Certificate programs provide a means for Indiana University to respond with a high degree of flexibility in meeting emerging needs for educational programs. They may address professional development needs of practitioners in a wide variety of areas, or they may provide focused areas of study for students pursuing other academic programs.

Certificate programs may be offered at the undergraduate and graduate levels and may be either credit or non-credit programs. The approval process here only deals with for credit programs. They culminate in Trustee approval for awarding a certificate as the functional equivalent of a diploma.

These programs of study are intended to be housed and supported within existing academic units. Credit certificate programs typically will be primarily comprised of courses already present in the curriculum. Generally, courses required in credit certificate programs will apply to related degree programs in the supporting academic unit. Thus, credit certificate programs often perform a recruitment function, serving as stepping stones to participation in a degree program.