Frequently Asked Questions


  •  Is this program connected to Yale University?

     Yes. This program is an offering of the Yale School of the Environment and the Environmental Leadership & Training Initiative (ELTI) at Yale University.

  •  Who teaches the courses?

    Faculty members and experts from the Yale School of the Environment present key concepts, introduce each week, attend live discussions and advise participants throughout the program. ELTI mentors and international guests also make contributions to the program. (See Instruction Team)

  •  What is the role of the ELTI mentors?

     Your mentors from the Environmental Leadership & Training Initiative (ELTI) are experts in online education. They will provide you with guidance to use the course platform, complete course work, address scheduling constraints and connect with your instructors, peers and guests. They are available to help you to stay on track throughout the program.

  •  Will I receive academic credit for the program?

     No. This professional certificate is a not-for-credit, non-degree-bearing program. As a result, we are unable to provide transcripts. Participants who complete the program receive an official digital certificate of completion (see below for more information).

  •  Does the program provide continuing education credits?

     The TFL program is currently an approved provider of continuing education units (CEUs) through:

    Please check these institutions' websites for more information on documentation and eligibility requirements. If you belong to a different professional society that offers continuing education credits, please contact us to discuss options.

  •  Will I receive an official certificate?

     Participants who successfully complete the program receive an electronic certificate signed by the Dean of the Yale School of the Environment and the Director of the Environmental Leadership & Training Initiative at Yale University.

  •  Do I have to complete all courses to earn a certificate?

     Yes. Participants must successfully complete all four online courses and the capstone project course to receive their signed certificate. Guidelines for successful completion will be provided at the start of the program. Your ELTI mentors will be available to assist you throughout the program and provide guidance to help you meet the completion requirements. The one-week field course is optional.


Program experience

  •  How does the program work?

      All required courses and coursework takes place online in dedicated online learning platforms. The optional in-person field course happens in an ELTI field site in the tropics.

    Each online course contains eight modules with recorded video lectures, case studies, readings, assignments, quizzes, and a suite of online tools for you to learn at your own pace.  The program also includes weekly live sessions, where you can connect in real-time with program instructors and peers. The yearlong capstone project course contains detailed guidance and expert feedback for you to develop or improve an implementable project plan.

    The optional field course includes site visits and field exercises so you can apply what you learned online into practice on the ground.


  •  Can I participate from anywhere?

     Yes.  You can take the program from anywhere, as long as you have internet access (See Technical Requirements). Exception: due to US export control regulations, we cannot admit individuals based in certain sanctioned countries.

  •  Can I work full-time while enrolled in this program?

     Yes. We, designed this program to allow you to work full-time while completing the program. Most coursework can be completed "asynchronously" at a time that works for you during the week. We record our weekly live sessions, in case you can not attend due to personal or professional obligations.

  •  What is the weekly time commitment?

     You will need to dedicate approximately 5 - 6 hours per week during each 8-week online course. This typically includes:

    • 2.0 hours watching recorded lectures
    • 2.0 hours working on assignments and capstone project
    • 1.5 hours participating in real-time online discussion groups
  •  When does the program start and how long is it?

     The program starts annually in June and runs for one year. There are four 8-week online courses, a yearlong capstone project course, and an optional one-week field course. There are weeklong breaks between the online courses. See Program Calendar.

  •  Is there an on-campus requirement?

     All the required parts of the program are online. There is an optional one-week, in-person field course in an ELTI field site in the tropics.

  •  What are the Yale resources included in the program?

      You will have access to Yale materials and experts.

    • Your login will give you unlimited access to the program platforms, recorded lectures, case studies, readings, articles, and more.
    • You will be able to talk online to Yale faculty members and experts face-to-face.
    • Yale faculty members will work with you on your capstone project with the goal of having an implementable plan at the end of the program.
    • Your ELTI mentors will support you to access the course resources provided throughout the program.




  •  Am I eligible to participate in the program?

      The minimum requirements are:

    • Proficiency in written and spoken English
    • Bachelor’s degree or equivalent from an accredited institution of higher education
    • Reliable access to the technology needed (See Technical Requirements)
    • Please contact us if you have questions about eligibility

    Participants are admitted to the program through a competitive admissions process. Please note that meeting the minimum requirements does not guarantee admission to the program.


  •  What are the admissions requirements?

     To apply to this program, you must submit:

    • Completed online application form
    • Scanned or electronic transcript (official or unofficial)
      • The transcript should demonstrate completion of a four-year bachelor’s degree in any subject from an accredited U.S. college or university or the international equivalent.
      • Applicants with a three-year degree from an accredited international institution are eligible to apply. Admission will depend upon an equivalency evaluation of your degree.
      • Please provide a translation for transcripts in languages other than English. Translations do not need to be notarized.
      • We will consider waiving the academic requirement of a completed four-year bachelor’s degree on a case-by-case basis for individuals with significant professional experience (at least 10 years).
    • Resume or curriculum vitae
    • Personal statement and two short-response statements (see application for more details)
    • One professional recommendation
      • A recommendation from an academic or professional supervisor is preferred. We are looking for individuals who can evaluate your scholarship, professional activities, leadership skills and career goals.
      • A letter from family or friends is not acceptable.
      • Our online application allows you to identify your recommender. The system will email your recommender with access information.
  •  Is there any prerequisite coursework?

      No, there is no prerequisite coursework.

  •  I am not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident. Can I apply?

     Yes. Participants do not need a U.S. visa to enroll or participate in the program. Depending on your citizenship, you may need a visa to participate in the optional field course.

  •  Do I need to submit standardized test scores?

     No, you do not need to submit standardized test scores to apply.



  •  What is the cost of this program?

     The cost of attending this program is USD$6,000. For an additional USD$2,000, participants can attend a one-week field course in the tropics. (See Program Cost)

  •  Are scholarships available?

     Limited scholarships are available on a competitive basis. To be considered for a scholarship, you must submit a completed scholarship form in your program application. We recommend seeking out additional opportunities for tuition support, such as fellowships or grants. Employers may offer support for continuing education. (See Scholarships)

  •  Do you offer organizational discounts?

     We would be happy to consider discounts for groups and organizations. Please contact us to discuss options.