Twin Cities campus
Twin Cities Campus

Human Services Leadership Postbaccalaureate Certificate

HHH Leadership and Management Academic Program
Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Link to a list of faculty for this program.
Contact Information
Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota, 301 19th Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN 55455 (612-624-3800; fax: 612-626-0002)
  • Program Type: Post-baccalaureate credit certificate/licensure/endorsement
  • Requirements for this program are current for Fall 2019
  • Length of program in credits: 12
  • This program does not require summer semesters for timely completion.
  • N/A
  • Degree:
Along with the program-specific requirements listed below, please read the General Information section of this website for requirements that apply to all major fields.
Human service professionals face extraordinary challenges that require innovative thinking and an interdisciplinary approach. The certificate in human services leadership provides mid-career professionals knowledge and skills in leadership, public policy, and public service redesign for greater success plus increased potential for advancement to serve in mid- to senior-level leadership positions in county, state, and nonprofit agencies. Designed with input from industry leaders, the program is intended for working professionals involved in human service program development and delivery. The program allows students to complete a professional 12-credit graduate-level certificate that can serve as a stepping stone to the mid-career master of public affairs degree.
This program is accredited by N/A
Program Delivery
  • via classroom (the majority of instruction is face-to-face)
Prerequisites for Admission
The preferred undergraduate GPA for admittance to the program is 3.00.
A four-year bachelor's degree from an accredited US university or foreign equivalent at time of enrollment.
Special Application Requirements:
At least 8 years of post-baccalaureate professional work experience. Pre-baccalaureate experience may be considered for applicants with a significant gap between completion of high school and the bachelor's degree. Sufficient prior academic preparation as demonstrated in a four-year bachelor's degree. A complete application will include a University of Minnesota application, personal statement, resume or C.V., transcripts, TOEFL scores (if applicable), at least three letters of recommendation, and a diversity statement.
International applicants must submit score(s) from one of the following tests:
    • Internet Based - Total Score: 100
    • Internet Based - Listening Score: 25
    • Internet Based - Writing Score: 25
    • Internet Based - Reading Score: 25
    • Internet Based - Speaking Score: 25
    • Paper Based - Total Score: 600
    • Total Score: 7.0
  • MN Batt
Key to test abbreviations (TOEFL, IELTS, MN Batt).
For an online application or for more information about graduate education admissions, see the General Information section of this website.
Program Requirements
Use of 4xxx courses towards program requirements is not permitted.
A minimum GPA of 2.80 is required for students to remain in good standing.
At least 1 semesters must be completed before filing a Degree Program Form.
Required Coursework
PA 5161 - Redesigning Human Services (3.0 cr)
PA 5162 - Public Service Redesign Workshop (3.0 cr)
Elective Courses
PA 5190 is limited to "Leading Across Boundaries" (2 cr).
Take 6 or more credit(s) from the following:
· PA 5011 - Management of Organizations (3.0 cr)
· PA 5103 - Leadership and Change (1.5-3.0 cr)
· PA 5137 - Project Management in the Public Arena (1.5 cr)
· PA 5190 - Topics in Public and Nonprofit Leadership and Management (1.0-3.0 cr)
· PA 5311 - Program Evaluation (3.0 cr)
· PA 5405 - Public Policy Implementation (3.0 cr)
· PA 5421 - Racial Inequality and Public Policy (3.0 cr)
· PA 5927 - Effective Grantwriting for Nonprofit Organizations (1.5 cr)
· OLPD 5011 - Leading Organizational Change: Theory and Practice (3.0 cr)
· 5145 or 5253
· PA 5145 - Civic Participation in Public Affairs (3.0 cr)
or PA 5253 - Designing Planning and Participation Processes (3.0 cr)
· Integrative Leadership
· GCC 5023 {Inactive} [CIV] (3.0 cr)
or PA 5105 - Integrative Leadership: Leading Across Sectors to Address Grand Challenges (3.0 cr)
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· Hubert H. Humphrey School of Public Affairs

