:: Certificate Program

Online Nonprofit Management Certificate Program—Section Descriptions

Budgeting in a Nonprofit Organization

This course covers budgets and how they are used in nonprofit organizational settings. You will gain an understanding of the uses and functions of budgets and the relationship between strategic budgeting and tactical budgeting. You will also learn about the organization-wide budget and different budget systems. The course will continue on to slightly more advanced budgeting topics such as capital budgets, cash flow budgets, and opportunity budgets. You will also learn how nonprofit organizations are using different budgeting techniques to handle operating challenges.

After completing this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Explain the uses and functions of nonprofit budgeting
  • Describe the different types of budgets used by a nonprofit organization
  • Recognize the use of the organization-wide operating budget and program operating budgets
  • Explain how an operating budget is created
  • Analyze a nonprofit operating budget through variance analysis
  • Describe how a capital budget is used and created
  • Explain the importance of a cash flow budget and describe how it is created
  • Recognize how the budget process can be managed for optimal results

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Fundraising for Nonprofit Organizations

Fundraising is one of the central activities of a nonprofit organization. To help finance operating budgets, nonprofits must raise money every year. In addition, special projects and improvements to facilities may be needed. In these situations, fundraisers will often launch large capital campaigns or apply for foundation grants.

This course offers an introduction to fundraising for nonprofit organizations, with an emphasis on the fundamental issues.

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Describe the key concepts related to nonprofit fundraising, such as annual campaigns, capital campaigns, and planned giving
  • Discuss how nonprofit funds can be raised through direct mail and telemarketing
  • Explain how the Internet and social media channels may be used to generate donations
  • Compare and contrast fundraising through corporate donations versus foundation grants
  • Explain the different sections of a grant application
  • Describe methods for evaluating annual campaign performance
  • Discuss how ethics applies to nonprofit fundraising
  • Explain the importance of donor relations

Estimated time to complete: 4-6 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

How to Read a Nonprofit Financial Statement

This course will develop your ability to appropriately interpret the major financial accounting statements that are used by nonprofit organizations. Ideally, you will gain an understanding of the types of financial statements that are used by nonprofit organizations, and how they differ from for-profit financial reporting. Also, you should gain an appreciation of both the power and limitations of accounting information in assessing financial performance and decision-making. You will also learn the uses of financial statement analysis, or ratio analysis for nonprofit organizations.

After completing this course, you’ll be able to:

  • Identify and describe the documents and financial statements included in a nonprofit organization’s financial report
  • Analyze the information found in nonprofit statements of financial positions
  • Analyze the information found in the statement of activities
  • Analyze the information found in the statement of cash flows
  • Describe the nature of business enterprises and nonprofit organizations, as reflected by the statement of financial position
  • Define financial (ratio) analysis and explain its objectives and limitations
  • Identify the various categories of financial ratios used in nonprofit analyses
  • Define and calculate the ratios within each category

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Leadership in a Nonprofit Organization

This course addresses the key issues surrounding leadership. What is leadership? Why is it important? What does it require to be a leader? How does leadership in a nonprofit environment differ from the private sector? What is visionary leadership? What role should ethics play? This course considers the foundations of leadership and examines how to be a successful and effective leader. The actual work of leadership requires specific qualities and skills. Some of these skills are unique to the nonprofit sector.

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Define leadership and explain its importance
  • Distinguish between some of the better-known leadership theories (Fieldler’s contingency theory, Path-goal theory, Vroom-Yetton-Jago theory)
  • Distinguish leadership from management and administration
  • Explain the role of ethics in leadership
  • Identify the benefits and drawbacks surrounding charismatic leadership
  • Recognize the importance of training, learning, and role-playing in leadership
  • Describe the impending leadership shortage in the nonprofit sector and discuss possible solutions to the problem
  • Discuss the seven bases for leadership
  • Explain why formal authority alone does not guarantee leadership
  • Explain leadership issues that are especially important in the nonprofit environment
  • Discuss the nine key qualities for leadership
  • Describe the leadership qualities that nonprofit leaders feel are important for success
  • Identify the five central skills needed for effective leadership and explain ways to strengthen or develop those skills in a leader

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Nonprofit Board and Volunteer Development

Volunteers are the lifeblood of most nonprofit organizations. Board members are a special type of volunteer. They help to guide the direction of a nonprofit, to promote the organization in the community, and to ensure that the nonprofit’s mission is fulfilled.

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the reasons why people volunteer and how nonprofits can make volunteer programs more successful
  • Describe the responsibilities of the nonprofit board
  • Discuss different models for organizing a nonprofit board
  • Describe the differences between a nonprofit board and a for-profit board
  • Explain different approaches for recruiting and filling a nonprofit board
  • Discuss the pros and cons of large vs. small boards
  • Describe why board evaluations are useful
  • Explain why nonprofit boards form committees
  • Discuss typical nonprofit board and staff interactions
  • Describe how nonprofits can develop and maintain a strong volunteer base

Estimated time to complete: 5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Principles of Marketing for Nonprofit Organizations

When we think of marketing, we typically think of the activities that a for-profit company engages in. However, marketing is an important function for nonprofit organizations as well. Marketing is the way that nonprofits determine the needs of their clients and their donors. As in the for-profit world, nonprofit marketing includes advertising, promotion, public relations, and customer relationship management. This course examines how nonprofits use marketing to publicize their mission and to gather contributions of time and money. The course also discusses marketing planning in the nonprofit organization.

