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The School of Professional Development offers a variety of for-credit micro-credential. The courses leading to a micro-credential can be taken after completing a bachelor's, master's, or other advanced degrees. Micro-credentials comprise series of two to three courses designed around specialized areas of focus –  either knowledge or competency-based, or targeted study within a field. Micro-credentials can be earned as a stand-alone credential as a graduate non-matriculated student or while enrolled in a matriculated program. A micro-credential is an excellent option for someone who may not want to complete the full credit requirements of an advanced graduate certificate or master’s degree program but would like to develop a preliminary understanding and knowledge of skills in a specialized field.

Courses and GPA

A student must achieve a 3.0 cumulative GPA in all graduate courses taken at Stony Brook to receive a micro-credential.

Calculation of the grade point average (GPA) includes all courses numbered 500 and above taken at Stony Brook. Temporary grades (I and NR), missing grades, and those grades for which no numerical equivalents are defined (P, S, U, and R) are excluded from the computation.

Grading System: See Academic Regulations/Grading System

A matriculated graduate student who has changed the primary program may request a restart of GPA in considering a possible waiver of academic probation. The GPA for the new program will be calculated from the beginning of the semester in which the change of program became effective. A graduate student who has graduated and is readmitted into a new degree or certificate program may request a restart of GPA. Program approval is necessary before any restart request is submitted to the School of Professional Development. Courses taken before the restart of GPA cannot be used towards a degree or certificate.

Language Proficiency

SPD students must comply with program admission requirements with regard to language proficiency. See English Proficiency Requirements for Admission.

Micro-Credentials Policy

Enrollment Requirements

Both SPD graduate non-matriculated students and matriculated students may enroll in zero (0) -12 credits in a given full semester (fall and spring). Students may register for zero (0) to a maximum of nine (9) units per six-week session in any summer term with 12 maximum credits overall. Winter term registration is limited to zero (0) - three (3) credits maximum. SPD students may not GPNC any courses.


Students seeking micro-credential will submit an SPD Graduation Application for Late Filers form. SPD will review and confirm satisfactory outcomes (e.g., a passing grade consistent with graduate-level expectations) before issuing a digital credential using SBU’s approved-provider Acclaim.


Students failing to register before the first day of classes or before late registration begins may still register during the first 15 days of the semester, but may be charged a late fee.

Students are responsible for the oversight of their enrollment, whether self-enrolled or enrolled as a member of an SPD contracted off-campus cohort. Programs or individual faculty members do not have the authority to waive these rules.

Program Recommendation

When all micro credential course requirements are completed, the graduate program director overseeing the micro-credential may recommend to the School of Professional Development that the micro-credential be granted.

Time Limit

The School of Professional Development requires that all courses required for a micro-credential be completed within 2 years maximum from the original admission term if completed as a stand-alone micro-credential, or as part of an advanced graduate certificate. Students enrolled in a master’s program must complete all requirements for the micro-credentials within the five(5) years allowed for the master’s program.

In the event a student reaches the maximum time allowed without having completed the credential, the student can submit a request for a Waiver of Graduate Time Limit. These petitions require the approval of the graduate program director overseeing the micro-credentials. Requests for a time limit extension must be filed at the start of the term that will have exceeded the time limit and must contain a significant justification. The ultimate decision rests with the Dean of the Graduate School, who may impose additional requirements.


As with all School of Professional Development offerings, appreciation of the ethical questions and adherence to the highest ethical standards of the discipline is required.