.edu, or csbs.uni.edu/womenstudies.

Select one of the following:3
Languages and Literatures:
Feminist Literary Theories and Practice
Graduate Seminar in Women's and Gender Studies: Comparative Feminist Theories
Feminist Theories in the Social Sciences
Must choose one course from the Social Sciences Category A, one course from the Humanities Category B, and one course from either A, B, or the Experimental Category C.
Category A: Social Sciences
Educational Psychology:
Current Approaches to Multicultural Education
Design, Textiles, Gerontology, & Family Studies:
Violence in Intimate Relationships
Political Science:
Problems in Juvenile and Family Law
United States Women's History
Modern European Women's History
Social Inequality
Feminist Theories in the Social Sciences
Women, Crime and Society
Category B: Humanities
Communication and Media:
Voices from the Margin: Performance, Rhetoric, and Social Change
Gender Issues in Communication
Languages and Literatures:
Literature, Gender and Intersectionality
Feminist Literary Theories and Practice
Black Women in America: Challenge, Spirit, Survival
Graduate Seminar in Women's and Gender Studies: Comparative Feminist Theories
Category C: Experimental
Social Science:
Internship in Women's and Gender Studies
Practicum that has a gender focus and is advised by a WGS faculty member.
Total Hours12