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Certificate Program

Educational Therapy

Empower your students

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certificate Description

Announcing a new post-certificate pathway!

We are delighted to announce a new articulation agreement with Notre Dame de Nemur, one of only two AET-approved master's degree programs. Once you've completed your UCSC Extension certificate, you can now transfer your credits and complete only 13 more semester units to earn a master's degree. Learn more.


The impact of inspired learning

Learn how individualized interventions can make a tremendous impact in the classroom, in private practice, and in the home. In one of the few Association of Educational Therapists-approved training programs, you will learn to assess the different challenges students have so you can effectively collaborate with an educational team and understand the underlying theory and the latest research to implement practical strategies for learning.

Teachers, tutors, resource specialists, and aspiring educational therapists will learn to empower and inspire their students. The material also supports you in setting up your own clinical practice.

Educational and therapeutic strategy

Our curriculum guides you to combine educational and therapeutic strategies—for evaluation, remediation, advocacy, and case management—on behalf of individuals with learning differences.

Gain one-on-one experience

Educational therapists work one-on-one through using socio-emotional, psycho-educational, and neuropsychological paradigms to develop individualized learning and treatment plans. They alleviate learning difficulties by using individuals’ strengths to overcome challenges.

Our Educational Therapy students

This program is designed for all educators, psychologists, marriage and family therapists, and other allied professionals at all levels as well as individuals interested in learning enrichment.

Educational Therapy certificate program objectives

  • Understand challenges faced by students with dyslexia, dyscalculia, ADHD, autism spectrum, and other learning differences.
  • Comprehend the theories, issues, strategies, and materials related to the assessment and instruction of students with reading difficulties.
  • Learn how dyscalculia impacts learning and apply strategies for helping students understand computation and problem-solving in mathematics.
  • Employ ethical principles in the field, and develop a business plan for managing a clinical practice.
  • Use and understand assessment tools and procedures frequently used in educational therapy settings.
  • Gain a deeper understanding of the priorities of learners, their needs, and the process of building a remediation plan.

Suitability for practice

The UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy program is committed to candidates’ development of ethical practice, establishment of professional boundaries, client confidentiality, and awareness of internship competence and personal limitations.

At any time during a candidate’s progress through the internship, should a significant concern regarding the candidate’s suitability for the profession occur, in accordance with the AET Code of Conduct and based on the candidate’s apparent behavior, a committee of program director, program manager, program chair and mentor shall convene to review the candidate’s conduct and performance. The committee shall interview the student and person(s) who raised the concern and consult with administration. After careful deliberation, the committee will determine, whether or not there is a basis for concern and, if there is a basis for concern, will determine a course of action, which could include possible immediate program disqualification or substantive remediation that can involve course or clinical placement or repetition. Should a candidate wish to appeal the review committee’s decision, the same procedures would be followed for appealing an academic decision as described in the UCSC Extension policies.



The UCSC Silicon Valley Professional Educational Therapy certificate program is approved by the Association of Educational Therapists. Founded in 1979, AET defines and sets standards for the professional practice of educational therapy. Educational therapists provide a broad range of individualized educational interventions for children and adults with learning disabilities and other learning challenges.

See the Professional Development section below for more information on AET.

Recent online events

Elevate Your Educational Therapy Career

Educators, administrators, parents, and allies of people with learning differences explore the transformative world of educational therapy in our AET-approved program. Learn about upcoming courses to expand your toolbox. (February 2024)

Intro to 2e: Understanding Bright Students Who Struggle

Experts talk about the twice-exceptional learner, how to reframe the situation, reduce stress, work with unexpected behaviors, and help neurodivergent, 2e children feel supported. (July 2023)

Teaching the Struggling Student

Learn to work with students who have common learning differences in this in-depth overview presentation by Diana Kennedy, an educational therapist and instructor in the UCSC Extension certificate program. (May 2023)

Program Overview

Estimated Cost: Starts at $6,090. Does not include potential practicum or internship costs. (You pay only for courses you enroll in.) | International Tuition Cost
Program Requirements: 10–11 courses (minimum 30 quarter units). Take 7 required courses (21 quarter units), 2–3 elective (minimum 4 quarter units), and capstone course (5 units). End with certificate review.
Minimum Hours of Instruction: 300 hours of instruction.
Estimated Duration: A full-time student can complete the certificate in about two years.
Modality: This is a fully online program with live-online & self-paced course formats.
Special Programs: This program is approved for workforce students.
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Course Quarter Units Fall Winter Spring Summer
1. Required Course(s): Seven Total & Equal to 21 Units
Educational Assessments I 3.0 +
Educational Assessments II 3.0
Educational Therapy: Structured Literacy I 3.0 + +
Educational Therapy: Structured Literacy II 3.0 + +
Principles of Educational Therapy 3.0
Strategies for Learning Differences in Mathematics 3.0
Techniques of Educational Therapy: Affective, Cognitive and Perceptual Elements 3.0 Summer Flexible
2. Electives:
Assistive Technology for Learning Differences 3.0 +
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in the Classroom 3.0
ECE: Brain Development in Early Childhood 3.0
Management of Clinical Practice 3.0
Neurodivergent Learners 1.0
Psychology of Human Learning 3.0
Understanding Learning Differences 3.0
3. Capstone Course:
Educational Therapy Practicum 5.0 + +
4. Completion Review:
Educational Therapy Certificate Completion Fee None

Meet Our Instructors

Bibinaz Pirayesh
Educational Therapist & Founder,
Brian Gadus
Accessibility Specialist/Teacher, Palo Alto Unified School District
Diana Black Kennedy
Educational Therapist, Speaker, Author
Erin Berg
Educational Specialist in Private Practice
John R Fleming
Founder / Director, Developmental Learning Solutions
Lynne Mariam Goldfarb
Chief Executive Educator, Doctors of Education | Consultant
Melissa Chi Le
Teacher | Program Chair
Rachael M Haven
Assistive Technology Consultant, TechPotential
Sharmila Roy
Special Consultant, Schwab Learning Center | Program Chair

What students are saying

Certificate Inquiry Form

Contact Us
Speak to a student services representative.

