Professional Development Certificate

The Vitae Professional Development Program provides a certificate of completion signed by the Dean of Graduate Studies. The Vitae Certification requires participants to earn a minimum of 30 credit hours over the duration of their graduate education. The certification length requirement is consistent with other institutional offerings and other standard professional skill trainings outside of academia.

Micro-certificates of shorter duration are also offered. Students can earn a  2019 SHIFT Conference micro-certificate by pairing themed workshops 1. Introduction to Inter-Cultural Competency and 2. Introduction to Knowledge Mobilization.

Competency-based or skill focussed workshops provide you with the opportunity to target a specific skill area. The opportunity to reflect, talk and rehearse your skills will help you build personal insight and seek experiences to demonstrate your competence.

Currently, there are 3 professional development and training certificates offered:

Comprised of a minimum of 12 credit hours accrued through VITAE/FGS coordinated workshops with the additional 18 credit hours accrued from workshops or training coordinated by other VITAE partners.

Comprised of a minimum of 20 credit hours accrued through VITAE/FGS or Career, Co-op & Experiential Education coordinated workshops or training (i.e. SHIFT Professional Development Conference, networking events, externships, and other Career, Coop & Experiential workshops). Remaining 10 credit hours accrued through workshops or trainings offered by other VITAE partners.

Comprised of a minimum of 15 credit hours accrued through workshops or training coordinated by a VITAE partner (Library Services, A-Z Learning, Office of Research Services or the Faculty of Graduate Studies). Remaining 15 credit hours accrued through an individual development plan or project.

Customize your Certificate

VITAE/FGS credit hours can be earned through skill-focused workshops and experiential learning. There are a few routes or options for earning credit hours:

1. 15 credit hours can be earned by presenting (oral or paper) at the Faculty of Graduate Studies conference: Mapping the New Knowledges, OR presenting at Brock’s 3MT Thesis challenge preliminaries.

2. 8 credit hours can be earned through your participation at the SHIFT Professional Development Conference co-hosted by the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Career Services.

3. 30 credit hours can be earned through the creation of a communication challenge video SSHRC Storytellers Challenge, Science Action OR advancing to the 3MT Finals.

4. 10 hours of the Instructional Skills Workshop (ISW) offered by Centre for Pedagogical Innovation can apply to FGS/ Vitae Certification.

5. 15 credit hours can be earned through participation in academic or scholarly development workshops offered by Library Services, A-Z Learning, Office of Research Services or the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

6. Individual Development Plan or Project: Students may submit an experiential learning report that articulates and verifies the demonstration of a target skill for up to 15 credit hours. Verification from both the student’s supervisor and/or community member is required.

** Individuals who have exceeded the 30 credit hour criteria can earn additional certification, however, credit hours cannot be duplicated toward more than one certificate.

Note that proof of attendance is required in order to verify your participation. When applying for your certification, please include either:

  • digital/paper copies of registration receipts/conference programs (for presenters)
  • signature of event organizer (print form)

For more information, please contact Karin Perry (

Completed your professional development credits?

Please complete the on-line form so we can process and verify your certificate of completion.