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PACE Graduate Certificate - Admissions

Important announcement about applications

New application system coming soon for those planning to enroll in winter 2016 or beyond. Click here for more details about this new application system. If you would like to begin preparing your application materials or apply to an earlier term, see application requirements below.

The method of applying for admission to any of the PACE Graduate Certificate programs depends on your current admission status.

If you are currently officially admitted to one of the ELP Master’s programs (PACE, LSE, Ed. Leadership Masters, Master’s plus IAL, or CAL) and currently registered for classes, complete one GO-19M, which can be found on the Graduate Studies forms webpage, for each certificate you wish to earn, and return them to the ELP department secretary or admissions assistant in the ELP department office in ED 504.

If you are currently officially admitted to any other PSU Master’s or Doctoral degree program and currently registered for classes,

  1. Follow the application instructions for Step 2 (apply online for admission to the ELP department) below. The department will need you to send only unofficial copies of your transcripts.
  2. Instead of completing step 1, fill out one GO-19M or GO-19D, which can be found on the Graduate Studies forms webpage, for each certificate you wish to earn. Return them with the required signatures from your current department along with your other paper application materials to the ELP department secretary or admissions assistant in the ELP department office in ED 504.

If you are not currently admitted to any PSU Master’s or Doctoral degree program*, complete the following steps. Admission is a two step process. Applicants must complete one application to Portland State University graduate admissions (step 1 below) and one application to the Educational Leadership & Policy (ELP) department (step 2 below).

Before applying to our program you must:

  • Possess a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution and have a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0 in the highest degree earned.

Step 1) Apply for graduate admission to Portland State University

  • All applicants, regardless of which ELP program they are applying for, must fill out the university application and pay the corresponding $65 fee.
  • Online Graduate Admission applications can be accessed here. You can pay the $65 application fee with a credit card through the website.
  • For Student Type, select: “5. Graduate Master,” and for Planned Curriculum, select: “Education: Educational Leadership and Policy, MS.” Even though you won’t be earning a master’s degree, selecting this option triggers the application for graduate admission.
  • Be sure to indicate the term you intend to take a course as your admission term. You must take a course the term you are admitted to the program or your admission will be automatically cancelled by the university Office of Admissions.**
  • If you prefer, you can download a PDF of the Graduate Admissions application and submit it to the department along with a check for the $50 fee and your other application materials instead of submitting the online version.

Step 2) Apply online for admission to the Educational Leadership & Policy Department

  1. Click here to access the departmental online application. Create a free account or log in if you’ve already created one. Be sure to write down your username and password. You will be able to save and return to your application before submitting it. You will also be able to track the progress of your application through the review process after you submit it.
  2. Click the Create a New Application button.
  3. Select PACE Graduate Certificate Application from the list of choices.
  4. Complete both pages of the online application. Before you fill in your electronic signature, please review the Graduate School of Education Behavior and Performance Guidelines (linked here); and the Portland State University Code of Student Conduct (linked here).
  5. Click the Submit Application Now button when you have filled in the application completely. Once you click this button, you may not go back and make changes. But remember, you must click the submit application now button before the application deadline if you want to be considered.

Accepted students will be assessed:

  1. A one-time matriculation fee if this is their first admission to a graduate program at PSU as of Fall 2009.


Applicants are responsible for ensuring all application materials are received by the department by the deadlines noted below! Faculty will review applications only after all application materials have been received. A timely admission decision cannot be guaranteed for incomplete applications. However, since the program reviews applications continuously, students should apply as soon as possible even if they missed the original deadline.

Quarter Priority Application Deadline
Fall July 1
Winter November 1
Spring February 15
Summer May 15

After the application review is complete, departmental decisions will be mailed to the student and are subject to final approval by the university Office of Admissions. You will be notified of your official admission status via a second letter from the Office of Admissions. Only after you are officially admitted you will be able to register for courses. The whole admission process may take a minimum of up to 4 weeks to complete. Please plan accordingly.

PACE graduate certificate application check sheet

Instructions concerning these documents and links to the forms are included in the online departmental application process. This check sheet is for your reference only.

A complete application includes:

  • University Application and $50 fee (completed online or by paper form)
  • ELP Department Application (completed and submitted online)
  • Official transcripts (From every accredited institution ever attended, including community colleges)
  • Current Resume
  • Personal Goal Statement

Retention of student documents

All application documents submitted to PSU become the property of the University and may not be copied or returned to a student. Transcripts from other institutions cannot be copied (PSU Bulletin, 2009-2010, p. 41). If you have any questions regarding the application process, please email or call 503-725-4633.

*If you decide you want to be admitted to the PACE master’s or doctoral program, you will need to reapply for graduate admission, repay the $50 fee and also complete the application procedures specific to those programs.

**It is a University requirement that students register and pay for at least one credit in the term they are admitted. Failure to do so will result in automatic cancellation of your admission. If you need to change the term for which you intend to begin classes after you have submitted your application, please contact the ELP Department at 503-725-4633 to discuss your options.


PSU supports equal opportunity in admissions, education, and use of facilities by prohibiting discrimination in those areas based on age, color, disability, gender, marital status, national origin, religion and sexual orientation. This policy implements state and federal law (including Title IX), and inquiries about it should be directed to the Affirmative Action Office, 122 Cramer Hall. A major goal of this department is to provide a diverse pool of qualified applicants for educational leadership and administrative positions in Oregon. African, Asian, Native Americans, Hispanics, and women are strongly encouraged to apply.