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12 Graduate Certificate in Education Courses

Study online for a Graduate Certificate of Education. Online courses give you educator training, a postgraduate qualification and a pathway to a master's degree.

Smiling classroom teacher with female student

For teachers and other professionals with education and training roles, Graduate Certificates in Education are popular. You gain new knowledge and develop professionally. The best online programs in Australia are flexible and accelerated.

A grad cert is the shortest and cheapest university course. It's usually four subjects from a master's program. By comparison, a graduate diploma is eight subjects long and a masters may consist of 12 subjects. You can study for it 100% online while working full-time.


A Graduate Certificate in Education is a postgraduate qualification that provides advanced knowledge in a specialised area of education. The program typically consists of four subjects and can be completed in six months.

Courses are usually designed with qualified teachers in mind. However, useful programs are also available for other professionals, such as administrators, corporate trainers, curriculum developers, and policy makers.

Usually, the course forms part of a larger Masters in Education program. Graduate are often able to use completed subjects as credit towards a future graduate diploma or master's degree.

The purpose of doing a graduate certificate is to upgrade your knowledge and skills in a target area. After completing teacher training, you may wish to specialise in a particular field. You can also build on an existing strength, making you more effective in the classroom. Additionally, courses open up opportunities to progress to higher positions, such as leadership or policy-making roles.

Online Courses


Careers and Development

Woman giving computer-related help to teenage boy

The first program on our list is not for school teachers but for career advisors who may or may not work in the school system. A Careers Education and Development specialisation is designed for current and future career development practitioners. You'll explore how to effectively advise people on education and occupation planning.

RMIT University

RMIT University's postgraduate course for career development practitioners is endorsed by the Career Industry Council of Australia (CICA). Graduates are able to seek professional registration with various career development and advisory organisations. Students explore topics such as career design practices, narrative approaches to career counselling, and design thinking for learning and work. The online program can be completed part-time in under 12 months.

Early Childhood

Woman wearing glasses helping young boy

Early childhood education in Australia covers the pre-school years (0-5) as well as the early years of primary school (5-8). Postgraduate courses provide a pathway to becoming an early childhood teacher and working in kindergartens, school settings or long day care. If you're not a primary teacher, you'll need to continue studying beyond a graduate certificate to earn a graduate diploma.

Southern Cross University

If you have a degree of any kind and want to work in early childhood education, consider the Graduate Certificate in Education (Early Childhood) from Southern Cross University. The course represents a major step in becoming a fully qualified early childhood teacher. Earning the qualification gives you guaranteed entry and up to four subjects credit towards a professionally accredited Graduate Diploma of Education (Early Childhood). Study areas include principles and practice in early childhood education, families and communities, and leadership and advocacy in early childhood.

Educational Leadership

Group of professionals attending training

Leadership and management opportunities arise in almost all teaching settings, including schools, universities, hospitals, government agencies, and vocational and corporate training. You can enhance your confidence and ability to lead with a specialised postgraduate course. Choose from a program designed for school teachers or a general program for all educators.

Edith Cowan University

The Graduate Certificate of Education (Leading Education) from Edith Cowan University is ideal for current and future school leaders who want to refine their leadership skills and produce positive student outcomes. You learn how to manage staff, initiate community engagement, drive improvement, and lead under challenging circumstances. Accelerated 100% online learning is offered, allowing you to study part-time and finish within 8 months. The university has a rich history in teacher training and began as a teachers' college in 1902. ECU consistently receives excellent teaching ratings from graduates. Completing this course puts you just 4 subjects away from earning ECU's Accelerated Master of Education (Leading Education).

UTS Online

The UTS Online Graduate Certificate in Education (Learning and Leadership) is designed for professionals who are looking to lead and support learning innovation in their practice or organisation, whether in corporate, health, public sector, school, higher education or community settings. You’ll be introduced to cutting-edge approaches and research about learning, including designing innovative learning, leading learning, and learning in the digital age. Delivered 100% online, with part-time study, you can customise your learning and assessments to meet specific professional aspirations and upskilling needs, and immediately apply learnings for career advancement.

