Certificate in School Culture and Violence

Certificate in School Culture and Violence

Children spend nearly as much time in school as they do out of it. Schools are not merely educational institutions where students can come and learn; they are also where students intermingle and socialize the most. While socialization can have many practical benefits, the primary purpose of K-12 schools is to provide formal education. To do that, educators must establish a safe, calm culture and learning environment for students, regardless of their ages. Without those things, youth cannot focus on learning.

Establishing suitable cultures and environments can be a complicated process requiring the consideration of several factors. Failure to meet those goals can lead to class disruptions, distractions, inappropriate behaviors, lack of respect for authority, and damage to school-student relationships. More extreme consequences can include complete breakdowns of the learning process or even episodes of violence or severe bullying in the classroom or on the school grounds.

When violence and bullying occur, every student is impacted whether they are a directly-injured victim or not. Teachers, administrators, and staff are also affected by exposure to violence and intimidating behavior in schools. Such acts create fear and demotivate people from wanting to attend. Children may feel uneasy or even emotionally distraught at school, resulting in a loss of performance and attention. Under such conditions, it is not uncommon for adolescents to introduce illicit substances into the equation, making matters worse.

Violence and bullying take many forms and can occur at any time, for several reasons. From cyberbullying to pressuring peers to use drugs or join gangs, many issues have underlying causes that trace back to behavioral disorders, socio-economic problems, and family matters outside the school’s span of control. Teachers may not be able to solve or even understand all the difficulties their students face. However, they do need to be knowledgeable of adolescent psychology, the myriad challenges and pressures modern students face, and what actions they can take to make a difference.

That’s where Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne’s timely Certificate in School Culture and Violence comes into the picture!


Benefits of the Certificate

Offered through Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne, this 15-credit  Certificate in School Culture and Violence can be tailored to the requirements of any student. The curriculum for every course was written by experts in the field to apply to the unique needs of busy working K-12 teachers who want the flexibility and convenience of distance learning, combined with rigorous content that counts for graduate credit.

All classes are self-paced, written in user-friendly language, and accessible in either an online or via emailed PDF format. All books are mailed to students regardless of the format selected. Like all Certificates offered by Professional Development Courses at the University of La Verne, the Certificate in School Culture and Violence offers graduate, non-degree semester credits primarily for classroom teachers and school administrators. Our Certificates are an acknowledgment of the extra effort you invested in improving your professional skills while enhancing the learning environments you have worked so hard to build. Earning a certificate from an accredited institution can potentially boost your professional career, by helping you meet qualifications for promotions, pay increases, or license renewal/recertification.*

Each 15-credit certificate program features an extensive list of current, three-credit courses. We encourage students to finish as many certificates as they need; however, any given course may only count towards one specific certificate.

Students can take up to 15 credits per semester or complete them one at a time. Once enrolled, you have up to 12 months to complete a course. There is no deadline to meet for obtaining the certificate, which is awarded automatically (and at no extra cost) upon the successful completion of the required classes. 

*Note, the University of La Verne is accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges. Professional Development Certificates are not designed to fulfill any specific district or state requirements. Students are advised to check with their school district or state department before enrolling in a course.

Certificate in School Culture and Violence Course Options  

Course options for the 15-credit Certificate in School Culture and Violence are:

Curbing School Violence - Learn how to create safer learning environments, build respectful relationships, respond safely to threats, establish fair discipline plans for disruptive behavior, and craft classroom intervention plans for preventing gang activity.

Drugs: Licit and Illicit- Equip yourself with current knowledge of modern legal and illegal drugs, their uses and abuses, effects on the brain and body, terminology, withdrawal effects, and more. 

Female Gangs - Explore the history and behavior of youth street gangs, focusing on female gang members, their beliefs, styles of dress, graffiti, symbols, rituals, and reasons for joining.

Adolescent Psychology: Current Research - This two-credit course examines positive and negative aspects of adolescent development, including issues related to biological, cognitive and socioemotional changes, school violence, Internet usage, body image, steroid use, sexual behavior, and decision-making.

Bullying - Utilize modern research on bullying to develop clear rules against bullying behavior, provide support and protection for victims, work with parents, understand legal issues, and develop intervention and anti-bullying programs.

Child Behavior Disorders - Learn to devise teaching strategies to suit children facing anxiety, post-traumatic stress, OCD, ADD/ADHD, and other problems that can cause behavioral and conduct disorders that disrupt learning.

Cyber Bullying: Strategies for Balance and Safety - Uncover the effects of cyberbullying and learn to create cyber balance through prevention, assessment, intervention, and other techniques that help tech-savvy students make balanced choices regarding technology.

Suicide, Self Injury, and School Violence Prevention - Get educated on the risks, factors, and policies related to suicide, self-injury, school violence, ways they are often linked, and procedures for the safety and protection of students and faculty.


How to Register

All three-credit courses for the Certificate in School Culture and Violence are completed online or via an emailed PDF format. They are open for anyone to register at any time during an open semester. After the completion of each course, students receive graduate, non-degree semester credit on official transcripts from the University of La Verne, an accredited university in La Verne, California. Upon completion of the 15 required credits, students are eligible to receive their certificate at no additional cost beyond that of the courses. No application required as the certificate is automatically mailed to the student’s address. 

Registration for classes is fast and straightforward and can be done online or over the phone. Courses are offered on a rolling basis during three standard semesters, and you can begin whenever you are ready! The registration dates are:

  • Fall: September 1 - January 31
  • Spring: February 1 - May 31
  • Summer: June 1 - August 31

As educators, we owe it to our students to do everything we can to keep them safe. Creating and enforcing a positive school culture can substantially enhance student learning and engagement while simultaneously curbing the ever-looming threats of bullying, violence, and disruptive or inappropriate behavior. Sign up for a class today to get started on improving the future for your students!



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