Adult & Continuing Studies

Human Services Certificate Programs

Advance your role in human services as you learn about emerging administration and leadership roles in an ever-growing diverse field.

Social Work Session

Program Overview

Offered 100% online, our human services certificate programs for adult & continuing studies students focus on two specific areas: 

•    Human Services Foundations
•    Human Services Leadership

Through these programs, you will develop advanced skills grounded in theory, research, and best practices in human services. With this new skill set, you will be able to successfully navigate complex organizations that are constantly changing in response to external and internal pressures.

Both of these certificates emphasize current and emerging administration and leadership roles in the human services field. You will be provided with academic and practice foundations that will support you as you advance in your current employment, focus on a new career pathway, or continue your studies. 

The certificate courses and program are designed to prepare individuals working in nonprofit organizations, for-profit social service agencies, health care organizations, and state and local governments where interpersonal work with individuals is the main focus.

NOTE: This program is also offered at the graduate level for students who have a bachelor's or master's degree. Please see our Graduate Studies academic offerings for details about the graduate-level human services certificate program.

Program Options

The 9-credit human services foundations certificate focuses on the development of the human services profession, models of effective organization and administration, and the basic principles of change and administration in communities and organizations. Loading... for continuing studies students.

The 9-credit human services leadership certificate focuses on multicultural and multidisciplinary approaches, ethical issues and standards, strategic planning, and how current and emerging issues impact policy making and leadership. Loading... for continuing studies students.

Complete the online certificate programs in human services foundations or human services leadership and then easily transition to organizational development & leadership (ODL) bachelor's degree program.

The transition is simple; students enrolled in the certificate will only have to complete a short application and will have all their discounted certificate course credits applied to the degree program.

Admissions Information

  • Online application
  • $35 Application fee
  • Personal statement: Please explain why you are interested in this certificate program with particular emphasis on your area of specialization. (Applicants should limit this essay to no more than one typewritten page.)
  • All official transcripts

No application deadline (rolling admissions)


See the Adult & Continuing Studies Tuition & Fees page for the per credit tuition cost for undergraduate continuing studies certificate programs.   


Though the human service certificate programs do not qualify for federal financial aid if taken alone, they are offered at a discounted tuition rate. We can advise you on program and payment plan options that will meet your needs. 

We also recommend that you:

  • Explore tuition remission benefits through your employer.
  • Check out our employer partnerships for discounted tuition rates for local organizations and corporations. If you don't see your organization listed, reach out to your HR department to advocate for a partnership.   
  • Transition your discounted certificate credits to one of our associate's or bachelor's degree programs to save money on completion of your degree.  You may also take these certificates as part of a bachelor’s or associate’s degree program, which are eligible for federal financial aid.  Please make an appointment with one of our Continuing Studies Academic Advisors to choose the option that works best for you!

Program Highlights

Ease Back Into Your Studies

For working adults that don't have much time in their schedule, this stackable certificate is the perfect solution for continuing your education. At Widener, you have the option of easing back into classes without making a full commitment while simultaneously earning discounted credits that can be rolled in to select master's degree programs. In turn, you will be able to advance in your career while saving money along the way. 

A Faculty of Expertise

Your classes are comprised of a diverse adjunct faculty with advanced degrees who are experts in the human development and leadership areas. Despite the virtual environment, you'll never feel far from your professors. Our faculty are always there to lend a helping hand and go the extra mile to guide you in your educational journey. 

Learn on Your Time and Terms

These fully online certificate programs offer you the convenience and flexibility of completing coursework when you want, where you want. You are no longer tied to a chair in a classroom and are free to study at any time, whether in the early hours of the morning or late at night. Widener offers the chance to learn on your time and your terms. 

Your Inside Track to Success

Your Inside Track to Success

Our goal is to place students on the inside track to personal and professional success.

Outlook & Outcomes

Potential Careers

  • Family Support Worker 
  • Social Service Liaison
  • Case Management Aide
  • Assistant Case Manager 
  • Child Advocate  
  • Gerontology Aide 

Industry Growth

It's projected that social and community service managers is projected to grow 15% from 2020 to 2030, which is much faster than the average growth projected for all occupations. 

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics 

Take the Next Steps

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Visit Us

To visit Widener is, more often than not, to fall in love with the place. To fit your timeline and schedule, we offer a variety of ways to get to know us.

View Tuition and Fees

Explore the cost of Adult & Continuing Studies undergraduate certificate programs.

Next steps to apply

We’re glad you made the decision to apply. All applications and supplemental materials are submitted through the online application system. There is a $35 application fee to apply to Widener.

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