Essential Employability Skills

Total cost:

$4,830 View Tuition Details

Application due date for April 11, 2022 term: April 8

Estimated time to completion: 9 Months

Take your career further.

To be successful and competitive in today’s workforce, employees must possess an essential set of personal and professional skills. The Certificate in Essential Employability Skills is a bachelor’s-level program specifically designed to help students navigate and master those skills so they are able to excel in their current job or overall. Some of the focus areas include organization and time management, communications, creative thinking, teamwork and leadership – all critical skills in a 21st century workplace.


in the nation for most master's degrees awarded in education*.

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What you can expect.

  • Flexible Study on your schedule. Our online format allows you to plan your coursework around your life.
  • Impactful With two built-in micro-credentials – Personal and Professional Skills and Teamwork Skills – you have the option to finish the program with two digital badges along with your full certificate. These badges can be placed on your social media to showcase your accomplishment to professional and personal contacts.
  • Customizable You decide the courses and skills you want to study. For example, strengthen your intellectual skills by taking courses in creative thinking, decision making, and self-directed action. Or ensure your ideas are being heard by learning new strategies from our courses in communications, collaboration and teamwork, and leadership.
  • Relevant The skills in this certificate program are based on the Indiana State Standards of Workforce and Development. No matter your career or location, the skills you develop in this program are in-demand and applicable anywhere.

A few of the classes you'll take.

  • COM4003 Communications 3 semester credits
  • GE4003 Critical Reflection and Self-Assessment 3 semester credits
  • GE4033 Planning and Organizational Skills: Time Management 3 semester credits
Cathy McKay, Ed.D.

Department Chair

Cathy McKay, Ed.D.
Administrative Faculty and Chair,
Department of Professional Educational Studies
View All Faculty

Quality Without Question

We are, and have always been, accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, a regional accreditation agency recognized by the U.S. Department of Education. This accreditation guarantees that our programs meet certain levels of quality standards.   

A Note About Licensure:

While this certificate provides a comprehensive understanding of the intended certificate outcomes, it does not lead to licensure, certification, or endorsement. ACE offers several programs that do provide a pathway to licensure, certification, or endorsement and they can be found here.

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Certificate in Essential Employability Skills

Total Tuition

18 semester credits
x $215 per credit



$50 Application Fee

$810 Technology & Library Fee
($40 per credit)

$100 Program Conferral Fee


Total Program Cost*


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1This is an estimated value of the cost for tuition and fees. Amounts may vary depending on number of transfer credits applied to the selected program hours or program pathway credit hours, the pace and satisfactory completion of the selected program or program pathway credit hours, receipt of, or eligibility for, institutional or non-institutional scholarship and/or grant amounts, and adjustments to tuition or fees as described in the Catalog Right to Modify Tuition section.

State of California Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF)

It is a state of California requirement that a student who pays his or her tuition is required to pay a state-imposed assessment two dollars and fifty cents ($2.50) per one thousand dollars ($1,000) of institutional charges, rounded to the nearest thousand dollars, for the California Student Tuition Recovery Fund. For more information and to see if you must pay the state-imposed assessment for Student Tuition Recovery Fund (STRF) click here.

Admission Requirements

Certificate in Essential Employability Skills

ACE General Admission Requirements

  • Complete and submit all application components including the admission application, the enrollment agreement, and the payment agreement.
  • Submit the nonrefundable application fee.*
  • Provide official transcripts from a regionally accredited institution indicating successful completion of the level of education required for entry to the program.**

*The application fee is valid for one year from date of submission.
**Additional evidence may be required to fulfill state requirements, including but not limited to verification of professional experience, test scores, or an interview.

Program Admission Requirements

Certificate in Essential Employability Skills

  • At least 30 Semester Credits from Regionally Accredited Institution
  • Minimum grade point average cumulative 2.00 on a 4.0 scale for full admission​​
  • Minimum cumulative grade point average 1.75 on a 4.0 scale for provisional admission

International Transcript Requirements

All applicants must submit to the Admissions Office official, sealed college transcripts from each institution attended.

  • Transcripts that are international and/or not in English must be evaluated through an NACES-recommended agency.
  • Texas applicants may only submit evaluations from agencies approved by the Texas Education Agency.
  • International applicants must request the course-by-course evaluation. The evaluation report must show that the non-U.S. education is equivalent to the education/accreditation level required for the program.

English as a Second Language Applicants

All applicants whose first language is not English must demonstrate competence in the English language as demonstrated in one of three ways:

  1. Submission of an official transcript showing a degree from a United States secondary school or regionally accredited college/university.

  2. Submission of an official minimum score on the paper or internet-based Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) or International English Language Testing System (IELTS) exams.
    • The minimum TOEFL score required for the internet-based version is 80, and the paper-based version requires a minimum TOEFL score of 20 for each of the three skills: Reading, Listening, and, Writing.

    • The minimum IELTS score required is 6.5. Note: IELTS is not acceptable for Texas programs leading to certification.

    • The testing agency must send test scores directly to American College of Education.
  3. Applicants to the Texas Educational Leadership program whose first language is not English must submit a minimum scaled score of 24 for speaking, 22 for listening, 22 for reading, and 21 for writing from the Internet-Based TOEFL (IBT) or evidence of an undergraduate or graduate degree earned at an institution of higher education in a country outside of the United States listed in Figure: 19 TAC §230.11(b)(5)(C).