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Define what marketing is within the nonprofit environment
  • Explain the service-intensive nature of nonprofit program activities
  • Explain how the marketing mix is expanded for service products (the Three Ps of Services Marketing)
  • Describe the importance of customer satisfaction and how expectations play a role in satisfaction with service products
  • Discuss the role of ethics in nonprofit marketing
  • Describe the importance of and explain the process of nonprofit marketing plan
  • Describe how target markets can be identified for donors
  • Explain how new service products are developed by nonprofits

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Strategy for Nonprofit Organizations

We hear a lot about for-profit companies, such as Apple Computer or Wal-Mart, and the successful strategies they have developed. Even though nonprofit organizations are not concerned with profit maximization, they too can benefit from following a strategy.

A nonprofit’s strategy constitutes its decisions about what it will do and how it will do it. Managers are critical to successfully implementing strategy since they are responsible for carrying out the actions that will support it. By understanding a nonprofit’s strategy and how it helps the organization fulfill its mission, a manager can do a better job implementing the strategy.

After completing this course, you should be able to:

  • Define strategy
  • Explain the basics of strategy in a nonprofit context
  • Describe the strategic planning process and how different approaches may be taken by different organizations
  • Discuss how mission statements are constructed
  • Explain how budgets and capital budgets interrelate with nonprofit strategic planning
  • Describe the success factors for strategic planning
  • Recognize the need for contingency planning

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Capital Campaigns

This course covers the key terminology and practices surrounding running a successful capital campaign within a nonprofit organization. You will learn about the phases of conducting a capital campaign—evaluation, feasibility study, organization, solicitation, and post-campaign activities—as well as how to avoid common pitfalls in capital campaigns. Expert video commentary, a case study, and vocabulary game will ensure you have a solid grasp of the content for execution in your nonprofit organization.

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Explain the five phases of a capital campaign
  • Define what a feasibility study is and why one should be conducted prior to a capital campaign
  • Discuss what role consultants can play in conducting a feasibility study
  • Describe important factors for evaluating consultants
  • Explain how tools like a gift range chart can help to organize campaign solicitations
  • Describe the different types of leadership teams and committees that may be formed to support a capital campaign
  • Discuss different techniques that can be used to troubleshoot a stalled capital campaign
  • Understand what is required for a successful solicitation meeting

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Introduction to Grant Writing

Strategic grant writing helps align the identified needs of a nonprofit (and its clients) with funding sources, whether foundations, government agencies, corporations or individuals.This course offers a guide to the basics of grant writing, an increasingly crucial method for raising money to fund projects and programs for nonprofits and other organizations. The course explores the relationship of grant writing to an organization’s strategy for fundraising. It also outlines the six stages of grant writing and highlights grant writing best practices.

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Discuss the importance of grant writing to nonprofits and other organizations seeking funding
  • Describe how capital grants and endowment grants can be integrated into fundraising efforts, including matching funds
  • Explain how grant writing and fundraising represent complimentary methods of ensuring a nonprofit’s financial stability
  • Outline the six stages of the grant writing process
  • Discuss the process of identifying and establishing a need for funding (Stage One)
  • Describe how to research grantmakers and available grants (Stage Two)
  • Explain the process of establishing relationships with potential funders (Stage Three)
  • Discuss the importance of alignment between a nonprofit and a funder’s mission (Stage Four)
  • Outline the grant writing process (Stage Five)
  • Explore tools and techniques employed in writing the grant proposal
  • Explain how a nonprofit should follow-up after winning or losing a grant award (Stage Six)
  • Outline best practices for grant writing
  • Apply your understanding of the grant writing process to case studies covering the six stages

Estimated time to complete: 4-6 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Social Media for Nonprofits

This course introduces learners to the use of social media in communicating, marketing, public relations, and fundraising for nonprofits. It explores the major social media platforms (Facebook, LinkedIn,Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest) as vehicles for nonprofits to reach their members, volunteers, and donors.

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Discuss the importance of social media to nonprofits for communicating, marketing, public relations, and fundraising
  • Explain how social media can be used to better engage a nonprofit’s audience
  • Outline the key questions nonprofits should consider as they become involved in social media
  • Discuss the strengths and weaknesses of Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and other social media platforms
  • Discuss the costs involved in social media
  • Explain the importance of establishing social media policies for your nonprofit
  • Discuss the measurement of social media effectiveness in communicating messages and in fundraising
  • Outline tools and techniques for successful social media use by a nonprofit
  • Apply your understanding of the social media environment to case studies

Estimated time to complete: 3-5 hours

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

Leading the Courtney Museum Simulation

Leading the Courtney Museum is a simulation designed to challenge and engage participants while exploring key real-world leadership issues confronted by nonprofit managers.

The learner assumes the role of executive director of the troubled Courtney Museum, and deals with a series of personnel, marketing, financial, and board/community relations issues.

As the learner makes tough decisions, an adaptive scoreboard reflects the impact of those choices on the museum’s prospects. Video commentary from experienced non-profit leaders provides qualitative context and explores the consequences of choosing different paths for reviving the museum.

Estimated time to complete: 10 hours of online course work

Ask the Expert: This course has an “Ask the Expert” feature, which submits your questions directly to an expert in the field you are studying. Questions are answered as quickly as possible and usually within 24 hours.

Successful Completion Requirement for IACET CEU: Learners must achieve an average test score of at least 70% to meet the minimum successful completion requirement and qualify to receive IACET CEU credit. Learners will have three attempts at all graded assessments.

Return to the top of page.

top of page