Graduate Certificate in Disaster Mental Health
University of South Dakota

Program Details

The Graduate Certificate in Disaster Mental Health is offered through the Disaster Mental Health Institute at USD, one of the leading agencies in the world in the field of disaster psychology. This psychology certificate prepares mental health professionals to serve their communities in times of need.

Students will gain knowledge and skills in helping groups prepare for, respond to, and recover from disaster, terrorist attacks, and public health emergencies. The program is intended for both existing mental health professionals and as a supplement to mental health graduate training. The National Biodefense Science Board also recommends Disaster Mental Health training for civic officials, emergency managers, first responders, and disaster relief workers.

Areas of coursework within this certificate program include:

  • Crisis intervention
  • Disaster mental health
  • Serving diverse communities in disaster
  • Traumatic stress
  • Management in disaster mental health
  • Directed readings and research in disaster psychology


  • Official transcript
  • Hold a bachelors degree
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Statement of Purpose
  • Resume
  • Applicants must complete a face-to-face interview
  • If applicant is not from the region, the interview can be completed via Skype or Elluminate. Applicants must complete a successful criminal background check prior to matriculation.

School Accreditation Statement

North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission