Program mission

The graduate Certificate in Gender Violence Intervention is designed to prepare individuals for positions related to understanding, studying, responding to and preventing sexual and domestic violence in a variety of communities and settings. It provides specialized study in gender violence and can be earned on its own, or in conjunction with another graduate degree in the Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs or the School of Social Work.

Program goals

  1. The program will guide students in the development of strong academic understanding related to gender violence intervention.
  2. The program will guide students in the development of skills in applying academic concepts to the practice of gender violence intervention.

Student learning outcomes

  1. Academic understanding
    1. Students will have knowledge of common types of gender violence.
    2. Students will have knowledge of theoretical perspectives of gender violence.
    3. Students will have knowledge of gender violence policies.
  2. Skills
    1. Students will have the ability to demonstrate methods of applying concepts to problems, practice and policy.
    2. Students will demonsrate professional behaviors and boundaries while working in GVI settings and with diverse populations.

VCU Graduate Bulletin, VCU Graduate School and general academic policies and regulations for all graduate students in all graduate programs

The VCU Graduate Bulletin website documents the official admission and academic rules and regulations that govern graduate education for all graduate programs at the university. These policies are established by the graduate faculty of the university through their elected representatives to the University Graduate Council.

It is the responsibility of all graduate students, both on- and off-campus, to be familiar with the VCU Graduate Bulletin as well as the Graduate School website and academic regulations in individual school and department publications and on program websites. However, in all cases, the official policies and procedures of the University Graduate Council, as published on the VCU Graduate Bulletin and Graduate School websites, take precedence over individual program policies and guidelines.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on academic regulations for graduate students.

Graduation requirements

As graduate students approach the end of their academic programs and the final semester of matriculation, they must make formal application to graduate. No degrees will be conferred until the application to graduate has been finalized.

Graduate students and program directors should refer to the following graduation requirements as published in the Graduate Bulletin for a complete list of instructions and a graduation checklist.

Visit the academic regulations section for additional information on graduation requirements.

Apply online today.

Admission requirements

Admission requirements
Degree:Semester(s) of entry:Deadline dates:Test requirements:
CertificateFallApr 1 (Mar 1 for financial aid)
SpringOct 1

Applicants must meet all general admission requirements of the VCU Graduate School.

Students with a B.A. or B.S. degree are eligible for admission into the certificate program. Relevant course work or practical experience will be considered in evaluating admission and substitution of courses. No more than six hours of substitution or equivalency credit will be granted. An overall GPA of 3.0 is required to receive the certificate, and no more than one grade of C may be earned in the certificate program curriculum.

Degree requirements

In addition to general VCU Graduate School graduation requirements, a total of 15 graduate credit hours is required to earn the Certificate in Gender Violence Intervention. Five courses are required, including an internship (three credit hours) that offers the opportunity for involvement in all phases of work in this field.

Curriculum requirements

Required courses

GVPA 623Research Methods for Government and Public Affairs3
GVPA 635Theorizing Gender Violence3
GVPA 693Internship3
PADM 650Principles of Nonprofit Management3
SLWK 761Interpersonal Violence in Clinical Social Work Practice3
Total Hours15

The minimum total of graduate credit hours required for this certificate is 15.

Students pursuing the Certificate in Gender Violence Intervention have an opportunity to combine their studies with a Master of Social Work

The combined Master of Social Work and Certificate in Gender Violence Intervention is a coordinated effort among the L. Douglas Wilder School of Government and Public Affairs, the School of Social Work and community advocates working in the area of sexual and domestic violence. 

Application process

Apply online at VCU Graduate Admissions. For additional information, contact:

Elizabeth Cramer, Ph.D.
Professor, School of Social Work
Phone: (804) 828-9029

Sarah Jane Brubaker, Ph.D.
Director, Gender Violence Intervention Program
Phone: (804) 827-2400

Sarah Jane Brubaker, Ph.D.
Associate professor and graduate program director
(804) 827-2400

Additional contact
Graduate Student Services and Advising
(804) 828-6837

Program website: