With so many opportunities inside and outside the classroom, it’s common for Princeton students to wish they could do more with their time here. Certificate programs are one solution.
What is a certificate program? “Certificates of proficiency” enable students to supplement their work in their departmental concentrations with focused study in another, often interdisciplinary, field. Certificate programs are similar in many ways to the minors offered at other universities.
How do certificate programs fit into the curriculum? Most certificate programs include required courses and a senior thesis or another substantial piece of independent work. Because of the rigorous requirements, students should identify their interest in a certificate program early in their academic careers.
For some students, certificate programs provide an opportunity to pursue a special area of interest that closely complements their departmental concentration. For example, a student concentrating in history pursues a certificate in African American studies or a student concentrating in psychology pursues a certificate in neuroscience. For other students, certificate programs provide an opportunity to pursue intellectual passions unrelated to the departmental concentration. For example, a student concentrating in physics pursues a certificate in Russian language and culture or a student concentrating in electrical engineering pursues a certificate in musical performance.