This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2024-2025 VCU Bulletin. Courses that expose students to cutting-edge content and transformative learning may be added and notification of additional program approvals may be received prior to finalization. General education program content is also subject to change. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

The graduate Certificate in Culturally Responsive Leadership is a 15-credit program that prepares school and community-based leaders with foundational theory, research and skills related to culturally responsive leadership. Culturally responsive and community-based leadership is, at its core, leadership that creates, maintains and supports belonging for all participants in an organization, particularly for those marginalized within most organizations. Students will develop specific knowledge of power imbalances related to race, ethnicity, culture and class in school and community settings and gain skills to mitigate those imbalances by establishing practices that nurture an inclusive organizational climate. Students will learn to analyze research and theory related to race, ethnicity, culture and class; engage in critical self-reflection and action; develop cross-sector relationships to advocate for transformative, justice-centered praxis; and identify and implement place- and people-based education strategies to empower communities for social change. This program is available in an online format.

Student learning outcome

Upon completion of the program, students will be able to:

  1. Develop specific knowledge of power imbalances related to race, ethnicity, class and other identities using culturally responsive leadership skills to facilitate inclusive environments where all stakeholders in their organizational contexts feel valued and have the resources and conditions they need to thrive

VCU Graduate Bulletin, VCU Graduate School and general academic policies and regulations for all graduate students in all graduate programs

The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.

It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on academic regulations for graduate students.

Graduation requirements

As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.

Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on graduation requirements.

Apply online today.

Admissions requirements

Degree: Semester(s) of entry: Deadline dates: Test requirements:
Certificate Fall Apr 1

In addition to the general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School, the following requirements represent the minimum acceptable standards for admission:

  1. Bachelor’s degree in an appropriate discipline
  2. Two letters of recommendation addressing the student’s potential for graduate study in education
  3. Statement of intent
  4. Transcripts of all previous college work
  5. Resume or curriculum vitae

Please visit the School of Education website for further information.

Degree requirements

In addition to general VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, students are required to complete course work in core courses. 

  1. Credit hour requirements: Students are required to complete a minimum of 15 credit hours.
  2. Grade requirements: Receipt of a grade of C or below in two courses constitutes automatic dismissal from the program. Courses with a grade below C cannot be used to satisfy degree requirements.

Curriculum requirements

Course Title Hours
ADMS 655Student-Centered Policy and Collaboration3
ADMS 656Human Dimensions of Leadership: Empathy, Trust and Care in Organizations3
ADMS 657Educational Leadership and Civil Rights3
ADMS 658Community-Based Action Research for Education Stakeholders3
ADMS 659Leadership in the “New Demography”: Immigration Theory and Politics3
Total Hours15

The minimum number of graduate credit hours required for this certificate is 15.

Enrollment Management
(804) 828-3382

Additional contact
Lacey E. Seaton, Ed.D.
Assistant professor and graduate program director
(804) 828-8736