Call (408) 861-3860


Professional Development


The UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy certificate program is approved by the Association of Educational Therapists.

Benefits of an AET-approved Program
  1. Fast-Tracked Membership—Alumni of UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy professional certificate program proceed through the AET membership process faster than those students who graduated from a program that is not AET-approved.
  2. Professional Opportunity—Although to become a Board Certified Educational Therapist-level AET member requires a master's degree, graduates of our Ed Therapy certificate program can become an associate member of the AET without a master's degree. Note: BCETs need to take professional development courses and earn 40 hours every four years.
  3. Conference Scholarships—UCSC Extension students may apply for scholarships to attend AET’s annual conference.

AET Certification

Visit the Association of Educational Therapy, to learn more about the organization's own certification requirements.

Licensure and Certification Policy

The certification by the AET is optional for practice in the field. There is currently no state licensure for educational therapy.

Please see our Licensure and Certification Policy to learn more.



Continue your education in an accredited master's degree program

Completion of the UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy certificate program allows you to transfer 30 quarter units (equal to 20 NDNU semester credits) toward the Notre Dame de Namur University Master of Arts degree in Educational Therapy. The NDNU MA program requires 33 credits. Have questions? Contact Polly Mayer at NDNU at

Requisite Knowledge

Please review the course descriptions to ensure that you have taken necessary prerequisites or meet the requirements through job experience or previous education.

Note: We require a bachelor’s degree and preferably some experience working with children to complete this certificate program.

If you do not have an educational background, we strongly recommend that you enroll in the following courses.

Advisory Board

Instructor Sharmila Roy

Certificate Program Chair

SHARMILA ROY, Ph.D., has over 30 years of experience in special education, primarily in teacher training, classroom interventions, and curriculum development. She is a special consultant for the Schwab Learning Center in Palo Alto, CA, and has worked in private practice as an educational therapist, as well as in the non-profit sector, and helped families navigate the special education system for their children. She has extensive experience working in K-7 classrooms and one-on-one with exceptional students, especially in the area of multi-sensory mathematics learning for students with learning differences and executive functional skills. Roy has been trained in the United Kingdom and received a doctorate in Special Education from the State University of New York at Buffalo. She has served as the chair of the Educational Therapy certificate program since 2014.

Certificate Program Advisory Committee

DLS Founder & Director, Developmental Learning Solutions
Instructor, UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy Certificate Program

Educational Therapist, Mindspark Custom Learning Solutions
Instructor, UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy Certificate Program

Educational Therapist, Founder @OneofOneKids, Keynote Speaker, Professor

Education Consultant and Literacy Specialist, Erin Powers Learning

Chair/Instructor, UCSC Silicon Valley Extension Educational Therapy Certificate Program

Executive Director / Founder of edcahoots

Establish Candidacy

Who should establish candidacy?

  • People who are pursuing a certificate (and have enrolled in a course in the program).
  • People who want to lock in the current requirements of a certificate or specialization.
4 Simple Steps to a Certificate or Specialization
  1. Complete a course in your selected program.
  2. Establish candidacy. Click on the Establish Candidacy button on your program page.
  3. Take all required courses for certificate completion.
  4. Once your grades are posted on your final course, enroll in the certificate review fee.
A Benefit of Establishing Candidacy

Program requirements may change. Once you commit to a program by establish your candidacy, you will not have to change your plans to meet new requirements. They are locked in for you. Timeline: 4 years to get it done (or 3 for a specialization) You must complete all the necessary units in a certificate within a four-year window. The clock begins on the first day of your first course in the certificate program. For example, if you started a course on Sept. 5, 2023, you would have to finish by Sept. 4, 2027.

Note: Establishing candidacy does not trigger the beginning of the four-year window. It begins the first day of the first course in your chosen certificate program. The Certificate Completion Review process does not have to occur within the four-year timeframe.

Exceptions to the four-year requirement
  • If you Established candidacy prior to Jan. 1, 2024, you will have five years to complete a program.
  • Students participating in a special program, such as workforce, international, or our curriculum partner programs, such as the Legal Studies courses (CLS by Barbri) and sales and business courses (Ziplines Education) have shorter completion requirements.

Establish Candidacy

Grade Requirements

Please note that only letter grades of C or higher may be applied to a certificate, and in some programs, students may have more stringent requirements. Students in most employer- and government-sponsored payment programs, such as workforce development, as well as international students on F-1 visas, need to maintain a B average to meet their requirements. Personal Financial Planning students have additional grade requirements for individual courses to attain a certificate.

See Grading and Credits Policy for further information.