Applied Educational Neuroscience Certificate

Butler University is excited to offer the opportunity for educators, counselors, social workers and mental health practitioners to acquire a certificate in Applied Educational Neuroscience with an emphasis on Adversity/ Trauma and the Brain through a graduate, non-degree program.

Tuition for the Applied Educational Neuroscience Certificate for the 2023-2024 academic year is $580 per credit hour. Please see information below for details regarding the program and how to apply.

Applications for the Applied Educational Neuroscience Certificate for the 2023-2024 academic year are now closed. Any applications received after 05/05/23 can be moved to the following academic year.

The Applied Educational Neuroscience (AEN) certification program is specifically designed to meet the needs of educators, social workers, counselors, mental health practitioners, parent, and anyone who sits beside our children and youth.  The certification is intended to provide graduate and post graduate students with an opportunity to become acquainted with the theoretical and empirical literature of educational neuroscience, social and affective neurosciences, adversities (individual and community) trauma and how the brain and nervous system are impacted and develop through the continuum of adversity and trauma. Trauma and adversity influence behaviors, relationships, and academic acquisition. This 9-credit hour track aligns with the Indiana Developmental Standards for educators.  The program consists of three content courses, each three credits, with the final course designed as a practicum for creating a specific project, template, or professional development within this area. The first and second course must be taken before the third practicum course as graduate non-degree and degree status.

This certification specifically addresses the research, the application of the research in the areas of the brain and nervous system development, adversity and how emotional social, and cognitive development are disrupted by these adversities and trauma. The AEN certification will also deeply explore the resiliency and the post-traumatic growth mindset of brain and nervous system reparation and healing because of intentional co-regulation and connection and emotional protective factors that buffer an individual’s experiences when adversity and trauma occur. Through these experiences, we quickly form a cohort learning community.

All courses are virtual through the Canvas learning management system and on Zoom. The first course includes both synchronous and asynchronous formats.  For the 2023-2024 academic year, the first course is in June.

Summer Semester, 3 weeks:

  • Week 1: asynchronous course work
  • Week 2: synchronous online meetings, Monday through Friday via Zoom (Eastern Standard Time Zone)
  • Week 3: asynchronous course work

In the first summer intensive course, we explore the research and begin applying the research in our schools, mental health practices and communities.  The second and third courses (practicum course), meet synchronous online meetings, Monday and Tuesday via Zoom (Eastern Standard Time Zone).  In the final practicum course, graduate students will design a program, template, or capstone encapsulating this certification based on personal interests, passions, and vocations.

Applications are accepted beginning in January of the 2023-2024 academic year for next year’s cohort.  The deadline to apply is May 5, 2023.  Any applications submitted after this time will be considered for the following academic year.

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ED 455 Research, Strategies and Principles of Applied Educational Neuroscience
(3 graduate credit hours)

This course provides a foundation for students to begin acquiring the knowledge and skills within a practical and professional context in order to apply the research of neuroscience, developmental psychology and pedagogy through classroom instruction, ecologies, assessments and relationships. Students will model, role play, discuss and present, as well as evaluate and problem solve. Students will study the impact of neuro-diversity and neuro-diverse climates and ecologies of K-12 students, developing understandings of how unique patterns of brain development vary as a result of neuro-diverse environments. This course is one of three courses required for completion of the certification in Applied Educational Neuroscience.

ED 456 Informed Trauma and Brain Instruction / Social and Emotional Learning 
(3 graduate credit hours)

This course will focus on the effects of adversity on brain development and students’ well-being with regard to the social, emotional and cognitive health of educators and their students.  The course will explore the research, principles and strategies of educational neuroscience as it relates to brain development and trauma-informed instruction, engagement and discipline.

ED 457 Applied Neuroscience/Trauma and the Brain Integrated into Social and Emotional Learning Practicum 
(3 graduate credit hours)

This course is designed as a practicum for the integration of learned research from applied educational neuroscience within the ED 455 and ED 456. Students will have the opportunity to integrate the latest research, practices, assessments and strategies into their classrooms, schools, mental health practices and other vocational settings developing workshops, programs, or educational settings that further develop the areas of applied educational neuroscience.  This course will provide feedback, reflection, whole class and individual meetings with students in their field or study and work.

Tuition for the Applied Educational Neuroscience Certificate for the 2023-2024 academic year is $580 per credit hour.  To be considered for graduate, non-degree-seeking admission to the Applied Educational Neuroscience Certificate, all applicants must complete the items listed below:

  • An application for graduate admission sent to Admissions
  • Official transcripts or copies of official transcripts from all colleges and universities where candidates:
    • Earned a degree
    • Earned more than 15 credits (undergraduate and graduate)
    • Completed any program prerequisite (regardless of number of credit hours)
    • Completed courses for which candidates are applying for transfer credit
    • An undergraduate/graduate GPA of 3.0 or above

Copies of official transcripts may be uploaded in the online application for application review only. Applicants who receive an offer of admission will be required at that time to submit official final transcripts issued directly from the institution(s) for verification prior to enrollment. More information is available in the application for admission.

For more information, please contact: Dr. Lori Desautels, Program Coordinator, at 317-940-8095 or