Program Description

The Graduate Certificate in Systems Leadership in Higher Education is a seven-month, nine-credit program that provides graduates with the knowledge, skills, tools, and models to lead systems-oriented change in post-secondary institutions. The program will prepare students to develop the skills required to understand global trends and national perspectives and take a systems view of their organization, make evidence-based decisions, to think critically, plan strategically and lead meaningful educational change. 

Who It’s For

Leaders or aspiring leaders in post-secondary educational environments who want to expand their expertise and gain new skills and credentials in the field of higher education administration and leadership to advance or redirect their career. Applicants who do not have the formal academic education to qualify for admission may be assessed on the basis of both their formal education and their informal learning, in accordance with the Flexible Admission Policy. Please visit the program admission page for more information.


Graduates will develop an understanding of educational improvement concepts and research from a systems perspective and be able to apply practical tools and strategies to address issues, challenges, and opportunities related to supporting student achievement and institutional growth.

Graduates will:  

  • Critically analyze the their own organizational context in light of existing cultural norms, national/international trends and global perspectives;
  • Foster and sustain an inclusive institutional culture and climate to support both student learning and faculty/staff professional growth;
  • Integrate evidence-based decision making approaches into administrative leadership practices to support growth and improvement;
  • Understand and use change and improvement processes to support student learning and institutional growth; and
  • Apply systems thinking to strategically plan and manage the higher education institutional environment to support student learning.