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This online 15-credit hour graduate certificate in positive psychology from Mizzou's Department of Educational, School, and Counseling Psychology (ESCP) is designed for individuals seeking a program that emphasizes applied interventions and theory in building thriving individuals, families, communities and organizations. Combining 21st century psychology and several ancient philosophies, contemporary positive psychology is focused on advancement of the individual and their collective well-being.

The program will provide you with a thorough understanding of the science of well-being and flourishing that will allow you to be more effective in your professional and personal life. Individuals may use this graduate certificate for personal enrichment or to increase their professional marketability across many career paths such as life/career coaching, teaching, managing, and organizational consulting.

Note: This graduate certificate does not provide counselor certification.

Degree Details

Core course

One online core course is required for the program, and the remaining hours will be fulfilled through the electives listed below.

  • ESCP 7200 Introduction to Positive Psychology (fall, spring and summer semesters) — Delve into primary theories, research, and application of positive psychology and the science of well-being as it is understood on a personal, professional and social level. Topics include character and talent strengths, motivation, mindfulness, positive emotions, meaning, creativity, engagement, relationships, work environments and accomplishment.


You will complete four courses, for a total of 12 credit hours.

  • ESCP 8700 Life/Career Coaching and Development (fall semester) — Learn life/career coaching skills and strategies, based in career psychology and positive psychology, that will enable you to coach individuals to achieve their personal goals and dreams.
  • ESCP 8710 Meaning in Work (fall semester) — Explore the influence of culture, environment, and personal values on meaning development while also providing the framework to assist others in identifying meaningful vocations.
  • ESCP 8720 Community and Stewardship* (summer semester) — Take a close look at the concepts of community and stewardship, investigating the literal roots of the word, as well as our ability to respond to and build our communities.
  • ESCP 8730 Positive Organizational Psychology (spring semester) — Examine the impact and implementation of positive organizational psychology research and application throughout professional organizations.

*Courses during the summer semester are 8-weeks in length.

Graduate certificate documentation

Upon completion of the program, the name of the graduate certificate will appear on your official University of Missouri transcript. A graduate certificate document will also be provided to you indicating that you have successfully completed all course work. A Graduate Certificate Plan of Study form must be submitted to the Graduate School at least one term before the conferral of the certificate. Learn more about the academic process for graduate certificates.

How To Apply

Admission criteria

Certificate program admission requirements will be the same as those for the Graduate School.

  • Upload unofficial transcripts when using the Graduate School's online application system
  • Grade point average of B or better in the last 60 hours of undergraduate education for applicants with less than a master's degree
  • Statement of interest: Briefly describe how this program will benefit your career aspirations and help you act upon your personal beliefs, goals, and philosophy. (Maximum of 500 words.)
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Resume or curriculum vitae

Application deadline

None. Rolling admission.

Application instructions

Submit the Graduate School online application, unofficial transcripts and letters of recommendation to the Graduate School. (GRE scores are not required).

Tuition and fees

Tuition for online graduate courses are charged at in-state rates. The course details page for each individual course you take will enumerate any additional fees. Tuition for undergraduate courses is dependent upon residency. For details about tuition and additional course fees, visit the Cashier's Office.

Financial aid

To receive financial aid, students must be admitted to the graduate certificate program. Financial aid is generally available to eligible students who are fully accepted into the program and who carry a course load of at least four credit hours per semester. To apply, visit or for more information, contact the MU Financial Aid Office.

Contact Information

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