Science, Technology, and Innovation for Global Development Certificate

The Science, Technology, and Innovation for Global Development Certificate provides a transdisciplinary experience for students seeking to work as change agents within academia and the wider realms of policy. As a result of an increasingly complex global environment, professionals who can engage a broad range of stakeholders—especially affected communities with soicio-technical problem solving approaches—are needed.

Value Proposition Description

Using theories and methods drawn from humanities, social sciences, natural sciences, engineering, and business, students completing this graduate certificate will learn essential skills in global innovation that will contribute to their own success as well as those whom they serve. The graduate certificate consists of a partnership between programs and departments from the School of Arts and Sciences, the School of Engineering, the Business School, and The Global School. No matter what your major is, the Science, Technology, and Innovation for Global Development Certificate conveys strategic thinking skills, empathy toward practice, and cross-cultural competency that is needed in all industries—including, business, government, the non-profit sector, and academia.

Group digging trench in soil


This global graduate certificate program will give you the skills you need to demonstrate knowledge of the relationship between science and technology and design in global innovation contexts. WPI’s approach to theory and practice and the team-based projects in this program will enable students to better, more accurately, understand what it means to design for communities and customers who are different than they are and to assess the suitability of different research methods for a range of socio-technical problems.

Applicants must have a BS degree in any discipline. If you’re a WPI student in your senior year of your undergraduate degree, you may take this program if your schedule allows and you have completed your IQP at an international site.

The Science, Technology, and Innovation for Global Development graduate certificate program requires completion of four courses in the Science, Technology, and Innovation for Development sequence for a total of 10 credits: 

  • DEV 501 Social Innovation and Global Development (3 Credits)
  • DEV 502 Design for Social Change (3 Credits)
  • DEV 510 Design Studio 1 (1 Credit)
  • DEV 530 Ethics in Design (3 Credits)

How to Apply

The following materials are required when applying to a certificate program:

  1. Completed online application
  2. Official transcripts from undergraduate institutions previously attended
  3. Application fee (waived for current WPI undergraduates and WPI alumni)
  4. One letter of recommendation
  5. Official TOEFL/IETLS test scores required for international students who come from countries where English is not their first language.
    • For all Business School graduate programs the minimum score for the TOEFL exam is 90 and the IELTS minimum score is 7.
    • Applicants who have completed two years of full-time study in a college or university in the U.S., U.K., Ireland, Australia, New Zealand, or the Anglophone regions or Africa, Canada, or the Caribbean, within five years of matriculating at WPI are not required to submit TOEFL or IELTS* scores. Students who have studied at a school where the language of instruction is English, but the official language of the country is not English do not qualify for a waiver (e.g., study at the American University in Cairo, Egypt, does not qualify a student for the TOEFL waiver).
  6. Statement of Purpose
  7. Resume

For the standardized tests, WPI’s institution code is 3969 and all departments use the same code.

*Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) downloads IELTS scores that have been transmitted to our e-download account. We will not accept paper IELTS test report forms. Please contact your test center and request that your scores be sent to the following IELTS e-download account:

Worcester Polytechnic Institute Graduate Admissions

100 Institute Road

Worcester, MA 01609



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Earn a Master’s in Science & Technology for Innovation

Do you have your BA or BS and want to apply these global innovation skills to change the world around us? Be part of a revolutionary, transdisciplinary team of researchers who work to create change with our master’s in science and technology for innovation in global development. Maybe your interest lies in helping protect people and our environment from the impacts of changing climate. Consider earning a master’s in community climate adaptation which focuses on addressing technical, cultural, socioeconomic, and policy issues related to climate adaptation. Students work on teams to address major challenges in communities around the globe.

Earn Your Undergraduate Degree First

Whether you’re just embarking on your college career or thinking about building a future in pressing global issues, our bachelor’s in society, technology, and policy is a great fit. Dive into critical problems like global health, environmental regulations, political systems, and more as you immerse yourself in how social science and technology intersect. You’ll graduate with the big-picture skillset to concentrate in areas like law, policy, history, or culture. If you’re intrigued by solving environmental problems our world faces today, consider earning a bachelor of arts in environmental and sustainability studies. Students pursuing the BA will learn to communicate technical information and gain the know-how to implement scientifically accurate and culturally sensitive change.