Program Overview

The Graduate Certificate Program in HIV & sexually transmitted infections (STIs)  is an interdisciplinary program that provides students with the conceptual knowledge and practical skills needed to work in the field of HIV & STIs. The program provides training and context for the global AIDS epidemic, arguably the most pressing public health issue of our time. It equips future professionals in health and social science disciplines to address the complex interplay of biomedical, social, economic, gender, political, and geographic factors that impact the spread of HIV and other STIs. Controlling these epidemics requires comprehensive strategies across sectors and countries; this program provides a framework and interdisciplinary foundation for this.

This certificate program currently involves affiliated faculty and steering committee members from multiple Departments and Schools across the university in the health and social sciences and other disciplines.


A graduate certificate program is a linked series of credit-bearing graduate courses that constitutes a coherent body of study and culminates in a Capstone project. The Graduate Certificate in HIV and STI’s is intended to enhance the education of matriculated UW graduate students and professional students beyond their regular course of study. Students will qualify for the certificate upon completion of 15 credits of approved coursework and a capstone project. Completed graduate certificates are recorded on the student’s UW transcript.

Please note that in order to complete this program, you need to reside in the state of Washington. The Graduate Certificate Program in HIV and STIs is not able to offer scholarships or any funding to students.

For master's degree students, the certificate program is typically completed during their second year of study, but students may choose to begin taking courses within the program during their first year without being admitted to the program. Students are encouraged to complete the certificate in one year. If two years pass without completing the program, students must reapply.

One quarter prior to graduation, all students must submit a planning form via email to the program manager.

2015-2016 Planning Form 

Coursework: Completion of the graduate certificate program requires a minimum of 15 course credits, 2 classes must be taken from the selected core courses,  3 credits are earned through the completion of a Capstone Project and the remaining credits are elective courses. Nine credits must be graded. Overlap of coursework applied towards the certificate program and degree program must not exceed 6 credits and is limited to elective coursework in each program. Core course requirements of a degree program may not be counted toward the certificate. Students are strongly encouraged to work with the coordinator of their degree program and with certificate staff to develop a specific course plan that will meet the requirements of both the degree and the certificate.

Academic course work on HIV and STIs (for example, a public policy class in which the student’s individual project focused on AIDS policy) may be substituted if the course is not in conflict with Graduate School Certificate Program requirements. To petition, please email with the course syllabus and a description of relevant course work. There must be relevant HIV/STI content within the course which may include a research project or paper.

Capstone Project and Independent Study Credits: Students will complete an individual Capstone project or paper over the course of the program and present their work at a Capstone seminar in the final quarter of their academic program. The Capstone project must be separate from a student's thesis or doctoral work. Students must sign up for 3 independent study credits with a UW faculty member as part of their capstone requirement. Capstone project proposals must be approved by the Certificate Program Manager and Director. Examples of Capstone projects include: providing technical assistance to ongoing HIV/STI research studies (development of study instruments, data analysis, field implementation, laboratory testing), writing a paper exploring a contextual aspect of HIV/STI (intersections between gender and HIV, analysis of international AIDS policy, program evaluation of a STI treatment program), or developing a teaching case scenario based on a clinical internship..

Capstone Project Guidelines/Mentor Instructions (PDF, 82KB)

Core Courses

(8 credits required)

  • GH 560 - Principles of HIV & STI Research. This is an intensive two-week course taught each summer. 
  • EPI 586/GH 532 - Responsible Conduct of International Research (course begins prior to start of fall quarter).
  • EPI 530/GH 562/MED 530 - HIV: A Multidisciplinary Approach
  • GH573/CONJ 553 - Clinical Management of HIV. Offered to UW students in person; offered distance to UW / WWAMI student. free of charge via distance learning technologies to groups of students in resource-limited settings. More information.
  • GH 522 - Global Program Management and Leadership  Offered to UW students in person; offered simultaneously via distance learning technologies to groups of students in resource-limited settings.
  • GH 563/EPI 549 - Prevention Research Methods for HIV and STI

Selected Electives Courses

(Minimum of 4 credits) - Elective courses may not be counted toward core course credit requirements.

  • GH 511 - Problems in International Health
  • EPI 588/HSERV 590A - Preparing and Writing Research Proposals
  • EPI 527 - Vaccines
  • GH 543 - Global Health Pharmacy: Medicines, Practice, and Policy
  • EPI 539/GH 531 - Research Methods in Developing Countries
  • HSERV/EPI/GH 590 - Special Topic Series (Topic changes every quarter. Some courses may be applicable to certificate program; must get permission of Certificate Manager)
  • BIOSTAT 524 - Design of Medical Studies (course has prerequisites)
  • GH 533 - Survey, Research Methods
  • EPI 532 - Epidemiology of Infectious Diseases in Resource-Limited Countries
  • ANTH 308 - Anthropology, Women, and Gender in Development

The following courses can be counted toward elective credit for the certificate if course assignments are focused on issues related to HIV and STIs. Approval from the instructor and the Program advisor, Dr. Kim, must be given for this focus before credit can be granted for these courses toward the certificate:

  • HSERV 522 - Health Program Evaluation (3-5) - course assignments must be focused on HIV and STI
  • NURS 576 - Assessment and Collaboration with Communities Populations and Systems - course assignments must be focused on HIV and STI
  • GH 533 – Survey Research Methods
  • GH 541 – Fundamentals of Implementation Science in Global Health
  • GH/EPI/ HSERV 600 - International Field Work related to HIV/STI (six months min.) Field Work must take place in a developing country and for a minimum of six months. Fieldwork must directly relate to HIV/STI and CANNOT be associated with thesis or practicum. Please talk with Dr. Kim to confirm that credit can be received for international work.


Applications are accepted on a rolling basis though we strongly encourage you to apply as early as possible to ensure you can complete all requirements for the certificate at the same time or before you complete your degree requirements.

To apply, please submit the following materials via email to the Certificate Program Coordinator. (Paper applications will not be accepted):

  1. Application Form (DOC, 51KB)
  2. Background and Goal Statement - maximum of one page describing your area of interest within the field of HIV and STIs, any relevant technical or language skills, relevant work, volunteer or international experience, and how the certificate program will help meet your academic and professional goals.
  3. Current resume or CV
  4. UW transcripts (official or unofficial)

For questions regarding the application process please contact:

Contact Information

For additional information about this graduate certificate program in AIDS and STIs, please contact:

Graduate Certificate Program in HIV and STIs

Box 357965

Program Director, Graduate Certificate in HIV and STIs
H. Nina Kim, MD MSc