Certificate in Essential Employability Skills

Explore the classes you'll take to fulfill this program's 18 semester credit requirement. For more information, a complete list of requirements, and course options, see the College Catalog.

Course List

(18 semester credits)

This course considers the necessity of communicating well in society. Communicating verbally, through the written word, and through body language are examined closely. Barriers to communication along with ways to overcome them are discussed in detail. The importance of providing and accepting feedback is analyzed. Interpersonal communication skills and theories of communication round out the course. 
This course focuses on helping students learn to analyze their strengths and weaknesses with a discerning eye. Through a series of exercises, students assess their strengths and how to harness them. Students also assess their challenge areas and determine ways to resolve them. Students will leave the course with a better understanding of how to utilize the best parts of their personality and skills for a force of good in society.
In an era of increasing collaboration, people entering the workforce now more than ever before need to understand the value of working with others. This course offers insight on how to be flexible when working with individuals and provides tips on how to exercise interpersonal sensitivity and take feedback gracefully without offense. Learners learn to recognize when it's necessary to stand up for their ideas or compromise for the good of a team. The concept of synergy is discussed along with the different modes of persuasion and negotiation. Students also learn about the various jobs involving teamwork, including virtual opportunities.
This course is designed to teach students the basic principles of planning and organization with a focus on time management. From keeping a day planner to using a digital organizer, students will learn about tools they can use to gain control of their busy lives. The concepts of to-do lists, prioritizing commitments, filing things away, and filtering out digital and physical clutter as strategies for improving efficiency are explored. Students address the challenges associated with procrastination and how to overcome it. Practical advice is provided on how to complete tasks in a timely manner, ways to approach seemingly difficult projects, and how to make commitments in line with personal and professional values and goals.
This course provides tips and suggestions on how learners can be more academically minded in all aspects of their lives. Through a series of activities, students will realize that learning doesn't have to stop when a lecture ends or their degrees are earned. The course examines attributes of successful, lifelong learners and people both in and out of academia. Exercises in the course are designed to foster students' interest in learning and ignite passion for continual development. 
This course is designed to help tap into the creative powers that many people possess but do not use. Through an examination of inventors and world leaders who created innovative products, students learn more about how they, too, can design powerful products and ideas that can revolutionize the world. Students examine attributes of creative thinking and what it takes to be innovative in a global society. The idea of not reinventing the wheel but making it better is also explored. Students engage in activities that teach them to think in unique and innovative ways about problems and opportunities on a global scale.
This course focuses on helping students learn how to independently structure their lives to better meet academic, personal, and professional goals. The concepts of self-efficacy, self-directed action, and self-awareness serve as the focal point as students learn to build confidence in their skills and take initiative toward attaining their aspirations. Emphasis is placed on developing lifelong habits that lead to greater productivity. Through a series of application-based exercises and reflective work, learners gain knowledge on how to take more control of their futures. Additionally, goal setting, resilience, and the drive to get things done are explored.
This course focuses on leadership styles and the attributes necessary to lead with poise, confidence, and kindness. Students learn what professionalism is and how to apply it not just in leading others but in all their interactions. The importance and benefits of taking pride in one's work is explored. Techniques to win over followers and others are examined along with attributes of professional interactions. Creating an environment and workspace that embodies professionalism is discussed. Students will leave the course with skills they can use to be more confident in leading and interacting with others.
This course focuses on strategies that students can use to think critically in more effective ways. The concept of analyzing problems from various perspectives is discussed in detail, and different models of problem solving are introduced. The importance of seeking feedback from multiple stakeholders is explored, along with the necessity to research what individuals and various entities within an organization have done to overcome their challenges. Theories of critical thinking are analyzed, and students gain practical experience in dealing with authentic, real-life problems. Students have the opportunity to review examples of organizational leaders succeeding and thriving in solving problems. The notion of what it means to think outside the box is explored in depth.
This course is designed to help students learn to communicate effectively across borders, navigate cultural differences, and hone skills that will help them succeed on a global level. They will learn what it means to be culturally competent and culturally responsible. Hallmarks of cross-cultural communication are considered. Additionally, ways to harness the power of a diverse workforce along with suggestions on how to develop a global mindset are presented. Ethnocentrism and the challenges associated with it are examined. Students will leave the course with a better understanding of where they fit in the world on a global scale and practical steps they can take to improve their chances for success in the global economy.
This course provides an overview of how to write successfully for a variety of technical purposes. Through a series of exercises, students learn to respond appropriately in writing in various modes and organizational contexts for different audiences.  Ethics of the writer and the responsibility to the audience are discussed in-depth. Students gain practical experience and better understand how to decrease barriers to communication through the written word. The impact of culture and language on technical writing are also considered.
Quantitative reasoning is a foundational course in which concepts of basic mathematics are applied to real-world issues. Students explore a variety of topics including representing and interpreting graphs, diagrams or tables; demonstrating skills in basic mathematical procedures such as algebra, geometry, statistics, and logic; analyzing mathematical results to determine their reasonableness, interpret the findings, explain the solutions, and cite the limitations where applicable.