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PA 5161 - Redesigning Human Services
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
This course provides an in-depth examination of the history and institutions delivering human services in the United States, with an emphasis on how human-centered design can help improve service provision and outcomes. It explores how public, nonprofit, and philanthropic structures create unique operational realities and cultures that must be navigated to lead change across institutional boundaries. It also systematically investigates contributors to disparities in the human services system, particularly race. The use of frameworks such as human-centered design, human services value curve, and an equity lens will help us on this exploration. Course learning materials take students through a design process to highlight strategies for systems change and improvement grounded in outcomes. Design processes are iterative and involve understanding and engaging the people and context in problem solving. Through project-based learning approach, students will understand the various constraints that need to be navigated in design: feasibility, viability, and desirability. Students gain experience using design to help appreciate these constraints and develop strategies for overcoming them.
PA 5162 - Public Service Redesign Workshop
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Public service delivery innovation and redesign in health and human services fields to improve outcomes. Study and application of theories of organizational development, leadership, and system change. Social system dynamics analysis. Engaging diverse stakeholders. Effects and influence of implicit bias on current and redesigned efforts. Models and tools for public service redesign.
PA 5011 - Management of Organizations
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Challenges facing higher-level managers in public and nonprofit organizations in mixed economy and democratic republic. Distinctive features of public and nonprofit management, skills necessary for effective management, manager's role as creator of public value. Lectures, case discussions.
PA 5103 - Leadership and Change
Credits: 1.5 -3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
Models of change/leadership. How leaders can promote personal, organizational, and societal change. Case studies, action research. Framework for leadership and change.
PA 5137 - Project Management in the Public Arena
Credits: 1.5 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Spring
Project management and leadership strategies for implementing public policy, including new or revised government programs, public works, and regulations. Use of project management concepts, principles, and tools, including project definition, scoping, planning, scheduling (using the critical path method), budgeting, monitoring, staffing, and managing project teams. Application of "agile" and "extreme" project management in situations of complexity and uncertainty, including those due to the scrutiny and expectations of elected officials, the media, citizens, and other stakeholders.
PA 5190 - Topics in Public and Nonprofit Leadership and Management
Credits: 1.0 -3.0 [max 9.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Selected topics.
PA 5311 - Program Evaluation
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Principal methods, primary applications of evaluation research as applied to policies/programs in health/human services, education, or the environment. Conducting evaluations. Becoming a critical consumer of studies. prereq: Grad student or instr consent
PA 5405 - Public Policy Implementation
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F or Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Theory, tools, and practice of the implementation of public policy, particularly in areas involving public, private, and nonprofit organizations. Analytical approach focuses on multiple levels in policy fields to pinpoint and assess implementation challenges and levers for improvement.
PA 5421 - Racial Inequality and Public Policy
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Periodic Fall & Spring
Historical roots of racial inequality in American society. Contemporary economic consequences. Public policy responses to racial inequality. Emphasizes thinking/analysis that is critical of strategies offered for reducing racism and racial economic inequality. prereq: Grad or instr consent
PA 5927 - Effective Grantwriting for Nonprofit Organizations
Credits: 1.5 [max 1.5]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall & Spring
Grantwriting skills, processes, problem,s and resources for nonprofit organizations. Researching and seeking grants. Communication with potential funders and generating financial support. Collaborating effectively with the organization and clients to create substantive, fundable proposals.
OLPD 5011 - Leading Organizational Change: Theory and Practice
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Typically offered: Every Fall
How theory is incorporated, affects the change process, and can improve schools/institutions of higher education. Characteristics that impact change processes/outcomes. Leadership/policy effects.
PA 5145 - Civic Participation in Public Affairs
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Spring
Critique/learn various approaches to civic participation in defining/addressing public issues. Readings, cases, classroom discussion, facilitating/experiencing engagement techniques. Examine work of practitioner, design engagement process.
PA 5253 - Designing Planning and Participation Processes
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Grading Basis: A-F only
Typically offered: Every Fall
Theory/practice of design, implementation, evaluation of planning/participation processes. Types of planning. Stakeholders, including underrepresented groups. Costs/benefits of participation. Participant roles. Planning/participation tools/techniques. prereq: Major or minor in urban/regional planning or instr consent
PA 5105 - Integrative Leadership: Leading Across Sectors to Address Grand Challenges
Credits: 3.0 [max 3.0]
Course Equivalencies: 01753
Grading Basis: OPT No Aud
Typically offered: Every Fall
Examines how challenges can be addressed through the shared leadership of government, business, and nonprofit sectors. Multi-sector leadership and related governance and management challenges explored from a variety of perspectives. The lens of the course moves to the collaboration itself after a focus on the individual, looking at techniques and qualities of successful teams, including those composed of diverse individuals or organizations. Students apply what they learn individually and in teams through in-class exercises and a final team project. Taught by a team of interdisciplinary faculty and considers different contexts, forms and specific examples of multisector leadership to enable transformative action to tackle significant societal issues and achieve lasting change.