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Our courses

When traditional just won't do.

The Virginia Commonwealth University Office of Continuing and Professional Education recognizes that millions of adult learners across the country are looking for something other than a traditional four-year degree. So we offer something different — courses designed to suit your personal and professional goals, as well as your schedule.

With a world-class faculty, strong national brand and enduring community relationships, VCU offers an optimal environment for working professionals to pursue their continuing education and career aspirations. Our course portfolio is robust and continually growing.

Types of courses

Our office offers noncredit and credit courses. Some courses also offer continuing education units, which are a way of officially recognizing the time you put into your professional education when credits aren’t available.  

Signature opportunities

Some of our specialty areas include:

Addiction Studies Continuing Education

In partnership with the VCU Department of Rehabilitation Counseling, a FREE 1 Contact Hour Online Module "What is Addiction" is available for community members.

Certificate in Paralegal Studies

The VCU paralegal certificate program is a six-month noncredit certificate program designed to advance legal industry skills and career options. We focus on practical knowledge in the law profession to prepare you to be competitive in a legal career search.

Craft Beer Certificate Program

This noncredit program, for participants who are 21 and over, is a partnership with industry and on-campus partners including the VCU School of Business, VCU Brandcenter, VCU College of Engineering, and VCU Department of Biology. An introductory course is offered several times annually. Our first cohort of the Business of Craft Beer launched in Fall 2018.

Cultural competency and language classes

These classes, offered in the fall and spring semesters, introduce adult learners to different cultures and assist them in becoming interculturally competent and exposed to world languages. Language classes are conversation-based with an emphasis on oral fluency and listening, and have included Conversational Spanish, German, Italian, French, Spanish for Law Enforcement, Medical Spanish, Arabic, and American Sign Language. Faculty and staff may be eligible to use a tuition benefit for these 1-credit courses.

Engineering professional development

In partnership with the VCU College of Engineering, noncredit professional development classes are offered to entry-level scientists, engineers and managers in manufacturing and technology, and are appropriate as on-boarding for new employees. Networking and educational sessions have also been available for alumni and industry professionals through the VCU College of Engineering Alumni Board. Participants may be eligible to receive professional development hours for licensure.

Hospitality courses

As a university partner with Lovegevity's Wedding Planning Institute (LWPI), VCU OCPE offers these noncredit event planning courses:

Noncredit online learning

In addition to online options for hospitality programs and test prep courses, VCU OCPE offers a variety of noncredit online courses and noncredit certificates in partnership with The Learning Resources Network (LERN). Courses have included Customer Service, Selling, Self-Publishing, Computer Skills, Workplace topics, Google Tools, Podcasting, Social Media, and more.

Personal enrichment

Our opportunities for personal growth vary widely and include introductory and advanced Aikido, PADI Open Water Scuba, and mindfulness workshops, and have included a World Drumming Workshop, a primer on Richmond’s acclaimed French Film Festival, a noncredit Introduction to Writing Memoir course, family team-building workshops, and organization workshops taught by Certified Professional Organizers.

We also offer seasonally, a FREE Community Series on the 3rd Wednesday of each month, at Regency.

Play Therapy Training Program

Explore and learn how to apply the therapeutic power of play to communicate with, and treat clients. We offer a series of six noncredit weekend workshops designed for licensed, mental health professionals and school-based counselors, which are part of the requirements for application to become a Registered Play Therapist (RPT) or School-Based Registered Play Therapist (SB-RPT). Check back for future advanced workshops.

VCU Test Prep

Our test preparation courses for the GMAT®, GRE®LSAT®, SAT® and ACT® were designed by a team of former standardized exam question writers and test preparation experts. We have also expanded to include Praxis Core Test Prep for those entering the teaching profession. VCU Test Prep includes:

MCAT Prep and help in the Foundations of Biochemistry are also available, through our education partner, Kaplan Test Prep.

Want to find out more? Get in touch.