Educational Studies

Online education using laptop

Educators who want to upgrade their skills and credentials often go for a non-specialist grad cert. The qualification has value in it's own right but also gives you four subjects that potentially count towards a masters degree. The course may be general or have an emphasis on leadership in a school environment.

Southern Cross University

The Graduate Certificate in Education from Southern Cross University provides the foundations for a masters degree and is open to graduates with teaching qualifications. Students gain a strong grounding in educational leadership, research, and teaching adaptability. Topics include social and political context for leading in education, leading professional learning, research and evaluation, and contemporary educational environments. The part-time online course is convenient, affordable and flexible. Each of the four subjects can be completed during a 7-week teaching period.

Educational Wellbeing

Girl receiving counselling from man

You can gain specialist skills for enhancing student wellbeing and resilience with a dedicated program. They're are aimed at qualified teachers who want to bring leadership and practical skills to their school community.

Southern Cross University

Uplifting the whole learning experience for students is the focus of Southern Cross University's Graduate Certificate in Educational Wellbeing. The online course equips teachers and school leaders with tools to enhance student resilience and wellbeing. Topics covered include understanding and enhancing student wellbeing, valuing diversity, supporting students in difficult times, and how to establish wellbeing best practice in your school community. The 4-subject, part-time course leads into a Master of Education for participants who choose to continue their studies.

Health Professional Education

Health professional in a hospital setting

Ongoing learning is important in health care to support high standards of patient safety and service quality. If you're a health professional and want to be an educator in your industry, a good place to start is with a postgraduate program in health professional or clinical education. You'll learn to facilitate collaborative learning in health-related workplaces.

Australian Catholic University

The Australian Catholic University's Graduate Certificate in Health Professional Education is for health professionals with at least a year of clinical or work experience. You'll study topics such as quality and safety in health care, facilitating professional learning in health settings, and curriculum design and implementation. After the finishing the four-subject course, you'll have the option to continue studying online for a graduate diploma or master's degree in the same discipline.

Higher Ed

Students responding to instructor question at university or college

Train to become a skilled lecturer, tutor or other academic instructor with a higher education specialisation. The insights and refinements you achieve could make all the difference in terms of your teaching confidence and effectiveness.

Victoria University

The Graduate Certificate in Tertiary Education from Victoria University is for teachers and academics in higher and further education. The course aims to develop your teaching skills for university and other tertiary institutions. Rather than juggling multiple subjects at once, each unit is completed individually within a 4-week teaching block. Subjects taught are Curriculum Design and Assessment for Learning, Design and Development across Learning Environments, Evidence Based Effectiveness of Educational Innovation, and Teaching for Learning in Tertiary Education: Foundations and Beyond.

Inclusive Education

Two young girls looking at each other in classroom

With an online course in inclusivity, you'll learn how to ensure that every child is able to effectively participate in classroom and other activities. You'll explore issues such as special needs, use of technology in learning, and collaborating with parents and others.

Southern Cross University

Gain skills to enable every student in the classroom to achieve their learning potential with the Graduate Certificate in Educational Inclusion and Diversity from Southern Cross University. The flexible, 100% online course aims to equip you with the awareness to understand and meet challenges associated with inclusion, diversity and special needs. Students also examine the role of technology for collaboration and lifting classroom participation. You learn from primary and secondary experienced academics and have the option to continue studying for a masters degree.

Innovative Learning

Professionals doing training

You don't have to be a teacher to benefit from studying education online. Courses are available to anyone responsible for improving learning outcomes, including in corporate, private practice and public service settings.

