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Cognition and Education

*Graduate Certificate


Program Overview

The Graduate Certificate in Cognition and Education provides an advanced understanding of current theories and principles of academic learning and motivation, as well as strategies that instructors can use to foster students’ learning and motivation. Students who complete the certificate will have documentation that they have developed the intellectual and practical tools necessary to design effective instruction.



Why choose this program?

The Certificate in Cognition and Education is appropriate for graduate students who are considering careers as teachers, higher education professors, educational researchers, educational program administrators, educational leaders, instructional designers, sports coaches, and others interested in designing effective instruction.

What You'll Study

Certificate Requirements: Students must complete 3 of these 4 courses (for a total of 9 credit hours of coursework) with a grade of B or better:

  • EDEP 5114 (Learning and Cognition),
  • EDEP 6114 (Cognitive Processes and Educational Practice),
  • EDEP 6224 (Constructivism and Cognition), or
  • EDEP 6444 (Motivation and Cognition).

Students may complete the three courses in any order; however, it is recommended that students complete EDEP 5114 before enrolling in EDEP 6114 because some of the foundational learning concepts are provided in EDEP 5114.

Current and Admitted Students at Virginia Tech
Graduate students accepted to any other graduate program at Virginia Tech will be admitted to the Graduate Certificate in Educational Research and Evaluation program on the basis of acceptance into their home department. To get the process started, submit your application to the program leader.

Apply (Current and Admitted Students)

Applicants New to Virginia Tech
Recommendations for admission to the certificate program for nondegree-seeking students will be made by our Graduate Admissions Committee, based on transcripts, the letter of interest, and the minimum requirements specified in the Graduate Catalogue. These admission criteria differ from our regular degree admission in that they require neither the GRE nor letters of recommendation. 

Apply (Applicants new to Virginia Tech)

There is a discount for in-state K-12 teachers; use this application form in order to receive the reduced costs. Otherwise, as with on-campus students, we refer you to the VT Office of Scholarships and Financial Aid for information on financial assistance. Generally, distance learners may qualify for federal loans if they take 5 or more credit hours per semester.

Find out what loans are available as a graduate student and other opportunities.

During the semester in which the certificate requirements are completed, students should complete the Degree or Certificate Conferral Request (in the Graduation section of forms) and give it to Nancy Nolen (

Applications are reviewed as they are received during the fall and spring semesters; there are no deadlines for applications.

Dr. Brett Jones
Program Leader
School of Education (0313)
Public Safety Building
Suite 201
330 Sterrett Drive

Nancy Nolen
Enrollment Services Assistant
402 Wallace Hall (0565)


Dr. Brett Jones
Program Leader
School of Education (0313)
Public Safety Building
Suite 201
330 Sterrett Drive
Blacksburg, VA 24061

Faculty Experts in Educational Psychology