Our graduate-level academic certificate in Integral Ecology is open to students who have not matriculated to our program, including advanced undergraduates. The certificate is awarded after successful completion of 12 units of approved Integral Ecology coursework.

The certificate addresses the ecological crisis in a way that integrates nature and culture, facts and values, science and spirituality. The curriculum supports scholar-activists committed to eco-social justice and the ideal of a flourishing Earth community. Integral Ecology certificate students will learn to apply new ideas and skills to catalyze personal, cultural, and institutional transformation. Students are invited to explore a unique facet of the broader program vision, set within the deeper context of the evolution of consciousness.

Certificate students will be enrolled in our regular graduate courses, which are attended by matriculated master's-level students and taught by our world renowned faculty. Certificate students can enroll in online or on-campus courses.

Up to 12 units earned in certificate classes are transferrable to our MA.

Certificate Curriculum (12 units)

1. Foundations (choose 3-6 units)

  • Philosophy and Ecology: Toward a Green Metaphysics, Phenomenology, and Epistemology
  • Integral Ecologies
  • Toward an Integral Ecological Consciousness

2. Practicum (3 units, optional)

  • Touch the Earth

3. Applications (choose 3-9 units)

  • Cosmological Powers
  • Merleau-Ponty: The Body and the Earth
  • Next of Kin: Perspectives on Animal Ethics and Biodiversity 
  • Plants and People: Understanding the Plant World Through Relationship
  • Mind and Nature in German Idealism
  • Judaisms and Ecology: Visions, Voices, and Practices
  • Spirit and Nature
  • The Great Turning 
  • Science, Ecology, and Contested Knowledge(s)
  • Environmental Ethics
  • Christianity and Ecology 
  • Buddhism and Ecology 
  • Earth Law: Toward a Flourishing Earth Community
  • Earth Law in Praxis
  • Integral Gaia
  • Ecologies of Liberation
  • Integral Permaculture
  • The Earth Journey
  • Nature and Eros

Certificate Policies

  • Certificate students are not eligible for federal financial aid. Federal financial aid is only available for our degree programs. 
  • Certificate courses are offered in both residential and online formats.
  • Certificate students are invited but not required to attend on-campus intensives alongside our online MA students.
  • Students can earn a maximum of one certificate in our program.
  • Students can take up to two years to complete the 12 units required for their certificate.
  • Certificate students must enroll in at least 1 unit every fall and spring semester. (Summer enrollment is optional.) Students who do not enroll in at least 1 unit in a given semester must apply for a leave of absence through the Registrar's office.
  • Students can decide to apply to our MA program at any point during their certificate. Up to 12 units earned while a student is in a certificate program are transferable to the MA degree.
  • Students applying to our online MA degree program after earning our certificate are required to participate in three on-campus intensives (two at the beginning of fall semesters, one at the end of the final spring semester). It is recommended that certificate students considering our online MA participate in at least one intensive while still a certificate student, thus facilitating their completion of the MA intensive requirements. 
  • Students in our MA program may also be awarded a certificate upon completion of the required coursework. 
  • Students in other MA programs at CIIS may also earn our certificate, so long as their degree program grants them enough elective units to complete the required certificate coursework. Certificate courses taken outside this elective allotment are not eligible for federal financial aid.

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