UTS Online

The Graduate Certificate in Professional and Organisational Learning is for educators and training professionals who want to develop their abilities to lead and support professional and workplace learning. Students learn to develop customised changes to the challenges of professional and workplace learning and practice, lead innovative practices, evaluate learning and develop strategic workplace initiatives. Delivered 100% online, with part-time study, customise your learning and assessments to meet specific professional aspirations and upskilling needs, and immediately apply knowledge for career advancement. Upon successful completion, you can progress into a Master of Education (Learning and Leadership).

A Graduate Certificate in Nursing Education course is available to registered nurses and other healthcare professionals.

Students learn how to support learning in healthcare settings. Professional development underpins service quality in health and the role of nurse educators is integral.

Programs consider education from both instructional and learning facilitation perspectives. You explore not only how to potentially teach but also how to establish development processes for staff in hospitals and other health service facilities... READ MORE

Religious Studies

Pupils singing together in choir

An online course in religious instruction prepares you to teach the subject in schools or within a church or Sunday school setting. Teachers in the Catholic school system are often required to earn a postgraduate qualification before conducting classes in religion.

Australian Catholic University

The Australian Catholic University's Graduate Certificate in Religious Education is designed for qualified primary and secondary school teachers. By completing this course online, you become eligible to teach religious education in Catholic schools and church organisations. You can choose four subjects from a set of six in this specialisation. Topics include educating young people religiously, learning and teaching for religious education, liturgy and prayer, and historical perspectives.

Special Needs

Special needs student painting

Every classroom teacher can benefit from training in special needs instruction. You'll explore how to support pupils with cognitive impairments and other challenges. Graduates gain knowledge, skills and strategies to improve learning outcomes and social development.

Torrens University Australia

Torrens University Australia offers a Graduate Certificate of Education (Special Education) for teachers and other professionals who want to broaden their expertise into special needs instruction. The course follows a person-first model, whereby the student and instructor partner to overcome learning challenges in ways that may be unique to the individual. Subjects explored include an introduction to mental health conditions, dyslexia, learning differences, and the person-centred approach. The course forms part of a Master of Education (Special Education) program.

What You'll Study (Course Structure)

A grad cert often consists of four core subjects in the area of specialisation. The same subjects may also form the basis of a major if you go on to complete a master's degree. Here are example course structures.

Learning Outcomes

With so many specialisations available, numerous learning outcomes are possible. But, in general, here's what you can expect to gain.

Lifelong learning and research skills
Having been a student, then an educator, a return to studies will open your eyes to your own learning and development potential. You're likely to be aided by exploring research, instruction and learning processes as part of your coursework.

Confidence and leadership
Expanding your knowledge, especially in areas where you have an interest, will increase your competence and confidence as an educator. Many courses also include the study of leadership and management.

Specialist knowledge
Whatever course you choose, you'll gain specialist knowledge. That could be in areas such as educational leadership, cultural awareness and competence, enhancing teacher and student wellbeing, and strategies for organisational learning.

Career Opportunities

Earning a postgraduate educational qualification is a significant achievement that opens up potentially many career opportunities. You demonstrate a commitment to professional development. You also build specialist skills and/or lay the foundations for a possible graduate diploma or master's degree.

While a grad cert is comparable with a graduate diploma and about as impactful as a university degree, it takes less time and money. Many teachers find graduate certificates are worth doing because you gain a specialist qualification in a short time, typically in 8 months part-time.

Job opportunities depend on your career path and ambitions. Some of the positions filled by educators with postgraduate credentials include lead teacher, assistant principal, principal, education consultant, program coordinator, learning designer, corporate learning officer, and performance manager.

Entry Requirements

Entry requirements for schools of education vary by program. For courses aimed at classroom teachers, qualifications that allow you to teach in an Australian classroom may be required. Other courses just ask for a bachelor degree or equivalent experience.

Here are examples of course admission requirements. Enquire for further details.

† Online courses are available in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane, Adelaide, Perth, Canberra, Gold Coast, Newcastle. Australia-wide.